To Serve Humbly

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“Polar Bears! Polar Bears! Come on, all you Polar Bears!” traveled through the cabin bays as the lifeguards made their way down to Lake Michigan to start the morning. Brave polar bears emerged from their cabins, grabbing towels, off to take a dip in the fog.

Back in the cabins, campers worked together cleaning up the shared spaces, sweeping out the sand and making their beds. Cabin inspection is part of the daily routine at camp and earns Quad points. Next up, everyone woke up their bodies and minds with morning stretch, reflection time, and flag raising in the Hollow.

In the Eating Lodge, each cabin group sent a “hopper” to the kitchen to bring back a large tray filled with a warm breakfast of eggs, English muffins, bacon, fresh fruit, and cereal back to the table. After a quick swing through the cabins to grab water bottles and towels, campers headed to Interest Groups throughout camp, including at the boat house, craft house and the high ropes challenge course.

While lunch means delicious meals, it also means exuberant pounding on the tables, singing, and dancing! The rekindle summer flash mob started, and energetic feet stomped and stepped while dancing joyfully together.

As the meal ended, everyone pitched in to clean up. At Miniwanca, we call it SOAP (Serving Others And Planet), and we practice every day by rotating through the kitchen (lovingly called Dishland) to scrub all meal’s dishes, pots, and pans, while others take turns sweeping sand out of the Eating Lodge. Just like the song says, “We’ve got a camp that’s built on sand!”

After lunch, it was time to pause and be still during rest hour. At the next bell, campers picked a seat in the Assembly amphitheater to watch LITs perform skits, do Quad cheers, and hear announcements before moving onto activities like pottery, creative writing, sailing, badminton, paddle boarding, cross stitch, and archery, to name a few.

Hungry after a day of living to their fullest, all devoured a tasty dinner of garlic bread, cheese ravioli with marinara sauce, and grilled broccolini. Rice Krispie treats were a welcome treat to finish the meal. Soon the Quads gathered in the Hollow for Nights Doings: Gold Rush! Camp transformed into “this place called Westland,” where gold nuggets were hidden (funny, how those nuggets looked like balls of aluminum foil painted gold…), and leaders donned costumes to set the scene. Quads competed to find the most gold and safely deposit it in their bank before being tagged by a bandit (aka, a leader in an awesomely silly costume).

To slow down, Camp Miniwanca settled into the sand to listen to the waves hitting the shore while the LITs provided insightful quotes and songs for Evening Reflection.