Reunited and it feels so good!!

Sunday, October 6th, 2019

Calling all program directors, past and present!!

Greetings, friends! Hummingbird here, and boy oh boy has it been a while since we last spoke! Since the summer came to a close, things have been quite a bit quieter in the Valley. The temperature has begun its gradual dip into that crisp fall feel, the leaves are slowly yellowing as they rustle in the breeze, and camp road is untrafficked during the day save for the occasional llama walk. Quite the contrast to our bustling summer!

But for a few folks, summer continued on juuuuuuust a bit longer into the fall with our Alumni Reunion at the end of September! Former campers, counselors, program directors, and their relatives descended on the Valley singing camp songs and practicing their swimming strokes for a weekend of the Princess Pat, Chris and Lillian’s cooking, and (of course) llamas!!

Participants enjoyed a contra dance Friday night followed by a Saturday full of classes that included the Ropes Course, yoga/meditation, swimming at the lake (FUNNER!!), basketball, arts and crafts, and glass beads! And in the afternoon, THERE WAS A MINI FAIR DAY!! Saturday evening after the LOBSTER BANQUET, folks gathered at the base of Tipi Hill to walk together in a reflective silence up to the Pinegrove, where friends of all generations shared stories and songs from camp through the years! Some songs have withstood the test of time, like the Princess Pat and Ayo Bo Diddly Bop, while others still hadn’t graced Pinegrove’s ears in decades! From 70s-era counselors to this very summer’s campers, there were songs for everyone, and a fire to keep us warm well into the night!

After a beautiful morning of more swimming and ropes on Sunday, folks gathered for another flawless Chris and Lillian meal and reluctantly drove back up Camp Road and into the real world…. Parting from the Valley is SUCH sweet sorrow!

I suppose we must admit now that summer really is over ๐Ÿ™ although if I close my birdie eyes and think hard, I can still feel the glow of that Pinegrove fire on my feathers! I’ll carry it with me as autumn continues to ~fall~ (hehehe get it??)

Keep checking back here for more updates throughout the off season, and enjoy pictures below of the beautiful reunion weekend!

I’m off to the lake…. Stanley the llama dared me to dip my wings in the cold, cold water!

Brrrr,
Hummingbird

A final word for the summer… Until the Fall!

Friday, August 16th, 2019

Dear Families,

With campers departed and reunited wth all of you, blog posts will become less frequent. You can stay in touch with HVC viaย Instagramย andย Facebook.

At a closing circle yesterday, each staff member recalled a “proud moment” from their time with your campers. We heard about campers overcoming fear of heights at the ropes course, diving for the first time, contending wth homesickness, getting help with the challenges of adolescence, daring to be silly, resolving conflicts with friends, and much more.

Staff supported all of these accomplishments and it’s also clear that your children came to camp determined to take risks, explore opportunities and learn about themselves. This process of becoming one’s true self is a life’s work and all of us at HVC are proud to have supported your children in this summer’s chapter of their personal adventure.

Here’s to more growth and fun as the school year unfolds! – Meg and Peter

Parting is such sweet sorrow!

Thursday, August 15th, 2019

Goooooood morning, HVC! Hummingbird here, and bird oh bird am I tired!! We’ve been up and at ’em here since the ripe hour of 5:00 this morning, when we were sung awake by the campers of Taj Mahal and Forbidden Planet. Some fabulous singing in my own professional opinion! Why on earth were we up so early? I bet you can guess….. I’ll give you a moment to think….. think hard….. what happens approximately 3.5 weeks after arrival day…… DEPARTURE DAY!! The saddest day of the summer… because it means camp is OVER! ๐Ÿ™ *quiet sobs*ย Let’s take a look at what’s been going on here in the Valley since we last spoke…

Yesterday, as Mag-O-Llama reported, was Packing Day! Campers worked hard all morning to scrub their cabins clean, put all their belongings back in their suitcases and duffels where they came from, and leave the buildings spotless! In the afternoon each cabin did its own special closing activity, ranging from sharing favorite memories of the summer to playing much loved games, to even taking a tractor ride around camp! It was the perfect way to close out the summer with our cabin mates! After our cabin activities we came back together as a whole camp to have our Major League Transportation Meeting, where we sorted out travel arrangements and brought aaaaaaaaaaaall our luggage to their designated holding points around the front yard so that they would be ready to go when the busses got here this very morning. And guess what…. THEY WERE!! The rest of the evening was a little faster paced from there. We had our final Evening Meeting and were dismissed to the dining hall for the LOBSTER BANQUET!!!!! We ate lobster and spanakopita and chicken parmesan and corn on the cob and potatoes and salad and ICE CREAM OH MY GOODNESS SO MUCH YUMMY DELICIOUS SWEET SWEET ICE CREAM RIGHT OUT OF THE CARTON IT WAS BEAUTIFUL MADNESS AND SO STICKY!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

Then we put on our long pants and long sleeves and sneakers and bug spray and we trudged up Tipi Hill together to Pine Grove. We sang songs, we danced dances, we told stories, and then we had our beautiful candle lighting procession, where every camper got to say goodbye to every other camper with the tap of a candle, or a warm hug! What a beautiful way to end our summer together!

And now, after a solid few hours of sleep, we are hanging around the front yard, backyard, and red barn. Campers left earlier this morning on the New York, Portchester, New Haven, Boston, and Newton busses, and they’re well on their way back to you folks at home! Meanwhile our campers headed out by car are soaking up all the last bits of camp here until their folks arrive! Counselors are hard at work to close down the last remaining areas of camp and get the place ready forโ€“ believe it or notโ€“ NEXT summer!!

I cannot stress enough what a remarkable summer we’ve had here at camp, and it’s sad to see everyone head off. But it’s comforting to know that each camper and counselor who goes back out into the real world today is bringing a little piece of camp with them, to make the world that much brighter!

Camp is getting a whoooooole lot quieter now but you’ll be hearing from all of us here at camp several times over the fall and winter, so keep checking back to see the exciting things that will happen before the Valley rings out with the sounds of campers’ laughter once more in just 10 short months! But until then, enjoy pictures from the lobster banquet and departure day! I’m off to sneak some leftover Ben and Jerry’s from last night….

Always hungry,
Hummingbird

It may be packing day… but it’s still a SUPER fun day!!

Wednesday, August 14th, 2019

Good Afternoon friends and fellows!! It’s Mag-O-Llama and today holds a soft spot in my heart! IT’S PACKING DAY/THE LAST FULL DAY AT CAMP!!!! We are really busy getting our bags packed, cleaning up our cabins, and spending lots of time with our friends before we say goodbye for the summer!

Yesterday was FAIR DAY!! There were lots and lots of treats, a bouncy house, a jelly bean count, a marriage booth, and so much more! Did I mention there were lots of treats??? ๐Ÿ™‚ Check out the pictures below to see THE BEST DAY EVER!!!ย We also got to see all of the beautiful artwork/glasswork/woodwork that was made this session!! We have some really talented artists here at HVC!!!!

Yesterday we also saw the slide show of all the memories we made at camp this session! It was a great way to reflect on the time we spent together and all of the things we accomplished as a community this summer!

Later on today we are having our very last cabin activity before we say goodbye! Here is what the cabins are getting up to today!

Loons will be hanging out and doing TP Zip!
Avalon is having a spa day!
Gimme Shelter is making S’mores!
Bermuda Triangle is making a GIANT sling shot!
Forbidden Planet is making a time capsule!
Haley’s Comet is making a polaroid photo board!
Down Under is going on a creek walk and making fairy houses!
French Quarter is doing warm and fuzzies!
Wombles are having a ballon dance party!
Paquatahnee is doing warm and fuzzies!
The Burrow is having fun with balloons and yarn!
Shangri-La is having a massage train and warm and fuzzies!
Wabanaki is baking cookies!
LCH is doing a yarn game!
Valhalla is having a beach party!
Fiddlers Green is having a dance party!
Camelot is having a cabin birthday party!
Taj Mahal is doing a build and burn bonding activity!
The apprentices are having an outdoor cookout!

Attached are some pictures below from classes that we didn’t have a chance to post! Check out some pictures from the engineering class and the skateboarding class!!

I’m off to save a spot for our very special pine grove celebration!!

Peace, love, and llama hugs!!

Mag-O-Llama

 

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