Category Archives: Columns & Features

How Do We Treat Each Other?


This was the question the leadership director at one of North America’s oldest overnight camps asked the staff one evening. It seemed to be an inane question, given the label of “brotherhood” that the staff had given itself for decades. But the silence in the room suggested legitimate soul-searching had begun. The leadership director, Tom Giggi, was also silent, prompting even more serious reflection. (One of Tom’s strengths is asking good questions; another is his ability to wait for thoughtful … Continue reading

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Nearly Half of Americans Participate in Outdoor Recreation

WASHINGTON, DC  – Almost 143 million Americans, or 49.2 percent of the US population, participated in an outdoor activity at least once in 2013. Although the actual number of outdoor participants increased since 2012, the participation rate fell slightly, due to population growth. The findings are part of The Outdoor Foundation’s 2014 Outdoor Recreation Participation Report, the leading report tracking American participation trends in outdoor recreation with a focus on youth and diversity. The Outdoor Foundation’s eighth annual Outdoor Recreation … Continue reading

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What’s Left After A Loss

Ashes of memories.

My best friends and I combed through the sooty remains of the log cabin and wondered: What’s left? The fire had been so hot that it melted the window glass and incinerated pretty much everything else. We found the cast iron woodstove, the porcelain sink and tub, and the soundboard from the upright piano. (You can see it lying in the rubble there in the photo.) We’d started coming to Sam’s cabin one year after Will’s 18-month-old died of a … Continue reading

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Training Staff To Work With Special-Needs Campers

Photos Courtesy of Camp CAMP

  Every spring, camps around the country turn their attention to recruiting, hiring, and training the staff that they hope will provide the best summer experience for campers. Recruiters meet with countless individuals during these trips, interview those who apply and show promise, and then extend offers to those who rise to the top of the applicant pool. Then, after all that, the real fun begins! These individuals–from different backgrounds and locations–will join together to form a team. While the … Continue reading

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16 Low Cost Gifts That Mean A Lot

Gifts don’t need to be expensive to create powerful memories. 

In my younger days, I vividly recall both of my grandmothers lamenting how, as we age, the days seem to pass by more quickly. Never is that more true than during the rush and bustle of the end-of-the-year holidays and beginning of a fresh new year. With the holiday season so near, those of us who didn’t finish our shopping in July (I am related to some of those folks, and I did not get that genetic trait!) do our … Continue reading

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