Official BSC Blog

From Koop’s Desk: Goodbye Summer 2017

Koop’s Desk

Goodbye Summer 2017…

On the final day of camp there are two emotions that hit me hard. The first is relief. From the day our staff arrive for orientation until the final camper is home with their family, I don’t take a second off. You trust me with your greatest possession and I do not take that lightly. My #1 goal each summer is making sure that each one of our campers is safe & healthy at all times. 

The second emotion is pride. Pride in what we have accomplished at camp as a community. I have been in the camping world my entire life, and a former director I worked for always said, “A camp is only as good as its staff”. I have taken this line to heart and know how lucky I am to be working with our team. 

Each Morning…

at 7:15am, our admin team meets to collaborate on the day’s events and discuss everything that is going on in camp. The team consists of Wade (our Assistant Director who I met over 20 years ago as a camp counselor and has remained one of my closest friends) and our Division Leaders; Jordan, Henry & Jason. There are two things that I admire most about these guys. The first, is their commitment to BSC. I know that every day, each of these guys works to make camp the very best it can be. They understand what needs to happen day in and day out in order for us to succeed.

The second, is that each one of them is pursuing their dreams in very competitive fields. They have taken risks, moved cities, and extended their schooling in order to do what they have always wanted. I want to thank them and all of our other counselors who worked tirelessly this summer to ensure that each camper was well taken care of both on and off the fields.

A Highlight For Me…

was the final campfire. Each summer I debate recording this event so parents can see how special it is. However, I believe it would take away from how sacred it is for our campers and counselors.  Almost every camper gets up in front of 160+ people (something I wouldn’t have been able to do as a child) and talks about their experience at camp. They thank those who have guided them throughout the summer, and expresses their feelings towards BSC. The respect and admiration everyone has for each other is evident in these moments. All are silent and are giving their undivided attention to who is speaking.

In The End,

it is all about the kids! Most campers arrive at camp expecting to focus and improve in their “major” sport. Our talented team of Sports Directors (Coach Wade, Warde, Lesure, Verrill, Green & Alonso) have been with me a long time and run incredible programs. However, BSC is more than this. Not only are our campers improving their skills in their respective sports, but they are learning and implementing life skills. Some are dealing with homesickness for the first time, roommate situations, and personality conflicts. When our campers are able to conquer their fears, resolve conflicts away from home with our guidance, and step out of their comfort zone, that is what summer camp is all about.

Camp is more than just the sports. It is about learning from each other and growing with one another. And at the end of the day, it is about how we all come together as a family. That is what the BSC community is to me. It is a family, and I couldn’t be happier to share it with all of you.

Thank you to everyone who made this summer one of the best we have ever had!

It’s never too early to discuss next summer. Details will follow shortly as 2018 summer enrollment will open after Labor Day on Tuesday September 5th.

Enjoy the rest of your summer, and I look forward to speaking with all of you over the winter. Camp will be here before we know it!

Koop

Camper – A Day In The Life: Monday July 31st: #Monday

#Monday

The first day of our final week….

Morning Session

After an incredible weekend, our last week of camp started off really strong. We have been so lucky with weather this summer, and today was no different. As the whistle blew at 7:45am, campers walked out of their dorms to a perfect 70 degrees and sunny. No better way to start the day. Perfect weather, walking to breakfast with friends and counselors…the way life should be. 

Breakfast

One of my favorite meals of camp ; breakfast sandwiches with a toppings bar. The yolk dripped out of the eggs as we stacked bacon on top and spread a little ketchup and hot sauce for good measure. And as always, wash it down with a mandatory glass of water (stay hydrated!) and our famous chocolate milk. There was silence in the dining hall as everyone was focused on their food while watching sportscenter on the TV.

Cleanup

From breakfast, it was time for cleanup. Yesterday, our inspection winners from week 2 had the opportunity to take a ride on our pontoon boat into town during rest hour. Once we hit town, we docked and hopped off to get some ice cream. Today began our final week of inspection. One more boat trip into town for ice cream was at stake. It was a solid cleanup and then it was time to hit the fields (and gym and ice).

Majors

A great morning of majors and minors it was. After an easy Sunday, everyone gave 110% today. Knowing that there are only a few Major periods left, campers & counselors knew how important it was to start the week off really strong. Drills were perfect and scrimmaging was intense and competitive. Even though it wasn’t a suit up Saturday, counselors were dressed up and ready to play. The goal is to show the kids how to play at a higher level and make them better.

Minors

Minors went off without a hitch. Arts & Crafts was buzzing because everyone wants to finish up their projects before going home. The waterfront too. Final canoe, fishing & waterski periods were running at full force. Last opportunities to get up on ski’s for the first time! Street hockey had some really good games and tennis had a little round robin tournament. Flag football had full field games while weight training & fitness guys were sweating and working hard. Overall, it was a solid morning and everyone was ready to wind down a bit and head to lunch and then rest hour. Need a good nap and some chill time to prepare for the afternoon.

Afternoon into Evening

Nap time was over & everyone was well rested and ready to finish the day on a high note. We had our first ultimate frisbee inter-camp game of the summer. We hosted Camp Wigwam on our football field for a pretty sick game. It was our 15 & under team playing and a good portion of the camp came out to support. Campers and counselors got really into the game. Even though we lost, everyone was cheering and getting rowdy. Always necessary to support BSC!

The remainder of the day was filled with Ice Hockey majors and a few more minor periods. Soccer & Basketball were playing full games, and so was Baseball & Lax. Great stuff to watch. I made my way into the ice hockey rink to watch some afternoon scrimmages. What an amazing program that Coach Warde runs. The beginning portion was spent doing a few drills that focused on footwork and puck handling. After that, it was all game play. All of our goalies rotated and got the chance to play. After freezing in there for about an hour, I made my way back to the field where I jumped in a little spike ball tournament. Love spikeball! Probably one of the most popular activities at camp this summer.

As the day was winding down and dinner was approaching, little bit of rain hit us. This actually wasn’t too bad, because it definitely cooled down outside and by the time dinner was over, the rain was done.

Night Time Show

At 8:15pm, we all made our way to the theater for a little surprise show. It’s tough to describe what the show was, but I feel comfortable calling it a mix between a magician, a juggler and a musical light show. Super creative and campers got a kick out of it. They were cheering and laughing the whole time. Some lucky audience members even got called up to volunteer.

A great day, and a great start to the last week. Tomorrow afternoon we head to Portland to watch the SeaDogs play a little baseball.

Until then…….

Goodnight!

Camper – A Day In The Life: Thursday July 27th

The Day

Thursday was one of those classic perfect camp days we strive to have.

Due to the long trip day Wednesday, we went for an hour late wake up Thursday morning. The whistle blew at 8:45. As usual, the rookies jumped out of bed to gather in their common area and hangout; eager to go to breakfast. The professionals do not move as quickly, but after a few nudges, they got up and made their way to the dining hall. And, as always, the seniors were last to make it to the top of the hill.

Breakfast was a delicious cheesy egg and hash browns meal. Oh, and blueberry muffins were also on the buffet line which are always amazing. When cleanup was over, it was time to hit the fields (and court & ice). After a day off from sports, campers were excited to be back out there. Majors started off really strong. Everyone was into it and giving 100% effort. Lax was fully suited up and ended the session with a sick scrimmage. Ice hockey was amazing to watch as always.

Throughout the day, minor periods were solid as well. It was a beautiful day, so the waterfront was in full force. A few kids got up on a wakeboard for the first time ever which we love.

The Night

After dinner we had a lot going on. Basketball inter-camp AND a skating social. The social was for our boys who just finished 5th & 6th grade. Those consists of our oldest rookies & our youngest professionals. Right when dinner ended, those boys ran back to their dorms to shower and try and make themselves look nice. Dorms smelled like Axe and there was plenty of hair gel going around! After final mirror checks the boys made their way up to the ice rink to put on skates and meet the girls. As expected, each group started off in their own areas of the rink. However, it just took one brave young man to head over to the girls and start chatting. Once this happened, everyone else joined in. Next you know, there were giggles and yelling all throughout the rink. And then boom, each camper was paired up with a young lady and they were skating while holding hands. Probably one of the cutest things I’ve seen all summer!

While the social was going on, the rest of the camp congregated in the basketball gym. Every year, we host a night game versus Camp Micah. We call it The Battle for Bridgton (since Micah is also in Bridgton). The boys playing are our oldest campers so the skill level is always at it’s best. Micah also brings a bunch of their campers to come watch the game as well. We make a bunch of signs & banners and hang them up around the gym. The coolest part is that we make it a white out. Every camper and counselor dresses in all white. Face & body paint are also very popular. The atmosphere is unbelievable – just like a high school game. From the opening tip until the final buzzer, the crowd is intense and cheering on our team. Last year, we lost in a very close game. This year, however, we sought out redemption. We took the lead from the start and never looked back. The trophy is back at BSC and will remain here until next year!

Goodnight!

An incredible night for everyone in camp. Back at the dorms, campers were super amped up either about the game or the social.

Until next time!

 

 

Camper – A Day In The Life: Wednesday July 26th: Trip Day

Trip Day!

One of the most exciting days of camp every year – Trip Day! After a day and a half of mediocre weather, we woke up Wednesday with clear blue skies and perfect Maine temperature. Our rookies & professionals were getting ready to head to Funtown Splahstown and the seniors left at 6am for a white water rafting adventure. It was an awesome day for everyone.

Funtown Splashtown…USA

At 10:30, the rookies & professionals boarded the bus. The ride was filled with excitement. Returning campers were busy planning their day and telling new campers which rides and what games are a must do. We split up into a bunch of groups of 5-7 campers with 2 counselors leading each group. They are able to explore the park together. Some groups began in Funtown, while others immediately needed to get wet at Splashtown.

Funtown has some awesome rides. The log flume is always my favorite because it’s an exciting ride and it’s great to get soaked to cool down. The best part of the flume are the pictures taken on it. It’s always fun to head to the booth after to see what kind of funny faces were made. The most popular ride in the park however, is probably Excalibur. An old school wooden roller coaster with a sick drop. In addition to the rides, there are a ton of games to play. Pop-A-Shot, ring toss, balloon popping, milk jugs, and so much more. Almost everyone leaves the park with either a basketball or a stuffed animal. I wonder if those stuffed animals end up making it home??

At 5:45, everyone congregates at the tent and we head over to the dinner area. Everyone gets a meal ticket that allows them to choose between a pizza, a burger, a hot dog, chicken fingers, or a caesar salad. Dessert includes either some soft serve ice cream (my fave), fried dough, or Dippin’ Dots. After dinner it was time to head back to camp. We returned to the busses and pretty quickly, the sugar rush ended and campers started falling asleep. We returned to camp at around 9pm and it was straight to the dorms to hang out, shower, and get ready for bed.

White Water Rafting Adventure

After a really early wake up (5:45am) and a quick breakfast, the seniors boarded a lovely coach bus and headed out for their white water rafting adventure. It was a long & tiring bus ride, but it was well worth it. It was an absolutely perfect day to head out on the river.

When they arrived, they were greeted by the guides. They gave us instructions and a rundown on safety and how the day was going to go. Pretty quickly, we were split up into groups and jumped into the boats and began the day. It was an amazing experience. We had everything from calm and relaxing currents to class 3 and 5 rapids! Everyone even got a chance to jump out of their boats and take a quick swim.

Rafting came to a close and everyone got off the river together. Everyone shared their experiences and what they thought of the morning / afternoon. The day ended with a really nice chicken & steak meal right on the riverbank. It was a perfect way to complete the trip and hangout as a group. The perfect bonding moment for our oldest campers to have. Something they will always remember.

It was time to head back to camp.

A successful and fun filled day of trips for BSC.

Talk soon!

Camper – A Day In The Life: Saturday July 22nd

First Saturday – Session 2

Suit Up!

Suit Up Saturday might be one of the most popular days at camp. We start of the day with a strong late wakeup – 8:45am. Hopefully everyone used the extra hour wisely and went to bed early and slept until the whistle. I definitely did! After breakfast, we have an extended clean up to end the week. Every room needs to be a perfect 10 before going to activities.

The activity whistle blows at about 10:15. From there everyone heads to their majors where they will be for 2 hours straight until lunch. We call it Suit Up Saturday because this is the only day that the counselors also get in full gear and participate. Obviously there are safety rules put in place for the counselors. It’s so fun though because the campers love seeing these older guys and girls play their sports. Nothing cooler than seeing some division 1 hockey players glide on the ice in full gear. Same goes for Lax, Soccer and Baseball.

Every major was going really well and we finally got some cooler weather today. Campers were working really hard and the directors were running some great sessions. Tons of cool drills and mini scrimmages were happening. The last 30 minutes of the period we had some full field, ice and court games going on. I loved watching and was enjoying every moment.

Afternoon Minors

After a pulled pork and mac & cheese lunch, we hit the dorms for a much needed rest hour. In the professional dorm we were all hanging out and doing some Mad Libs! Some very funny stories came out of this.

At the activity whistle, it was time to hit the fields and the waterfront for a strong afternoon. Arts & crafts, soccer, archery, basketball, canoeing, waterskiing, fishing, weight training & fitness, flag football, gaga, field games, ice hockey. All were running! What an afternoon it was. After a strenuous morning, it was nice to see the campers take it easy a little bit and just have some good old fashioned camp fun. I jumped on the boat and got to see some pretty sweet wakeboarding and tubing.

Movie Night!

Every Saturday night, we have movie night for the campers. The youngest campers, the rookies, head down to Koop’s house to watch and eat some snacks. The professionals head to the lovely air conditioned humanities center to eat and watch their movie. The seniors hangout in the senior lounge and do their thing. It was a great ending to a great day.

Tomorrow is Lazy Bones Sunday and in the afternoon…Carnival Day!

Goodnight from Bridgton!

 

Camper – A Day In The Life: Thursday July 20th

Camp is in full force as we entered our 4th day of Session 2. Everyone is making friends and enjoying their activities. Campers are working really hard at their major sports and having a ton of fun at all the different minors. Counselors have tons of energy and are making sure that all activities are going smoothly.

The past 2 days have been very hot and humid. Not your usual perfect Maine weather. The key words have been Water & Sunscreen. When the heat rises it is super important to stay hydrated. I joined the Basketball major this morning with the famous Coach Whit. He was working the kids hard and going through tons of drills to help improve their game. We finished off with a little scrimmage. It went really well and everyone left the court pretty tired.

2nd period I made my way down to the waterfront for a little fishing lesson on the pontoon boat. It was amazing to be on the water. There was a nice breeze and we even got to jump in and go for a little swim. It was a good day to fish, we caught about 12 fish. It would be fun to bring them back to the chef, but at camp, we throw them back in the lake.

For lunch, we had chicken caesar salad wraps. They were delicious. Finished off with a nice little cup of chocolate pudding and whipped cream. After lunch, everyone went back to the dorms for rest hour.  Because it was such a hot day and we were all working hard, most campers took a nap. It’s always a good time to just chill out and prepare for the afternoon.

4th and 5th periods went really well. Activities were a little calmer than usual so no one got too tired. The temperature started to drop a little bit and some clouds rolled in. This made the rest of the day really nice. During choose up, we hosted a spike ball tournament that a lot of kids got involved in. It’s slowly becoming one of the most popular lawn games in camp. It’s a game of athleticism & teamwork.

Thursday night dinners are always a cookout. The dining hall staff fires up the grille outside and we all get to hang out and eat. Burgers & Hot Dogs are always on the menu along with a bunch of sides. The sun was setting as we sat around the grass and enjoyed a great meal and some solid conversations.

The evening activity was just some good old fashioned free play. Gaga and the Basketball gym were going strong as always. It was a nice night chill night that we all enjoyed.

Everyone seems to be pretty tired after today. I think we are all going to fall asleep early and get a great night’s sleep.

Excited to see what’s in store for tomorrow!

Goooooodnight

 

Camper – A Day In The Life: Monday July 17th

Session 2 – Day 1

Hello, Goodbye

Majors, baby.

Hello and welcome to our session 2 campers! Goodbye to our session 1 campers, you will be missed.

It was a beautiful morning here in Bridgton, Maine. The sun was shining and the temperature was a perfect 73 degrees. Like every morning, the whistle blew at 7:45am and all throughout camp you heard, “Goooood Morning Bridgton!! Everybody up! It’s a great day to be at camp!” – The classic wakeup call from our fearless leader, Koop. Heading up the hill to the dining hall were tons of new faces. New 8 year olds and new 15 year olds walking together to see what was for breakfast. And what better than chocolate pancakes and bacon for opening day. Don’t worry though…for the healthier ones, there is always a yogurt and fruit bar available.

Majors

Ice Hockey, Lacrosse, Basketball, Baseball, Soccer. Those are the “majors” here at camp. Every camper majors in one sport and then minors in different sports and activities. Majors are comprised of skills and drills. The kids buy into their sport and really want to improve over the next 3 weeks. The directors of each sport are masters at their craft. All of them come from division 1 college backgrounds and really know how to lead and teach.

The first day of majors are always awesome to watch. Campers and counselors come out hungry and are eager to get going. The energy is at an all time high. Everyone wants to give 110% and prove that they are there to get better and to work. Our Lax program had the best major period I have ever seen. The enthusiasm and level of play was incredible. Every single person on the field was running hard and listening to the coaches and director. It was impressive. The other majors were all the same. At our 6pm lineup, each director stood up and gave a recap of the major and there was not one negative thing that was said. All upbeat positive attitudes. Good vibes over here for day 1!

Minors

Sports

Every coach wants their players to be well rounded athletes. Hockey coaches want their players to play sports like lax to improve on their hand-eye coordination. Basketball coaches like their players improving their speed & agility on the soccer field. In addition to their majors, everyone also minors in different sports & activities. When at the minors, it is always game play. On the first morning of every session, we give our campers a weekly schedule with every single period laid out for them. This is important to us, because it allows us to make sure that there are always enough campers at the minor periods to play a full game.

Activities

At our core, we are Bridgton Sports Camp. However, we pride ourselves in being a perfect mix of a sports camp with traditional camp values. In addition to our sports, we offer an array of activities that allow our campers to try new things and take breaks from the sports.

Our waterfront always has some of our most popular minors. Waterskiing, wakeboarding, canoeing, and fishing are always running every single period. Maine has beautiful lakes and amazing weather, and everyone loves getting in there. Many of our campers have never been waterskiing or wakeboarding before and it is awesome when they get up for the first time. This year, we got a brand new pontoon boat that we use during fishing periods. Today, one of our campers caught the biggest fish of the entire summer. It was sick! Don’t worry, after looking at it, they threw it back in the water and we did NOT eat it for dinner!

In addition to the waterfront we offer many other activities. Arts & Crafts is a great place to go and cool down and make some pretty neat stuff. Street Hockey & Tennis always get intense. We have a great weight training & fitness / speed & agility program that aligns perfectly with our campers major sports. There are solid workout regiments that campers can work on during these periods that will help them improve on the court field, and ice.

Night One

After dinner, we have evening activities. Most of the time, it is Bridgton Sports League; aka BSL. We also have free play occasionally. Additionally, we have special events and trips. One night we have casino night. Other nights we do ice cream sundaes. One time we even go to a Portland SeaDogs minor league baseball game. Tonight, we kicked it off with BSL.The way it works is every division is divided up into different teams. Because we are a sports camp, our divisions are college conferences. ACC & Big Ten. Last session our 2 winners were Clemson & Ohio State. Games of Gaga, Newcomb, Volleyball, Handball & Kickball were played on the fields. As it became dark, the games came to an end.

Our youngest campers, the rookies, head straight to showers and start hanging out and getting ready for bed. The older guys have a little more freedom. The middle division, the professionals are able to play in the gym and hang on the fields until 9:15. After that, they head to their dorms to shower and prepare for bed. Lights out for them are at 10:30. Because they are the oldest in camp, the seniors are ables to stay out of the dorms a bit later. We don’t have a “shower time” for them. As high school students, they know that they need to shower and wash up before lights out.

So concludes our first day of camp. We hope that you follow us on Facebook & Instagram for some sweet photos from around camp.

Until next time…Goodnight from Bridgton!!

Yours Truly,

A Bridgton Sports Camp Staff member

Camper – A Day In The Life: Color War!!

Color War

The Rundown

2 successful days of color war are in the books. Our 3rd and final day is tomorrow, and at the end, a winner will be crowned. Currently, the Warriors are beating the Penguins by 70 points. A close margin with plenty of events left and many points still to be won. Every year, our two color war teams are the winners of the NBA Championship VS the Stanley Cup Champions. The teams are led by 2 of our oldest campers; the senior captains. Their assistants are the younger, professional captains, who help take the lead on controlling the professional division. Then, we assign a counselor captain to each team to help maintain order.

Day 1 – Wednesday

Day 1 was filled with tons of drama. All 3 divisions were split up amongst themselves around camp for different games and events.The day began with Seniors playing an intense game of soccer, while the Rookies played kickball and the Professionals split up between cricket and basketball. From there, there was a rotation of games throughout the day. Handball, Flag Football, Gaga, Wiffle Ball were being played. Kids were having a blast and really getting into it. There was a real competitive nature in the air. We stress to our campers and staff that while it’s fine to be competitive and want to win, the most important parts of color war are sportsmanship & respect. Stay humble when you win, and keep your head up when you lose. Treat your teammates, the referees, and the opposing team with respect. This is something that all of us can continue to work on every single day.

Track & Field

Also during day 1 of color war, we hosted one of my favorite events of the summer; the track & field. Each division had their own event. We set up a track on one of our fields and host races such as the 100 “meter” dash, the 800 “meter” run, the “mile” run, and more. Two of my favorite races are the 4 x 100 “meter” relay and the 4 x 400 “meter” relay. It’s so fun to watch the kids race and pass the baton to their partner. There is also a baseball toss and a football toss. The culmination of the event is an all team, best of 3, tug of war. Check out the website and Facebook for some awesome pictures of the event.

Nighttime – Day 1

As 6pm rolled around, we had our first color war lineup. We went over scores for the day and discussed the importance of sportsmanship and respect. There were some fantastic recaps of the games that were played and some great shoutouts to campers. We ended lineup with a few rock paper scissor challenges for points. It was awesome to see everyone rooting on their teammates in such a simple game. After dinner, we took a break from color war and enjoyed some organized free play activities.

Day 1 – Thursday

The Morning & Hockey

Today we expereinced a bit of rain and some cold weather, so we had to tweak the schedule a little bit. Due to the long and tiring day 1, we had a late wakeup this morning. 8:45am, so just an hour later. After breakfast and cleanup, the entire camp made their way up to the ice hockey rink for our annual color war hockey game. It is always one of the most intense and exciting games of the summer. And today, was no different. The Warriors jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead, but the resilience from the other side was so impressive. The rest of the game was an outright battle. The Penguins fought hard and clawed their way back into the game. With only 4 minutes to go in the game, the score was 7-5. The music was blasting during stoppage and the crowd was going nuts. Everyone in camp was in the arena and cheering on the players on the ice. After a sweet backhand goal that put the Warriors up 8-5, they didn’t look back. They put in 2 more quick ones, and the game was over. It was incredible way to finish the hockey season at camp. Always so proud of all of our hockey majors and seeing how much they improved over the summer.

Top Chef & Dodgeball & Jeopardy

The rest of the day was similar to yesterday. Each age group split up amongst 3 different events and rotated. Again, due to the weather, we had to switch to rainy day schedule. One event was of course, a camp staple…dodgeball! Games are always intense in our gym. The 2nd event that took place was Camp Jeopardy; another camp favorite. Love seeing our campers use their knowledge in order to win points for their team. Our assistant director, Wade, does an amazing job putting this event together. And our 3rd event of the day, was perhaps my most favorite. Year after year, our rookie division leader hosts this event and it is always one of the best. It is BSC’s very own version of Top Chef. Each age group goes one at a time and splits up into 6 different teams. 3 Warrior teams & 3 Penguin teams. Each team is given 3 base ingredients that must be used in the meal. Today’s base ingredients were beef jerkey, string beans, and strawberry frosted cookies. YUM. There is then a table of other ingredients that campers are allowed to come up and select a few to add to their dishes. Some of these include, vanilla pudding, string cheese, apples, pringles, rye bread, jelly, and so much more. Everyone is given 30 minutes to come up with the most creative and unique dish. They are then presented to our counselor judges. They decide the winners based on a bunch of different categories. What an incredible event this was.

The day finished strong with our senior basketball game after dinner. Just like the hockey game, the whole camp was in the gym watching. It was super intense and competitive, and the sportsmanship was the best I’ve seen so far. In the end, the winning team won by 8 points. It was an unbelievable game to witness.

As the sun sets, we go into our final day of color war, and also, our final day of session 1. I can’t believe how quickly these 3 weeks have flown by. Tune in tomorrow for a recap of our whacked up relay!

From Bridgton, Goodnight!!

 

Camper – A Day In The Life: Tuesday July 11th

Trip Day

Rookies & Professionals go to Funtown Splashtown, USA

My favorite amusement park in New England. I’ve been a frequent visitor of the park since I was 8 years old. Today was the day! Our 8-13 year olds woke up at 8:45am and went to breakfast. The school busses rolled up to the dining hall and campers and staff jumped on board to head to Funtown Splashtown USA! The bus ride was filled with excitement. Returning campers were busy planning their day and telling new campers which rides and what games are a must do. Counselors get different camper assignments, and they are able to explore the park as groups. Per usual, we started the day at Splashtown; hitting some of the best water rides the country has to offer. After lunch, it was time to change out of bathing suits and head into Funtown…

Funtown has some pretty cool rides. The log flume is always a crowd favorite. On a humid day, it’s nice to get a little wet. The best part of the flume, however, are the pictures taken when the log heads down the steep drop. There are definitely some funny faces to look at. The most popular ride in the park however, is probably Excalibur. An old school wooden roller coaster with a sick drop at the end. (This ride also takes great pictures at the perfect moment.) I myself didn’t muster up the courage to do this ride until I was 11. In addition to the rides, there are a ton of games to play. Basketball shooting, ring toss, balloon popping, water squirt racing, and so much more. Almost everyone leaves the park with either a goldfish or a stuffed animal that is anywhere from the size of a baseball to the size of a camper!

Dinner at the park is also really fun. Options include burgers, hot dogs, pizza, chicken fingers and more. Of course, there are also tons of snacks throughout the park that our campers love. Fried dough, candy, frozen lemonade, and we can never forget…Dippin’ Dots! What is there not to love about this day. Before we left, we had one more surprise in store.

A voice came over the loud speaker asking everyone from our camp to all meet in a certain place. Everyone was confused, but headed to the spot and gathered around. When we arrived, there was a police officer waiting for us. Everyone became silent. The officer went stern and began telling us that a bunch of our campers were disrespecting the park. That we weren’t behaving and that we might not be allowed back again. It was clear that people were upset and didn’t know how to react. After a 5 minute lecture from the officer, he stopped talking. He looked around, and all of a sudden his stone-cold face turned into a huge smile and broke out into laughter. He yelled as loud as he can “COLOR WARRRRRR!!”…….Relief and excitement spread throughout the campers and staff. We boarded the bus to come back to camp and are eager to begin color war tomorrow 🙂

Seniors Wake Up Early & go White Water Rafting

The boys were woken super early at 5:45am. After a quick breakfast, they were on the road by 6:15. It was a long bus ride to the Kennebec river. Almost instantly, everyone was sleeping on the bus. I don’t blame them! As the bus got closer, the campers were woken to the sweet sweet sound of some counselor karaoke. Seems a little more fun than our every day whistle. This certainly wasn’t your average wake up, but it was hilarious. Campers joined in and the bus ride camaraderie grew quickly. Everyone was singing along and getting pumped up for the day ahead.

When we arrived at the river, we were greeted by our friendly guides. They gave us instructions and a rundown on safety and how the day was going to go. Pretty quickly, we were split up into groups and on the river. It was a really fun experience. We had everything from calm and relaxing currents to class 3 and 5 rapids! Super adventurous and challenging at times, and some campers even took a little dip.

Rafting came to a close and everyone got off the river together. We walked over to the campsite with the rafting staff to recap the day. Everyone shared their experiences and what they thought of the morning / afternoon. The day ended with a really nice chicken & steak meal right on the riverbank. It was a perfect way to complete the trip and hangout as a group. It was time to hit the busses and venture back to camp….Oh yea, and on the way back, the bus driver pretended we had a flat tire and once everyone was off the bus, he held upon a sign that read “BSC COLOR WAR 2017!!”. It Is ON!

CIT’s Head South to Boston

As their final journey as semi-campers, our CIT’s traveled down to Boston today. I was lucky enough to join them. It was a day filled with bonding and reminiscing about their time as campers at BSC. We shared many stories and many laughs throughout the day.

After a quick Dunkin Donuts breakfast, we arrived in Bean-town at about 11am. We started the day off by touring around Harvard University and Harvard Square. It was a beautiful morning and a great way to explore the incredible campus. We obviously had to by some Harvard swag before leaving the area. From there, we ventured to Newbury street. We started at the very top and worked our way south, We grabbed some lunch and went into about 1 million stores. I think the group favorites were the Harry Potter Shop and a hidden sneaker store called Bodega (if you like sneakers and are in Boston, GO! It’s behind the vending machine…)

Newbury street ended and spit us out into Boston Common. We explored the beautiful park, took some pictures and just hung out. We made our way to Quincy Market and shopped a little more and chilled by the water. At around 5:15, we sat down for a group dinner. Our last stop for the day was to go see Blue Man Group. The show was excellent. We were all entertained and were active during the show. One of our guys even got chosen to go on stage as a helper.

It was an unbelievable way for this group to finish off their camp careers. Every single one of them has grown tremendously while at BSC over the years, and we are so proud of the young men they have turned into. We hope that many of them return next year as counselors.

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With only 3 full days of camp left, Color War is upon us. It’s going to be a great finish.

Until Next Time….

Camper – A Day In The Life: Saturday July 8th & Sunday July 9th

Final Weekend – Session 1

As the sun set on this Sunday evening, our campers received their cell phones after dinner. This would be the last time they can call their parents, because by Saturday, the session will be over. These last few weeks have flown by and I can’t believe we only have 5 full days remaining. The end of today marked the final weekend of the session. It was jam packed with activities, sports, intercamp games and more…

Saturday

I’ve never experienced weather quite like what we have had. It was sun all day, but finally it was a bit cooler. Since our last little storm last week, it has been perfect outside. Allowing us to go about our normal schedules. Saturday morning began just as every morning does. We had an extra hour to sleep though. After breakfast, we went straight into major periods. We go for a little over 2 hours at majors doing a mixture of skills, drills, and game play. Everyone was working really hard.

Intercamp – Indian Acres Basketball

While camp was running smoothly, we had a basketball tournament to attend to. This was our favorite basketball tournament of the summer. The Indian Acres 16 & under. We were an underdog this year, but we sent our best team to see what we can do. Our coach said to the team that if we were going to win the tournament it would be because of our defense. Win or lose, we would be the hardest working team on the court. Our first round matchup was a tight game from start to finish. It was our first game playing as a team, so we were getting all the kinks out and learning to play with each other. The court was outside and the sun was shinning. With 2 minutes to go, one of our campers hit a go ahead 3 pointer to put us up 2. From that moment, everything clicked and we didn’t look back. We had a steal on the last possession of the game and we won by 3.

Our second game was interesting. It was against one of our rival camps; Wigwam. The tournament style was a 2 game round robin with 8 teams competing. The top 4 teams would move onto the semi-final. The seeds were determined by overall record & point differential. Going into game 2, we had an opportunity to claim the 1 seed in the playoffs. We needed to beat the other team by a significant margin in order to do so. Coach spoke to the team and explained the situation. Everyone understood what needed to be done. Our captain took control of the game and got everyone going. Our defense was perfect and that turned in to fast breaks and really solid offense. We scored 82 points in the game, and it was enough to give us the 1 seed.

The semi-final game was against Camp Winaukee. A very skilled but much smaller team than we were. For the first time all day, our players really felt like we had the opportunity to win the tournament. We came out really strong in the first half. We kept everyone fresh and used our whole 10 man roster to win the game. From the opening tip until the final buzzer, we were laser focused and in control. We won by 10 points and were heading to the finals. This would be our 4th trip to the finals of this tournament, but we’ve never taken home the trophy.

When the home team, Indian Acres is in the finals, the place gets rowdy. The game takes place in their indoor hardwood gym and the entire camp is in attendance. It becomes a pretty hostile environment. However, Freyburg Academy took Indian Acres to the limit and beat them by 3 points in their semi-final matchup. They were a really good team with some amazing shooters, especially one kid who must have been averaging 6 3-pointers per game. Before the game, coach told one of our players that his only job for the entire game was to face-guard this kid and make sure he did’t touch the ball. This camper worked so hard and only allowed this kid to take one shot the entire game. It game late in the 3rd quarter and he missed. Our captain, and point guard had an unbelievable game in what would be the final game of his camp career. It was so important to him that we won this game. And that’s exactly what we did. As coach said from the beginning, we will win this tournament because of our defense, our hard work, and our hustle. For the first time in BSC history, we were the champions of the Indian Acres 16’s basketball tournament. It was a sweet day and an unbelievable drive back to camp where we would present Koop with the trophy at lineup. It is now sitting in our dining hall.

Saturday Night at the Movies

A camp favorite. Saturday night at the movies! Every Saturday night, the different age groups spread out around camp and watch a movie together. They get snacks and soda and it’s a great way to hang in pajamas with your friends! Koop hosted all the rookies at his house where they snuggled up on coaches and on the carpet and watched their movie. It was a super cute scene to see!

When the movies were over, everyone went back to the dorms and went to sleep. It’s okay to stay up a little late on Saturday’s since Sunday’s are…..Lazy Bones Sunday!!! That means late sleep in and buffet breakfast! Woo

Sunday

Sunday was a great day. If you forget what we do Sunday mornings, check out our past posts for some knowledge! After our 10:30 lineup, we went into some organized free play. There was an 11 & under soccer tryout too. One of our veteran counselors led a gaga tournament for some of the younger kids. Ultimate frisbee was also going on at the football field. It was a nice and relaxing morning. Everyone was out of the dorms and enjoying the day.

After lunch, we had a nice treat. We had 2 hockey scrimmages against local youth teams. The games were a ton of fun. The first game was for some of the older kids and the second game was for younger campers. The games got really intense! Mostly every camper and counselor from camp went into the rink and watched the game. There was a ton of chanting and cheering going on for our teams. It was a really cool thing to see. Everyone was into it and the players loved playing for our crowd. The players harnessed the energy of the crowd and were victorious in both games. Nothing gets the camp camaraderie going like hockey games!

Right after hockey and before dinner, we had our first night of playoffs for BSL (Bridgton Sports league). To remind you, BSL is a league where campers in different age groups are split into teams and compete in camp games. Games include cricket, capture the flag, volleyball, gaga, handball, newcomb, kickball, and more. For the rookie division, we had our semi-final matchups tonight. Everyone played newcomb. The games were intense and the competition was high. After all, the winning teams of the league get a pizza part at the end of camp, and their team name engraved in the BSL Cup! While the rookeis squared off on the newcomb court, the professional / senior league was playing cricket. It was awesome to see the entire camp up on the fields having fun and competing.

After the games, it was straight to dinner and then kids were given their phones to call homes. The night was done, and so was our final weekend of session 1. It has been an incredible few weeks and we have so much left in store for the final days!

Stay tuned……….

Goodnight from Bridgton!