July 30th – Circles

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Hello! For those of you who just arrived today, welcome to the Merrowvista blog, where you can read updates about what is going on in our camp community. Each day, a different member of our community will share a piece of their Merrowvista experience with you, helping you learn about the daily ins and outs of camp life and some of the goals and themes of the session. Today, you are hearing from Bailey. I am the Assistant Director of Camp Programs here at Merrowvista, and if we did not meet when you dropped your camper off today or last Sunday, I hope we have the chance to talk at Grand Council.

At Merrowvista, circles are a big part of every gathering, large or small. After arriving this afternoon, each village stood in a small circle and took turns sharing their names, where they are from, and some silly fact about themselves like “what animal would you shrink down and store in your pocket if you could?” After dinner, the Pioneers and Trailblazers gathered in a large circle on the A-Field to sing a song and learn about tonight’s Night’s Doings, Opening Carnival, where they played games with their village and signed up for Interest Group Adventures tomorrow, their first chance to see what activities Merrowvista has to offer.

Google offers two definitions for the word circle. The first: “a round plane figure whose boundary (the circumference) consists of points equidistant from a fixed point (the center).” During Opening Council tomorrow night, our Camp Director, Kris, will talk about why we sit and stand in a circle formation so often at Merrowvista. In a circle, each person has equal distance from the middle of the circle, and along with that, a unique point of view. Every single point of view is important to our community, and when in a circle, our community gets a visual reminder that their opinion and perspective is just as important as the next person’s. And while respecting that everyone has equal say in our community, we also respect the fact that everyone’s views are slightly different, maybe in large or seemingly small ways, but no matter what the differences are, everyone’s voice is vital to that of the larger community.

The second definition: “a group of people with shared professions, interests, or acquaintances.” If you read our last blog post from July 29th, you will know that Merrowvista is a specialty camp, and we specialize in best selves. By the end of this session, the circle we run in will be a circle of people who strive to be their best selves. This is the glue that binds us all together, the shared interest and profession that we all work on each day.

Campers have gone back to their cabins for the night, talked about how they can stay safe and healthy this summer, and learned where the bathroom is. Tomorrow they will sit in more circles as they learn about the Health Center, Waterfront guidelines, and daily schedule. Some campers will spend the session running circles around their leaders, while others are already biking their way around the circumference of Nova Scotia. When all is said and done, whether here for 2, 3, or 4 weeks, the summer will fly by before our eyes. By the time all of you circle back to Merrowvista, ready to reload your cars with more or less luggage than you arrived with, we hope your camper has a stronger sense of their own place in this circle, and how they can share it with others both inside and outside of their own circles.