Now that we’re in the heart of the 2019 season, every couple of days there is a milestone or special event to look forward to. The typical daily routine is so seamless now that the rhythms of camp life provide a stable backdrop to enjoy and celebrate these traditions, big and small.
This past Saturday morning, we hosted the Timanous relays. For over a half century now, Timanous has welcomed our fellow neighboring camps to the shores of Panther Pond for a swim meet. While not all of our campers participate in the races, many spectate on the shore, the porches of nearby cabins, and even in kayaks or canoes from the water. This year, we had so many camps accept our invite (eight) that we held two heats for most of the races. The Timanous boys, as well as the visiting campers, all competed hard and cheered their swimmers on. It was heartening to see that the sportsmanship all around was an even greater force, and as our guests readied to return to their camps, creative songs of congratulations sprung up from each group.
This summer continues to be blessed with amazing weather. We were expecting a large thunderstorm to pass through the other afternoon, but we had hours of unexpected sun and only a brief period of clouds and a bit of heavy rain. You might say that isn’t the best of luck, but when else can you hold an entire activity devoted to dam building in Red River? (and then of course dam-dismantling the next day).
On Sunday morning the entire camp traveled the eight miles to our sister camp, Wohelo. We call this day Hiiteni Sunday, where each year campers, counselors, alumni, family and friends gather to celebrate the founders of the Luther Gulick Camps (which became Timanous and Wohelo). There was some time before the ceremony for our campers to explore Wohelo (their rocky shores above Sebago are quite the contrast for our sloping grassy hills) and for those with relatives at Wohelo to visit. During the ceremony, we learned about the original founders and those that have been instrumental in the continuation of the camps. It was especially poignant this year as we embark on another successful transition of camp leadership.
As always, there was lots of singing: the camp songs we sing every year to remember and celebrate our history, as well as new selections that counselors and campers practice for weeks to perform in front of the large gathering. This year was the first for the newly-formed Timanous Choir, whose great performance surely kicked off a lasting tradition for future Hiiteni Sundays.
We closed the week back at home with Council Fire. It was the first time since the recent heat wave when it felt brisk right after dinner, and you could wish that you brought up your long-sleeve from the cabin. The imperceptible changes in sunrise and sunset and cooling temps are easy to miss, and then you look up and realize the summer is flying by. We only have one more week in the first half of camp. Lots to look back on for sure, and lots still to come.
Check out our Shutterfly site for all photos from the 2019 summer.