Camp Hillard Week 4 Highlighted by Charity Event, Song and Cheer Contest, and Senior Camp Trips

The fourth week of Camp was another exciting and successful one!  Camp is now in full gear with all of our swim, sports, and arts programs, as well as specialty activities and special events. Campers are in their instructional swim groups, sports leagues are in motion, as are all our regular program areas.

On Monday, our 2015 Charity Event, Swim for Sunrise, began.  All campers participated in lap swim and swim races during their Instructional Swim period, and everyone received a special Sunrise Day Camp bracelet.  Sunrise Day Camps are the world’s only dedicated day camps for children with cancer and their siblings, provided completely free of charge.  Providing memorable summers since 2006 for children ages 3 ½ -16, Sunrise Day Camps brings the simple pleasures of childhood back to children struggling with cancer, changing months of loneliness and isolation into summers filled with sunshine, laughter and happiness.   Sunrise Day Camps are located in Pearl River and Long Island, as well as in Israel, and are affiliated with 22 renowned hospitals and medical centers.  Sunrise Day Camp-Pearl River is a proud member of the Sunrise Association, whose mission is to bring back the joy of Summer Day Camp to children with cancer and their siblings.  For more information on Sunrise Day Camp-Pearl River, please visit their website at

Campers will receive special Thank You bags with a special charity event T-shirt and other goodies for all donations of $40 per camper or more.  For all donations of $100 per camper or more, campers’ names will be entered into a raffle for a tuition-free Summer 2016!

This week has been highlighted by some exciting out of camp trips.  On Monday, the Navajo and Apache Boys and Girls visited Powerhouse Studios.  They enjoyed participating in an interactive game show, The Wild ‘N Wacky Challenge, where every camper had the chance to get doused with green slime or to get a pie in the face.  Good times!  The Emcee would call on certain campers to play the Lucky Number game, and the winners would get to choose a counselor or a Tribe Leader to slime!  One highlight of the trip was the lunch; really tasty pizza and All You Can Drink Soda!!!

On Tuesday, the Iroquois Boys and Girls embarked on a very special, Iroquois Overnight to Brookwood in Glen Spey, New York.  This annual trip is reserved solely for the oldest campers, the Iroquois, and the campers really look forward to it.  We departed from Camp early on Tuesday morning, in order to get in a full day of fun at Brookwood!  Lake activities were very popular with campers and counselors alike; everything from kayaking and paddle boating, to water tubing behind a speedboat and the Blob, a giant trampoline-like inflatable that campers could bounce up and down on, splash-landing into the refreshing lake.

The food at Brookwood was great; breakfast, lunch and dinner were served daily, and campers had the option of mac and cheese, fresh veggies, chicken nuggets and waffle fries, spaghetti and meatballs, tacos, grilled cheese, and more.  The Iroquois boys took on the Brookwood 6th grade soccer team; for the first team in a number of years, the Hillard Boys notched a decisive 5-1 victory over the Brookwood boys. A most impressive win! In the evening, we enjoyed a bonfire by the lake and a delicious s’mores roast.  We had a great full day of activities of Wednesday before saying goodbye to our new friends and making the return trip to Hillard.

Speaking of food, can we talk for just a minute about the food at Camp Hillard?  It really is pretty fabulous. A great deal of time and thought is put into the Menu planning prior to the Summer Camp Season.  Some of the more popular lunch offerings include Hillard’s Famous Cheese Pizza, Nachos Grande with Cheese, crispy Chicken Nuggets, the insanely popular Chicken O’s (think a chicken nugget shaped like a donut), Mexi-Beef Tacos served with Salsa and Sour Cream,  Asian-inspired Chicken with broccoli, to name just a few.  In addition to the Daily Menu, a variety of substitutes are readily available so as to accommodate all camper’s tastes, preferences and dietary needs.  Mid-day snacks and afternoon refreshments are also served daily; Goldfish, Graham Crackers, Oreos, fresh fruit are among some of the daily snack options.  Ice cream and iced pops are served on an alternating schedule in the afternoon; Twin Pops, Chocolate Eclairs, Firecracker Pops, Ice Cream sandwiches and more.  There is no better way to end a busy Camp day than sitting down with friends and enjoying a cool and refreshing treat before boarding the bus to go home.

Friday was our Annual Song and Cheer Contest and Tribal Color Day.  All of the campers and counselors sang their hearts out!  The judges are feverishly studying their notes and the Awards will be announced during Monday morning assembly.

The boys and girls attending the mini-sleepaways departed on Sunday morning.  This year, the boys and the girls will be visiting Camp Pontiac in Copake, New York.  Randi and Bruce, the INA girls and Boys Divisional Head Counselors, are very excited about joining the campers on their mini-sleepaway.

It is hard to believe that Monday is the start of the second half of the summer season.  There are still so many great activities and special events on tap.  Our Senior Camp Challenge continues with the Gray team currently ahead, instructional swim is in full swing and theater practice continues for Visiting Day and evening performances.

Swim races, s’mores roasts and ice cream parties are scheduled for next week, and Thursday is New Year’s Eve and Winter In July. Campers and counselors will participate in several winter-themed activities and events during the day, including a special Winter Wonderland in the Creative Center and a New Year’s Eve dance party the Gymnastics Pavilion.

For more details specific to your child’s group, please read our Weekly Tribal Newsletters which are found in the Enrolled Camp Families section of our website.  Have a great weekend!