Monday, April 4, 2016

Camp photos and another counselor letter

Happy Week 2 of Spring Term, everyone!  The first session of the Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp capstone is now FULL, but applications for the remaining sessions are still being accepted.  If you’re still considering taking the capstone this summer, now is the time to apply.

Whether you’re still considering applying, are already enrolled, or are reading this because you’re an alumni or have other interests in MHKC, we hope you enjoy these photos that provide a glimpse into the magic that is the Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp capstone.

Following the photos is a short letter written by a former counselor, which was part of the “Letters to Future Counselors” assignment that students receive at the end of the capstone.  This letter gives further insight into the experiences that counselors and campers alike enjoy every year at camp, and you can read more like it here.  Enjoy!

A photo of a medium-sized crowd in front of Fanning Hall at Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp.  The building is brown, with a large, sloping green roof.  Nearly every person in the image has their hands raised towards the upper left corner of the photo, as if they have been captured mid-dance.
A photo of two people at the stables; the side of a horse can be seen in the background on the left, and the torsos of two other people are also visible in the background.  Both people in the foreground are wearing name tags made from the cross section of a small round piece of wood.  The left individual’s tag reads “Katie,” and the right individual’s reads “Doni.”  Katie is wearing a tie-dyed t-shirt, a blue helmet, and glasses, and her right arm is outstretched towards the sky while her left is draped over Doni’s shoulder.  Doni is wearing a green tank top, and is leaning over to be closer to Katie’s height.
A photo of campers and counselors in the pool.  Some are playing with floats.  Most are slightly blurred in the background, but in the foreground is an individual resting on a blue float and wearing a red baseball cap pulled low over their eyes.
A photo of three adolescent individuals standing outside in front of some windows and smiling at the camera.  In front of them, some towels and pieces of clothing are hung over a rail.  The tallest person is on the left, is wearing a dark t-shirt with blue printing on the front, and has their right hand raised in a “thumbs up” sign.  The person in the middle is the second-tallest, and is wearing an NFL jersey.  The person on the left is the shortest, and is wearing a red long-sleeved shirt.
A photo of campers and counselors canoeing on a lake, with a lightly snow-covered Mt. Hood rising up behind them on the left.  There are three canoes: a green one on the left, a red one in the center, and dark, possibly blue one on the right.  The canoe-ers are waving at the camera, and one is holding a canoe paddle aloft.  Behind them is a line of thick green forest before the mountain rises into a cloudless blue sky.
All photos courtesy of Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp.

Dear New Counselor,

        I hope that you are as excited as I was on day one.  Your fears will settle and your positive attitude will carry you far.  Utilize every opportunity you have to get to know your group of counselors, they are more valuable than gold coffee up here.  Personal care is not as gross or intimidating as you may think.  It just is, so do what needs to be done, wash your hands, and keep moving along.
        Bring snacks next week and share with your group during meetings.  Chocolate is very necessary.
        Feel safe enough to cry and know that you can ask for help.  Understand that your idea of the ideal camp experience may not fit into your camper’s life.  Consider their needs, do your best, and rest when you are given the time.
        This will be hard.  This will be incredible.  Magic happens in the pool and happy tears bloom.  Never give up, and remember to live.
        I believe in you.  Good luck!

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