What Should the Voters Know?:
We at Special Days Camps feel very lucky to have been able to have an in person overnight camp in 2021. We are a small organization mostly staffed by devoted volunteers. Not being connected to a big corporate organization has its challenges, but it allowed us to be nimble in our reactions to the challenges that Covid provided. We hopefully and tentatively planned with our partner camp location as vaccine rates increased in the spring and early summer. Under the close supervision of our medical team who advised our mitigation strategies, we provided two weeks of camp to kids with cancer and their siblings in August. Hurray!
Our programming and daily schedule was altered somewhat, but that is too boring to discuss. Our campers didn’t care about mitigation strategies…they were just excited to be back at camp! They wanted to play and laugh and sing around the campfire!
Our theme was “Special Days Topsy Turvy” because we wanted to celebrate doing things differently! Our Scipmylo events were the centerpiece of our programming.
Scipmylo is Olympics spelled backward…Each day we had a Scipmylo event complete with gold, silver and bronze medals. Each event was a topsy turvy version of a traditional event. We have rarely seen our campers more engaged in a program than we did this year! They took time all week to plan and practice for upcoming events. The volunteers got into the act as well as they competed in exhibitions before each day’s event. Watching your counselor perform in a silly sport made it all the more engaging!
Here is a summary of our events:
Biathlon…A crazy obstacle course done backwards ending in the campers shooting their counselors with water blasters!
Art Race Each team had a canvas and creativity…The judges had all the art supplies. The campers had 45 minutes to create a work of art in a relay. Each camper took turns either working on the canvas, getting the supplies or advising the artist on the best way to express “Special Days” in art. We wanted an event that gave the artists time to shine!
Slip and Slide Curling What a hoot! Each player ran at the slip and slide with an inner tube and tried to get as close as they could to the bullseye. The opposing team might “bump” them out of the way or maybe even closer to the target!
Equestrian events This was two events! Each cabin group made a pool noodle horse. The first event was “Dressage” Each camper pranced and danced to music with their “horse” in the ring. Scoring was based on artistic interpretation and horsemanship…in other words, did it look like you were riding a horse or dragging a pool noodle around? The next event was a “Steeplechase” or a course full of jumps and obstacles. This was scored based on speed, jump style and horsemanship. And yes! Each horse needed a coconut clip-clopper running behind them! It was nothing short of hilarious and amazing.
Canoe Races We admit it…this event was mostly for the volunteers. Nothing too creative about a canoe race, to be sure, but the staff took it VERY seriously. Some also were able to model their good sportsmanship for the campers!
Synchronized Swimming Unbelievably fun! Each cabin worked on music and choreography for a water ballet. You haven’t lived until you’ve seen some 14 year old boys practicing their ballet with utter seriousness. It was hilarious, bonding and a memory they will never forget!
Words cannot adequately express how much fun we had this summer. Please take a look at the photos of these Scipmylo events to get an idea of what an impact we had on the lives of our campers!