For over three quarters of a century, Chimney Corners Camp has been a place where girls have spent their summers learning, laughing and building life-long friendships. Many of the traditions started in 1931 continue on to today. Several of Chimney's songs date far back in our history. Song N Sign and Candlelight are examples of two long standing traditions, anxiously awaited by campers today.
Chimney Corners Camp is a very special place in that it maintains many traditions as well as changing to meet the progressing needs of our campers. They are a valuable and important part of the campers' and the staff's experiences here. The following is a summary of many of the things which make Chimney Corners the special place that it is.
Both sessions Moms' Weekend is an event that takes a large amount of planning and energy, but is well worth it. This event takes place during the third weekend of each session. Moms will arrive on Friday afternoon and participate in all of their daughters' activities. Some campers will have surrogate moms if their mom can't make it. On Sunday at noon, families are invited to camp for "Family Day". more>>
Each evening, at the end of the Evening Activity, whether it is a Unit or All-Camp Activity, will end with Good Night Circle. Everyone crosses arms (right over left) and holds hands with the person next to them. Then several quiet songs are sung. Most of these songs can be found in the Chimney Corners songbook. The second to last song is always "The Sun is in the West", then hands are dropped and "Taps" is sung. Don't worry if you don't know the songs at first, its okay to hum along!
Before the campers go to bed at night, once they are in their
pajamas, they light a candle in the middle of the cabin and the
counselor poses a question for the cabin group. Then, one by one, each
cabin member is given the chance to express her views, share her
thoughts and get to know her cabin mates. This is a very special time
in the cabin group, and all staff members are encouraged to become
involved in cabin chats, as it is a great way to get to know campers
and other staff.
These events are very traditional. On the evening of the last Wednesday of the session, the entire camp will go to the chapel where we are given a chance to reflect on the session. There are camper representatives from each of the units (Juniors, Intermediates and Seniors), Service Corps and Aides, and a representative of the assistant counselors, counselors, support staff, program staff and ad staff. The ad staff will select the speakers based on their involvement and enthusiasm during the session. The event is rather solemn, and ends with each camper and staff leaving the chapel, receiving a candle and Good Night Circle being led by the Aides on the IGL field. First session it is called Circle of Happiness and second session, this event is called Candlelight.
This is one of the more anticipated events of first session. Each cabin group will prepare a song to which they will learn all the words and choreograph a dance. The campers must also come up with their own costumes (nothing from the Prop Room should be used). Then, on the second Saturday of first session, they will perform the song a cappella in front of the whole camp. Wiff N' Poof takes place in the Art Center, and Program and Support Staff are often asked to be judges. It is one of the few truly competitive events at camp, as each of the judges score each cabin and a winner is chosen from each unit.
This event is much like Wiff N' Poof except it takes place during second session. However, the cabin changes the words of the song to include the names of their cabin mates and counselors, and they paint a sign to include their counselors' names and cabin name. It is judged similarly to Wiff N' Poof. Both events take place in the Art Center. Song n' Sign will take place on the second Saturday evening of the second session.
These events are our traditional talent shows. Berkshire's Best takes place on the third Wednesday evening of first session and Saratoga South takes place on the third Wednesday evening of second session. Campers are invited to sign up to sing, dance, act or perform whatever talent they may have. Also, afternoon activity groups may use this time to perform something they have been working on. The number of acts is usually limited due to the large amount of interest.
Camper Banquet is a large themed party to say good bye to the campers. The aides pick a theme first session and the program staff pick the theme second session. Camper Banquet takes place on the last night of camp, and awards are given out for the best centerpiece and costumes. There is a show portion to the evening that occurs after dinner. Specialty cabins are recognized during this event for their effort this session. A slide show will follow the show, as well as one last Good Night Circle.
On Monday morning after Moms' Weekend, we have late wake-up and breakfast at 9:00 AM. The Ad Staff and the kitchen staff work to have 3 areas around camp that breakfast is served from. Each area serves a different food so campers and staff have to walk around to get their breakfast. This is a past tradition that was recently brought back. Campers can choose to serve their counselors in bed, if they wish. It is a relaxed morning and breakfast goes until 10:00 AM.