Hello Campers, Parents and Alumni

Of course, I hope that this note finds you, your family and your friends in good health.  I will not spend your valuable time telling you how to wash your hands and practice social distancing, etc.  I am sure you are doing whatever is necessary to keep yourself and others safe.

Why would I be so confident that you are doing the right things at this critical time?  Because you are a part of the Camp Tall Timbers Family.  Whether a current camper, family member, staff or alumni; you know what it is like to show compassion for others, work with a group to achieve a common goal, organize and show enthusiasm in all that you do.  You are the people that others will look up to during this critical time.   I am convinced that the foundations of your camp experience will be helpful over the next few weeks.

As far as camp goes, we are working hard to prepare for our 50th summer.  Hiring staff, making improvements, building and cleaning up.  We have worked on our activity calendar and started to gather the supplies we need to support our program.  We did a lot of painting and improvement work in the Fall so the usual wet weather of the Spring will not be a factor in our preparations.

We are closely monitoring the implications of Covid-19 and will continue to keep in touch with any updates and information should any of the events encroach on our camp schedule.

In the meantime, you, your families and everyone around you, healthy and safety should be the paramount objective at this time.  Should anyone here at Camp Tall Timbers be able to help you in any way please contact us.  I can be reached at glenn@camptalltimbers.com or via phone at 301-874-0111.

 

Be Safe,

Summer is here- Packing Count Down Begins

Anticipation has been building for months and camp session 1 is kicked off and it’s time to start packing for session 2, 3… at Camp Tall Timbers!

The packing list is long but you don’t want to forget anything. Crossing off each item as clothes and shoes are laid out let’s you know how far down the list you’ve come and how much more you must go.  It’s crazy how counting out 10 pairs of pants, 10 t-shirts, 10 pairs of socks, 10 pairs of underwear can get you revved up for the summer adventure awaiting you at Camp Tall Timbers. Whether you are a first-time camper or an experienced veteran, readying the clothes you’re going to bring to camp can unleash all kinds of emotions. For our returning campers, the excitement is real. Sleep away camp is a known entity. Summer friends will soon be reunited, there will be new activities to try, new people, to meet. For first time campers, preparing for sleep away camp can be overwhelming. Sure, there is excitement but there are nerves and anxiety too as all the “what if…” scenarios run through your head – What if nobody talks to me? What if I don’t like the food? What if I don’t like the activities? What if I get homesick? This is where you can take a deep breath and relax. Our experienced staff is well-trained for any eventuality. Most importantly, as our experienced campers know, our staff is there when you need them to make your time at Camp Tall Timbers your best summer ever!

Okay, all the items in multiples of 10 have been readied. Now there are 3 bathing suits and 3 sweatshirts. This is becoming a counting game! 2 Camp Tall timbers t-shirts to order from the website, 2 pairs of sneakers, 2 pairs of lightweight pajamas, 2 laundry bags, 1 jacket, 1 pair of sturdy shoes, 1 pair heavyweight pajamas, 1 pair of rubber shoes, 1 poncho or raincoat, 1 pair of rain boots, 1 Camp Tall Timbers baseball cap to order from the website. That’s all the wearables but, there are still towels and washcloths and a toothbrush and toothpaste, soap and shampoo, a flashlight with batteries, stationery and pens, sleeping bag and water bottle to add to the growing pile of possibilities. Whew! Now to grab a few optional items and you’re ready to blast off for an unparalleled experience, a chance to get away from the everyday!

Welcome to Camp Tall Timbers Summer -sure to be the best summer ever!

Away From the Everyday

Sleepaway camp is an amazing and wonderful experience for any child. With the challenges and stresses of everyday life, sleep away camp provides children with an opportunity to safely explore, grow, build confidence —and make long lasting friendships. Living in a cabin with nine other people the same age encourages responsibility, builds teamwork, respect for others, and develops bonds that last a lifetime. Camp friends are friends for life.

At Camp Tall Timbers we have been providing magical summers for children for over 46 years. Magic and meaningful experiences happen when kids are learning and growing independently as well as collaboratively –each and every single day. We encourage our campers to step outside books, ipads and gaming— we want them to experience the world around them. When they unplug, they reconnect with the world in amazing ways. At Camp Tall Timbers we have a world away from the city, the stress, the traffic and the noise. Our world is comprised of swimming pool blue, pine forest green, hiking-trail brown and campfire gold,. Nature is our playground.

Our campers fuse into this environment and make it “the best”. Each summer we watch them build confidence and respect for themselves and others. We watch them test themselves by taking on new challenges, embracing the outdoors and finding laughter that echoes through the trees. Our professional staff safely guide and encourage campers to embrace new challenges, develop and expand skills and make it fun all along the way. We love building confidence and smiles.

We are an award winning nationally accredited camp. We provide 120 acres of activities and adventures–swimming, tennis, soccer, horseback riding, zip lining, kayaking, arts and crafts, biking, hiking, golf and so much more. While we want our campers to have fun and get silly –we take our job, caring for them, very seriously. Our counselors are well screened, trained, qualified and experienced professionals, including teachers, coaches and college students. We have onsite nurses and nearby doctors.

Magic happens here. Away From the Everyday.

July 26- “C” Day

It’s Wednesday the 26th of July, and it is a C day. As always, we had Girl Power Hour and Boys’ League to kick us off and give everyone the chance to hang out with their friends that are not necessarily in their cabin. The day continued with creative writing with Mason Period 2. Emily Smith and Violet were deep in thought, writing away with music on in the background when I went in to check something – they seemed to have written a lot to and from what I’d heard it was good!

At the first free swim, Abi held her counsellor auction prize which, if you were here third session last year, would remember it to be a ‘Tea Party with the Queen!’. There was a sign up for The Ritz and the area was cordoned off from anyone that had not bought the prize. The campers (Cabin B of course): Ella, Ella, Nela, Carly, Taryn, Freddi, Nadine and Mayson, dressed to impress and drank their English Tea with countless Oreo’s. It looked very pleasant indeed!

In period 3 gymnastics, Taryn, Cat, Mayson, Freddie and Sofia completed a cheerleading stunt with a cradle. In lake activities Robert and Vance caught a fish and both decided to kiss it! Jay went out on a Paddle Boat with Miles and took numerous great pictures – there are a few hilarious ones that caught Ella P and John falling off their paddle board and into the lake. Unfortunately, John lost his sunglasses and was unable to find them again – duh!

Tonight, it was the seniors’ turn to go bowling! We took a school bus and a van and headed to Winchester with Brynn and Glenn this time. The snack bar was raided and the bowling alley packed with excitable CTT campers. The music machine was a hit with everyone paying their dollars to play their favourite songs, while of course competing with their friends at bowling. It was an enjoyable evening and everyone had a blast – sleeping well when they returned to camp!

The juniors played a game of Counsellor Hunt whereby Jenneka, Ashlyn, Mason, Kane and Aurelien hid around camp and had to be found. Before they found Aurelien, they were given a clue to his whereabouts, it was: ‘Ward away your evil spirits’. After a few guesses, they figured it out and found him, painted in all yellow at the initiation site!

 

Third Session, The Fun Continues…


Good evening from Third Session at Camp Tall Timbers! Today all the new campers arrived, and it was an exciting day for everyone. Campers were reunited with friends from previous years and began to make new friends with those who haven’t been part of the CTT family before.

We started the day with lunch followed by a short rest hour. The rest hour was spent unpacking and arranging the campers’ belongings as well as chatting away with their cabin friends. The bell then rang at 2.30pm for the afternoon activity – Clue. Joey had been murdered, found by Casey and we needed to find the culprit!
We met at the pavilion for a debrief of the situation and then each cabin went around in groups, some cabins teaming up – Cabins A and F together as well as Cabins 3 and 5, and Cabin 7 with Boys’ Tents (double trouble!). The campers had to go to several activities and try and get some clues as a reward for their hard work. We had stations at the pool, the gym mats and tennis, to name a few. Cabin 8 were the fastest team to undo a human knot at the gym mats with a score of 0.19 seconds (crazy), compared to Girls’ Tents that took just over 7 minutes.
The activity went on for a couple of hours before we were all back at the pavilion to see which team had found the clues and solved the crime!
Once the game was over we had time for free swim before our first camp dinner of this session: lasagna, calzones and garlic bread – It was a winner!
The day ended with a campfire for our introductory evening activity. Each cabin worked together to create a skit about a bear from Timber Ridge breaking in and stealing all of Bill’s food. But, there was a twist – everything had to be sung! It was a song skit, and it was highly amusing. Girls’ Tents took to the floor and did a version of ‘We are Boys’ Tents’, but ‘We are Girls’ Tents’ and presented their story of the bears being caught. Cabin F went with a Goldilocks theme with Ashlyn narrating (singing) the synopsis. It was very funny. However, Cabin A won the best skit for their performance featuring a lot of choral singing led by Dani and Sydney.
Everyone then sung a couple of songs together – Country Roads being a campfire classic and Wonderwall, before making our s’mores and heading to bed with big smiles on the campers’ faces. We can tell already that Third session will definitely be a blast!

July 5th

It’s Wednesday the 5th of July and following the celebrations yesterday, we’re back to usual and it is a C day. It was the first C day so all the campers were still adjusting to their schedules and fathoming who they had their classes with.

The day kicked off with Girl Power Hour and Boys league. Girl Power Hour concentrated on a wider topic of trust which will become more apparent to the campers as the session goes on. The girls did exercises that focused on the mind, body and attitude. There were three different activities for each focal point and all the girls worked collectively to achieve the goals together. The aim of Girl Power Hour this session is to work with all the girls to accomplish something as a group and learn how to create and solidify real friendships through trust.

Boys league was more athletically based and they played several games. The younger boys were in the Rec Hall and the older ones in the gym. From the outside, all you could hear was a lot of screaming and singing in time with the music from the speakers so one could only imagine it was a lot of fun!

Lunch came before we knew it and there wasn’t a silent camper in sight with it being Taco Tuesday and the chants of Girlside and Boyside echoing the dining hall as loud as ever. A few of the announcements included: ‘Solomon learning how to do a backwards roll in Gymnastics’ as well as ‘Xavier doing a back tuck with a spot’. There was also a shout out to Anders for trying exceptionally hard in Vollyball!

This evening was another exciting one as the whole camp headed out on a field trip to a baseball game! The game was against two local teams: the Winchester Royals and The Harrisonburg Turks. The atmosphere was great, the campers were content and the snack bar was exhausted from the countless trips to buy sodas! Joey P was fortunate enough to receive a pair of signed batting gloves while Mayson and Caley managed to also acquire a ball each, one of which was signed by most of the team – cool, huh!

Happy 4th of July

It’s the fourth of July! Happy fourth of July to all our friends and family of Camp Tall Timbers, we hope the day treated you as well as it did everyone here.

To kick off the great day of celebrations most of the campers and counsellors came to breakfast dressed ever so patriotically, it was a sea of red, white and blue wherever you turned. The flag was raised just before breakfast and the National Anthem was sung at breakfast accompanied by a standing ovation. Bill, our ever so friendly Kitchen Supervisor, took to the middle of the floor to deliver a version of ‘Yankee Doodle Dandy’ much to everyone’s entertainment.

The activities were running as usual and lunchtime featured an array of announcements: ‘Bubba Harr for catching 7 fish in Lake Activities’ – the most that anyone has caught this summer so far! ‘Ella Stamera for climbing up the rock wall in 32 seconds’ and ‘Jake Gentin for winning the 500 game in Football’.

Dinner was slightly different today. We had a cook out and everyone sat with their cabins and out outside under the pavilion. It was fun and the food was great: BBQ chicken, hotdogs and burgers with the ever-favourable salad bar.

What followed dinner was a camp baseball game run by Joey from admin and counsellor Casey. The campers were split into two teams with counsellors and they all prepared to play their biggest game of the season at CTT. There was music in the background, 4th of July banners displayed and Phil was narrating the whole game, it was a great atmosphere to be a part of. The final score of the game was 14-6.

After the baseball game Brynn and Jenna arranged a pool party for the whole camp. Everyone was ushered down and we did competitions – best belly flop, biggest splash, best dive, to name a few. We also played water polo which was very enjoyable. Pool parties are always a winner!

To complete the day of celebrations canteen was a camp favourite: milkshakes!

First Day of Camp

The first full day at camp began with dippies to get the session started but it only featured some of boys’ side today (Girls are clearly preferring the sleepies option already). We’re sure this will change as the session goes on! At breakfast, all campers were handed their schedules for the next two weeks and were all very excited to see what each activity entailed and who they were going to be with.

Boys League and Girl Power Hour were first so all the boys headed to the baseball field and the girls to the gym. Two different activities were led for the boys – ultimate frisbee and kickball which offered the boys a chance to choose what they wanted to do within the class. It was a great success and allowed the campers in different cabins to begin integrating with one another and start to make fantastic memories.

Girls Power Hour focused on teaching the girls the way of ‘Girl Side’. They were taught a few of the songs and chants that are carried out at lunch time such as the ‘Girl side, what is your profession?’, the ‘Girl side synchronized cheer’ and the ‘Build me up buttercup’ song and movement. The returning campers were quick to lead the way with teaching the newer campers. It was a great experience for all involved!

Lunch time followed free swim after periods 1 and 2 and of course as it was Grilled Cheese Monday! It always goes down a treat!

The evening activity was a classic – Gold Rush. The camp was split into six different teams and competed to answer clues (riddles) the fastest and obtain the most amounts of gold. Some were harder than others ‘Look out for the Tiger in the Woods’ (Golf hill) and ‘Watch out for the Green Goblin’ (Spiders web) whereas others were a bit easier to understand ‘Find magic wherever you look, sit back, relax, all you need is a book’ (The radio room library). The teams had to figure out the clues and find where the gold was stashed. The first team that solved the riddle got to choose from the five piles of rocks and take it with them. The sixth team to figure the answer were left without any gold. The piles of gold were all weighted differently so it was a race to each pile to see who could get the best pick and the hopefully the heaviest amount. The winning team was the team whose gold weighed the most at the end.

What made it exciting was the magic rocks that teams could find. If a team found the blue rock they could freeze another team and take their gold and exchange it for theirs, if they believed the other teams gold weighed more. The emerald rock was the best though, if a team found this they kept it and it doubled the weight of their gold at the end so it was a great secret weapon!

Everyone had a great time solving the clues and finding the gold scattered around the camp – it really was a rush for gold! Trevor’s team came out on top (again?!). He was accompanied by: INSERT NAMES and they were the first to get their canteen before heading to bed no doubt exhausted from a fun filled first day of activities and adventures.

Spirit & Swag

It’s quiet now at Camp Tall Timbers but, if you listen very closely, the spring breeze ripples the still waters of our private lake, rustles through the trees and dances across the athletic fields, you can imagine the laughter, hear the songs and feel the energy of summer camp at its best.

Our first session is still a few weeks away. Cabins and common spaces are getting prepped, supplies are on order and a great staffing team is being finalized. The excitement is palpable as we anticipate welcoming our first campers of the summer.  Soon Camp Tall Timbers will be full of laughter and song when our campers arrive for what we know will be our best summer ever – Summer 2017!

Camp Tall Timbers has always been a magical summer place where kids thrive and grow. For almost 50 years, campers have been heading to the Blue Ridge Mountains for inspiration to get away from the everyday, try new things, challenge mind and body and make new friends. Camp Tall Timbers has many traditions cultivated over the years that make our campers part of our larger camp community.  We’re all about time-honored values: honesty, friendship, skill-building, respect, teamwork, confidence, creativity and self-discovery. Through songs and cheers, the spirit of Camp Tall Timbers can be felt in every nook and cranny of our 120 acres. Campers feel that spirit every day in all that they do, enhancing the experience and wonder of summer camp and creating fond memories they can hold on to for a lifetime.

To build community, we make announcements at every meal highlighting camper accomplishments. We cheer each other on, offering encouragement and support. We award Golden Feathers for each activity to recognize those campers who show particular effort, improvement or skill throughout the session. Around an evening campfire, while stars twinkle overhead and crickets chirp, we share stories, sing songs and connect with each other. The spirit of Camp Tall Timbers lives in all of us!


Announcements, announcements, announcements…visit our camp store and check out our exclusive gear and share in the fun with the Camp Tall Timbers spirit!