Warm sunshine with a tinge of summer humidity is in the air and is due to remain with us throughout our final week of camp. Our boys in Warrior and Senior Camps jumped out of bed this morning with renewed enthusiasm as they prepared for their first day of Olympic competition.
Most camps promote color war at the end of their camp season. In color war, the campers are split into two teams, ranging in ages from the oldest campers down to the youngest children in camp. All points won from all games are tallied, crowning the team that achieves the highest score. Takajo had color war starting in 1947 for the first few summers. However, Founder Morty Goldman witnessed the pressure older campers were placing on younger campers to win games. Morty felt that the emphasis was far more on winning than on the spirit of competition. He also believed that it was necessary to address what he referred to as the “negative aspects of competition.” He believed when a game was over, opponents should shake hands and respect the outcome, not carry the event back into the bunk.
This was the start of the Takajo Olympics, a highly spirited competition by age group that has our boys come together only for the camp-wide song competition. Yet, we cheer for each other during all the Olympic Games without the added stress of recording the points from our younger campers combined with the older boys.
The Junior campers remain on high alert as they continue to attempt to figure out when Junior Group Leader, David Levy, plans their Olympic break. David has been tight-lipped and all smiles as he takes pleasure in extending this high-stakes guessing game.
Warrior campers sported green and grey face paint as they took their talents to the playing fields for a full day of competition. Our Senior boys took the morning to organize for a week’s work of competition and created their lineups for team sports, swim meets, and quad games. The first activity for the Seniors featured a track meet. Boys competed in the 50- and 100-yard dashes, the 220 and 440 individual and team relays, long jump, football toss, shuttle relay, and cross country run.
Our older boys were all business this afternoon as they gave every ounce of their energy trying to help win events for their team. For the next four days, our boys will compete in every land sport, watersport, and skill, including golf, archery, and paddle tennis. The last day of competition will feature a whacked-up relay, during which teams will compete in events that will take place throughout the entire camp. The energy level in camp is at a peak, and our boys can’t wait to participate in this end-of-the-summer competition.
After a long, hot day in the bright sunshine, our hard-working staff came together in the dining room for a lobster feast prepared by our amazing food service team and served by yours truly and our devoted administrative staff. It was our way of thanking the staff for everything they had to endure throughout the summer. The night featured great food, lots of laughs, and the recognition our staff deserves for the care they provided to our boys throughout the season.