Category: Dare to Explore in 1-4!

Camp Reunion Day – See You There!


November is a notoriously happy time for a lot of reasons, namely the first snowfall, imminent holidays and promise of winter break in less than a month. But as a winter chill enters the air, it also brings about a certain nostalgia, because it feels like camp has never been further away. At least while it was still warm out, we could pretend like Eagle River was still within our reach, as if we had only just left the north woods or maybe—if we closed our eyes and tried really hard to imagine it—as if we were still there. The memories tend to linger longer when the sun is still warm on our cheeks and our backs and school hasn’t quite started yet.

But when winter comes around, it’s a cold reminder that there are still some long months ahead of us before we can head back to camp, and we want nothing more than to be surrounded by our camp friends and family.  Lucky for us, the Jordan family knows exactly how we feel. They bring us all back together under one roof on the glorious Saturday in November that we all know as camp reunion day.


To me, the camp reunion is that extra push of motivation to power through the cold weather and the reassurance that, once June rolls around, the wait will be worth it. You are reunited with all of your favorite people and, even in the cold, un-camp-like weather, you are filled with a warmth that reminds you a little bit of Sand Lake, horses and fresh bug juice.

When I was younger and had neither the access to a car nor means of communication to visit my friends who lived hours away, my mom would dutifully drive me to the camp reunion every November so that I could see the people that I loved so much. And even as I grew older and could drive myself, I relished in the chance to be surrounded by the people, pictures and memories that helped me remember that camp is something I can’t live without.


This is the first November in almost thirteen years that I won’t be able to make it to the reunion, so I know that I’ll be surfing through the camp website for photos that can try to replace the happiness that I feel when I’m there. It’s a weaker substitute, but just knowing that other campers and staff will be reuniting, reliving the days of summers past and chatting excitedly about summers future, will help me thaw the icy feeling that living in a world without Woodland tends to bring.

Come November 22nd, I know I would probably give anything to be at the camp reunion. So if you have the chance to get yourself there—whether it be by driving, carpooling or even biking—I highly suggest that you take it!

Natalie Behnke



Happy Halloween from Starshine 2014!


Costumes are not just for Halloween…we dress up at camp almost every day!  Alien Night, 4th of July Games, Seasons Camper Council, Silver Birch Pajama Party, Olympics, Campfires…you name it, we wear it!  We would love to see pictures of you in your Halloween costume, so email us at:


Starshine Favorite Things

Daphne: I like looking back and seeing everyone’s accomplishments throughout the summer, the toasts that the counselors give are funny, spoon assassins because everyone is suspicious of each other, but is completely into the game, cabin nights because I like spending time with my cabin

Sofia: cabin nights because it forms a tighter bond with friends, Olympics is so much fun because it is the one day you are with different people other than your cabin and competing with friends, and banquet because I enjoy the toasts our counselors make for us as they make us all laugh and cry about the amazing inside jokes we share

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Silver Birch Pajama Party

Arantxa: spoon assassins because I like running after people and trying to eliminate them, Olympics because everything gets so competitive but it is still super fun and winning or getting awarded the spirit stick is one of the best parts, and aqua tram; because I just love my cabin and bonding with them is by far the best thing

Colette: spoon assassins because it is super intense and suspenseful, banquet because even though it is sad, it is fun to hear about all of the things you accomplish in only six weeks, 4th of July campfire because I love seeing the songs and skits TP does and doing a cabin song and skit


Seasons Camper Council

Elena: banquet because the whole camp comes together to laugh and cry at all of our memories, Olympics because you can compete against other girls and scream until you lose your voice, and Wednesday campfires because we get to gather around the fire in our Crazy Creeks while laughing at our hilarious campfire leaders

Frida: Olympics because we learn how to work with your team and also you can show your abilities, campfire because you spend a good time with your friends and the entire camp, and cabin night because you get to know your cabin and also we tell stories and have a great time

Chelsea: I love Olympics because it is super competitive, everyone cheers super loud, and I love competing in the track event; I LOVE banquet because I love hearing all the awards that everyone has accomplished and seeing if I passed my levels; TP and Woodland fairs because I love running the booths and going to them, and I love seeing my brother and hanging out with our friends from TP


 Super Hero Night


Why The Sun Has a Purple Tongue and Sunnyside’s Favorite Things

Before September is too far behind us, I wanted to be sure to post Sunnyside’s “favorite things” (see below) since they were the sponsoring cabin for the blog last month.  I received the clay sun you see here (which reminded me of Sunnyside!) as a thank-you gift at the ACA SE Fall Conference in Savannah 2 weeks ago, and the story that came with it made me think about how at camp it is OK to color outside the lines.  In fact, we encourage it!  (see accompanying photos)


One morning when my daughter, Cora Grace, and I were eating cereal, she stuck out her tongue and said, “Daddy, what color is my tongue?”  I responded, not paying much attention, “Cora Grace, your tongue is pink.”  “No, Daddy, my tongue is blue.”  That caught my attention.  I realized she was eating cereal pieces of the same color so they would change the color of her tongue.  I saw the game she was playing and started asking her, “What color tongue does Daddy have?  What color tongue does Mommy have? “  And so on, until we’d named most of the people she knew and the cereal was gone.

Then I said, “Cora Grace, what color tongue does the sun have?”  She thought for a moment then said, “Oh, Daddy, the sun has a purple tongue.”  Since then, most of the clay suns I make have purple tongues.  They tell me that we should be able to say, “Why not?’ instead of “That’s not possible.”  They also say that it’s OK to color outside the lines. 

Mud Dabber’s Pottery & Crafts (NC)

olympics 2 campers

Sunnyside’s Favorite Things

Susie: my 3 counselors (Sarah, Rachel, and Sam) who love to be and have fun; riflery was a new and fun experience for me; I love the homey atmosphere and the fact that everyone knows each other; I loved the canoe trip and how fun it was to talk that night with my tent-mates; archery because it is a hobby I have always loved

Sophia: playing with the goats in Farm Zoo, making new camp friends, passing levels in swimming and riflery, going to campfire

Lydia: cantering in riding, canoe trip campfires, getting to un-tack the horses, seeing old friends from camp, the cheering at Olympics

Ana Pau: tennis, riflery, and sailing, memories, friends that will be forever, Dan’s grilled cheese, Banquet and Birthday

kissing horse

Isa: water-skiing around Sand Lake, meeting new girls and making new friends every year, learning more sailing skills and passing levels, trying new delicious recipes that Dan makes, growing from the inside and outside

Grace: Dan’s grilled cheese, canoeing (capsizing), Farm Zoo (bunnies), getting mail and packages, trotting in riding

Andrea: the feeling you get when you jump into the lake, hanging out with your friends, Dan’s chicken potpie, the sound you hear when you shoot a gun in riflery, accomplishing swimming to Cathy’s, EVERYTHING!!!

Claire: riflery, tennis, canoeing, Dan’s chicken patties, skiing during Rec Swim

kelly j


You Know You Love Camp When…(CIT’s)


2nd Year CIT’s on Banquet Night

You Know You Love Camp When:

  • You get super into all of your camp activities (ex: Spoon Assassins).
  • You can’t wait to spend the next summer at camp.
  • You’ve been away for several years but you still remember all of the crazy songs and traditions.
  • You get to hang out with all of your best friends in the cabin.
  • You plan your whole year around coming back to camp.


CIT’s at the Beach

You Know You Love Camp When:

  • There’s no place you would rather be.
  • You countdown to camp next summer as soon as you leave.
  • You cry at the thought of leaving.
  • You don’t mind getting bug bites.
  • Real life problems fade away once you are at camp.


CIT’s Serving Pancake Breakfast — YUM!

You Know You Love Camp When:

  • You can’t sing the real lyrics to a song that was sung at Song Contest or Co-Ed Show.
  • You go to your camp friends instead of your home friends for advice.
  • You are so excited to see your camp friends at the start of every summer.
  • You cry during the slideshow.
  • No one understands camp at home, and when you try to explain, they don’t get it.
  • You’d rather tell your camp friends about the big happenings in your life versus your home friends.


CIT’s Showing Their Sunday Spirit

p.s. This is the last in a series of “You Know You Love Camp When” blogs…stay tuned for new blogs throughout the year!

You Know You Love Camp When…(Sunnyside)


Sunnyside: Final Banquet Night

You Know You Love Camp When:

  • You make new friends.
  • You are sad to leave.
  • You share a laugh with your cabin.
  • You travel a long way to get to camp.
  • You pass a level.
  • You collapse into bed at night from exhaustion due to all of the activities.


Sunnyside: Chillin’ at Campfire

You Know You Love Camp When:

  • You are sitting by the lake and feel like you are at home.
  • You give up a lot of things to come to camp (like traveling and being with your family).
  • You feel like you are at home.
  • You feel welcome.
  • You feel integrated into the camp family.


Sunnyside: Woodland Fair Day