June 27, 2015 is the day that many Robindel campers have been counting down to since August 16th of last summer. We see countdowns from the campers on Facebook and Instagram throughout the year and it makes us excited to plan for the summer as we visit with families, hire staff and plan the camp program. We are all filled with excitement for tomorrow’s opening day. We know that there are many emotions swirling around the households of our camp families today. We wish you all a wonderful night and we look forward to welcoming the campers to Robindel tomorrow.
Throughout the year we receive many wonderful letters from our campers and staff and we want to share some of them below. They embody the reasons why we are involved in camping. We love our campers and staff and we can’t wait to begin the 2015 summer!
As I sit here packing my carry on in preparation for this summer, I started to realize how much camp has impacted my life. Though this is my last summer as a camper, Robindel’s life lessons will stay with me forever. Exactly eight years ago from tomorrow, I walked onto a bus going to an unfamiliar place. I cried a lot on the bus and was frightened to be away from my parents for 7 weeks. But immediately as I stepped off the bus, I felt right at home. Robindel was the first place that fully accepted me for who I was. After I came home from my first summer, my parents noticed a change in me. They saw that I became more open minded, confident and felt comfortable in my own skin. Every summer after I came home from camp, I felt better about myself. My dad often says that when he sees me on Visiting Day, I’m my happiest self. At camp, I am my happiest self. I’m surrounded by my best friends in a beautiful place doing the things I love. How could I not be happy? Camp has giving me valuable life lessons, such as acceptance, respect, friendship, honesty, and trust and teamwork and for that I am eternally grateful. Robindel is a truly indescribable place. Though this is my last summer, Robindel will always be in my heart. I can’t imagine whom I would be without it. The most important lesson Robindel has taught me was to be myself. Ann and Nat, I cannot thank you enough for everything you have done for me. You have given me the greatest gift, confidence. I can’t wait for this summer- it’s going to be the best one yet!
Thank you both so much for being a reference for me regarding a position at (Day Camp). I am happy to say that I got the job and will be a camp counselor for the upcoming summer! I am very excited to use the skills I’ve learned at Robindel to help make a positive impact on young campers. I can say from the bottom of my heart that camp has shaped me into the person I am today. It’s not the beautiful campus, or the range of activities, or the amazing food, the reason that I love camp is because of all the wonderful people who I had the privilege of meeting through my six years at Robindel. It is through these people that I have learned many skills. Some of those include: teamwork, problem solving, organization, determination, and probably the most important, little time it takes to love a group of people. I am sure that any current, or ex-camper can all tell you that. The crazy part of all of this, is that you only get to see them (for the most part) for seven weeks out of the entire 52. The bonds that you form with the girls into your bunk become sisterly bonds. You genuinely love them. They are probably some of the greatest people I will have the chance to meet. You also meet incredible mentors who do so much to shape you into a caring, compassionate, and all around good person. The campers, counselors, administrators, and everyone who is involved with camp in any way, has no doubt changed my life. I am a completely different person than I was when I stepped off the bus in 2009. I grew more confident, mature, and more comfortable being who I am thanks to camp.
First off, I just wanted to wish you all an amazing summer. Today is the 10 year anniversary from the time I stepped on the bus my Hemlock summer. When I arrived at the bus stop I was excited and eager to attend Robindel, but I had no idea that camp would play such an important role in my life. When I think of camp I immediately think of the sunsets, the main field, the lake, the infirmary, the dining hall, and Ann & Nat’s office. Robindel, however, means so much more to me than these physical structures.
Robindel has provided me with best friends that I have been able to count on for ten years, and I I know I will have for the rest of my life. I would not have been able to get through high school, let alone each day, without them. Blue and White competition allowed me to grow, mature, and learn about the responsibilities of being in a position of power. Robindel campers and staff taught me how to be a better friend, daughter, little sister, big sister, student, and ultimately a better person. I owe so much of who I am today to Robindel. Camp Robindel will always be my second home and a place where I learned the importance of standing up for myself and those around me. Camp taught me to always “look on the bright side” and that life can be better with a positive attitude and a wide smile.
Although I say that I am “thanking Robindel” for allowing me to grow, I am really thanking all of you. Thank you for providing me with a support group and place I can be my best self.
I admire all of you for continuing to influence and empower young girl’s lives the way you have impacted mine. I hope every Robindel camper is able to appreciate the experience and cherish each memory the way I have.
Happy almost camp! I’m not sure exactly what day the campers arrive but I know it is coming up so, yay! I bet you are very busy and I don’t want to take a lot of time out of your day but I wanted to say thank you. I have been meaning to send you a thank for a long time but couldn’t decide exactly what I wanted to say, with that here is it;
Thank you for everything you did for me while I was a counselor at CR. I have to admit when I first got to camp I didn’t understand what people meant when they said it was “home”, but today I do. Not only around this time every year, but almost weekly I think about camp and the girls and I am reminded that there is always somewhere I can go ( if not physically then mentally) where I will feel “home”. I love seeing all of the updates on social media and keeping up with all of the activities! I know for a few summers I thought I would be coming back and never made it work, and for that thank you for understanding and working with me.
I read a letter this week written by Hunter S. Thompson to a friend when he was younger that read “no one HAS to do something he doesn’t want to for the rest of his life, but then again if that’s what you wind up doing by all means convince yourself you HAD to do it. You’ll have lots of company.” I’ve always told myself I HAVE to do this or I HAVE to do that for my career, and camp was never on that list. I realize that camp has been one of the most important changes in my life so far. It really helped me to open my mind on what is the “norm” for success and what success will mean to me. It definitely helped me to get where I am today and will continue to guide my decisions throughout life.
After not going to camp last season, I took an internship with (a bureau of land management). I really hated it there and struggled with my decision all summer. In the end, it opened up a huge opportunity for me as and Outdoor Recreation Planner with (another bureau), which is where I am now. I have made great friends in a very short amount of time and I am really loving it here. I know I will make many more career moves in the future and I believe that camp will always be a huge part of it even after just one year. Like I said before I cannot thank you and everyone at camp enough for everything that CR has given to me.