May 6 2014
So, now you know something about how a tentative schedule of Friday event themes is first plotted by the supervisors.
As we get closer to the summer, ideas are thrown out, new ones are brought in, roles begin to be cast. (Could Seth be the Evaporator? Would he be willing to wear tights?)
It’s wonderful when we can incorporate some of our teaching experience into a Friday event. We seize the opportunity to integrate great storytelling into our camp program.
Everyone acknowledges the influence of the Harry Potter book series on children. In fact, Harry Potter was a popular Friday event several years ago (back when we had pre-ordered the books and we were waiting for them to arrive each summer. Several of the books were released during camp season). We even had a sorting hat which sorted campers into different houses…
JK Rowling has noted that one of her favorite childhood authors was C.S. Lewis. One summer, we recreated the storyline from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, part of the Chronicles of Narnia series. Counselors had to audition for the roles of the Pevensie children. Only proper British accents would suffice! Camp Sewataro was under the spell of the White Witch and a bitter winter chill overtook the usually sunny and pleasant campgrounds. Campers spent much of the week trying to figure out who was the White Witch? …and where was she hiding? They interviewed Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy as they tried to solve the mystery and break the spell.
Our culminating moment was at the Tree House in the Meadows. When campers arrived there, they found the Tree House enveloped in snow with icicles dangling from the roof. (yes, in July; another one of Mark Taylor’s engineering accomplishments!) As the voice of Aslan boomed from the Meeting Hall, the White Witch rose from our midst – goodness gracious, it was Heather, our beloved Young Tribe Head counselor! How could she possibly be the White Witch? Even her co-counselors were incredulous!
Many people at camp play key roles in the presentation of a Friday event. During our Muppets event two summers ago, several counselors with musical talents were rounded up to form our own Sewataro Muppet band. Animal (the multi-talented counselor Jay), was missing from camp that Friday morning. Who helped us to locate him? Why the Sudbury Police! Officer Hutchinson drove through the tent area with the siren wailing and the lights flashing…and out stepped Animal from the cruiser, in front of the whole camp, as campers and counselors watched from the Grassy Bowl, our amphitheatre. Kermit the Frog sang The Rainbow Connection as Animal rejoined the Muppet Band and Officer Hutchinson waved to the crowd.
The planning, writing, casting, set-up, and performances draw upon the talent and creativity of our staff. It takes many hands (and minds) to create these epic events.
We often have returning staff ask, “Can I be in a Friday this summer?”
Many returning campers’ first question is, “What are the Fridays this summer?”
Our Friday Special Events have become a revered tradition, up there with the Green Gizmo and Tribe Spirit Pins.
…And I didn’t even mention our Sewataro Olympics week. That’s another blog for another time!
What will the Special Events be for the summer of 2014? We will soon find out!!