A "First" For Our Campers

By Green River Preserve

As we begin our fifth session of the summer here at Green River Preserve, base camp is filled with new, shining faces that are ready to explore. The beginning of each session is a kind of rebirth, and this session is especially rejuvenating because about fifty of our sixty campers are experiencing GRP for the first time. Every question that is asked is special because it marks a “first” for that camper. The newness of camp for the campers is refreshing for me as a counselor. Though I have been here the whole summer, this session is giving me the opportunity to see things and events as my campers see them, as though they are entirely new.

This session, I will answer questions about where the Archery range is and how to play Predator/Prey. I will explain Mentor hikes and free time to many different campers. Last night, I introduced Rose, Bud, Thorn, another of our traditions, to my campers. We do Rose, Bud, Thorn every night before bed. Roses are the best parts of our days. Buds are what we are excited about for tomorrow. Thorns are our least favorite parts of our days. None of us had Thorns, so we decided to have a Stem instead. A Stem is an experience that helps us learn and grow. We all had Stems yesterday, and we have them every day.

We all have “firsts.” For the first time this summer, I am assisting in Drawing and Painting. Star, a Senior Mentor who has been at GRP since it began, leads this activity. As we began the first activity period, he asked lots of questions about our surroundings and our observations. He mentioned contrasts and colors and asked us to use our imagination to fashion a new world that we would draw and later paint. GRP is one of these worlds, but instead of using pencils and paper, we create the community of GRP with the questions that we ask and the interactions that we have.

Audrey (ATI2)