“Camp is great!”
A common saying among seasoned Merri-Mac girls that our new friends quickly learn is true as
well. As a former camper, I remember saying this phrase with such pride.
It’s been six years since I was a Sunnyside camper and now ironically, I am a Sunnyside
counselor. After being away for so long, I’ve been considering what five years’ time has meant
to camp.
The beautiful thing is, not much has changed.
Sure, many cabins have been refurbished and there’s a new Intermediate camp song I am
learning lyrics to, but there’s still the fresh smell of mountain air that surrounds us in the
mornings. The hill is just as endearing and challenging as it used to be.
Yesterday Adam shared “another true story,” girls showed extreme sportsmanship in battle ball
and ice cream sandwiches were enjoyed for dessert by everyone! These and many other
charming traditions remain.
Overall, I’ve changed. I can see now how much camp molded me into the person I am today. I
know that I can take on challenges because I kayaked down a river, facing my fears. I know
what true friendship looks like. I know that growth doesn’t happen by accident. And your girls
are learning these life lessons too.
It’s surreal being a counselor to girls who were 10 when I was last here. I beam with joy getting
to see how they’ve changed and who they are growing in Christ to be.
I pray that camp will reside in their hearts and minds as a place of play, challenge and
belonging. Camp formed me and is even continuing to do so now as a staff member.
Camp changes us and allows us to become who God is calling us to be. As a 22-year-old I can
continue to say, “Camp is great!” and will for many years to come.
Juliana Ryan