Refreshing Activities at Summer Camp

session7a93On the hot summer days we get here at camp, all anyone wants to do is jump into the pool or lake to cool off. For some lucky campers, this is an everyday reality: one activity, waterskiing, allows campers to spend all morning at nearby Lake Anna.

Waterskiing is a half-day clinic run by SV2 counselor Rebekah Pirie and Junior Boys counselor Hagen Abbott. The campers leave at breakfast and head to Lake Anna, where Rebekah and Hagen take them out on the boat. Before any campers are able to try it out, Rebekah and Hagen go out and demonstrate the fundamentals of waterskiing. After that, campers take turns out on the water for several hours.

Throughout the week, campers learn and practice until they are able to stay up in the water. When it isn’t their turn, campers can relax in the boat and enjoy the lake. On Friday, as a special treat, they go tubing instead of waterskiing.

Campers don’t have to leave camp to enjoy aquatic activities, however. Every day, each village has a free swim in either the pool or the lake. In addition, the pool runs water polo and pool swim throughout the day, while campers at the lake can enjoy canoeing, kayaking, lake swim and fishing.

The lake is divided into three sections of water: red water, yellow water and white water. While red water is typically used only for swim checks, the other two sections are full of fun activities. When yellow water is open, campers can fly off the rope swing and shoot down the slide as well as relax in tubes in the water. White water includes the floating dock, diving board, high dive and zip-line. With so many fun options in the lake, there is no going wrong!

session7a92One of our most popular evening activities, slip and slide, also includes water. The slip and slide is stretched out down the mountain boarding hill and covered in water. Campers take a running start and slide down the tarp, shooting off onto the grass at the other end. There is no denying that everyone gets muddy at slip and slide, but that’s all part of the fun!

There is a lot of fun left in the week here at camp. In the next few days we will have a Hawaiian luau dance as well as a horse show. Stay tuned to hear all about it!

Get Ready for Summer Camp near North Carolina


There are still a few

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sessions left for our summer 2016 camp season! We know its stressful to try and cram everything in at the last minute! Stress can pile up easily during this time. From last minute packing to anxiety about leaving home, we have some tips for you to prepare your child for our summer camp near North Carolina.

  1. Living on their own. – Speak with your son or daughter about living at summer camp and taking care of themselves while away at summer camp. Obviously our amazing summer camp staff will constantly supervise campers, but it probably won’t feel the same without a parent being there. Talk about good hygiene and the importance of taking care of themselves. In our summer camp cabins, campers will be living with each other in a smaller space. Go over what it means to be a good roommate and to respect other people.
  2. Summer camp will be over before you know it. – The only downside about camp, is feeling homesick at summer camp. We can’t guarantee that your child won’t feel homesick, but we can do our best to help them adjust to a typical day at camp and camp life. With one-week sessions, summer camp will be over before you know it and we want campers to have the most fun possible. We have found that most campers get over feelings of homesickness on the first or second day of camp and go on to have a great time at summer camp.
  3. Start packing early.- One of the top tips we receive from parents is to start packing about a month early. Hopefully, you have begun packing for summer camp by now, but if not, you can read our tips for packing for summer camp. In short, follow the summer camp packing list, label everything, and keep valuable items at home. Any electronic that can connect to WiFi is restricted at our summer camp.

Now, relax. Remember that your son or daughter will have an amazing summer at Camp Friendship this year. They will make tons of new memories and friends that will last a lifetime.

If you’re looking for the best summer camp near North Carolina, contact Camp Friendship at 434-589-8950 for more information or to schedule a tour today!


Wild West and Charlie Make an Appearance at Summer Camp

session6a-295Another week has come to an end, and we are still having a great time at Camp Friendship! After the excitement of Camplified earlier this week, the past few days have been nice and relaxing. On Wednesday, the seniors enjoyed a movie night for evening activity, while the juniors had a pool party. The activities offered the perfect way to unwind after a busy time at camp.

session6a-296It has certainly been busy! Campers in activities like drama workshop, dance and school of music have been preparing all week to perform at closing Campfire tonight. In drama workshop, campers learn some of the fundamentals of drama and acting, play improvisation games and rehearse a skit to perform for everyone else. In dance, campers learn a choreographed dance routine throughout the week. Set to popular current songs, the dances are always a hit at Campfire. Finally, in school of music, campers get to choose a song or selection of songs to sing at Campfire. With all of the preparation going into the acts, they are sure to be showstoppers tonight!

Meanwhile, some of the counselors have been hard at work practicing for the soccer game against our rival camp later in the summer. Sports supervisor Antony Shinks, acting as team captain, has been coordinating the practices and preparing for the game. The contest is only a few short weeks away.

session6a-294Last night we enjoyed the Wild West-themed dance. Riding Camp decorated the gym to perfection, including saloon doors at the entrance and hay bales scattered around. Although almost everyone dressed in cowboy or Western outfits, there were a few outliers- such as a wild Kanye West and a wild Adam West! The dance was a hit, as everyone enjoyed songs like the Cotton Eyed Joe.

Though it’s already Friday, we still have a lot of activity left in the week! After dinner, everyone will head down to the theater to watch Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Following the play, we will see more performances at Campfire. After the performances are over, everyone will join in a couple rousing renditions of the Friendship song. At the end of Campfire, supervisors will sing everyone off to their villages with “This Little Light of Mine,” the perfect way to end another perfect week at camp!


Games, Music, and Friends at Summer Camp

session6a93The past few days have flown by, so it’s hard to believe that we are already halfway done with Week 6 at Camp Friendship! Our campers have been very busy with all sorts of activities as well as yesterday’s big event, Camplified.

Throughout the summer, various musicians join Camplified and tour at camps across the country. Yesterday was Camp Friendship’s turn to welcome the talented musicians. The event proved to be a big hit with campers, who enjoyed the music, freebies and meet-and-greet. In the afternoon, campers were able to participate in Camplified activities. The juniors loved the record-painting station, where they were able to choose an old record and decorate it as they wished. Other activities included Frisbee, sound-mixing, dancing and a photo-booth. When campers got tired, they could relax in blow-up chairs with a free bottle of Hint water.

session6a96After dinner, the entire camp headed up to the gym for a concert. With music from Jagged Row, Pom Oak, Tyson and DJ Kiss, everyone enjoyed the night. In addition to original music, the bands played current hits like Shake it Off and Stitches. Campers and counselors demonstrated their own talent to the Camplified visitors by showing them the classic Everytime We Touch dance.

Following the concert, there was a short meet-and-greet opportunity. The musicians signed posters and papers and even posed for photos with the campers. It was a great way to end a fun day full of music and activities!

session6a99The week is not over quite yet, though. With the Wild Wild West themed dance and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory coming up, there is more to enjoy coming up at camp.

Anabelle – former camper, former cit, current counselor

Choosing the Right Residential Camp

While this summer is relatively half-way over, the search for the perfect residential camp near Pennsylvania for sons and/or daughters is still not over for some families! The earlier that you start looking for a residential camp, the less stressful (and cheap) your experience will be. Here at Camp Friendship we have come up with a few tips to make the search a little bit easier, so keep on reading ahead! However, keep in mind that we still have some sessions open for your child to attend! Don’t take too long though, you might miss out on what could’ve been an amazing summer experience for them!

  1. What does the camp offer? The best way to guarantee that your son or daughter enjoys their experience is by sending them to a camp that offers what they are interested in. Look through the residential camp activities to see all of the options. At Camp Friendship, we offer sports, water activities, low and high ropes, creative arts, and different evening activities to end the day. There is something for everyone to do at Camp Friendship!
  2. How far away is the camp? The distance away from home shouldn’t affect your decision way too much. If you think a residential camp is the right fit, don’t cancel it out because it’s farther away than you wanted. Just make sure to visit the residential camp first before you make any final decisions.
  3. Who will be taking care of your children? One of the most important things to find out about is the residential camp staff. Ask about the hiring process, any licenses and training they take, and what the ratio of counselors to campers is. These are the people who will be with your children all summer, so feel free to ask as many questions as you want.
  4. What are on the campgrounds? Whether you’re taking an online tour or actually visiting the camp in person, find out about the residential camp facilities. Look at the cabins, all of the different fields and courts, the pool, the lake, etc. At Camp Friendship, we are constantly updating and checking the facilities to guarantee a safe and fun experience for our campers!

Now, are you ready to sign your son or daughter up for the best residential camp near Pennsylvania? Then contact Camp Friendship today at (434)-589-8950 for more information or to schedule a tour!


A Bit of History at Camp This Week!

Tsession5a95he past few days at Camp Friendship have seen scorching hot temperatures as well as thunderstorms. We have not let the weather get in the way of enjoying another week at camp, though! Campers and staff alike have participated in activities and prepared for upcoming events. 

Our French campers and staff were able to celebrate the French national holiday of Bastille Day this morning at flag. After explaining the significance of the day, they sang the French national anthem, La Marseillaise, for everyone. 

session5a93For the past two weeks, riding camp has been hard at work preparing for their horse show. Campers have the opportunity to ride in front of judges, win ribbons and show the audience the skills they have learned at camp. All the hard work is definitely worth it when campers can show off their talent and win ribbons!

Meanwhile, the drama production class is gearing up for next week’s play. The production, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, is directed by performing arts supervisor Cody Payne with Junior Girls counselor Kerry Lester serving as assistant director. Over the course of this week, campers auditioned for roles and began memorizing their lines as well as practicing onstage. Rehearsals will continue next week until the production is staged on Friday evening. With plenty of campers excited to bring the story to Friendship Stage, the play is sure to be a hit!

session5a96During the hot summer days, our campers love to visit the snack bar, where they can order ice cream and cold drinks to cool off. The snack bar staff- April Moore, Michael Calvelli and Sophia Barsanti- work hard every day to make sure each camper can enjoy their preferred snack and beverage. One of the most popular snacks at camp is the classic Chipwich, which consists of vanilla ice cream sandwiched between two chocolate chip cookies. 

Our 50th anniversary celebrations continued on Wednesday when camp welcomed special visitors to film a segment for the local news. Several staff members and campers as well as the founder, Chuck Ackenbom, were interviewed about their experiences here. The segment aired Wednesday night on Newsplex in Charlottesville. 

As Week 5 winds to a close, we are already looking forward to the coming weeks! With Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and other special surprises happening next week, the fun is sure to continue at camp. 

(Camper, CIT, Counselor)

A Fun Week Starts Now!

It may be hard to believe, but we are already halfway through the summer at Camp Friendship! The weeks have really flown by, and our campers are still having as much fun as they did on the first day.session4a-ColorWars92

Last Friday, all of camp was divided into red, white and blue teams for one of the biggest events of the summer, Color Wars. In the morning, campers competed in land events like dodgeball and lake events like biggest splash. The afternoon’s relay race proved to be a very popular event, as all campers were able to participate and help their team towards victory. The relay race ended on the lower fields, where each team’s captains built a fire to snap a rope six feet off the ground. After dinner, the teams presented their song, dance and float. While everyone fought hard for their team, in the end only the white team prevailed. The evening ended with fireworks and music over the lake.


“Thank You Kitchen Staff”

On Sunday we welcomed new campers and watched performances at Campfire. Although everyone gave wonderful performances, Senior Village 1 stole the show with their act, “If I Was Not a Counselor.” Led by their supervisor, Minou Adriaans, SV1 earned a standing ovation, Camp Friendship style.

One of our most popular activities here is water polo. Typically taught by Junior Boys counselor Joe Hyman, it involves treading water in the pool and trying to throw a ball past the goalkeeper and into the net. Campers love cooling off in the pool and playing water polo.

session4a-ColorWars93Another popular activity is my personal favorite to teach, sports variety. In sports variety, campers can choose different sports, like dodgeball or gaga ball, to play throughout the week. Everyone gets to play their favorite game over the course of the week, and it is fun to change it up from day to day.

On Monday night, each village had a cookout for dinner. While some villages enjoyed hamburgers and hot dogs for dinner, others preferred the ever-popular taco skillet. Prepared by counselors, taco skillet includes meat, tomato, onion and corn served over Fritos. For dessert everyone was able to roast marshmallows and eat s’mores.

There will definitely be more fun later in the week, as camp will host the Royal Ball dance as well as the horse show. Stay tuned for another post describing the second half of the week!


Send Letters To Your Child at Overnight Camp

Do you know what children love about overnight camp? Besides all of the activities, friends, and adventures, campers at Camp Friendship LOVE to receive mail from family and friends. Sending something to your camper can help ease feelings of homesickness; cheer them up on a bad day, or just a nice little surprise. Keep on reading for some ideas of what to send to your son or daughter while they are away at our overnight camp near North Carolina this summer! If you still haven’t signed them up yet though, please do so now as we have a few sessions left for your child to attend before summer ends!

  • At Camp Friendship, you cannot send care packages to your camper. We don’t allow care packages in order to reduce the animals and bugs in the cabins, the probability of a fellow camper having an allergic reaction, and to save you money! The best way for a camper to have an awesome experience at overnight camp is to not have distractions from “outside world”. This helps them better adjust to a typical day at overnight camp and being away from home. With that being said, we ask that you only send letters and flat magazine-sized envelopes to your camper.
  • The best way to stay in contact with your son or daughter at overnight camp is to send them a letter! In the letter, ask questions that prompt the camper to write you back. For example, ask about any new friends they have made or how they are enjoying the overnight camp activities. In the letter, keep a positive attitude about overnight camp and them being there. Don’t write messages like “…the house is really lonely without you here,” this will likely cause feelings of homesickness at overnight camp.
  • Send some photos to your camper. Since campers can only receive letters and flat magazine-sized envelopes, photographs are a great option. Campers really miss their family and friends while they are away at camp, and an old family photo, new photo of the family pet, or some photographs of friends are a great addition to hang on their bunk!
  • If you receive a letter from your son or daughter where they express that they are upset or missing home, don’t be alarmed. Homesickness at overnight camp is extremely common and unavoidable. Write back that overnight camp will be over before they know it and how proud you are of them for going. If you’re concerned at all, please speak with an overnight camp staff member or your child’s counselor.

Just remember that your son or daughter will love and appreciate whatever you send to them! If you’re looking to send your son or daughter to the best overnight camp near North Carolina, contact Camp Friendship today at 434-589-8950 for more information or to schedule a tour!


Summer Fun, Rain or Shine!

session4a92 2It has certainly been a very busy week at Camp Friendship! After our campers settled in o Sunday, everyone headed to Council Fire to see performances from campers and counselors alike. Our staff brought out some classic performances for Campfire, including the crowd-pleaser Smooth and Creamy. The night ended with two renditions of the Camp Friendship song before bedtime as everyone prepared for a busy week of activities ahead.

The week started on a patriotic note, as campers and staff celebrated American Independence Day on Monday. Rain and chilly temperatures could not dampen our spirits, as many staff members and campers wore their favorite red, white and blue and even painted their faces to celebrate the holiday. Each village enjoyed a cookout to finish off the day. In my home village of Junior Girls, we enjoyed our hamburgers, hot dogs and s’mores with music, dancing and crafts.

session4a94 2The week’s fun continued as the days passed. On Tuesday and Wednesday the weather cleared up and the skies became sunny. Campers took advantage of the nice temperatures to enjoy activities like mountain biking, soccer and archery. The seniors ended Tuesday on a high note playing a variation of capture the flag, tri-cone ultra, for evening activity. Meanwhile, the juniors cooled off at a pool party. On Wednesday, the seniors enjoyed their own pool party while juniors played the always-popular Chip Cup at Lower Fields. Campers had to search for chips scattered across the soccer field, collect them and trade them in for cups of water to throw on friends and counselors. The big water fight was the perfect way to end the hot day!

session4a95 2There is much more excitement in store for the week. There was a disturbance after flag today and supervisors have been driving around in golf carts dressed very strangely. It almost seems as though they are building up to something… Maybe Color Wars? Tonight campers will head to the gym for the IndepenDance, enjoying one last Fourth of July celebration. I’m positive our questions about today’s disturbances will be answered at the dance tonight. There is sure to be more excitement tonight and a fun day of activities tomorrow!


Best Horseback Riding Camp near Washington DC

Does your child love horses? Do they know how to ride them? Or maybe they just want to learn! Camp Friendship is the best horseback riding summer camp for children ages 7-16 nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.  What makes Camp Friendship the best horseback riding camp near Washington DC, is that we teach the fundamentals of horse and rider, as well as provide the most fun with our gentle horses. Your child can enjoy playing in the river or taking them out on our country trails. Whether a beginner or an advanced rider, Camp Friendship has the perfect program for any horse enthusiast! Our programs are designed to bring the best experience to children during their stay at summer camp.

The Horses: Camp Friendship’s ninety horses can be described as wonderful, versatile, and safe.  They are owned and maintained by the camp year round.  The herd is composed of all different sizes, colors, and breeds so that Camp Friendship is well equipped to best match each rider with a horse that is well suited for them, from the most basic beginner to the advanced rider.

We look forward to hearing from you and providing a unique summer experience for your child. We’re open all year round for tours and questions. Contact Camp Friendship today at 1-800-873-3223.