Each month, I write an email to some of Bethany Birches’ supporters. The topics and content vary. I share from my heart in these emails, about things that have happened at camp that I just love! A lot of times, I highlight something that one of our campers or staff has written or done. And, what would a note to supporters be without updates and sharing of needs?! Expect that too. Here’s April’s update.
You can subscribe to this update if you’d like right here.
Last week this time I was walking the streets of Paris. It was excellent. It was great to be in a famous city on the other side of the world with REALLY GOOD FOOD, but even greater was the time I spent with my in–laws. Back in November Tuna’s mom (some of you know her as Mama Tuna) invited me and her 2 other daughter-in-laws to Paris. Just the 4 of us, no Bergey boys. We went overseas without our common thread: our husbands!
I was hesitant at first, traveling to another country is a big deal and I’ve heard you should be careful with whom you take on that adventure. But in talking with a friend, she said:
“Perfect! You’re mother in law is brilliant. There is nothing to do but bond in another country!”
And that is exactly what we did. I loved the streets of Paris and especially analyzing the streets of Paris with my newest family members. I loved the French cuisine and more than that, learning what my sister-in-laws loved. I loved trying to learn the French language, but I loved even more the acceptance of my mother-in-law and sister-in-laws as I butchered the words time and time again. As I was reflecting on this I was struck with the undeniable fact that this is what happens at camp.
Well, not exactly. We do not take campers to France. I don’t even think we have anything that could be considered French food at camp! What does happen at camp happened to me in Paris. People are in new environments. People are in situations where they can’t help but bond together as they explore new activity and relationship. Campers and staff alike explore new ideas, games and experiences together, in nature, and make memories. Campers bond with others who are experiencing new things. Veteran campers bond with rookie campers as they work together and each brings an experience.
As summer approaches and my time gets tight I’m reminded partly of the reason we do camp. Jesus taught through community and BBC does the same. Don’t miss the opportunity to bond with a community. Whether you come to BBC this summer (or next!) or head overseas with your in-laws, don’t miss the opportunity to share an experience with others in a different place. I believe it’s a taste of God’s kingdom here on Earth.
What could be better than a week at Bethany Birches Camp this summer you ask? I say Free Camp!
No, this isn’t a chance to get a week of camp free, it’s a chance to get a few hours of camp free. Although, you can get $100 off your upcoming camp session this summer + multiples of $7 on top of that (see below).
Here’s the deal: For a few hours we’ll bring some of our staff to a town near you and do camp (if you live in VT or NH that is). We will:
Get messy (if you want) at our pig trough.
Play Full Contact Playdough Pictionary or Mission Impossible or Smugglers.
Watch video from last summer.
Hear stories of summer camp.
Eat snacks if the pig trough wasn’t enough.
Get Camp Cheap:
GET $100 OFF SUMMER 2012 – Each eligible camper* that attends will be entered in a drawing to win a $100 gift certificate good for BBC Summer 2012 program. One certificate will be given at the event.
Any returning camper will be given a $7 discount for summer 2012 for EACH eligible never-ever** they bring along!
*will be in the age range 5-18 yrs. old this summer. **never-ever camper is someone who’s never been to BBC for any program
No need to sign up, just show up! We’ll have info and forms on summer camp at the party as well.
To anyone in grades 9-12: join us this weekend at the Jan. Connect. On Sat., Jan. 7 we will go skiing before heading back to camp for the rest of the weekend. And get this – it’s only going to cost you $10! Thanks to Neil and Hamish Dewar – the tickets are on them – thanks Dewar’s! NOTE: $10 tickets limited to the first 10 campers.
So, if you’re coming to the Jan. Connect and you’d like to get some skiing in, let us know. Email camp @ bethanybirches.org to get your name on the list.
Register for the program and let us know you want to go skiing. Add $10 to your payment.
If you already paid for the weekend, bring $10 with you.
You must have a parent-signed permission to participate along with you.
We’ll have two places and times for meeting:
Plymouth Country Store at 7:30am (store is on Rt. 100 and is closed now)… you’ll drop you stuff for the weekend off there and that stuff will be taken to camp… you’ll take your ski gear with you and go to the mountain
OR, meet at Okemo at 8am at the drop off area at the Clock Tower Base Area… 77 Okemo Ridge Road, Ludlow, VT. There is an unloading area right next to the clock tower. This is the main area of Okemo. You do NOT want to go to the Jackson Gore area. We will meet at this unloading area around 8am. Call Brandon at 802-432-8989 if you need help finding us.
Price – $10
Lunch – bring your own lunch or money for food – you’ll get dinner when you get back to camp.
Again, to get on the ski list, email or call (802-672-5220). We’ll save a ticket for you!
Greetings. Sometimes, supporters will ask what we hope for, what we need to do the work of Bethany Birches better.
Well, most of what we want isn’t what we need and most of what we need can’t be put on this list. But, there are some tools and other things that will help us do our work better. Some of these items will make our jobs easier.
If you are able to acquire, buy or otherwise gain for us, any of these things, we will be grateful! And, you can get tax benefit too.
THE LIST (right now)
Trail work – lots to do!
Benches for fireside sites – we need help on design and materials and install
Basketball court repair – $$
Large Generator – 15KW to 30KW – preferably PTO driven on 3 point hitch OR propane set in place
Opportunities to learn abound at summer camp. Campers are taught about Jesus through relationship with counselors, staff and friends. Campers learn of God’s creativity as they uncover the great outdoors. Staff and campers learn about relationship as we seek to develop a community of love all summer long. This past summer we even sought to help campers gain and maintain traditional academic skills through a program called “Explore 30.” Explore 30 is a nationwide program sponsored by the American Camp Association (ACA). Explore 30 is a program that helps camps encourage campers to read for at least 30 minutes a day. The ACA developed this program to address a problem common in school students called Summer Learning Loss. This summer at BBC 30 minutes of each day was dedicated to reading. Campers could choose if they wanted to read during this time. Some campers opted to draw, sleep, journal or day dream, but many chose to read. Some counselors took this opportunity to share their favorite stories with campers while others opted to keep up with their own reading. Either way, this summer at Bethany Birches Camp, campers were encouraged to keep learning through both traditional methods and methods unique to the camp setting!
To learn more about Summer Learning Loss and Explore 30:
A highlight of summer 2011 for many campers and staff was the addition of the GaGa Pit.
An octagonal wall allows many participants to enjoy an exciting, fast paced game of GaGa, a form of dodgeball. The game starts by throwing the ball up and shouting Ga the first two times the ball hits the ground and continues until only one person is left in the pit. After that everyone jumps back in and a new game begins. It doesn’t matter if someone has quick feet or slow, is young or old, jumps high or not, anyone can play and have a lot of fun! Many campers would have loved to play this game all day every day. Some campers cleaned up meals faster to play GaGa. The pit was always full during free time. If you haven’t played the game yet, get yourself up to the hill to play. Tuna and Cheeks are always ready for a game of GaGa!
Special thanks to YoYo, Chad Yoder, Brian Goshow and Gerry Hawkes for playing significant roles in the construction of the GaGa Pit! Thanks also for the Eco Track Gerry, and the brackets Brian!
We’re very excited to have people at camp again this weekend! Between work day and teen connect we have a host of fun stuff to do! To be prepared for the weekend, please bring the following:
1. Sleeping bag/pillow (no mats needed, we sleep in beds in the cabin!) 2. Toiletries and towel 3. Change of clothes 4. Warm clothes to go outside 5. Clothes that can get dirty (if coming for work day) 6. A piece of a costume (optional) 7. A magazine we can cut up (optional)
Oh and an open mind and an attitude ready to share with others. We’re trying to have community and we want you to join us as we seek to follow Jesus. The only thing needed for all of that is to bring your whole self. Looking forward to seeing you this weekend!
With a few nights of frost over the past week AND forecasted flurries in the mountains AND our seasonal maintenance manager applying to work in snow making departments at nearby mountains, we are gearing up for another winter of snow, beauty and fun!
Below is another reminder from Killington to buy reduced price lift tickets by THURSDAY OCT 20th.
Again, if you don’t ski, there is still plenty of activity to enjoy at camp and the scenery is guaranteed inspiring.