Why We Love GRP

By Green River Preserve

On this sunny afternoon at the Preserve, campers can be found hustling back and forth to activities, attempting to cram their belongings and freshly made crafts into their trunks, and bonding over the sighting of our second Grand Slam animal sighting of the week, a turkey.

When sessions come to an end, counselors and mentors encourage campers to reflect on their experiences at camp. Each night we perform Rose, Bud, Thorn (a camp tradition where campers share the best part of their day, what they are looking forward to tomorrow, and their least favorite part of the day) in every cabin. To me, this nightly exercise is a like a precursor to the Upper Council Fire on closing night. At this sacred ceremony, Sandy will read Chief Seattle’s letter and ask questions such as, “How do you plan to leave your mark?” and “What did you learn at Green River that you will carry on into the world with you?”

Since they have been practicing their self-reflection skills and awareness the entire week, campers often return to the cabin that night filled with the urge to share and discuss, Why do we love GRP? For Gracie of Spirit Winds 2, the answer was easy: “The food is good, the lake isn’t too cold and we take buses to our hikes.” For others, it is less specific. Jaclyn says, “I love that you can just be you. People will help you and teach you no matter what you want to do.” No matter the age, knowledge or outdoor experience, everyone seems to have an answer to this question. Personally, I think that is the best part. I have yet to find another place in the world that has the capacity to capture curious minds from all over the world and draw them back here year after year. The amount of growth campers have shown in this short week is unimaginable and we cannot wait to see how they take their lessons learned out into the world with them. Thank you parents, family, friends alike for sharing your child with us this week and we will see you tomorrow.

Kristen, Whipoorwill 1 Counselor