Today was an amazing visiting day at Camp Takajo. The sun was shining, and the humidity levels were not as high as expected. The warm breeze coming in off Long Lake made us all appreciate the magnificent, summer day.
The other day in my blog post, I reflected on how special it was for boys to reconnect with their sisters at our carnival. I mentioned this sibling reunion during my staff meeting last night to highlight the importance of this weekend. I mention this here because, when we witness the love between two siblings, we can only begin to get a sense of the magnitude of love that emanates when a parent reconnects with his or her child.
As a parent, the relationship with our children is the most sacred relationship we will ever hold. I often joke with my wife that if we were on a sinking ship with our two sets of twins and there were only four life jackets, she better know how to tread water. The point that I’m trying to make is that I understand the profound love that you have for your children and how you spend every waking moment of your life thinking about them. By sending your children away to summer camp, you are generously sacrificing your quality time with them. However, the gift that you are giving your child provides them with immeasurable growth, maturity, and self-reliance.
Parents and grandparents who visited today marveled at the positive growth they have noticed in their children in just four short weeks. They commented on the inner strength that they have seen develop through the life skills that camp cultivates. I am often asked if I enjoy visiting day. While admittedly I see the day as a distraction from our routine, I find great joy in witnessing the unconditional love between parents and their sons. I also take great pride in introducing you to my staff, who have worked tirelessly to provide this enriching experience for your boys.
As the clock approached five, the Warrior Campers assembled at their lineup area with their counselors for their final goodbyes. Under the direction of our seasoned Group Head Counselor Hank Fortin, our visitors gave our boys one final hug before departing. By the time our campers reached the dining room, they were eating pasta and looking forward to their evening campfire. Meanwhile, many of our staff members combed the property picking up rubbish and preparing their activities for tomorrow’s visiting day. After a quick staff meeting in our dining hall to recap the day and focus again for tomorrow, legendary Takajo Chef Norm’s granddaughter, Karen Irby, surprised our staff with her gourmet pizza. With bellies full, our counselors went to sleep with a sense of accomplishment and excitement for what tomorrow brings.