Why Working at a Camp Starlight Makes You a Better Leader

October 9th, 2017

A lot of people wonder how so many counselors return to Camp Starlight and tell all their friends about working at this summer camp. The answer lies in how Camp Starlight helps counselors, whether it’s their first summer of their fifth, become better leaders when they work here. Working all summer long with campers is a challenge, but Camp Starlight really provides the guidance and support to its counselors to help them be the best at their job and help them be leaders. To have a successful summer you need to be a leader to the campers and here is how Camp Starlight ensures every counselor a successful summer.

 

  1. Team Work of Co-Counselors: When you’re a counselor at Starlight, you always work in a team with your co-counselors in your bunk. As a team you figure out how to work with the campers and help them have a fun summer, the constant teamwork molds how you become a leader.
  2. Find Your Voice: Communicating with campers every day and night, Starlight helps you find a positive voice for the campers to follow. This voice contributes to how effective you communicate with the campers and have a successful summer when conflicts arise, and as a leader, communication is the most important aspect of a productive team.
  3. Understand Your Skills: Starlight helps you figure out what your strong skills are when working with campers and what skills need improvement. They are always there to give you tips in how to have a better summer with your campers and want you to be a successful leader so the campers have fun.
  4. Keep the Motivation Going: Working day and night with the campers is a challenge, so motivational steam can run out quickly, but Starlight helps counselors push through the rough times and maintain focus. Giving the counselors a hand or helping them stay positive is how counselors learn to keep going, this skill is what helps counselors become better leaders because they are ready to face any challenges.
  5. The Importance of Smiling: Stress and worry is a daily part of the job, but Starlight reminds counselors to always keep smiling and this little habit goes a long way. Remembering to smile maintains a positive focus and makes you approachable, an important characteristic for the leader of a group.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why I Cant Wait to Come Back to Camp Starlight

October 3rd, 2017

For those who have never worked at a summer camp before, there are many questions to ask and ideas to consider about life at a summer camp, but at Camp Starlight, returning staff can put all worries to rest about what it is like to work at the most special summer camp this world has to offer.

For starters, working at a summer camp is all about helping kids grow and become better individuals and one of the most rewarding aspects of working at Camp Starlight is the ability to watch all sorts of talented kids grow and master what they love. More often than not, the staff returns to see the campers they have helped, anticipating all the potential within them for another summer at Starlight. Along with the campers, all the staff members look forward to spending another summer with friends they have met from all over the world. Camp Starlight nurtures friendships not just for campers, but for staff as well, and Camp Starlight is a place that allows people to strengthen friendships with people from Australia, South Africa, England and any place imaginable.

Because of all the people staff members at Camp Starlight are able to work with, Camp Starlight is the most positive working environment, everyone is happy to see and spend another day of the summer with their co-counselors and campers. It never really feels like work because you always have that much fun wherever and whatever you’re doing at Camp Starlight. With all these positive elements of working at Camp Starlight, it’s no wonder so many staff members return each summer to once again feel the magic of Camp Starlight, a place that is truly worth the ten for two.

What I Never Dreamt I Would Get Out of Summer Camp

September 25th, 2017

When working at a summer camp for the first time, there are many typical things that you would expect to happen like making friendship bracelets, sitting around a campfire or chanting traditional camp cheers. While all of these things do happen at Camp Starlight, there are many experiences that occur that take first time staff members for a surprise. The one thing that really surprises staff members working at Camp Starlight for the first time are all the positive life lessons they get out of their summer.

Working with kids of all different ages and coworkers from all different cultures truly provides first time staff members with a life perspective they’ve never experienced before. They learn so much about campers and other cultures and in turn learn so much about themselves. Camp Starlight is a place that helps first time staff members discover new skills, talents and passions about themselves just like the campers do. Before Camp Starlight, you might not have ever known that you have the best time working with younger kids or have a knack for coaching campers to the championship. You learn what skills you really have when working with kids and in what ways you can improve their lives for the better.

Not only do you learn new things about yourself, but you gain so many new memories and friendships unlike any other. Camp Starlight is a camp that gives you the opportunity to make a new best friend from Ireland and experience special events with your campers that create unique memories. You will never forget the thrill of Olympics, all the laughs from Friday Night Show or how sad you were to say goodbye to all your campers and friends on the last day of camp.

There are many things you will never dream you would get out of summer camp, but once you experience a summer at Camp Starlight you realize anything is really possible.

My Last Summer as an Upper Senior

September 18th, 2017

When I ran off the bus on the first day of camp, I immediately started crying because I was so happy to be back at Camp Starlight. As an Upper Senior, this was my last summer at Camp Starlight and when I arrived I knew I was ready to embrace that role at camp.

The last summer is bittersweet in how special it is. This is the summer where I finally got to do everything I ever wanted to do at camp and it was a blast, but this was the last time I would get to spend an entire summer with my best friends playing games, hanging in the Lake House and having all the fun I could want. Sometimes it is overwhelming having this much responsibility at camp and knowing that you’re a huge role model for the younger girls, but once I embraced that responsibility, I became a better leader for my division. There are so many life lessons you learn in your last summer at camp, for instance, I learned how important it is to be calm and collected in stressful situations and that it is better to always have a positive outlook in any situation. Learning this helped me be the best leader and find my voice in the division. All the responsibility of being an Upper Senior is hard work, but at the end of the summer when I realized how many amazing things happened because of my hard work, I realized how in the end it was all really worth it and that my summer wouldn’t had been as fun if I didn’t put in my all. It is incredibly hard to say goodbye to my summer home but I with all the amazing memories and friendships I’ve created over the years, I know Camp Starlight will never really leave me.

– Bailey R., Camper

 

Polar Bear Challenge Motivates Campers

September 11th, 2017

Jumping into a teeth chattering cold lake every morning isn’t the most pleasant sounding idea at Camp Starlight, but you would be surprised by how many people willingly do it and there’s actually a great reason why they do.

At Camp Starlight there is a special club you can be a part of if you jump into the lake every single morning of the summer. Jump in, splash around and embrace the cold and you’ll be a member of the prestigious Polar Bear Club. Each morning campers from all the divisions jump into the lake to complete the daily task of being in the Polar Bear Club. No skips are allowed, even if it’s extra chilly in the morning, and if you successfully complete this challenge there is a special party at the end of the summer just for you.

It’s a silly challenge but there are so many benefits to being a part of the Polar Bear Club because of everything it teaches campers. For a camper to participate in this means they start their day completing a challenge a lot of people won’t even attempt to do. When a camper starts every morning overcoming a challenge and feeling accomplished, it sets them up to have a positive day where they can accomplish many more things. This ripple effect will translate into campers realizing how much potential is inside them, motivating them to tackle larger and more difficult challenges. The Polar Bear Challenge also shows campers the importance of determination and to never give up, especially on mornings when it’s a bit nippier than usual.

Their hard work pays off when at the end of the summer they realize they are one of few campers that were actually motivated enough to become a member of the Polar Bear Club, the rewarding feeling is something that makes all those cold mornings well worth it.

My First Summer at Camp

September 4th, 2017

I was very excited and nervous for my first day of summer camp at Camp Starlight. I did not now what to expect when coming to camp and was nervous about what would happen. When I came to camp and came off the bus I exploded with happiness, camp seemed so cool and fun.

Campus is so pretty with the giant lake and there are so many great snacks to eat. I quickly made a lot of friends and had so much fun with the dance specialists. The dance staff is so nice and fun to dance with, dance is my favorite activity at camp. When I grow up I want to be a counselor and a dance specialist at Camp Starlight.

I made so many memories at my first summer but my favorite memory of the summer was making it to the finals for MTV night, my counselors really pushed me to work hard and it payed off.

I also learned a lot of fun things, like how to waterski for the first time. Every day is fun and full of adventure. I love all my new friends at camp and even though I was nervous at first, Camp Starlight easily became my summer home. I love how much fun I get to have every day at Camp Starlight and can’t wait for next summer already.

– Molly M., Camper

Bunk Plaques Add to Growing Starlight History

August 28th, 2017

The history of Camp Starlight is as deep and diverse as an ocean, full of life and a variety of characters, this summer camp contains an endless amount of history. There are so many stories that can be told within the gates of Starlight.

One way to leave your bit of history and to make your camp story last a lifetime is through the tradition of decorating a bunk plaque at the end of the summer. With the help of everyone inside your bunk, a plaque is given to every bunk on boys and girls side to decorate however they like to tell a story about their summer. Inside jokes and funny incidents are often inscribed on these wooden plaques, the paint depicts all the fun these campers have experienced this summer. No matter what is painted or dusted with glitter, the plaque symbolizes all the fun Camp Starlight was able to provide for these campers.

The plaque allows for a bunk to bond over all the good and sometimes the rough times of the summer, reminiscing over everything they have gone through together and will remember for the rest of their lives. This tradition is so special in the way it brings all the campers and counselors together, reminding everybody of how they were able to overcome challenges and accomplish goals as a bunk, the summer wouldn’t have been the same without everyone in the bunk taking part in helping each other.

These plaques are forever hung in the Dining Hall of camp, the one place everyone is gathered for important times of the day. When you look up at your plaque from this summer or summers ago, you are able to remember all the amazing memories you have made at Camp Starlight and the unique experiences you wouldn’t be able to participate in anywhere else. With your plaque, your history is forever a part of Camp Starlight’s.

Camp Starlight Music Production

August 23rd, 2017

 

The Summer Closes but Starlight Will Never Fade

August 18th, 2017

As last sunset of the summer touches the lake and the Starlight shirts are packed away, another summer at Camp Starlight has come to a close. The summer flew by as the wind does through the trees, easily and without notice. It’s not until the activities slow down and trunks lift out of the attic that you realize another summer of fun, laughter, excitement and challenge has come and gone. You won’t be able to see the growth within yourself if you stare up close in the mirror, but it is visible in the list of achievements you’ve accomplished throughout the summer, whether big or small. Smiling at your new friends and hugging your old ones, Camp Starlight has brought you together with people you never knew you would meet in life from all over the world. Remembering all the times you spent laughing at the evening activity, singing and cheering during Olympics and how excited you were to start the summer when you hopped off the bus, the memories from the summer of 2017 flood you entirely. It’s really at the end of the summer that you realize how special this place is and how it’s magic transforms an ordinary summer of work and play into a season of outrageous amounts of fun and unique opportunities. Preparing for goodbyes have never been as difficult as when you have to separate from those you have grown closest to and admire. You may wonder how does time move this fast exactly when you don’t want it to and why will these next ten months until camp feel like ten years. The wait is long, the goodbyes are hard and the heartache is heavy, but all of this is worth it when you hop on the bus to go home because you know soon enough you will hop right back off to your summer home, Camp Starlight.

Olympics Produces Winners and Life Long Memories

August 11th, 2017

After a great battle between blue and white, the annual Olympics at Camp Starlight came to a final close, declaring Happy Blue Day the successor on girl’s side and Grand Stand White the winner of boy’s side. Every single camper, regardless what team they were on, put in one hundred and ten percent effort into these Olympic games, embracing every unusual task or challenge that would earn their team points. Campers wouldn’t even do a double take when asked to toss cheese puffs onto a camper’s head full of shaving cream, duke it out in the most intense game of Gaga or eat dinner in complete silence to help their team win. Olympics is a five day event that everyone takes seriously, counselors and staff included because it is also their hard work and dedication that helps their team win. Counselors and staff can sacrifice all their time to help design costumes and a set for Sing! or compete in staff volleyball games during rest hour just so that their team can get a few extra points. No matter how few or many points a camper or counselor earned for their team, they all added up in the end and without them the results wouldn’t have been the same. Olympics is a time that brings all of the campers, counselors and staff together, a special event that bonds everyone together as they all fight for the same goal. When the winners are announced at the end of the fifth day, cheering and shouts of joy erupted in the air but it didn’t compare to the rewarding feeling when everyone from the blue and white teams rushed the lake, celebrating all the things that every camper had been able to achieve during this Olympics. While winning is a reward in itself, the real reward of Olympics are the memories everyone was able to create during these five days of fun, athleticism, teamwork and friendship.