Dear Camp Families,
We hope this email finds you happy, healthy and enjoying the change of seasons. The countdown to camp is on!
We are thrilled that the FDA has now authorized the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine to include all camp-age children. It is our policy that all counselors, staff and campers must be fully vaccinated before camp.
In order to accommodate the ever-changing needs of our campers and staff and in response to requests, Summer 2022 ends on a Friday instead of Saturday. The last day of camp this year is Friday, August 12th, 2022. This allows staff and campers to travel home for critical back-to-school responsibilities. It also gives families the entire weekend together. Thank you for encouraging this change and for your support.
New Camper Events
Here are other dates to put on your calendar for our NEW CAMPER events :
– Philadelphia, April 2nd: Elmwood Park Zoo
– NYC Metro-area, April 3rd: Turtle Back Zoo
– Maryland, April 24th: South Germantown Recreational Park
– Florida, March 13th: Markham Park
Early Bird tuition registrations have been entered to win our lottery prize of camp tuition at its original rate ($800)! We’ll be announcing the winners around Thanksgiving. We are thankful for each and every one of you.
Warmest wishes from the mountains,
The Camp Office
The trouble with camp is that camp ends.
The buses pull out this morning. In an instant, camp is silent. But the air will be filled with happy memories. Pine Forest’s 90th summer has come to a close and it was one of the best ever.
Thank you campers and counselors, housekeeping and maintenance, nurses and doctors and office staff, one and all, for making it such a tremendous season.
And now it’s back to home and school. But everyone who shared this wonderful summer comes home a little different. A little better. Keep the spirit of PFC alive all year long. Stay in touch.
Pine Forest is more than a place in Greeley, PA. It’s a place in our hearts.
Like the song says, “All our bags are packed, we’re ready to go.”
Mountain Baggage, R&B, UPS, FedEx.
Today we pack up, have our awards ceremonies, and tonight it’s the candlelight. It feels like we just arrived. But we’re coming home with so much more than we can pack in a bag; new friends, new adventures, new confidence. There isn’t a duffle bag or shipping company big enough to handle it.
Those are the things that we carry.
The transition to “the real world” isn’t always easy for you and your campers. Here are some tips to help both of you make the transition as smooth as possible.
- Don’t take it personally.
Yes, they’ll be SO happy to see you. They’re also very, very sad.
They’re sad to leave camp! They’re sad to leave their friends! They’re sad to leave their counselors! They’re sad to leave their independence and camp persona! It’s okay (great actually)! It means you gave them the best gift ever!
- Remember: They’re exhausted.
In the last week alone, they experience Color Days, the play, song and cheer, a gymnastics show, banquet, packing and more. Over the past seven weeks they’ve been living with ten other people, hanging out with friends day and night, participating in activities from sun up to sun down. Enough said.
- Be patient.
It might take a few hours or a few days to be entirely “on.” They might even seem a little numb. It doesn’t mean they don’t love you or didn’t miss you. It doesn’t mean that they won’t open up and start gushing in a few days. Nothing is wrong. They just need time! Things that are normal: wanting to talk to their camp friends immediately, all-day, every day for a few days (yes, they just spent seven weeks with them – we know). Wanting to spend some time alone before jumping into the deep end of home life (think family gatherings, sporting events, play dates). Any combination of the above. Normal. Normal. Normal.
- Focus on small moments and questions.
Think about your two best friends who live far away.
Friend one: you pick up the phone no matter what, even if you only have a minute. Though it’s been months, you know she’ll cut right to the chase and start where things left off. Or not. Maybe you just answer a quick question, maybe you talk about who got the final rose- you can hang up when you need to. One word answers, longer answers, anything goes. No pressure.
Friend two: You love her. Really. You LOVE her as much as friend one. But you really only pick up when you have time to sit, totally focused, for an hour-long catch-up. So, no. You don’t always pick up. Because you’re at work, or you’re making dinner, or you’re about to get the kids ready for bed, or you just don’t feel like telling your life story. That. Sounds. Exhausting.
The moral? Be friend one. You’ll learn more!
What was this morning like?
Which activity was the best?
Who was the goofiest counselor in your bunk?
Less good questions/statements:
Tell me EVERYTHING about camp.
Can you explain your weekly schedule?
What were your counselors like?
Ask a few, manageable, lighthearted questions every hour on that first day. You’ll open up that can of worms without having to pry, without overwhelming your fresh-off-the-bus camper.
- Give them wings.
At camp they were the most independent versions of themselves and they’re still basking in the glow of those camp freedoms. Advocating for themselves, making independent choices— it’s why you sent them to camp! Think about how you felt the first time you came home from college. It was a little weird! Think about small liberties you can introduce to reinforce your camper’s summer growth. If you have an eight-year-old who didn’t make his or her bed before camp, encourage him or her to make the bed at home (even if it isn’t as beautiful as you’d like). Though seemingly a “chore,” having your camper do things for him or herself at home will continue the summer’s momentum and make him or her feel happy and confident. And isn’t that what this whole camp thing was about from the start?
Dear PFC Families,
The trouble with camp is that camp ends. Tomorrow night is the candle-lighting ceremony. Songs will be sung, good-byes will be said, and tears will be shed.
It’s hard to leave Pine Forest.
Tonight is also a time to reflect on camp friendships, fun and an unusually memorable season. And for us, it’s a time to express special gratitude to every family who shared their children’s safety and well-being with us. We hope that your children come back to you a little more independent, confident and a little happier than when they left.
On behalf of all 5 generations of our family, thank you for being a part of our 90th summer, one of the most monumental in our history. We look forward to seeing you back “Up Where the Sky Begins” in 2022 and for many years thereafter.
With heartfelt appreciation and warmest wishes from us all for a happy, healthy school year ahead.
The Black/Morin Family
Color Days 2021 has begun!
And the teams are…
Gold Autumn vs. Blue Spring
What was the surprise, or “break” to start it all?
Quiet came over the crowd at our counselor basketball game, galloping was heard in the distance. Two riders on horseback with torches trotted up girls’ loop, pointed their torches toward the upper field…then, “Cue the Music!” Two amazing floats traveled down, one with springtime flowers, the other with bales of hay and autumn leaves. In each float were counselors dressed up as baseball and football players, butterflies and scarecrows. Next stop, Mitchell Field, where a huge bonfire ignited for our 90th summer, and then a grand finale of fireworks. Awesome!
But it wasn’t over! Back at the bunk on every camper’s bed was their own team’s knee-high socks and wristbands.
Color Days lasts for 4 full days of competition with games, skits and songs all culminating in “The Sing.”
To follow every score, game, and exciting moment, we have a special page designed just for PFC’s Color Days. Keep checking it for the latest news!
Reminder: Please no visitors at camp for any reason.
P.T.B. Protect The Bubble!
Let the fun and competition begin!