One of the best parts of marathon camp is ‘Choice Day’. On this special day, counselors and volunteers give campers the opportunity to do activities outside the usual Camp John Knox offerings. The kids have a chance to participate in two activities; one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Junior marathon campers also had the option of an all-day white water canoe trip down the Hiawassee River.
In Iron Chef, campers learned knife skills and other cooking essentials, and then put their newly acquired talents to use making a meal that included Thai chicken lettuce wraps with peanut sauce and cheesecake. Extreme versions of high ropes and challenge courses allowed campers to try these classic activities at more intense (and fun!) level. Senior high marathon campers could also participate in a movie making session and a nature hike. Campers could also take a tour of the Mayfield Milk Dairy, complete with ice cream sampling and then work off their frozen treat at Eighties Iron Man, a high energy Zumba relay that had our campers dancing all afternoon.
I had a blast running extreme arts and crafts, an option for our elementary and junior marathon campers. Campers created beautiful paintings, worked on string bracelets, tie dyed bandannas, and splatter painted a huge sheet. I even let my first session have an impromptu “shaving cream war” with left over supplies. They all left smiling and in the words of one camper, smelling like their dads. Seeing my crafters create awesome reminders (and memories) of their time at camp made me remember why Camp John Knox is so special! My campers made up a variety of ages, interests, and personalities, but as they playfully threw shaving cream blobs at each other, those differences did not matter. I love that CJK is a place where kids can enjoy the outdoors, make new friends, try new things, and where all you need is excitement and a good attitude to have a great time!
With this reminder, I am eager to see the friendships that form as we move into our second week of camp, and I know the other staff members are equally excited. Stay tuned for more posts both on the blog and on Facebook!
-Anna Rennich, Program Assistant