Today was the last day of this Session. It was also the last Session for 2016. It's always bittersweet to close a camp. The Staff and Campers became close, and had a lot of fun together.
Today began with the campers doing a bit of last-day tweaks to their journals, and some campers adding some new items. When everyone was present, we all convened for the all-camp photograph, which Tom Shreve took. The campers then went down the Service Road to the large Garry Oak Tree, the oldest tree on the Refuge, about 350 years old.
Our Naturalist Gary Fawver told the campers the story that this old tree asked our Gary to share with the kids. The story describes all of the things that the Garry Oak encountered through his long life at this spot. The campers were very attentive.
The Beavers, Chickadees, and Owls each went out on the trails for their last walk and sit-spot. When they returned, each camper selected their favorite journal page for a picture to be included in a book to be assembled of this year's camp. Here's one camper's favorite...
Charlie and Sandy showed the campers how to bind the covers to the journal pages. With the help of the Team Leads and Camp Assistants, they were ready to take over to the Visitors Center to join up with the other project deliverables for the week. Our veteran camper Clair did the honors of taking the completed journals for display.
Our Photographer Tom Shreve helped the campers mount the 4 x 6 print of one of their favorite pictures in a frame to take home. Tom had printed and framed 8 x 10 prints of another favorite picture from each camper and mounted those on the wall in the Riparian Room.
The campers then turned in their art supplies and loupes for us to use in our next camp.
With everything set up for when the families arrived, the campers assembled in the EE Shelter for some music, courtesy of Ginny, Sandy, and Gloria, our string trio,...
and some dancing, choreographed by Ginny, with Sandy and Gloria providing the music.
The families arrived on time and the entire congregation was led over to the Visitors Center by Sandy, on her viola.
The Staff will take a bit of time off to recharge our batteries. Soon, while the memories of the 2016 Camp are still fresh, we'll get together to debrief what went well this year, what we should look to improve, and discuss if some of the activities should be replaced.
We thoroughly enjoyed the time we spent with the campers and are grateful for the opportunity. We appreciate your joining the celebration today, and look forward to seeing you the Refuge and perhaps at next year's Camp.