The final part of the YMCA Camp Oakasha mission is providing lasting memories for our campers. Over the past few days I've asked campers, young and old what their favorite memories of camp are and I love the answers I've heard so far!
Rainy days are always something we as staff put extra energy into, and as it turns out, many of the campers' favorite memories have taken place on rainy days! One of our CIT's who has come to camp "for forever" told me that her favorite YMCA Camp Oakasha memory was canoeing in the rain a few years ago. Although at the time she thought it was going to be cold and dismal, it turned out to be an awesome adventure! Another camper told me that swimming in the pool in the rain was her favorite memory. It seems that to some campers the rain actually makes regular camp activities more fun!
A younger camper told me that his favorite camp memory was his first day at YMCA Camp Oakasha. He is the self-proclaimed "Most Popular Kid at Camp" because "everyone knows his nickname and always says hi." This sense of camp-gained-confidence was echoed by another camper who said that his favorite memory was when he was the "Most Famous Camper," because the other kids always saved him a spot in four square and he got "Tommy Re-Do's" whenever he wanted them.
Other campers remembered Scavenger Hunts, tricking their counselors during games of Kick the Can, and coming up with cheers for the Color Games. It's really interesting to reflect on what kids remember and what is important to them at camp. Sometimes it's big special events that we put extra planning into, like the Color Games, and sometimes it's everyday activities made extraordinary!