The Sun was peeking through the clouds this morning. As the sound of reveille echoed across camp, dedicated Dippies jumped out of their beds for their daily ritual. Friendships have been made by those who meet down at the lake each morning.
“How’s the water?” one boy asks.
“Easy dip,” another boy replies.
This club, which was created by our founder, Morty Goldman, was originally a way to get the oldest campers out of bed each morning. Now, it’s a badge of honor. To be a Dippie at Takajo you have to head down to the lake every morning, rain or shine. This summer, we have had our share of challenging dips.
The warm temperatures and slightly humid air were perfect for our Takajo Tennis Tournament. We normally are limited to the number of players who can participate when we host seven camps. However, this year, Tennis director Steve Olivas offered all campers the opportunity to play to all who were interested in competing. This made for an amazing all-camp activity. We had brackets in the ten-, twelve-, fourteen-, and sixteen-and-under age categories. All seventeen courts were in use, and match play was competitive and entertaining. As luck would have it, we had an unexpected rain shower make its way on campus after lunch that forced us to postpone our quarterfinal round until tomorrow.
Normally, as we enter the fourth week of camp, there is a level of anxiety that often impacts our youngest children because of the excitement of the impending visiting day. However, this year there is a sense of calm, normalcy, and routine that is very refreshing. Up until this point, we haven’t really mentioned that this weekend would be our normally scheduled visiting day. Candidly, it really doesn’t come up very often in conversation. We have mentioned to the boys that we have scheduled FaceTime calls for everyone on either Friday or Saturday and that we’ve planned a few special activities to make the weekend festive.
Later this week, we will host our Takajo Swim Meet, a climbing wall competition, as well as our all-camp Carnival, which will take place on Thursday. These events offer a great change in our routine and create the sense of family and community that we want to instill in camp.
As the day came to a close, I walked by the Snack Shack and witnessed campers of all age groups sitting together on picnic tables, enjoying bowls of cereal and other healthy snacks. It was the perfect way to wind down at the end of a long day.