Just like a treasure box full of keepsakes or a drawer full of letters from friends, every second at Camp Starlight has the potential to turn into a lesson you hold on to forever. After all, what is camp but a collection of magical moments?
True, the days can be long — but you can always count on this: just when you think you’re getting “burnt out” from school or work, something will happen to remind you why you decided to be a camp counselor in the first place!
Remember these 10 classic camp counselor moments to remind yourself why you left civilization behind to be a camp counselor at Camp Starlight all summer!
The first campfire of the summer
Every campfire is special, but the first campfire of the summer holds a special place in the collective lore of camp counselors.
After a long (and cold!) year away from the woods and cabins of summer camp, that classic campfire smell comes like a rush of fresh air. Ushering in the new season — and at the same time, bringing back happy memories from summer seasons past. Sigh… truly, no camp moment is more emotional than that first campfire. (Except perhaps the last one!)
That moment when you realize you don’t miss your phone
Digital detox is a big part of camp life, especially if you’re totally addicted to Instagram and Buzzfeed. Sometimes those first few days can be a shock to the system.
The rewards are big, though, for counselors who learn to “tune in and tune out” — living in the moment is way easier when you aren’t tied to yesterday’s Facebook posts!
That moment when you learn to live without your mobile “leash” is a classic camp moment and a lesson you’ll always carry with you.
Getting up on stage and making a total fool of yourself
You never were into acting. You also couldn’t imagine that you had any creative talents to share. But there you were at camp up there on stage totally making a fool of yourself. Setting a great example to your campers by going out of your own comfort zone and participating in the evening activities at camp is something you will never forget. Yes, the picture of you in the crazy wig and tutu found its way on facebook but now your friends and family back home will see a different side of you.
The glory of shower hour
Showering at home may be kind of “meh.” But showering at camp? Basically the opposite of “meh!” Nobody said camp life had to be muddy, right?
The only real challenge of shower hour at camp is making sure everybody doesn’t take a full hour just to themselves! Trust us when we say you’ll never forget that camp shower feeling — nothing feels better after a long day of running around in the sun!
The last s’more of the summer
The first day of camp and the last day at camp are always the most emotional for summer camp counselors. Making new friends! Going back to school! It can be kind of a crazy roller coaster (but a fun one of course). Camp is all about traditions, so chowing down on that last traditional campfire s’more is bound to be a moment you always remember. Cheesy? So be it!
Sending postcards to your friends at home
Let’s be honest — isn’t it a relief to be working at Camp Starlight this summer instead of painting houses or checking out groceries like most of your friends from school?
Sending postcards home is one of those moments when you stop and realize exactly how awesome it is to be where you are. The question is, how can you fit all that enthusiasm into one five-by-six inch card?
Fourth of July at camp
Fourth of July is always awesome. Fourth of July with all your friends at summer camp? Four times as awesome!
We may raise the flag at camp every day, but it’s extra special on the Fourth of July. Who knows, there might even be a few fireworks…
When you cheer up a discouraged camper
Being there for your campers when they need you is by far the most fulfilling part of the camp counselor experience.
I still remember the counselor who helped me cheer up and get back in the game when I felt homesick at my first sleepaway camp. So getting to do the same for a camper with the blues felt all the better.
The power to turn “having the blues” into “having a blast” is the superpower that separates camp counselors from mere mortals!
Getting mail from home
Yeah, sure, Mom can be annoying sometimes. But absence makes the heart grow fonder, as they say, and getting mail from the folks is a special moment for camp counselors.
Especially when you’re close to the end of the season, those little pieces of home start to feel a little bittersweet. It’s nice to know that you’ll get to see the ol’ homestead again in a few weeks — even if you’d rather stay at camp all year around!
The last campfire of the season
Just like the first campfire of the year sets the tone for the future, the last campfire of the year gives everyone at camp a chance to reflect on a season well-spent.
Everyone around you has gone from being friendly strangers to life-long friends and chances are you know the camp grounds like the back of your hand.
Cherish those last few group songs, and remember: next summer will be here before you know it!