Dear Campers, Parents, Staff, Alums & Friends,
If you can remember back to when you were a kid (assuming not everyone who reads this newsletter is), you may remember feeling like summer belongs to you! And that’s right on the money….summers should belong to kids! We know that can’t be the case for everyone. Some kids don’t have that luxury. For those who do, it’s an awesome feeling. Think about what it felt like to know that school was ending, and summer was just starting. You’ve turned in your last paper, taken your last test, cleaned out your desk or your locker, and you are walking out those school building doors for the last time of the school year! And your whole summer is just laying there waiting for you! I am biased towards summer, I admit. I have strong memories from my childhood, and that one stands out as the greatest feeling of excitement and anticipation year after year after year! There are other great moments of excitement, to be sure. Start of a new baseball season when I played as a kid? Fantastic. Same with new hockey and football seasons. Loved that. Tickets to a really cool concert? Sweet!! None of those even come close to the sheer joy that accompanies the start of a new summer.
And it makes so much sense on a very basic level. Summer is a time when kids can feel much more in control of their lives than they do the rest of the year. Sure, that’s mostly perception, but that’s important too. During the school year, adults are mainly in control of what happens when and where. This pertains to academics, of course, but also to things like school or club sports, and arts programs. And that’s obviously the way things need to be. Summers can be different, and can give children much more of a sense of making decisions for themselves. That’s exciting, and it is also a very valuable contributor to the maturation process as kids grow into adulthood. And that difference, even if it is not as dramatic as it is perceived, is what untethers kids from the structures and confines of the school year and helps to set them free. This is true whether or not kids go to summer camp. Separation from the physical and psychological structures of the school year is healthy.
So are the kids in your house excited for summer? We would bet they are. Are they nervous about going to camp? They could be, even if they’ve done so before. Each summer is different and new, and remember, your kids are a year older than they were last May. If your son is 10 years old, that represents a factor of 10% of his entire life! He’s probably changed a good amount in that time, so it wouldn’t make sense to expect him to reach the same way to similar situations. Makes the world go ‘round, doesn’t it? So, if your son is expressing some nervousness about camp, that’s totally normal. You can listen to him, and you can reassure him. You can also tell him that being nervous is not a problem…it’s an opportunity. Most people get nervous about something from time to time. The real question would be how do we respond? Going to camp is a gift and rare chance to explore, grow, make friends, and have crazy amounts of fun. We don’t want to let a normal feeling of nervousness prevent anyone from tapping into these great opportunities. Summer belongs to children, and at camp, we make sure they know it!
The kids in our house are middle-aged adults. But that doesn’t mean we’re not excited!! In fact, shortly after this newsletter is published, we’re gonna toss the dogs into the car and point it north! It’s already getting very warm in Tucson, and that’s our cue to go to Wisconsin. We should have the camp office up and running by May 16th or so. The weather at camp has been mild for the most part, with a periodic snow shower here and there. The lake thawed a few weeks ago, which is early, and the water level is very good. When we first arrive (we being Mike and our cook, BILL MILLER), it’ll just be a few of us up there. We have the great joy of watching camp fill up with people just as the trees start to fill out with leaves. It’s a great time to be at camp, and we just can’t wait to get started!
It is that time of year, and we want to wish all of our college and high school graduates a hearty (if perhaps a bit early) congratulations on your fantastic accomplishments!! Oh the places you’ll go! And we’re so excited that one of those places will be beautiful Arbor Vitae, WI for another summer of great leadership!!
Last month we had a truly fun and very successful fund-raising event in Chicago for Camp for All Kids. We had a great dinner, enjoyed some fantastic live music (the older folks sure enjoyed it, anyway), and combining the event with the silent auction that went along with it, we raised over $100,000 to send underprivileged kids to camp! Events like that take a ton of work, and resulted from the efforts of many, many volunteers. We are especially proud of SCOTT WOLF, JOE BERNS, MYLES ROSENSTEIN, and ALEXANDER ZLOTNIK who all gave up their own time to work on the event and help make it a gigantic success. Our thanks to them as well as the Timberlane parents who also pitched in with their time and support. You all are truly helping to make an important and positive difference in the lives of some wonderful kids.
As you probably know, your final and full payment for camp is due by May 15th. If you have not yet paid your camp balance, please take care of that. You can always access your statement on your Keylog Page from our website. If you’d like to pay by check, you can mail that to our Summer address in Woodruff. If you’d like to pay by credit card, you can click here, and pay it securely. Remember that credit card payments incur a 2.75% surcharge. Thank you very much.
A few other reminders for parents:
- PLEASE READ YOUR PARENT HANDBOOK! There is info about your camper’s travel info, and much more in there. We will send specific travel-to-camp info and baggage tags to all 1st Session and 8-Week campers in early June.
- Many forms are also due on May 15th. We cannot stress enough how important this information is to our preparations. Even if your son is a 2nd session camper, those preparations happen now, before camp starts, so your cooperation is critical and very much appreciated.
- If you are going to mail any payments or forms to us, please stop using our Winter address now, and direct all mail to our Summer address.
- REMEMBER THE DEADLINE FOR SENDING MEDICATIONS TO CAMP FOR 1ST SESSION IS JUNE 9TH. 2nd session and 8-Week refill deadline is July 6th to ship your camper’s medications to camp.
- ANOTHER DEADLINE: If you are going to buy logo’d items from the Everything Summer Camp website, you should place your order by the middle of this month to assure receipt of your items before the start of camp
- If your son is or may be planning to participate in one of our trips to Canada, HE WILL NEED HIS PASSPORT! We ask that you err on the side of caution and send his passport to us even if he is only considering such a trip. We ask that you mail the passport to us when or shortly after your son is coming to camp. Please address it to Leslie's attention. We hold all passports in a safe place until the boys need them. The Trip Leaders hold the passports during the trips into Canada, and then after the trip, we mail the passports back home. So your son is never responsible for the safe-keeping of his passport.
YO OLDER GUYS: 2 reminders for you:
If you have been assigned a camp Little Brother, please remember that you are to CALL (not text, email, tweet) your little bro as soon as possible. If your little bro is from another country, then you may email him. Please try to get that done by May 15th. Thanks very much.
We have had a strong number of guys pre-registering for our big trips this summer. If you are eligible for one of these trips and you want to go, we recommend your pre-register to help assure you will have a space on the trip available to you. THIS IS FOR RETURNING CAMPERS ONLY. Trips eligible for pre-registration include:
- Isle Royale Backpacking - 10 Day trip (1st Session)
- Sand River Canoeing (1st Session)
- Apostle Islands Sea Kayaking (1st and 2nd Session)
- Quetico Provincial Park - The Canadian! - 12 Day trip (2nd Session)
- Isle Royale Backpacking - 6 Day trip (2nd Session)
YO STAFF: Please remember to read and get familiar with the Staff Manuals we have posted online on your Keylog page. If you are a CIT, we have mailed you a great little book to help you start thinking about how to communicate well with kids. That's just a little platform that we'll build on throughout Staff Training, so read up, and everyone - please be sure to bring all the reading material we may have sent you to camp. Thanks.
CERTIFICATIONS: We have just a few more spots in our American Red Cross Lifeguard Training school from June 7th – 8th. The course will cost you nothing, and the certification is valid for 2 years. We pride ourselves on having a staff full of lifeguards (more than 40 each summer), and it is so vital to our program. So even if you're primary role at camp is not on the water, we want you to get this training. You can sign up from your Staff Keylog page. Click the "Extra Training" link.
THIS YEAR THERE IS AN ONLINE COMPONENT TO THE LGT COURSE! So the instructor will send you a link and you’ll need to complete that portion before the water portion starts on June 7th. That also means the sooner you sign up, the sooner we can get you linked up to start the online portion.
- If you are a first-year Junior Counselor (CIT last year), your LGT and CPR certs are valid through this summer.
- If your LGT and/or CPR will expire before the end of the summer, you must re-certify. You can do that at camp FOR FREE! That class is on June 8th and 9th. The cert will then be good for 2 years.
- If you will be a member of our Ski Staff and are not a certified Boat Driver, that course, also at camp, also FREE, runs from June 2nd- 5th.
- You know we think this is important, right? Why else would we make this so easy for you and so affordable (FREE!). Please sign up today if you haven't already. To see our list of who we have signed up, please click here. Thanks.
STAFF TRAVEL TO CAMP: Some of you have been great about getting this info to us. If you have either not sent us any info, or if you sent us a travel date but not a method of getting to camp, please get in touch with us right away. We try to coordinate travel when we can, but we need good info to help with that.
|It was great fortune smiling down up on JACOB & SAM KLINE as they won the “Hamilton Lottery” last month and got to sit right up close to the stage for the show. And who was sitting just a few seats away. None other than Hamilton Lottery winners SCOTT WOLF and SAM “PICKLES” KAHN. Apparently the show is good. People like it. Probably similar to Karaoke Night at camp. Nashvillians GRAHAM & MAX ELLIOT took a little trip to Chicago and got to hang out with some of their buddies there, including JORDAN PLOCKER and JOSH MEYER.|
|This is sure an exciting time of year for some of our Junior Counselors who are off to college in the fall. JAKE FLOM is headed to the University of Michigan. JAKE HOFFMAN will be at Washington University. JONAH HOFFMAN will attend Indiana University. JACK ROSENTHAL is staying close to camp, and will attend the University of Wisconsin. BEN SCHACHTER will be a Wildcat at Northwestern University. Congrats to all of you. Congrats also to DAVID ARTZI who will begin a Masters program in Sports Management and Analytics at American University.|
| AROUND THE HAND-WASHING STATION|
This is it – the final newsletter of the offseason! The next time we talk will be AT CAMP!
I want to take a slightly less goofy tone this time around and reflect a little on my first year in this new, crazy role. This has been one of the best years of my life (I get paid to talk to people about camp! I already did that, anyway!), and the true pleasure has come in interacting with all of you. Whether it was meeting a first year camper and his family in their home, traveling for a reunion, interviewing new staff members, or even just sending a quick birthday bravo note, this job is worth it because I get to work closely with people who get camp and who are just as passionate about it as I am.
When I run into any of you (campers, parents, or staff) around town, without fail the first question you ask is “How’s the job?” It warms my heart, and I know you’re not just asking to be polite! You’re asking because you are deeply invested, because you recognize the power of the place, and because you’re ready for next summer to top the previous summer.
I can tell you with the utmost confidence this summer will top any that came before. I’m serious. It’s going to be out of control.
Mike, Leslie, and I have put in a lot of work over the past 9 months (and will continue to do so in the coming weeks), and I couldn’t be more ready for that work to pay off and to see our vision for the summer come to fruition in the form of blue and white games, lodge dancing, and pizza parties.
Ultimately, camp is all about the people, and from the bottom of my heart, thank you for being the camp people that you are.
SEE YOU SOON AROUND THE HANDWASHING STATION,
P.S. Any final thoughts, questions, or suggestions for this summer? I want to hear them before I head up! Scott@camptimberlane.com
BRAVO TO OUR MAY BIRTHDAY BOYS & GIRLS: Eli Garber - 5/1/2006, Adam Wasserman - 5/2/1998, Felix Chaoulideer - 5/3/1997, Dylan Port - 5/3/2005, Rayj Rikimaru - 5/3/2001, Jack Silver - 5/4/2007, Jackson Turner - 5/6/2004, Drew Cushing - 5/7/2008, Emma Cohen - 5/8/1997, Alfredo Kuri - 5/12/2004, Leo Sclamberg - 5/12/2004, Charlie Weiss - 5/12/2006, Jacob Kline - 5/13/2002, Lucas Arora - 5/14/2007, Oliver Arora - 5/14/2007, Corrie Hitchens - 5/15/1971, Timofey Voronin - 5/15/2008, Joseph Lourie - 5/17/2005, Tyler Borstein - 5/18/2004, Eddie Tepper - 5/18/2004, Luke Sclamberg - 5/19/1999, Akil Dickerson - 5/20/2005, Ben Ellis - 5/20/2004, Ben Goss - 5/20/2005, Zach Miller - 5/20/1998, Ben Schachter - 5/20/1999, Ben Wright - 5/20/1997, Carlos Saenz - 5/21/2002, Jake Hoffman - 5/22/1999, Jack Van Ooyen - 5/23/2002, Hannah Donnelly - 5/27/1993, Jacob Elias - 5/27/1998, Akanksha Khanna - 5/27/1989, Rich Mc Gowan - 5/27/1972, Owen French - 5/28/2003, Lucas Levy - 5/31/2005. Starting next month, we get to sing to our birthday folks in person!
Alrighty!! This is the last issue of “Timberlife!” that we will write from Tucson until next year (which means next September). We will have travel information coming by US Mail to Full Season and 1st Session families in early June (it’s already posted on your Keylog page), and 2nd Session families in early July. We are so excited to get to camp and welcome everyone when you arrive. Have a great May, and we’ll see many of you very soon!!