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Kelsey T. at Chris Dudley

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Hey, Camp Fans!

With extreme excitement to share the submissions we received for our 2018 ‘Share Your Camp Story’ Contest in which we ask campers and parents alike to write in about how the camp experience went. We got such a great turnout that we’re still sharing them this far into 2019! Here is another installment to our contest collection!

Today’s submission comes from Kelsey T. who spent her summer at Chris Dudley Basketball Camp! Check it out:

When I was 7 years old, I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) is an autoimmune disease, a chronic illness where the body does not produce insulin, a hormone that breaks down carbohydrates into energy. In order to stay healthy, I will need to give myself insulin (via syringes or an insulin pump) every day, multiple times a day, for the rest of my life and monitor my blood sugar to make sure I am healthy. Being diagnosed with T1D at a young age was isolating, scary, and had me questioning what my future held. Chris Dudley Basketball Camp for Kelsey T.!

When I was 10 years old, I started going to the Chris Dudley Basketball Camp, a basketball camp started by Chris Dudley who was the first NBA player with T1D. Every camper had T1D and played basketball, which I loved. I was nervous, scared, and hesitant to spend a week away from my parents in a new place. But after one week at CDBC, I knew I had found a home away from home and a new camp family. I was immediately welcomed into the camp family, as I have seen so many new campers be welcomed throughout the years. The magic of camp is truly indescribable. For me, it was a safe place. A place where everyone understood the daily challenges of T1D; a place where for once in my life, I wasn't the outsider with a chronic illness. All of a sudden, the questioning of my future that I felt was answered. All of the ‘why me?’s had a reason. Camp. Camp was my why, camp was my future. At camp, I learned that despite T1D, I could do whatever I dreamed of. When I was 16 years old, I knew, without a shadow of a doubt, that camp was what I was meant to do with my life. I went to college to get a degree in Psychology and Camp Administration. I have now been on full time staff for 2 years at CDBC and I have been coming to camp for 17 years. Not a year goes by that I don't find a passion for the campers that I get to meet every year at camp. They are truly my family. They are my ‘why’. Camp has forever changed me, saved me, and inspired me.

What a personal submission, Kelsey! We appreciate so much your openness and honesty in sharing your medical matters. How cool to get this somewhat retrospective look at what summer camp has done for you (it’s always great to hear a success story)! I’m so very happy you discovered your ‘why’ and it’s amazing to hear how essential Chris Dudley Basketball Camp has become in your life! I hope you squeeze the fun out of every summer! If anybody else would like to check out CDBC, give them a closer look sometime and, as always, thanks for reading!


- John

Consider Camp Cody this Summer!

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Hey, Camp Folks!

Summer is knocking on the door. It’s definitely time to start thinking about the camp you’ll be attending in the upcoming season! Take a gander at our featured summer camps with whom we’ve formed great relationships here at Everything Summer Camp and read about another one today!Enjoy campfires with your fellow campers at Camp Cody!

We’re shining our summer camp spotlight over to the eastern border of New Hampshire. There, we’ll focus in on Camp Cody.

Located on the shores of Ossipee Lake, Camp Cody features a mile-long stretch of private waterfront. The campgrounds are tucked away and remote, surrounded by tall pines with the White Mountain National Forest all around. 

Camp Cody campers enjoy Canoeing, Sailing, Swimming, Wakeboarding, Water Polo, Waterskiing, and much more on the waterfront. They sharpen their skills in Archery, Baseball, Basketball, Fencing, Hockey, Soccer, Tennis, Volleyball for Land Activities. And campers also get the opportunity for Adventure Trips, Outdoor Cooking, Rocketry, and Survival Skills.

Camp Cody also shows its campers the opportunity for other activities such as Woodworking, Ceramics, Videography, Music, Crafts, and Dance.

All these activities are made possible by Camp Cody’s sports facilities including their baseball diamond, a soccer field and a football field. They also have their volleyball court, a hockey court, a floodlit five-a-side soccer arena, a floodlit basketball court and six tennis courts—two of which are floodlit. They also offer a modern laser tag course as well as an archery range.

With sturdy, yet rustic buildings across the campgrounds, Camp Cody maintains its remote feel. The cabins are comfortable, housing up to seven campers and three counselors. The cabins are all set up with electricity, fully-equipped bathrooms, and accommodating space for storage and belongings!

Join in on the fun of the summer action at Camp Cody—an awesome place to make your summer escape! If this camp sounds like a good fit for you, look into it more by checking out their website sometime and, as always, thanks for reading, Camp Fans!


- John

Jacked About Juggling!

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Hey, Cool Campers!

The number one reason for kids to go to summer camp is to have fun! And camps are really good at showing kids a fun time! Most camps offer somewhere between 50 and 100 activities! Some activities are an outlet for your sense of adventure while others indulge your quieter side to enjoy a simple activity that provides a creative outlet. And today’s activity definitely falls under the latter category.

Today, I’m talking about Juggling!

Juggling is documented in Ancient Egyptian paintings on tomb walls that date back as far as 4,000 years! Juggling is a skill that’s been passed down from generation to generation! So far, it’s made it four millennia! Who knows how long it will last?! It’s had its dips and spikes in popularity throughout history. Following a long lull from the court jester days, Juggling came back in a very big way as a part of the act in Vaudeville song and dance shows.

To learn the art of Juggling requires patience, determination, focus, and just a bit of direction. It’s easier to start with two Juggling balls instead of the traditional three, but the concepts are basically the same. If you’re going to attempt three, you want to start with two Juggling balls in your dominant hand and one in the other—otherwise one in each hand if you’re just starting with two.

Starting with your dominant hand, toss one Juggling ball about eye level and when that ball reaches the apex—the height of the toss, throw the ball from your other hand underneath the arch of the ball that’s airborne. Catch each ball as they come down in the respective hand and repeat. It’s that simple. But it takes days of practice to achieve the muscle memorization and fluidity.

I can say from experience, though—the time spent is well worth it! Juggling sharpens your concentration and, once you have the motions down, can be very therapeutic! See if your camp offers Juggling for their activities and, as always, thanks for reading!


- John

Deb K. and the Birchwood Way

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Hey, Camp Fans!

We been so thrilled with the large response we got to our annual ‘Share Your Camp Story’ Contest at Everything Summer Camp! It started after the close of the summer season back in 2018 and I’m still publishing your submissions one by one in the springtime right here on the Blog. Your stories were fantastic and it’s such a fun time reading through them! Enjoy another one right now!

Today’s post comes from Deb K. who wrote in to tell us about her many connections to Camp Birchwood: Camp Birchwood--the camp that keeps on giving!Camp Birchwood has been part of our summers for 30 Years! My oldest started going at age 8, she continued till senior high school and even returned as a counselor for a couple years. Two other daughters went to Camp Birchwood too! One of our sons went to Camp Birchwood for Boys and loved every minute of being in nature!

7 years ago our grandson started going, 3 years later another grandson joined his cousin, both loving it! 2 years ago our granddaughter started going to Camp Birchwood for girls...

Today we picked up the two grandsons from the pickup point. Love hearing all the adventures and about old camper friends! They bring up camp all year long...sure a wonderful experience for all of them!!

How cool that Camp Birchwood has been in your life for 30 years! It’s been a part of your life for generations! It must be a really fantastic and well-rounded camping experience! I hope Birchwood continues to stay in your life for summers to come! I’m sure it will with the lasting memories it creates! If anyone else is interested in Camp Birchwood for their next summer adventure, be sure to check out this camp some time and, as always, thanks for reading!


- John

Reese LOUISE!!

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Hey, Reese Fans!

And who isn’t a fan of Reese Witherspoon?  We definitely are here at Everything Summer Camp—after all, Reese was a summer camper herself back in the day! I posted about this beloved actress and how she attended Camp Monterey. I disclosed that information on the last Blog post I wrote about Reese from a number of years ago.

You can read the previous Blog post I wrote about her by clicking right here. Reese Witherspoon went to summer camp when she was young.Since it’s been so long since her last post, I thought we could revisit Reese to get to know her a little bit better.

Looking up to Dolly

Reese grew up in Nashville, Tennessee as well as her childhood hero: Dolly Parton. Reese would dream from a young age of someday becoming an entertainer of some sorts. After talking the only commercial agent in Nashville into representing her as a high schooler, Reese went out for a casting call for 1991’s ‘The Man in the Moon’—her film debut.

Reese Bookworm Witherspoon

Reese is a nerd!—a book nerd! And I mean that 100% as a compliment! The word ‘nerd’ doesn’t hold the same negative connotation that it once did and Reese definitely fits the bill. Reese actually has her own production company in which she attains the rights to books and turns them into movies (you know, every author’s dream)!

Not Least is Easter!

She offered the information in an interview with Vogue Magazine that her favorite holiday is Easter. With this holiday approaching soon, I thought I’d share her enjoyment of family time spent hiding plastic eggs on one another and gathering for a special meal.

We love the down-to-earth, family feel that Reese exudes. I hope these facts were new for all of you as well about a wonderful actress and former summer camper. If you have interest in checking out her old stomping grounds at Camp Monterey, give them a closer look some time. And, as always, thanks for reading.


- John