Archive for the ‘Camp’ Category

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Meet the Rangers: Lon Everett, Camp Hardee

March 24, 2015

Camp Ranger Lon

By Meridith Orr, Program Executive

This is the first in a series of interviews with our Camp RangersStay tuned to get to know each ranger at all of our camps!

Think about the last time you visited one of our Council camps. Maybe you hiked the trails, made s’mores over a campfire or enjoyed a meal or activity in our dining hall. You may not realize it, but there is someone who makes all those adventures possible for Girl Scouts, someone who works behind the scenes to ensure our campers have everything they need.

At Camp Hardee, that someone is Lon Everett. Known to most campers as “Mr. Bluejeans,” he is the camp ranger responsible for keeping the property in tip-top shape.   In addition to sprucing up the Rotary Lodge this past winter, Lon has helped establish new trails, re-open abandoned trails and re-discover trail markers. Always ready with a smile and a joke, Lon works tirelessly to provide a fantastic experience for Camp Hardee’s visitors. Recently, he took a break from his rounds to answer a couple of questions for our Girl Talk blog.

Q:  How did you get started being a camp ranger?

A: About 25 years ago, I was referred to a church camp site in my home state of New Jersey as a facilities manager. I started working there and learned a lot of stuff on the job.

 

Q: How long have you worked with Girl Scouts and our council?

A: This has been the first Girl Scout council for me– eight years this July. Seems like yesterday!

 

Q: What’s a fun fact about Camp Hardee?

A: As I sit along the Pamlico river seeing the brightly colored cabins – I am watching the eagles fly. Just saw two young eagles flying with an adult eagle – the first time I’ve ever seen that! They were right on top of us.

 

Q: What do you love best about being a camp ranger?

A: Watching campers grow up to be adults and have children who come to camp and then become campers – watching that progression.

 

Q: What’s the ONE thing you do around camp that no one would expect that you do?

A: Wash dishes! I help out in the kitchen in the summer sometimes with that.

 

Q: If you could teach someone something about your job, what would it be?

A: The proper way to use a chain saw. It becomes part of the job as a ranger to get firewood.

Q: What do you do in the winter?

A: Cut up trees, get firewood ready for the upcoming year, get the buildings ready for the winter, pick up leaves. All that stuff that needs doing when no one’s around. Mostly inside work. Last year is when I did all the electrical work and floors in the rotary lodge. The work on the trails is easier with no leaves. This year I’ll be cutting the kudzu out with a bush hog and tractor.   That way people can see the woods and not just kudzu this summer!

 

Q: What do you like best about Girl Scouts?

A: The comradery and how everyone works together. Seeing people from all walks of life, all over the state, getting to hear the stories of where people are from.

 

Q: Do you have a favorite camping tip or story related to Girl Scouts?

A: Funny story. Two summers ago a camper came up to me who was eight or nine years old. “Mr. Bluejeans, I have a project I want to do for you!” She wanted to put pads on the screen doors at the point where they hit the frame so no one would wake up at night. She was as serious as can be. She really wanted to do that kind of work. I told her I thought it was a great idea.

 

Q: What’s your earliest memory of camping as a kid?

A: In high school, I went camping with my church youth fellowship. We sold pumpkin bread all through the winter to go to Florida for a week to Disneyworld (which had only been open two years at the time). We were up for two nights straight over the weekend baking pumpkin bread. It helped save the cost big time. There were about 30 of us. We spent a whole week camping out, plus we went to Disney World and Cypress Gardens.

 

Girl Scouts visiting Camp Hardee have a great friend in Mr. Bluejeans. Next time you see him, please be sure to thank him for the firewood, the fun trail hike, the lovely Rotary Lodge or the Kudzu-free view of the woods! And if you have a question for our rangers, please be sure to leave one in the comments!

 

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The Magic of Camp Graham

March 17, 2015

Summer Resident Camp - Girl Scouts NC Coastal Pines

Nephitearya Bailey, Camp and Outdoor Program Director

Greetings from Kerr Lake! Did you know Camp Graham sits on 155 acres of lake frontage, open areas, and woodlands? Campers have a blast as they swim, canoe, kayak, paddle board, sail, and slide down the ten foot water fall of summer fun!

Camp is a place where a girl can simply be herself as she tries new things and makes new friends. No matter her learning style, she will find success in our experiential programs. Spending at week at camp helps girls grow in self-confidence, build and explore leadership skills, and develop a deep appreciation of nature. And most importantly, camp is all about having FUN!

“From the moment you pass through the wooded gate, you instantly leave all worries and cares behind. Camp Graham is nothing less than magic; for campers, Leaders, and staff alike. No matter the time of day, you can always hear silly songs and laughter. It’s the little things that happen at Graham that mean the most and bring out what really makes it unique,” shared one camp staff member.

Some of those unique little things we are proud of at Camp Graham include:

  • Our Camp Fairies respond to every letter they receive from the campers;
  • We have a theme night dinner, where everyone dresses to impress in homemade costumes;
  • Every camper can expect to visit our Tie-Dye hut and make their own wearable camp memory;
  • Camp Kaleidoscope! Camp Graham proudly offers the opportunity to camp to the children and staff of Duke Children’s Hospital. When the campers join one another, it’s as if every illness and homesick heart is gone. Camp K holds a great history with us at Graham, one that we couldn’t be more moved by!

One of the most special times at Camp Graham is the Thursday night closing campfire at summer resident camp. “As the sky darkens and the stars start to shine, you can find the campers creating their wish boats, all different and unique. Each child will close their eyes, make their wish and light the candle before setting it out to sail in the lake, reflecting on all the wonderful times shared during the past week,” added Amberley R., camp unit leader.

Entering my third year as camp director, I am excited welcome your camper to Camp Graham! From canoes to paddle boards, archery and a low ropes course, we have something for everyone. And don’t forget about our beautiful, new Cloverfield tree house unit!

Join us on the shores of Kerr Lake this summer and find out first-hand why Camp Graham is a magical place that feels like home to so many past and present campers! Register prior to March 31, 2015 and receive Early Bird discount pricing!

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