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Hayo for How Long?

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Hey, Camp Fans!

We’ve changed up our ‘Share Your Camp Story’ Contest, turning it into a monthly deal and we love the stories we got for our first May Contest! All entrants after our two prize winners received S’more Bucks (our campy term for loyalty points) for their participation. At Everything Summer Camp, everyone’s a winner.

The following post is from Melissa M. who wrote in to tell us about her family history at Hayo-Went-Ha summer camp through the generations! Here’s her submission:

“My name is Melissa and my 8-year-old son Dylan is a 4th generation camper.  Our camp is YMCA Camp Hayo-Went-Ha on Torch Lake in northern Michigan, which was started in 1903. My grandfather was the camp director for many years, and first started working there in the 1960’s. My dad and his siblings spent their summers at camp, joined the staff when they were old enough, and are still involved on the camp board today. My aunt was even the camp nurse in the 90s. My brother, cousins, and I also got to grow up spending summers staying with our grandparents while they ran camp and, eventually, we became campers and counselors. Now I have an amazing son of my own who gets to continue the tradition of ‘growing up camp!’ I feel really lucky to have a shared history with not only my family, but thousands of people from all over the world who love Camp Hayo-Went-Ha as much as I do.

My grandfather wanted all of us to be ‘Keepers of the Flame,’ which means keeping the spirit of camp and the lessons you’ve learned there alive in your heart, even when you’re not at camp. It’s more important than ever to remember those lessons, friends, and connections, because they will last a lifetime. I can’t wait for my son to be a Keeper of the Flame and have his own camp stories and friendships!”

I love your connection to Hayo-Went-Ha along with the rest of your family, Melissa! What a good stretch of history your family has there! It must be so cool now that Dylan is carrying that torch! I’m sure, like you, he’ll make a great Keeper of the Flame! Thanks for your submission, Melissa! To everyone else, you can check out Camp Hayo-Went-Ha on their website and, as always, thanks for reading!


- John


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