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Think of all the choices you have made in your life that have made you the person you are today. One of the most valuable life skills we practice with our campers here at Camp Highlander is decision-making. Unfortunately, pop culture influences decisions for our children like: what they should wear, how they should talk, what they should eat or drink, what music they should listen to or how they should act to be “cool.” Because of this, often times our children are paralyzed when they have to make decisions - unsure of what is the right thing to do, of doing it wrong or how it might be perceived by others.

The best way for children to learn how to make good decisions is to practice decision-making. We provide the perfect opportunity for this life-skill practice on our Camper’s Choice days, and today was the first of Session C. Every camper gets to choose and sign up for their favorite activities for the entire day and make their own schedule. These are definitely some of the most popular days at camp. Camper’s Choice days promote independence, allow campers to have a voice and give them control of their destiny.

In addition to our regular camp activities, on camper’s choice days we offer alternative activities that we normally don’t have on a typical day at camp. Today these included running, letter writing, friendship bracelet making, zumba, gaga ball, pool noodle polo, slackline and so much more. We even had eight boys who signed up for golf at a nearby driving range. They had so much fun that they are hoping to play 9 holes on Saturday. Each summer there is a camper choice activity that always takes camp by storm. This year it’s Party Rock Anthem! This is basically a GIANT dance party, where even the campers can teach some new moves to the group. There is no limit for sign-ups, and the Party Rockers are a plenty!

On camper’s choice days many campers opt for a slower paced day to relax and enjoy the relationships they are building with friends. Some campers opt for adventure and choose canoeing on the Green River, waterfall rappelling or hiking. Campers also have the opportunity to go on off-camp activities and work on their progressive skills and achievements towards their Master of the Mills (our highest achievement in a particular activity). Most campers choose to travel to activities with friends, but others will sign up alone in pursuit of their personal goals, growth and interests. So many fun things to do and so many choices.

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Favorite Details of the Day:

  • Reflect - Beth talked about the immeasurable value of each and every camper and staff member. Using a $20 bill, she showed that even if it is crumpled up, thrown on the ground and stepped on, it still has value. At some point in life, we will all get mistreated, torn down or discouraged by others, but our worth is immeasurable.
  • Meals - Breakfast was bacon, eggs, bagels with cream cheese, fruit, yogurt, grits and oatmeal. Lunch- Pepperoni and Cheese Pizza and salad bar. Dinner was beef stir fry, fried rice and salad bar. Dessert - Highlander mudslide!!
  • EP - Counselor Hunt!! This is a camper and staff favorite. Imagine a tremendous game of hide and go seek. One counselor from each cabin and the activity counselors get dressed up in camo to hide in the boundaries around camp. Each staff member is worth positive, negative or neutral points. The object of the game is to catch as many staff as you can to tally your points to the highest, but you might get negative points…you don’t know until the finale. And the best staff member that EVERYONE wants is the one who is worth 0 points but guarantees the cabin a trip to Gus’s after EP!
  • Weather - The weather has been fantastic. The sun was bright and warm today, but the afternoon had a wonderful breeze in the air that made walking to activities so enjoyable. I love North Carolina summers!