Towering Pines Blog

Camp Provides Opportunities through Activities!!

I get asked often by people who aren’t familiar with the concept of summer camp — what makes camp so special and why do I feel so strongly about it?  I realize when they ask me this, that I have a very short amount of time to answer so that I can truly convey the essence of camp!  Keeping my reply short is very hard to do because there really are a plethora of reasons why I feel camp is incredibly valuable for both children and adults.  I truly want to share all of the wonder of camp with them!

My answer in a “nutshell” is usually something like this:

Camp gives people the opportunity to explore who they are as unique individuals.  They also get the chance to try new things and challenge themselves in ways that are outside of their comfort zone but within the safety of a supportive camp community.  The camp environment and our 6-week program at Towering Pines is very intentional because we not only develop and play together, but we also learn to live together as a family and grow together as a community.

Participating in activities for six hours a day is one of the ways that provides a variety of opportunities for the campers to work on their own personal growth, not only physically, but also socially and emotionally.  The framework of the summer program encourages campers to make choices about the activities they want to take; provides structure and skill development for them to experience the activities safely and creates a natural environment from which they can determine the level at which they want to challenge themselves.  Campers not only learn new skills, but they also improve on skills that they already know.  Having a variety of activities from which to choose also helps the boys learn to make decisions independently which is a valuable life skill!

In looking back through some of the “moments” shared by campers from this past summer, there are many reflections about the activities that they tried.  For some boys they chose to try something completely new; for others they chose a familiar activity and tried to pursue advancing through levels within this.  Some may have chosen an activity based on their friend’s selections; others have completed the highest rank in an activity and chose to go back to explore an activity that they might have done as a younger camper.  No matter the reason for these activity selections, the end result is the same . . . loads of learning and lots of fun!!

Here are some of the responses from the fellas at TP  based on the questions, “The activity where I learned the most . . . . ” and “What is something you learned in this activity that you didn’t know before?”     (**Please note — not all campers answered all questions.  Included are all responses given.**):

Cabin 4:

  • Rodrigo:  Instructional swim and zoo; how to swim
  • Ryan:  Archery; how to shoot
  • Miles:  TP Players; we play games
  • Warner:  Free swim; water skiing and kneeboarding
  • Benji:  Instructional swim; sidestroke
  • Chester:  Crafts; how to make a cardboard shooter
  • Guy:  Archery; that you have to pull the bow back far
  • Jose Pablo:  Fishing; how to fish!

Cabin 5:

  • Ben:  Instructional swim; sidestroke
  • Devin:  Instructional swim; sidestroke
  • Chris “Sarge”:  Riflery; how to shoot standing
  • Roark:  Tennis; Always hit with good form!
  • Chase:  Fishing; small mouth bass fight a lot
  • Will:  Archery; that different bows are better at different yards
  • Matt:  Trick ski; getting up on one ski
  • Andres:  Fishing; how to cast closed and spinning reels
  • Matteo:  Fishing; how to cast and put a worm on a hook

Cabin 6:

  • Javier:  Archery; because it’s my very first time doing archery
  • Emiliano:  Archery; how to shoot
  • Diego:  Sailing; to understand where the wind goes
  • Bosco:  Riflery; how to safely shoot real guns
  • Jose Pablo:  Archery & Sailing; I learned how to sail
  • Forrest:  Instructional swim; diving
  • Charlie:  Riflery; I also learned biking
  • Thomas:  Archery; how to pick an aiming point

Cabin 7:

  • Rodrigo:  Riflery; how to shoot better
  • Andres:  Free swim; to ski slalom
  • Juan Pablo:  Archery; to shoot in 40 yards
  • Miguel:  Sailing; I learned many things
  • Emilio:  Instructional swim; many things about different types of swimming
  • Reid:  Instructional swim; I also learned a lot of new things in tennis
  • Jacob:  Sailing; how to rig a boat
  • Will:  Archery; how to do actually do it

Cabin 8:

  • Sebas:  Tennis; many skills
  • Rodrigo:  Trick ski; To do more tricks and be better at it
  • Pablo:  Trick ski; 360 degree outside of the wake
  • Emeric:  Trick ski; how to slalom
  • Lucas:  Tennis; Good serves and good receives
  • Conor:  Archery; Anchor point matters and then aiming spot
  • Lucio:  Sailing; how to sail; sailing terms and parts of a sailboat
  • Aiden: Riflery; how to shoot and the best techniques
  • Henry:  Tennis; backhand
  • Manuel:  Sailing; nose
  • Thomas:  Sailing; multiple useful knots

Cabin 11:

  • Johnny:  Riflery; have the least amount of breath when you shoot
  • Mitch:  Sailing; how to tie knots
  • William R.:  Tennis; slicing
  • Nathan:  Skindiving; what painted turtles were
  • William L.:  Basketball; how to box out people bigger than me
  • Ricardo:  Trick ski
  • Pato:  Trick ski; slalom
  • Alvaro:  Tennis; how to play tennis
  • Patricio R.:  Tennis; doing the swing in tennis

Cabin 12:

  • Julian:  Skindiving & Free Swim; how to catch fish while swimming & how to ski
  • Eli:  Skindiving; how to stay under water longer
  • Colin:  Fishing; different patterns of fish
  • Ercole:  Trick ski; how to slalom
  • Arturo:  Tennis; how to play tennis
  • Sam:  TP Players; how to be funny

Activities are an integral part of the camp experience, and within these our camp values are incorporated whenever possible:  Respect, Community, Growth, Responsibility and Safety.  As we prepare ahead for the Summer of 2024, we continue to be mindful of these values as they provide the framework for everything we do.

Please feel free to share your experiences with other families who may want to explore the option of sending their son/daughter to Towering Pines or Camp Woodland.  If you haven’t yet registered your son or daughter for 2024, click this link:  Register Here for Summer 2024

Angie Ziller

  • Camp Mom at TP
  • Leadership Staff at TP/Office Manager
  • Marketing TP/Woodland
  • Leadership Team TP/Woodland
  • Assistant Waterfront Director at Woodland
  • Counselor at Woodland
  • “Building in our hearts fond memories, Towering Pines for you.”