Top 5 Activities for Senior Village

Like I promised on Tuesday, I am ready to tell you guys about the top 5 activities of Senior Camp. Our teen campers are always looking for an activity that will keep them entertained. A favorite counselor or the participation of other friends play a major role in some of the choices our teenage campers make. We do our best to provide a learning and challenging experience during these activities to encourage a commitment to the chosen activity.

Top 5 Activities of Senior Village

High Ropes – Each day, campers get to pick form a couple of different high ropes events that have been prepared by our high ropes staff. The most popular courses are the Jacob’s Ladder, the Climbing wall, and as I like to call it the Stair Way To Heaven! All of these events are pretty high off the ground when completed, which is why our campers must wear the proper safety gear, such as helmets, harnesses and the proper ropes tied to them. Personally, I am afraid of heights but none of the campers I witnessed seem to be at all afraid of trying. They climbed those courses without a problem. A few of the campers reached a point were they wanted to give up, but the other campers and counselors who are not climbing cheered them on the whole time and guided them what to the finish. I think campers like this activity because it feels very good and gives them a sense of true accomplishment when they make it to the top.
Tennis – Like Junior Villages, Tennis is one of the most popular activities amongst Senior Village campers. I never found tennis fun until I came to this camp. I started to play tennis because campers are always playing and I thought I would give it a try. Now I can’t stop playing either. Our campers choose to play tennis during their free time instead of doing other things. The tennis courts are always busy with someone playing tennis. Maybe the reason why campers enjoy tennis so much is because of Alina. She must make tennis fun for everyone. One of the campers was telling Alina that next year he’s going to enroll in the half-day tennis clinic. Maybe in the future, there will be a famous tennis player who learned tennis for first time at Camp Friendship.
Badminton – Badminton definitely became one of the most popular activities. Badminton is kind of like tennis in my opinion, so maybe that’s why campers enjoy it. Campers make teams of two and have a little tournament everyday. Campers get pretty into it and get a bit competitive, but our counselors always remind the campers that it’s not about winning, but about having fun!
Lake Swim – How nice is it to be by the lake to cool off in the heat of the summer. Friendship Lake doesn’t only have water, but we have the slide, zip-line, swing robe, floating dock, paddle boats, beach volleyball, and most importantly tanning. Our campers take full advantage of the lake every day. Thankfully we’ve been having awesome weather so far this week, so campers were able to really enjoy the lake.
Target Sports – Like I said in junior villages activities, I think campers like archery and riflery because it’s not something they get to do a lot at home. In both activities, campers are well equipped with goggles and arm guards in archery, as well as goggles and ear muffs in riflery. The activities are taught by trained counselors and cover how to aim and the correct positions in which to shoot. There are some campers who can hit bull’s eye rather frequently now. Our counselors must be good teachers or our campers are just naturally talented.

I think it’s great that the campers get to enjoy so many activities they can’t do on a regular basis at home. Hopefully the weather will continue to be sunny and perfect so campers can enjoy rest of their stay at Camp Friendship.


Posted by Cris Higginbotham

Summer Camp Ends & Family Camp Starts!

I’m back on my friends, our fantastic intern, Song, has been keeping you guys company over the last few weeks with weekly updates but now it’s my turn. It proved a bit hectic for me to do it all so I hope you enjoyed Song’s updates on camp over the summer. I’d like to thank Song for all her great work this summer and we hope she enjoyed her time with us.

Our 43rd summer camp season here at Camp Friendship has been a total blast. We’ve had a great time and we’ve made awesome new friends. Like all good things this too must come to an end, for the summer only though. We’ll be back next summer better than ever, have no fear. At this point in the week we have already said good-bye to most of our friends and many of our staff. If my count is correct we have about 20-30 staff left on camp at this point, that’s down from over a hundred during camp. We wish our staff and campers a wonderful rest of the year and we hope to see them all next year.

Yesterday was the official end of an era here at Camp Friendship. Our very own Ray Ackenbom, Director of Camp Friendship for 25 years and son of our Owner, Chuck Ackenbom withdrew from his post as Director. Ray told us, “it’s time to try something new”, and with our blessing Ray is off to Egypt with his wife to teach and pursue other interests. After 25 years at Camp Friendship Ray’s leave makes way for a new director with new ideas, but fear not we rely heavily on our traditions and philosophy here at camp and those are not about to change. As of this morning, Sam Leonard our former Assistant Director/Program Director is now officially Camp Friendship’s new Camp Director. While we will miss Ray very much we look forward to big things from Sam and we wish them both luck with their new adventures.

Now on to Family Camp! Yes my friends, the official camp may be over but our Family Camp is just getting started. Over the next week, we will have families coming to stay with us from all over the place. They are bringing their brothers, cousins, kids, grandmothers, and everyone else for a fabulous Camp Friendship experience. Around the time you read this we should have about a dozen families pulling up to camp and getting settled for a fun filled week. I hope to have some photos of family camp to share in the next few days, so keep a look out on our twitter page and on this page for updates.

Posted by Cris Higginbotham

Top 5 Activities for Junior Camp

Camp is getting busier and bigger every week with more campers, but we got it under control with help of fourteen new CITs (Counselors-In-Training) and some new counselors. This week I have checked out our programming schedule as well as checking in with a few campers and counselors and we have come up with the top 5 most popular activities of our Junior Camp campers. Before I run these down for you let me just share this quick little event.

I was visiting the lake on Monday with our Marketing Director Cris as one of our campers in fishing class caught a snapping turtle right out of Friendship Lake! It was a pretty big turtle, well Cris says it was HUGE! Our fisherman, Eroll, successfully loaded the turtle into a 5 gallon bucket, then Cris and Rory took it to down to the Rivanna River which runs right through camp. That was quite an interesting way to start the week! Anyway, back to the list of the most popular activities.

Junior Camp’s Most Favorite Activities. . .

1. Archery

Archery class has always been pretty busy since the beginning of the camp. Campers learn how much each color is worth, how to score more points and tricks to hit the bull’s eye in class and each camper gets to shoot multiple times. Don’t worry, everyone is required to wear safety eye gear and wrist guards. Our trained counselors are there to help each camper get the most out of their archery experience.

2. Riflery

We offer .22 Riflery and Air Riflery here. Along with archery, riflery has been full almost every week since the beginning of this summer camp season. Our target sports director, Mike, helps campers with aiming to improve their skills and the proper technical and safety aspects of the sport. I think our campers enjoy riflery a lot because it’s not something most of them get to do at home.

3. Mountain Biking

Mountain biking is very popular for both our girl and boy campers. During the first day, they usually ride the loop around the camp so that our counselors can asses the campers ability and confidence on the trails. After the first day, campers and counselors go on different trails around camp for more advanced adventures. I think biking is pretty chill especially at Camp Friendship with beautiful views.

4. Tennis

Tennis is definitely a big sport at Camp Friendship. Our USPTA professional tennis coach, Alina, and many other talented counselors teach campers from the basics of tennis to more advanced skills in the sport. They don’t only learn how to play, but they play games like “Around the World” everyday to make it a more fun and challenging activity. Recently, I’ve been seeing a lot of campers playing tennis during their free time. I guess campers just can’t get enough of tennis!

5. Pottery Wheel

Pottery wheel is one of the most popular activities with our junior camp girls. We do get some boys that enjoy the activity but they are a little outnumbered. They have been making bowls, plates, and cups. After they are done, they have to let the pieces dry and sometimes they paint them so they can be fired later in the week. I think the reason why campers like pottery wheel is because it’s relaxing. While they are working on their pottery pieces, it’s a good time for them to chat and get to know some of the other campers better.

I will update you guys with Senior Camp’s Top 5 activities on Thursday, stay tuned! While you wait, drop us a comment and tell us what are your favorite activities at camp?