This past week, the Inter Girls had their “big trip” to Great Escape theme park. We had beautiful weather, and all of the campers (and staff members) were super-pumped for all of the rides and attractions. Everyone made sure to take advantage of every minute of the day and made sure not miss out on anything that Great Escape had to offer (rides, sweets, games).
The staff expected to have a fun day at Great Escape, but I don’t think that they ever thought that they would see so much growth in their campers. Many of the campers were nervous to go on the roller coasters, but throughout the day, they pushed beyond their comfort zones and tried new things. Despite the fact that they were traveling in mixed groups, there was still a tremendous amount of support during any vulnerable moments of fear.
This week was the Fuzzy Feud finale, an all-camp activity modeled after the game show “Family Feud” with categories and questions all about camp.
Each division (Juniors, Inters, Seniors, LITs) had a group competing for them during the finale for a special prize. All of the campers were very excited to win the special prize, and enthusiastically cheered on the group representing their division.
Last night was Camp Echo Lake’s biennial Alawatchakeema ceremony. During this special all-camp event, the spirit of Alawatchakeema visits Echo Lake to make sacrifices in order to purify the community. Head Staff members dress up in tribal gear and run the sacrificial ceremony.
Chiefs emerge from the ground, zip-line in through the trees and float across the lake. Before the ceremony begins, there is a dance performed around the fire pit, and the Witch Doctor comes out to announce the Chiefs. The Chiefs then announce which members of the Echo Lake community will make sacrifices by not speaking, not eating breakfast or sleeping under the stars.
All of the campers know that this event is a sacred, long-standing Echo Lake tradition. They were all very respectful and quiet during the entire ceremony, and today, they are adhering to their sacrifices.
This week, all of Main Camp participated in “Random Acts of Kindness Day”. All of the campers wrote thank you notes to the people that help make their Echo Lake experience special (Head Counselors, support staff, etc.). The day was a good reminder to campers and staff alike to appreciate everyone and everything that camp has to offer.
This week, Tribal is coming to an end. The campers will join together to watch the Sachem Games (sporting events that the Senior Village and LITs compete in) as well as Tribal Sing. We will also have our camp party in the Lodge on Friday, followed by banquet and reprise on Saturday.