Camp Idlewild 2009

Another year of Camp Idlewild is in the books. I was at camp for the 40th anniversary of the lunar landing; I was also at Idlewild when Armstrong took that big step for mankind 40 years ago! To say that camp has been a big part of my life is an understatement. I delivered my first sermon (3 minutes long) at camp. I met my wife at camp (in fact, Lynn's first counselor at age 9 was my mother). I made one of the greatest catches in the history of softball at camp (over the shoulder at full speed diving into the weeds… Willie Mays called to inquire about my technique). I took Lynn to camp in 1977 to give her an engagement ring. I have lots of good memories at Camp Idlewild. OK, there are some not so good ones too, but I won’t go into those.

We made some more very good memories this year at camp. For the second year in a row, I directed the Junior (Middle School) week. We had 18 girls and 16 boys and a full compliment of staff-- and everyone worked together to make this one of the best weeks ever. This was the most cooperative and accommodating bunch of middle-schoolers I’ve ever seen. For example, they wanted very badly to play pranks on each other, but I kept telling them “No.” They would shrug and say, “OK,” and they didn't. Well they did pull a little bitsy prank at the prodding of their counselors on Friday night… and then felt guilty about it. What great kids!

Most of my staff and 16 of the 34 campers were from Denbigh (counting some former members now at Carrsville). We also had 4 or 5 camp mascots (staff brats) who really added a lot. When I saw Kate and Emily climbing to the top of a tall tree, they added gray hairs. The kids really liked singing, and we had some great devotional times. We had a bunch of the kids (and a few adults) come up on stage and sing “This is How We Overcome” Sunday morning, complete with the spinning around and yelling Whoop-Whoop, Aye-Aye’s… that was great.

Then there was the “Great Yellow Jacket Incident of 2009.” Have you seen those cartoons where a swarm of bees chase someone? Well, it’s no cartoon. A swarm of angry yellow jackets followed us from the archery range through the amphitheater around the old canteen building and into the dining hall. We had several campers stung—Kacie won the ribbon for most bee stings with 14. But everyone was brave and we survived… many of the yellow jackets did not!

Here's a YouTube video of our week. Hope you like it. Hope you'll join us next year!