Thursday, July 4, 2013

Why You Should Go to Camp

(UPDATE 07/01/14: Photos from camp 2013 were added to this post after this was posted.)

I just came back from a summer camp last week, and in a week and a half I'll be off again to another camp. It's my first time going to summer camps since I was in middle school, and I had never been more excited for summer because of it. As I was talking to my boyfriend about it, he didn't realize how much of a big deal camps are to me. Actually, most of my friends within the past few years probably didn't realize (but probably aren't surprised) that camp was a huge part of my life.

A few of my camp friends and their cabin years ago! (I was not there that year) Source: my friend Heaven

Camp is the place for lifelong memories

In middle school, I went to a few different camps through the San Pedro and Peninsula YMCA, and coming back as a counselor to one of the camps and Royal Family Kids Camp brings back so many memories that I cherish so much. Camps were always the highlights of my summers. 

That being said, here are a few reasons why you (or anyone) should go to camp (even if you're a counselor): 

  1. You get to be out of the house! One of the things I always dread about summer is wasting my life staying at home and watching tv. Going to camp gets you out of the house and keeps you busy for a few days. If you're lucky (and can afford it), you can go to camp for a few weeks, or maybe even a month or so! 
  2. It gives you something to look forward to! Most of the time, you have to register for camp weeks or months in advance, probably while you're still in school. Even if all your other plans for summer are up in the air, camp will get you excited that you at least won't be doing absolutely nothing the whole three months of break. 
  3. It makes for a great job/volunteer opportunity! Both of the camps that I'm working at are volunteer-based, but there are tons of camps that pay you to be a counselor for them! (You'd have to be over 18, of course). I have a couple friends working at camps for most if not the whole summer, and they get paid a set amount for the whole summer and have weekends and I think nights off as well! Whether or not you want to work for a week or a month, there are camps out there for you! 
  4. You learn and try so many new things! It's usually only at camp where most people get to do things like banana-boating, horseback riding, archery, high ropes, or do arts and crafts like "shrinky-dinks." Camp lets you explore so many different areas that one wouldn't normally get to do at home, and it makes that activity that much more special because you get to look forward to it at camp every summer. Even if you're a counselor, you get many opportunities to act and feel like a camper. 
  5. You meet amazing people! The two years I went to four summer camps with the Y as a camper, I met so many different people! I may not talk to them all the time, but we all definitely remember each other when we run into each other outside of camp. Since coming back to camp as a counselor for the first time in five years, my friends and I still clearly all remember each other from camp. These people become unforgettable to you.
  6. Last but not least, these memories last a lifetime. If camp wasn't great, people wouldn't keep coming back as counselors years later, long after they've outgrown being campers. After my last year as a camper I always promised myself I'd come back, and after five years, I'm able to make that happen. Other people have been going to camp for 25 years, even longer. It may only be a week or a month, but regardless of the time, you will remember it forever. 
What do you miss about camp? What was your experience like? Did I forget any other reasons to go? Do you disagree? Leave a comment below!

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