Monthly Archives:November 2023

Friendsgiving: Anywhere and Anytime

Here’s a math problem to solve: Camp Reunion + Thanksgiving = ???? (^hint: look at the title of the blog^)

It was super fun to gather in the Chicago area this past weekend for a reunion of camp friends – both Woodland and TP (Friendsgiving)! Campers and staff were together for part of the afternoon to catch up on the past few months, share memories and stories of summers past, and build excitement for “Opening New Doors in ’24”! It was just like being back at camp during Fair Day…snacks were served and games were played (with prizes!). Some of our favorite CIT’s were on hand to infuse camp spirit, and, of course, cameras documented the event (hence the photos you see here).

One of the things I have learned over the years is that campers (and staff) return to camp because of the people. Sure, activities and traditions are part of the draw to come back to County D Road. However, these wouldn’t be the same without the individuals who are there to create the memories we rely on this time of year when summer is still over a half a year away.

The ecosystem of camp is such that the bonds of friendship are strong because of the welcoming community from the beginning. The staff are really good at helping campers integrate into the camp experience and intentional about giving them organic opportunities to meet and learn about each other in an authentic way. It doesn’t take long for the seeds of friendship to grow!

Towards the end of the summer, we asked campers to reflect on what it looks like when they are being a good friend at camp (and would love for this to spill over into being a friend at home and school!).

When I am being a good friend at camp I am:


Audrey: helping cheer them up; Amelia/Georgia: helping; Evie: kind, respectful and responsive; Jaclyn/Eleanor: being kind;  JoJo: having fun; Luci: thoughtful and respectful; Fiona/Oli: including others; Oli: being nice

Silver Birch

Alice/Masyn: being kind and helpful; Elyse: helping others and being thoughtful; Clara: helping people and being myself; Lia: happy; Mojo: welcoming; Roberta: nice and kind; Ana Roberta: when I don’t get angry; Maya (CIT): talking/including others


Eloise: making others feel at home; Maggie: helping others; Olivia H: nice; Casilda: nice to them; Renata/Camila: empathetic; Dani (CIT): patient


Hannah: me; Orla: happy; Maddie H: a good listener; Amelia: helping everyone no matter what; Maddie B: calm; Nat (CIT): being empathetic and myself


Julia: helping others; Regi: proud of myself for having awesome friends; Natalia: nice and helpful; Olive: helping others when they are homesick; Sophia: understanding, positive, respectful; Casi: always helping; Taylor: comforting them; Tess (CIT): not fighting when things get hard


Zoe: funny/kind; Alix: kind and thoughtful; Stella: chillin’; Amelia: nice, understanding, respectful; Phoebe: proud, happy, positive; Clara: happy; Olivia: there for them; Sydney: happy; Isabella (CIT): having fun


Vale: feeling good and happy; Marion: friendly; Lizzie: including others; Bella: kind and respectful to others; Izzy: making new friends in activities; Elizabeth: being nice and inclusive; Katherine: super happy


Sofia: empathetic; Delia: open; Lou: making people laugh; Lizzy: thoughtful and not annoying; Lizzie: helping others feel better; Kaitlyn: respectful; Lilah: being kind

Friendsgiving: Anywhere and Anytime!

The gathering in Chicago was the kickstart to camp reunions anywhere, anytime! It is EASY to host your own FRIENDSGIVING for camp friends where you are. Let us know HERE that you are interested, and we will help get it organized!


Now is a GREAT time to enroll your camper/s for 2024 and reserve your spot/s. Sign up HERE:

Revving Up for the CWTP Reunion

What seems like a million years ago when we lived in Texas, I would dread the November weekend each year when somewhere around 400,000 people on 150,000 motorcycles joined the residents of Galveston Island for the Lone Star Rally. I would listen to bikes of all shapes and sizes drive by all day (and all night). In looking back on that time, I can’t help but think how the bikers were really just coming to the Island for their yearly reunion. And, we are about to do the same thing ourselves when Woodland/TP campers and staff come together this coming weekend for an afternoon with camp friends in the Chicago area.

I’m sure the Lone Star Rally revs up each year as the weeks and days draw closer in anticipation of meeting up with friends who haven’t seen each other for a period of time. Bikers gather at their favorite restaurants to catch up on the events that have passed between visits, enjoy rides along the beach and other scenic routes, meet new friends, and make plans for future opportunities to do what they love (ride motorcycles). In many ways, this annual biker weekend is one giant family reunion.

Sound familiar?! The excitement for gathering at the Northfield Community Church on Saturday, November 18th is building as campers and staff make plans to spend a few hours together at the annual reunion the weekend before Thanksgiving. We are also making it possible for campers and staff who do not live in the Chicago area to “pop in” on Zoom to say hello to cabin mates and friends. What if it’s been more than a year since you have been to camp OR if this will be your first time? We would love for any former campers/staff (once a part of the Woodland/TP camp family, always a part of our camp family!) and new campers who will be joining us in 2024 to stop by. Please feel free to bring along any friends from home who might want to learn more about the TWO BEST CAMPS AROUND! 

The video from the recent summer will be shown, scrapbooks containing numerous camp photos will be passed around, stories from the past summer will be retold, school year events will be shared, and plans for next year will be made to DO WHAT WE LOVE AT CAMP (and of course, we will enjoy an assortment of yummy snacks!).  And, yes, this weekend will be one giant family reunion!

 We can’t wait to see you on Saturday, November 18th from 3:30-5:00 pm CST!  Please RSVP HERE to let us know you are coming. Check your email to get the Zoom link to join virtually (4-5 pm). p.s. Motorcycles/bikes welcome!