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Kenwood and Evergreen camp friends are forever

The incredible summer of 2015 at our camp in New Hampshire is sadly now over, which means that we have all had to get back to our “real” lives. Most campers have returned to school by now, and our staff is either back at their off-season jobs or resuming their studies. I know that I speak for everyone on the Camp Leadership Team when I say that we all miss our community very much. We miss the hugs and high fives of morning assembly, the laughter and cheering that wafts through the trees throughout each camp day, and singing Taps together each night before bed.

As this summer was ending, at closing campfires and banquets, Scott reminded us all of the importance of trying to bring the spirit of Camp to our home lives this fall and winter. He encouraged us to take all of the life skills that we learned in our overnight camp community – the determination, the independence, the resilience, the creativity, the adaptability, and maybe most importantly, the empathy – back to our home lives of school, family, friends, team sports and hobbies.

And since Camp ended my inbox has been flooded with emails from parents excitedly telling me about how so many of you took his words to heart. Here are a handful that I’ve received just in the past few days:

“I was surprised (in a positive way) that she was so confident. It was a small change but definitely something I noticed and know that it is a learned confidence from camp.”

“They both came home with terrific smiles and new interests – [name removed] would like to learn more about filmmaking and [name removed] couldn’t play enough Chess (he’s beaten both of his parents so we’re sending him to Papa on Monday for some competition).  Both shared their appreciation for family tonight (and were quite helpful, courteous around the house, actually!)..but had to admit that they missed their friends.  I couldn’t be happier to hear their friendships ran that deep…”

“She was caring and supportive to her friend, understanding how her friend was feeling and reacting to it. She might not show it all the time at home with her siblings or with us but she definitely learned this at camp. She’s never really been able to see another side to a situation or how someone can love/hate something that she does/doesn’t. I felt like yesterday she really showed true empathy to her friend. For this and all of the other changes, growths and confidence boosts that you have nurtured at camp for her, we are forever grateful!”

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And we are grateful for all of you (and miss you terribly!). Thankfully, we’ve also been inundated with photos of camp friends spending time with each other since we all returned home. We love how close our community is, and how many camp friends travel around the country and around the world to be with each other! Here are some of the photos we’ve received (or taken ourselves) in the past few weeks:

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The Brodys and the Sebells took some time to relax in Ogunquit, Maine after Camp ended, and we loved bumping into the Keyes and Trissel families!

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Counselors Josh, Sean and Caleb have been hanging out with the Lilienfelds at what they refer to as “The Southern Branch of Kenwood”.

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Celebrating their second-annual K&E Camper/Alumni reunion, the Zbars and the two Jennas hung out at the famous Chilmark Tavern on Martha’s Vineyard (where Jenna Sprafkin is the Head Chef, and Jenna Petersiel is the owner). 

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The Emanuels and Ben were hanging out and happily bumped into Avery while getting some ice cream!

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There was a mini Bunk 12 Reunion in NYC last night as Ben and Matt organized a dinner with Lowell, Ben and Russell (along with Evergreen counselor Jenny).

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Camp friendships last FAR beyond your time as a camper or counselor. Recently, members of Juniper 2006 Rachel, Lauren, Sara, Emily and Melanie got together for a fun night together. We love seeing that you guys still hang out together!

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K&E Camp friends hang out together all over the world. Just the other night Katie, Sarah, Amanda and Gayle had a night out together in London.

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And it looks like Hannah, Arianna and Rebecca had an amazing trip together in Israel!

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Just a reminder that as you travel around the country or the world to bring some Camp apparel with you for our “Where Your Camp Shirt” contest. There will be a prize again this year for the camper who has their photo taken the farthest from Camp’s Wilmot, NH address while wearing an article of Camp clothing. This year the prize went to Oliver Eig, and we can’t wait to see who wins this year!

To start things off we have this great pic of Evergreen Alumna Eve Smythe climbing Ben Nevis in the UK, posted by her dad (and former counselor) Ian Smythe.

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It’s so wonderful to see how important Camp is in the lives of our community members month after month, year after year. In just a few weeks we will start posting announcements about all of the exciting special events we have planned for this fall and winter, like our gaga parties, camp reunions, winter weekend, and gatherings just for our new campers. We wish you the best of luck with your return to school or work. Keep Camp in your heart and in your daily life, and we look forward to seeing you soon. We miss you all so much!

Learn why Kenwood and Evergreen friendships last a lifetime

Camps Kenwood and Evergreen is a 7-week brother-sister summer camp in NH, where campers make some of the most important and lasting friendships of their lives.