Summer 2022 has begun, and it feels like Manitou has come back to life once again! After months of planning for, and dreaming about, this summer, our campers and staff are back together in their favourite place. Nothing makes us happier than hearing the sounds of campers and staff laughing and chatting filling up the camp. It’s good to be home!
Here’s a little recap of what we’ve done so far:
The buses rolled in a little later than usual (the long weekend traffic was nuts), but the energy of the camper’s arrivals was just as exciting as usual. We made up the extra hour by postponing our incredible activity fair until the morning, so the kids had time to unpack and make their beds. We started with a delicious dinner prepared by Chef Will and then went to our ceremonial raising of the flag. The whole camp gathered around the flagpole as we officially kicked off Manitou 2022.
On Friday, everyone spent the day in cabin groups, doing swim assessments, trying many different activities and for those who are new, getting to know camp. We then headed to the Activity Fair; an interactive experience lead by the Activity Head and Specialists where campers get to know and understand what each activity is all about. After experiencing the Activity Fair, campers ranked their favourite activities they wanted to try for the first week.
After a beautiful first day, the whole camp gathered together for our first Friday Night Fireside ceremony. We honoured 2 staff who had been exceptional during our pre-camp training and explained to everyone what the purpose of ‘Fireside’ is. We also introduced this year’s theme: “GROW THROUGH WHAT YOU GO THROUGH”. It was amazing to have everyone back together, singing the camp song and embracing their friends – it was like no time had passed! Campers returning for their second summer spoke about what camp means to them and why they decided to come back to Manitou. We hope you enjoy hearing their words in our video of Fireside, as it was a very emotional and special night for us.
After a long wait throughout the year, camp is off to a wonderful start! It feels like we are back to 2019 where we can focus every second of the day on the campers rather than the more complicated summer we faced logistically last year due to COVID. We almost forgot what it’s like to run a normal camp with so many happy kids and a staff that are incredibly motivated and energized to give our campers the best summer ever! It’s clear that the staff and your children are emotionally ready for camp. At the same time, we realize that although many of the campers are doing so much better than last year, the adjustment to camp will still take a bit longer than normal.
On another pandemic related note, we thought it was important to give you an update on our Waterski/Wakeboarding program. Usually when one of our boats breaks down, we get the boat fixed in a day or two and always get a rental boat if necessary. Unfortunately, due to supply chain issues there are no rental boats available immediately this year and parts are in short supply. As a result, our ski program is running at 2/3’s capacity right now. To make up for this, our ski staff have volunteered to work overtime, taking kids skiing at 7 am and at rest hours. We hope that by the end of the week we will have all three boats up and running again as we know this is a lot to ask of our ski staff team. We are so proud of them for wanting to do whatever they can to manage this situation. As we say to our campers and staff; life is 10% about what happens to you and 90% about how you react to it. We are proud of our campers being patient while our staff step up to the challenge to solve the problem.
Our theme for 2022 is “Grow through what you go through”, but just as easily it could also be “What a difference a year makes.” We hope you enjoy the video clip as we kick off summer 2022