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Summer is officially over.

The days have grown shorter, the temperature has dropped, and the trees throughout camp are freckled with the first colors of fall.

By now, most of you are settled back into your real-world routines: school, sports/band/theater/dance practice, homework, weekend, repeat. As busyness takes control of your life, it’s easy to let the lessons you learned at camp drop off, one by one, until you pick them up again next June or July.

But, on this unusually warm day in late September, we want to encourage you to keep living out the values you learned at camp.

Let the same courage that led you to conquer the Crow’s Nest give you the confidence to make new friends, or try out for that sports team, or audition for that school play.

Let the same honesty and integrity that helped you respect your cabin-mates and counselors, to treat them with kindness and fairness, and to form deeply authentic friendships, make you a better student, a better teammate, a better friend and a better person back home.

Let the faith it took to face your fears, to try new things, to trust those around you and to hold fast to what you believe, provide the strength and hope and determination to make the very most of your life each and every day.

“Make today better than yesterday, as good as you hope tomorrow will be, with courage, honesty, integrity and faith as you live the Highlander creed!”

These words and the values they encompass are not just a fun slogan to be reiterated each day at camp and then tossed aside when you leave Old Forge Mountain.

Imagine what your life would look like if you lived out these words, every single day, at home just as you do at camp. Imagine the growth you’d experience and the positive impact you’d have on the lives of those around you.

The world could use a little more CHIF. Where better to start than with us?