October Update

Welcome to fall,

            We are now officially in the fall season with Halloween right around the corner.  Hope all is going well for you!

            Life at Asto Wamah at this time of year is usually very quiet; however, this year has been a bit different.  As you may remember, the basketball court was resurfaced in June to replace the old, broken up one.  Well, now the entire A-field has been dug up!  There will be no more holes, rocks, or bumps.  The field has been graded so that it is now smooth and flat. Grass seeds have been planted and by mid-June, the A-field will be green and lush. The logs have been raised so seating is more comfortable and not so close to the dirt.  Both the running long jump and standing jump areas are now clearly defined with wooden frames and will provide us with more of a “regulation” area for our Track Meet during two-week sessions.  We will post pictures in the next Blog.  We use the A-Field so many hours each day and for many different activities.  We look forward to this improvement and think you will enjoy it!

            Between Hurricane Florence and last Tuesday’s 8 inches of rain, Columbia Lake is overflowing.  The dam is now open to allow the excess water to run off.  At this point, it appears that there will be no worry that the lake will be low next summer.

            In October, information about the dates and fees for the 2019 season will be announced.  STAY TUNED!

            Hope your memories of the past summer are still vivid and make you smile!

Our best to you all,

Catherine, Chris, Jen, and Nancy

September Update

Dear Asto Wamah Blog Followers,

This is the first of the off-season blogs since the end of camp on August 11th.

My intent is to update you with information about Asto Wamah so that you can know what is going on during the ‘quiet’ season.

To begin with, we hope you are well, have enjoyed this wet and hot summer, and are now ready to begin a new school year with energy and determination.

Camp is very quiet and peaceful.  Major activities include the squirrels and chipmunks running about.  The latest change is that the canoes and sailboats are packed away in the Activity Room, the rowboats are lined up on the logs where you are used to seeing the canoes, and both rafts are now in winter mooring next to Polywog dock (grey raft) and Little Dipper (white raft).  Columbia Lake is strangely empty off Main Dock.  The cabins are all locked and the clotheslines have been put away.  The Gaga Pit and tetherballs are the only evidence of past fun and laughter.

Now that our contact information for campers and parents is managed through UltraCamp, there will be some changes in the way we communicate.  Moving forward, you will be notified of important information via email, which means it is necessary to have an account in UltraCamp.  If you came to camp this summer you are all set.  However, if you have a friend or relative who is interested in getting news and updates, please encourage them to go to create an online account using the Log Into/Create An Account link on the  Camp Asto Wamah website menu bar or by using the following link, UltraCamp/Camp Asto Wamah.  We would greatly appreciate if you would kindly spread the word.

Day 13 - Last Day & Campfire!!!

Today was a hot and hectic day for sure! As it was the last full day of the 2018 camp season, there was much to be done before we all leave tomorrow. Boats needed to be cleaned and tucked away, sports sheds tidied and packed, and everyone had to collect their arts & crafts projects. Swimming got one last day to enjoy the lake, as well as a few of the boaters! Dinner today was Texas Hash, a huge favorite that a lot of campers were especially excited for. Then came an extra special treat, double candy at store! After everyone had picked out their candy, it was off to our final rest hour. 

Following general swim and fourth period, we all played non-stop cricket, as a final camp-wide game. After an intense battle between the green and white teams from track and field day, everyone was rewarded with an ice pop to cool off. Cookee bell rang and we all got ready for supper, meatball grinders! 

Now, cabins are taking the last towel or two off the clothes line, packing up their trunks and getting ready for camp fire! Every session, on the final night, we head to the counsel ring for songs, s'mores and awards from swimming and boating classes. As well as track and field day ribbons, and the coveted cabin clean up award! Whichever cabin, within the three sections, passed Sue's inspection day in and day out, will be awarded a special prize tonight!  

Mmm I want to linger, Mmm a little longer...

Until summer 2019,

Gillian

Day 12 - Banquet

The last Thursday of the session is a very important one here at Camp Asto Wamah, it's banquet night! The schedule runs as normal, just with an emphasis on trying to get a shower in today, as everyone attempts to look their best for this evenings Thanksgiving-style supper. Turkey, stuffing, gravy - you name it, it's on tonights menu! Campers got dressed in their cleanest, green and white outfits, and we all piled into the main room in the upper lodge to eat together. 

After enjoying ice cream, chocolate caramel crunch or cookie dough, it was time for the much anticipated slide show. Pictures from track and field day, general swim, and other various activities at camp made an appearance. As well as old throw back pictures of staff, LT's and campers! Charlotte and Gina lead us in songs that we hadn't gotten the chance to sing all session, as well as a few fan favorites. Then came time for year awards. First years get a green hat, so make sure to ask your new campers to try them on for you when they get home! 

Candle light is how we wrap up banquet, with each cabin counselor choosing one camper to read a short passage. During this, everyone gets an individual candle, which gets lit and placed into the lake. At the end, after everyone at camp has placed their candle into the lake, we sing good night songs and watch as the candles float away. Now, campers are off to get ready for bed, silently, as there is no more talking tonight. Giving time for campers to reflect on this session overall.

Until tomorrow, for camp fire and the final full day at Wamah!

Gillian

 

Day 11 - Talent Night!

This morning was a rare morning at Camp Asto Wamah, we slept in for a WHOLE HOUR!!! Some campers were thrilled, others chose to use it as a time to read or write letters, and the counselors for sure used it as time for more sleep! Cabin clean up time was cut a little short because of it, but the campers still managed to have the cabins looking fabulous before first period rang. 

Classes went on as normal, with an even greater focus on learning new skills as this session is nearly over! Sailers, swimmers, and boaters all enjoyed the water today, as well as the hot sun. Dinner, our noon time meal ended with a perfect treat for this hot and sunny day, ice cream! Then campers were off to rest hour before cooling down in general swim. 

Tonights evening program has been in the works for a few days, talent night! There were skits, comedy acts, singers/dancers and even a few magicians. Many of the cabins even chose to come together and create a group skit, which was awesome to see. After enjoying grapes for snack, its off to read more of the cabins book and get ready for bed!

Until tomorrow, 

Gillian

Day 10 - LT Carnival

Today was hot, hot, hot! Luckily that meant everyone was eager to get in the water and have swimming lessons, after making sure to clean their cabins this morning. Campers were very focused this morning and the first three classes ran smoothly. Swimmer learned new strokes, lots of butterfly bootcamps, and boaters worked on their own skills too! Some even learned how to capsize safely. Arts and crafts is a perfect time to work on secret sister projects, our secret santa spin at camp, which will be revealed tomorrow!

For dinner we had pork shops and butterscotch pudding! Rest hour was a perfect time to attempt to cool off in the cabins, with the fans on of course. Then everyone went in for general swim before finishing up the day with fourth period and activity period. Sunfishes (our smaller sail boats), paddle boards, and snorkelers all enjoyed the water during activity period today! Then it was off to dry off and change for supper - grilled cheese!

Tonights evening program is extra special, it is completely run by the LT's! Every year LT's pick a theme and plan all session for one night, where they create various games and activities or all campers to participate in. LT Carnival is certainly a night to remember, and this year I'm sure it will be OUT OF THIS WORLD!!!!! You'll have to ask your campers about it when they get back!

Until tomorrow,

Gillian

Track Meet!!!

Today was our yearly all-day event.... Track Meet!  Today is a different schedule then normal, and campers are split into Green and White teams, and compete in events like Standing Jump, Long Jump, Softball Throw, a 50 Yard Dash, a "Marathon", and Swim Races.  Luckily, Track Meet usually entails a morning General Swim, and we sure needed it today, because it was hot!  

Some of the events take place after lunch, including the Wamah Triathlon.  This event involves every camper, and most staff, and takes participants from the very top of the camp road, onto the lake, back onto land at Hungerford, and a grand finale finish in the water.  Some people run, some people swim, some people are in boats and canoes- and everyone gets to watch the final leg, of a longer distance swim.  Special thanks to Drew who orchestrates the whole thing, because its an important tradiaional event here at Asto Wamah.  

We had our usual ham and noodles for lunch, and dinner was "pick-up"- the all camp version of leftover night at home.  It is one of my favorites, because you get to eat a variety of items all at once!  We of course had green and white cake to finish off supper.  

Campers are off to bed now, and just finished some team relay games, which are always fun.  These included Dizzy Lizzy, a soccer ball dribble, a Relay Race, and more.  It's a fun, silly way to end the day.  We were so lucky with today's weather, and as we look into the forecast and hear about the heat that is to come, we always try to remember how lucky we are here at Asto Wamah to have beautiful Columbia Lake to go in!  

Day 7- A rainy start, but a beautiful end!

Today started out rainy, with indoor games instead of regular activities.  Sports class played a hilarious game that involved acting, guessing, and most of all... laughing!  Swim classes played Scattergories and Charades, and Boating classes played Smallcraft Jeopardy.  Before we had a slightly longer Rest Hour, we all had the fan-favorite lasagna!  It was the perfect day for it, with the drizzle and clouds.  The afternoon brought a Sing-off, but by 4th period the sun was out, so boats were able to go out!  Activity Period was full of fishermen, girls jumping off the tower, ukulele playing, as well as plenty of boating practice.  

This evening was Eat Out, with hot dogs, potato chips, and the fixings, and we were lucky enough to be able to eat outside!  Evening Program was my own personal favorite game ever.... King Dodge (although some of the girls requested that we call it the appropriate Queen Dodge instead!) Tomorrow is our traditional Track Meet, so we hope that everyone gets a lot of rest! 

 

Day 5 & 6

The fifth day of camp began with chocolate chip bread, much to the campers delight. We were able to avoid the rain until much later in the day, and so morning classes went off without a hitch. For dinner we had chicken parmesan and sorbet (both strawberry and lemon). After a nice and relaxing rest hour, it was time for general swim! Campers paired up, and went into their respective swimming levels before fourth period and activity period. Supper this evening was pulled pork and cherry cake. Due to a quick, but heavy rain storm, evening program was inside. It was Deck-A-Counselor! Each cabin picked 2 staff members, and a few LT's, and created skits with them - all while dressing them up however they decided! It was a very entertaining night to say the least!

Today camp began with waffles and peanut butter, a fan favorite. Our morning ran as normal, as we luckily avoided the threat of rain once again! Dinner was meatloaf, a new recipe this camp season, and the campers really liked it. Butterscotch pudding followed, before it was time for rest hour. 

Then the day really got interesting! A special African Drumming program visited camp today, and each group of campers got to participate with their cabins. While very loud, it was very exciting and the campers really enjoyed it. With a funky schedule to fit everyones classes in, as well as this program, it took us right up to supper. Tonight we had chicken melts and gingerbread cake. Now all the campers are getting ready for evening program, in long pants, tied shoes, and dark clothing. Any guesses???? PIRATES! 

Until tomorrow,

Gillian

Day 4

Our fourth day here at camp kicked off with chocolate chip bread and cereal! Then came time for cabin pictures! Chris got all the cabins taken care of quickly, so that they could go back and clean the cabins, in hopes of impressing Sue - the nurse! Everyday Sue inspects each cabin to find the cleanest within the three groups (hilltop, lakeside and seniors) to find a winner of Cabin Clean Up.

The rain held off and we were able to get all classes in this morning. Sailors enjoyed a perfectly windy day on the lake and each class went out! For dinner, we had ziti and salad, with vanilla pudding for dessert. Following rest hour, we practiced a fire drill incase of emergencies, and then a quick passing of rain prevented us from getting to go into the water for general swim. Luckily, fourth period was able to go on as normal (minus sports in the upper lodge). Activity period was filled with tons options from LT's and counselors! A few LT's lead a dance party in our activity room and had an awesome turn out! Brendan and Sloane even took out a group of girls in the Hunter, our largest sail boat! They all had a blast!

Supper tonight, was eat out! This meant counselors packed up picnic baskets, filled with sandwiches and bug juice (camp slang for lemonade), and set off for different places around camp! From docks and picnic tables, to the lean-to and counsel ring, cabins were spread out all over! Afterwards, we headed back to our cabins and put on tied shoes and long pants, because tonights evening program was Capture the Flag! Everyone got really into it tonight, and now they're changing into their bathing suits for a quick dip before heading to bed!

Until tomorrow,

Gillian and Olivia

Day 2 & 3

Second day of camp, our first full day, kicked off beautifully! French toast for breakfast, ravioli for dinner and tacos for supper! Classes began yesterday, and seeing the various swim classes out and boats in the water was awesome! Evening program was 'garbage collector.' Each team has one camper, or 'collector' in charge of holding the bucket while the rest of the team shoots different point-based dodge balls in! Then it was time for a quick dip and off to bed!

Day 3 began quite foggy, but luckily cleared after our blueberry bread breakfast and lead into another beautiful day! Classes really got into it today, with sailboats getting a chance to go out, as well as the canoes and row boats! Carol, our designated basket lady and her slew of campers have started their respective projects and they are starting to really take shape! 

For dinner today, our noon time meal, we had chicken tenders followed by cherry jello for dessert. Everyone went in for the general swim that follows rest hour and then it was off to fourth period. Activity period options today included jumping off the tower, playing gaga, making bracelets and more!

Pizza and, Sue (the cooks), famous apple crisp, were a big hit at supper tonight. Now the campers are off to get tied shoes on and wear clothing with LOTS of pockets! Any guesses to what we are playing tonight?

Spies and Smugglers!

Until tomorrow,

Gillian

Day 1

Last first day of the 2018 camp season! Second girls kicked off on this beautiful and sunny day, making drop off a breeze. With seventeen LT's (leadership trainees) to help carry trunks and show campers to their cabins, it was made even easier! After everyone was all moved in, introductions and rules given out, it was time for a quick general swim! Everyone got into the water to cool off just before supper, our evening meal!

Supper tonight, per camp tradition, was hot dogs and brownies for dessert! Evening program, another first-night tradtion of 'Medical Wars' got the whole camp involved! Every night we, as a whole camp, come together to play one big game!

After a few intense rounds, quick dip was offered before campers got ready for bed. Then counselors read the camper-choosen book to help with falling asleep. They will read this book for the rest of the session as a great way to wrap up the day!

Now it's time for everyone to get some sleep in preparation with our first full day of classes and activities!
 

Until tomorrow, 

Gillian

Last Full Day!

To start off our final full day for this session, we had English muffins for breakfast with cereal alternatives. We were fortunate enough to have a sunny and clear-skied day for final testing in all classes. Campers put in their best efforts to pass their swimming and small craft classes, and finished up arts and crafts projects.  The great weather continued and we had a great general swim after rest hour.  

A little later in the afternoon, a group of campers took to the lake in all seven of the Sunfish sailboats and our big Hunter sailboat to play a game of pirates! It was a lot of fun and everyone had a great time. Currently campers are headed to the council ring for our campfire where they will receive rewards if they passed their small craft and swimming classes. Awards will also be given to those who placed in Track and Field events, and to those who maintained the cleanest cabin throughout the session. What everyone is most excited for however are the s'mores! Looking forward to seeing everyone tomorrow for pickup in the morning from 8:30-10am!

See you soon and signing off, Dan and Sloane

Day 12

Yesterday we had a great day and despite thinking the weather would make things challenging we lucked out for the most part!  Sailboats and other small crafts were able to go out and practice on the lake, and campers had a great time in swimming class as well.  We had a quick storm that came by in the afternoon but we had clear skies after for banquet!

The second Thursday is a special day with banquet, as the whole camp gets together and has supper in the main room of the upper lodge.  After a great meal consisting of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and more, we sung songs and watched a great slide show of pictures taken from throughout the session which everyone loved.  Banquet closes with a candlelight service, where each camper gets a candle in a bowl.  Most of the time we gather in a circle around the flagpole and light each candle one by one, but because there was minimal wind on the lake, we were able to float the candles onto the lake and enjoy the beautiful sight of watching all the candles slowly float away.  It truly is a special sight to see and everyone enjoyed it.  We have great weather for our last full day of camp which everyone is excited and thankful for.  

Day 10

Today brought a wide variety of weather, including torrential rain before, during, and after General Swim, where many swimmers just swam in the rain- we're wet anyway, right?  Supper tonight was grilled cheese and tomato soup, perfect for the slightly cooler weather that rolled through with the rain clouds.  

Tonight's evening program was a Talent Show- and it was amazing!  From comedy skits, to ukulele performances, Irish Step Dancing- we had a little bit of everything, and it sure is amazing to get to see some talents that people have that we wouldn't normally get to see in camp.  At the very start of the Talent Show there was a rainbow over Columbia Lake- a beautiful end to a beautiful day.  

Tomorrow marks the last regular day of camp- Thursday is Banquet, Friday is campfire, and Saturday.... Shhh.  It can't be ending this soon!  

Days 8 & 9

On Sunday, we were lucky enough to avoid most of the rain storm and get classes in! Campers enjoyed cinnamon bread for breakfast, ham and noodles for dinner, and pick-up (our left over styled meal) for supper. Evening program was where the real excitement began, Deck - A - Counselor!!! Cabins chose two staff members out of a hat to bring back to their cabin and plan a skit together, decking them out however they wanted! Everyone laughed and loved this game which hasn't been played in years!

Monday morning, after rough storms through out the night, a tree branch fell right on the lodges power line! Due to this issue, and the lack of power, we got to sleep in, which the campers enjoyed. After a quick fix by a repair man, power was restored and everything could proceed as usual. The first three classes went on without a hitch, with rest hour following our Swedish meatballs dinner! Then came an optional general swim/gaga/tetherball time frame, and fourth period. Activity period today consisted of various games in the upper lodge, gaga and a huge focus around working on Secret Sister projects. Each camper got to pick a "secret sister" yesterday to compliment, do nice things, or make cards for. The idea is every similar to "secret santa." They have until Wednesday at supper, when we do the big reveal!!! So exciting!

Now we are off to play Garbage Collector, tonights evening program! 

Until tomorrow, 

 

Day 7

Welcome back to the Birch Blog!  Today at camp we started off with english muffins, and we had our Track and Field day!  Generally we have Track and Field day on Sunday however due to impending weather we decided to have it a day early and it was fantastic.  Campers had a great time participating in events which included running and standing long jump, softball throw, 50-yard dash, a “marathon” run (which is around a mile), and swim races.  There was also our classic team triathlon, where every camper has a role in a giant relay race.  Swimming, row boating and canoeing, and running takes place at different sections of the race.  

Kids are currently getting long pants and dark clothes on in preparation for evening program which will be Pirates!  This game includes being able to run about in the woods and involves lots of teamwork.  Before that we will have one last quick track and field event, the 220 and 440 meter dash.

Until next time,

Dan

Day 6

Our day today started with a camp staple, waffles and peanut butter! Then came cabin clean up, and a normal rotation of our first three periods (sports, boating, swimming or arts and crafts). For dinner we had chicken parmagain and sorbet, followed by the picking of green and white team captains. Tomorrow is track and field day here at camp, typically Sunday but moved up because of the impending rain! Captains went with Drew just before rest hour to divide the camp into green and white teams for tomorrows events!

After rest hour, we had a special guest join us! Carla, along with various African drums and musical instruments, visited camp and taught the campers different popular rhythms from the amazing places she's visited. Carla was able to showcase her love for this style of music, and her passion to help others, when she explained to our campers what visits like this meant for the villages she goes back to - fresh water wells and even a future bridge! It was an amazing treat for campers and counselors alike!

Supper tonight was burgers, followed by delicious cheesecake! Now everyone is off to get tied shoes on, in preparation of tonights evening program - Step it Up!

Until tomorrow, 

     Gillian

Day 5

Good evening everyone, today for breakfast we had bagels and oatmeal. We also enjoyed some hot cocoa on this chilly morning. Our normally scheduled classes were changed due to a very special guest speaker, Bobby Daly. He is a former Camp Asto Wamah staff member and has been serving in the peace corps for 2 years now. He presented information regarding the lives of those he has worked with in Uganda. Bobby explained how life in Uganda is different from our lives in the United States. He taught the campers a few songs and they seemed to have a lot of fun!

For lunch today we had baked ziti, baguettes and a fresh green salad on the side. After lunch we resumed our typically scheduled classes. Campers got to enjoy swimming, boating, sailing, and stand up paddle boarding. 

For supper we had chicken melts! Pretty soon we will be heading up to the field to begin our evening program. We are playing King Dodge ball. This game is different from medical war. In this game when a person gets out, they have to go to the other side and try to get out of jail by hitting someone with a dodgeball. Tonight's game is sure to tire everyone out! 

Until tomorrow, 

Amanda 

Day 4

After yesterdays rain storm, we were thrilled to be back to our normal camp activities today! The day began with a fan favorite of chocolate chip bread, a perfect start to this sunny, beautiful day! Then came the task of cleaning up the cabin and dealing with very wet clothes lines -- luckily we started an overflow line to help the drying process along!

The first three periods ran as normal, and then came dinner (our lunch time meal) of meat loaf that was enjoyed by all! A new recipe which was a hit amongst the campers! Rest hour, a time to relax, nap, work on small projects and get ready for the rest of the day, followed a trip to the store for, most likely, a piece of candy. 

Activity period included games of frisbee, jumping off the tower and playing gaga. There was no cookee bell tonight as kitchen staff had the day off, meaning eat out!!! Sandwiches of PB&J, turkey, ham and hummus were packed into baggies and into picnic baskets. Cabins got to eat together at various parts around camp, docks and picnic tables included! Bug juice (lemonade) was passed around along with chips and cookies! 

Now were all getting ready for evening program, Spies and Smugglers! 

Until tomorrow,

Gillian and Sloane