The feeling of anticipation is genuine, and thrilling. Such emotion is part of what makes experiences like camp so special.
In the final moments before opening day, the excitement that had been slowly building over the past few months suddenly, and exponentially, escalates – like reaching the top of a roller coaster’s first big climb. We can imagine the campers playing, laughing, running across the grounds, filling the bunks and the dining hall; finally starting the summer that we’ve waited 10 months for.
At home, we suspect that Manitou campers are just as excited as we are for opening day. For returning campers, this excitement stems from knowing what’s just around the corner. Knowing that, so soon, they’ll be in the lake, practicing on the courts, and playing on the fields. For the new boys, this excitement is mixed with nervousness from not quite knowing what a Manitou summer means for them. They’ve only heard about it, or seen pictures and videos of the possibilities for fun and community that awaits them.
This anticipation, although it may feel a bit overwhelming, is necessary to appreciate the transformative experience that camp is. Waiting for something for so long can be uncomfortable, but the moment they arrive at camp, there is a natural positive energy that embraces each one of the campers; the ‘anticipation’ is replaced by spirit, and excitement for what’s ahead.
If this is your first experience with summer camp as a camper, staff, or parent, please know that we all share the nervous feeling that goes the first day – even camp directors!
I love this moment, and the anticipation of what’s ahead…. The new friends that will be made, the adventures that will be shared and the challenges that will be overcome. So much opportunity. The more we experience camp, the more we appreciate it. We know it will be over as fast as the thrill of this moment.