Author Archives: Camp Hillard

Camp Hillard Week 3 Highlighted By Festival of Fun

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 theater rehearsals, arts and crafts projects, and so much more.

Last week was highlighted by the following special events:

  • On Monday, 5th year campers attended a special party, enjoyed ice cream cake, and received a Camp Hillard pillow.
  • Junior campers enjoyed some exciting boat rides at the pool.
  • On Tuesday, the INA boys headed out to the ballgame, taking in a Rockland Boulders Minor League Baseball Game.
  • On Wednesday, campers who have been here for 6 or more years, celebrated with a special breakfast; pancakes, french toast sticks, tater tots, eggs and turkey sausage. They also received an extra special gift, a beautiful Hillard golf umbrella.
  • On Thursday, we had our Annual Festival of Fun. This year’s theme was Super Heroes and Cartoon Characters.  Campers and counselors alike participated in a festive costume parade after morning assembly to kick off this exciting day.  There were Supermen and Wonder Women, Annas and Elsas, some famous Flintstones, and even some Minions!  Rumor has it The Flash made an appearance on the Upper Field, but he was here and gone in such a flash, we can neither confirm nor deny this rumor!
  • Senior camp boys and girls all had fun on Friday with the Senior Camp boat races.
  • The Senior Camp Challenge continues, with Grey currently in the lead but there is still many weeks left of fun competition!

Camp Hillard’s Swim Program is off to a great start.  In Junior Camp, the Pawnees, Chickasaws and Hurons have been assessed and placed in their appropriate swim lesson group. The campers have been assessed based the American Red Cross Learn to Swim Program and the Camp Hillard Aquatic Groups  by certified Water Safety Instructors. Afternoon swims are for play and fun. Campers swim with their friends and are able to use different pools throughout the week. Many campers enjoy a ride on the water slide, while some have fun playing with rings, beach balls or noodles. The deep water challenge is offered to any Junior Camper that is interested. Once campers have passed the deep water challenge they can use the diving board.

The Middle Camp swim program is also off to a great start! After being skills tested, all Cheyenne and Comanche campers are completing their third week with their swim groups. They are already learning new skills and refining old ones. Our instructors are working diligently with your children to help them achieve their swim goals for the summer.

Campers are taking a break from the summer heat during afternoon free swims and enjoying all that the Camp Hillard pools have to offer! Every Cheyenne and Comanche group has taken at least two trips down the “Great Green River,” the water slide located at South Campus. At Main Complex, the campers who have passed the deep water test jump off the diving board, go down the slide, and swim in the deep end.

A lot was accomplished at Senior Camp Swim during these first three weeks of Camp. Many of our campers have taken and passed the Deep Water Challenge.  We continue to offer the challenge every single day of the summer.  All campers have been placed in swim classes, we have had many full days of swim instruction, and all campers are progressing nicely.

In the afternoons, many fun activities are well under way.  Campers have had the opportunity to play in a structured game, enjoy the cool water of the Hamptons (ask your kids about this) and all groups have now experienced the Great Green River water slide.  In addition, this Friday campers participated in Boat Races.  It was a relay race by letter group, and campers had a wild time paddling their boats across the pool.  We also had “Music at the Pool” the last two Fridays.  It’s a joy to watch swimmers and counselors alike grooving to songs as they relax and play in the water.

Camp Hillard’s Performing Arts program has gotten off to an illustrious start.  In junior camp, the Huron Girls are celebrating the 50th anniversary of The Sound of Music while the Huron Boys are learning about the all America’s favorite sport in their production of Take Me Out to the Ballgame. The Cheyenne Girls are learning what is like to live in a world full of ice and adventure, in Disney’s Frozen while the Cheyenne Boys are learning how a little “magic” goes a long way in Aladdin.

In middle camp, the Comanche Boys and the Cherokee Boys Theater Club are learning how to have “soul” in their show Blue Brothers. On the other hand, the Comanche Girls are learning what is like to live in a world full of adventure, in Disney’s classic, Beauty & the Beast.

 Finally, in senior camp, the Cherokee and Navajo Girls are having an “Aca-mazing” time with their show Pitch Perfect while the I-A girls as well as the INA Boys, are learning what is like to live in a world without dancing, in the Broadway hit, Footloose!

In music, the Pawnee and Chickasaw Girls and Boys are busy getting ready to perform for all of their family and friends on Visiting Day, which is right around the corner.

Speaking of Visiting Days and Evenings, the Cherokee Boys enjoyed a very successful Visiting Evening on Thursday. The original date was scheduled for Wednesday, but an unfavorable weather forecast necessitated a change to Thursday, and the weather was absolutely spectacular. While Visiting Days are always fun and exciting, there is something extra special about a Visiting Evening; campers get the opportunity to stay after camp has ended, where they get to enjoy a Tribe Dinner at South Campus before family and friends arrive for the evening program.  The Cherokee boys showed off their progress at swim before hitting the courts and the hockey rink to showcase their athletic skills.  The Comanche Boys are looking forward to another exciting visiting evening on Monday; they will be the first Tribe to hit the stage to perform for their family and friends.

There is never a dull moment on the fields at Camp Hillard. The Junior Campers have done a wonderful job playing baseball and softball. They have been working hard on the skills of throwing and catching, hitting live pitches, and running bases.  The Cheyenne Boys have also been working on their baseball skills. The boys have learned how to use pitch backs to not only work on their throwing but also their fielding skills.

The Cherokee Girls have also spent a lot of time on the softball field.  The focus for the last couple of weeks has been practicing situations. “You have the ball, now what?” Hitting skills and fielding skills have shown great improvement.

Soccer has been a major focus over the past few weeks for the Cheyenne and Comanche girls, who have been working on their throw-ins and trapping, shooting a moving ball, as well as honing and refining their dribbling and passing skills.

The Iroquois, Navajo, and Apache Girls have also been hard at work on the soccer fields.  They have been focusing on following their passes, shooting a moving ball, and dribbling.

The Iroquois, Navajo, Apache Boys as well as the Comanche and Cherokee have been working on their basketball skills. Shooting, passing and zone defense have been stressed by the sports counselors and the carry-over has been seen in game play. Their skills are getting better each day. The Sports counselors are very excited over the improvement.

Sports Leagues are in full swing and are going well. Exciting Intra-Tribal competitions take place daily on the hockey rink, the soccer fields and the basketball court, on the baseball and softball diamonds and on the flag football gridiron.At the Gymnastics Pavilion, the team of instructors has been as excited to participate in Fun, Fitness and Balance activities as the campers have. Junior Camp has been engaged in Exploration Activities while Middle and Senior Campers engage in an obstacle course designed specifically for Fun and Fitness. Middle and Senior campers have also been using all of our gymnastic apparatuses in a variety of activities promoting balance.  Zumba is a new addition to Individual Activity Choice, or IAC, this summer; this dance-fitness program, that incorporates hip-hop, soca, samba, salsa, merengue and mambo has been met with great enthusiasm and success.  Each day staff strives to hear our favorite phrases in the gym: “I DID IT!! And I WANNA DO IT AGAIN!!”

This week will again be very busy.  Here is what’s on tap:

  • Our Annual Charity Event for Sunrise Day Camps begins.
  • The Navajo and Apache Boys and Girls will be visiting Powerhouse Studios on Monday.
  • On Tuesday, the Iroquois Boys and Girls leave for their Overnight Trip to Brookwood.
  • The Comanche Boys Visiting Evenings will take place on Monday and Wednesday.
  • On Friday, it is our annual Song and Cheer contest. The campers have been practicing every day for this big event.  Make sure to have your campers wear their Tribal T-shirt.
  • Marshmallow Roasts and Ice Cream Parties continue, Talent Shows and our regular programming schedule continues!

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.

Camp Hillard’s 2nd Week Summary – All This In Just One Week!

The second week of Camp was a great week of Camp!

The week started off with our Senior Camp Challenge opening ceremonies.  Cherokees and INA’s were divided into teams of Green and Gray, with everyone receiving a special t-shirt.

On Monday and Tuesday, we had our annual lollipop hunt, divided by Division.  Over the long holiday weekend, fireworks went off above the Upper Field, dropping lollipop seeds everywhere.  When we arrived on Monday morning, junior campers discovered that lollipops had sprouted and we needed to collect them so we could play ball again! Freshly picked lollipops always taste the best!!!!  On Tuesday, middle and senior campers enjoyed their Lollipop Hunt, with as slightly different twist.  Campers collected and sorted the lollipops into colors, receiving points for the most pops collected.  Congratulations to the Cheyenne D boys, Cheyenne A girls, Comanche D  boys, Comanche B girls, Cherokee C boys, Cherokee C girls, Navajo Girls and Iroquois Boys for being the best lollipop pickers in camp.  As a reward they will each receive a super yummy S’mores Roast!!!!

On Tuesday, July 8th, all our 2nd year campers received the traditional Camp Hillard banner, and on Wednesday, July 9th,   3rd and 4th year campers received their specially designed and highly coveted t-shirts!  On Wednesday, campers and counselors sported the traditional white Camp Hillard shirt and their best and brightest smile for their Group Pictures.

 Marshmallow Roasts began with the INA and the Chickasaw and Huron girls this past Wednesday.  It was a very messy, but delicious affair.  The Chickasaws followed suit on Thursday and they really showed us how to really get messy!!!!!

On Friday we started our summer tradition of Music at the Pools during the afternoon free swims.

It has been an amazing first two weeks of camp fun, but we still have lots of special events to look forward to. 5th year campers can get psyched for their Ice Cream Party on Monday; the boats are out of dry dock and are being shined and polished for Junior Camp Boat Rides and Middle and Senior Camp Boat Races ; the INA Boys are heading out to the ballgame on Tuesday, for a Rockland Boulders Minor League game; preparations are already in high gear for our Festival of Fun and our second Tribal Color Day on Wednesday; the Cherokee boys are gearing up for their Visiting Evening on Wednesday; and 6th year and more campers will enjoy a bountiful breakfast buffet and a special gift on Thursday!  All of this in addition to more marshmallow roasts, ice cream parties and more….Phewww!  What an exciting week coming up!

See you Monday!!

Camp Hillard’s 87th Summer is Underway!

Camp Hillard’s 87th Summer Season kicked off on Monday, June 29th.  After a very long, cold and snowy winter, campers and counselors and parents were thrilled that Opening Day was finally upon us!

On Opening Day, campers and counselors got to know one another.  As groups got off the bus, they were brought to their respective Tribal meeting areas where campers were introduced to one another and counselors met their campers. Counselors and campers got to know each other’s names by playing all different types of games. After putting things away in our bunks, we had a great first day of activities including our first swim.  Camp Hillard’s famous pizza was on the menu for all campers, and the end of day refreshment, a Twin-Pop, was truly delicious!

The rest of Week 1 was also highlighted by:

  • Campers being assigned to their swim instruction groups.
  • Exciting sports instruction and games.
  • Many groups had their first arts and/or other specialty activities.
  • Tuesday was our first Tribal Color Day.  Camp was awash in a sea of colors as campers and counselors alike were decked out in their special colored t-shirt.
  • Our Independence Day celebration on Thursday was highlighted by an exciting Independence Day parade, an all-camp cookout, special refreshments, and other special activities throughout the day.

Next week will be another fun filled week of excitement.  In addition to all the fun of the regular schedule, we will also have the following special events:

  • The Junior Camp Lollipop Hunt will take place on Monday, as will the Senior Camp Challenge Opening Ceremonies for Cherokees and INAs.
  • The Middle and Senior Camp Lollipop Scavenger Hunt takes place on Tuesday.
  • 2nd Year Campers will receive their Camp Hillard banners on Tuesday, and our 3rd and 4th Year Campers will receive their special T-shirts on Wednesday.
  • Wednesday is our Camp Pictures day.  All groups will have their group picture taken.  We ask that all campers where their white Camp Hillard T with the green logo.
  • Wednesday is also a special evening for our INA Boys and Girls!
  • Some tribes are also scheduled for their Marshmallow Roasts.
  • On Thursday, the Apache, Iroquois and the CIT’s will visit Playland Amusement Park in Rye.

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.

We hope you are enjoying the holiday weekend!  We can’t wait to see everyone on Monday!

Camp Hillard Summer 2015 Dates Are Set!

The countdown to Summer 2015 begins!  Camp dates have been set.  Summer 2015 will begin on Monday, June 29th, and Camp will end on Thursday, August 20th.

We are now finalizing our Camper Awards Mailing which will go out to all Summer 2014 campers at the end of next week.  Be on the lookout!

And then, about a week later, the Enrollment Mailing for returning families will go out, followed a couple of weeks later by the mailing to new families.  These mailings will include our Fall Newsletter highlighting some of the things planned for next summer.

Feel free to contact us at any time with any questions.

Camp Hillard’s 86th Summer Comes to a Close

It is hard to believe how quickly another summer has come and gone!  Camp Hillard’s 86th summer was another successful season, full of fun, friends and really fabulous weather.  This last week of Camp kicked off with a bang on Monday, with the Apache and Iroquois Visiting Evening performance.  The boys and girls set off on an epic journey to Arendelle with Anna, Elsa, rugged mountainman Kristoff and his loyal reindeer Sven, in a spectacular stage version of Frozen.

The fun continued on Tuesday, with the annual Camp Hillard Carnival.  This year’s Carnival theme was Candyland; every group in Camp was responsible for creating a game booth with a sugary sweet theme.  Skittle Soccer, Candy Craze, Pin the Crown on Queen Frostine, and Rolo Ring Toss, to name a few!  There were exciting rides and attractions on the Main Field for campers to enjoy; a Candyland obstacle course, the Dixie Copter, the Dixie Dragonfly, and the Polar Extreme.  As an extra specially sweet treat, every camper and counselor received a bag of tasty treats including Hershey’s kisses and Twizzlers from the Candyman. The Carnival culminated with one of the most popular refreshments of the summer; a sour, Lick-a-Color ice pop.  It was a truly spectacular day from start to finish.

On Wednesday, we were all treated to a show at the stage where campers performed some popular tunes from their Visiting Day performances.  In addition, some furry four-legged friends returned, joining the Libman family onstage as we presented a generous check of $28,003 to the Heeling Autism-Guiding Eyes for the Blind organization.

Final Day Festivities on Thursday included the traditional Moving Up Ceremony, where campers and counselors moved over or up to a different Tribal Assembly area.  This is always an exciting event for the Huron boys and Girls, who will be moving out of Junior Camp, and the Comanche boys and girls, both moving up to Senior Camp.  We enjoyed a delicious lunch of Chicken O’s, followed by an Ice Cream Sundae, before we gathered at the stage to give Special Recognition  to counselors who really stood out this summer, followed by the ever-popular Counselor Talent Show.  The INA boys rocked their 70’s style performance of The Jackson Five’s I Want You Back, while the Theater Staff put together a rousing seven minute medley of popular Disney songs.  It was a very entertaining and spirited display of talent!

Jim Libman continued his father’s tradition of jumping into the pool in his clothing, much to the delight of campers and staff alike!  The day seemed to fly by, and before we knew it, Tribes were meeting for their Final Afternoon Assembly and refreshments, this time with lots of  goodbye hugs and some tears.  When Lenny gave the word, campers took one last walk with their counselors to their buses, buckled up and rolled down Elizabeth Street for the last time, as The Libman Family and the Leadership Team waved goodbye.  The end of yet another successful Summer!

The 86th Summer was truly terrific. Camp Hillard is a special place, and a big part of what makes it so special is due in large part to that very special group of people, the Hillard Counselors.  What they did this summer was very special.  Our campers truly benefited from all of the care and attention they received from these dedicated and enthusiastic people.

We will shortly begin the cycle again and start getting ready for Summer 2015.  In the meantime, we wish all of you the very best for the rest of the summer and on into the school year.

Thank you again for a great summer!

Camp Hillard Week 7 highlighted by Topsy Turvy Day, Sports League playoffs, and Senior Camp Challenge

Week 7 was another fun and exciting week at Camp, highlighted by a variety of fun events. Campers continue to put their talents on display, showcasing their singing, dancing, boxball, basketball, break dancing, beat-box, piano, and “armpit-tooting” skills in performances worthy of America’s Got Talent.

Campers continue to work on their American Red Cross swimming skills and are making great progress.  In addition to our regular swim program, all campers got to have some extra special fun at the pools; Junior Campers participated in Wacky Swim Games on Wednesday, while Middle and Senior campers took to the diving board for their Crazy Dive contests on Thursday.  Pawnees, Chickasaws and Hurons got to spin around in an inflatable Wonder Wheel, while also completing an aquatic obstacle course and a watermelon relay.  Cheyennes and older showed off their formidable diving skills, spinning and twisting and cannonballing and bellyflopping into the pool!  Their counselors also participated in this highly anticipated event, jumping into the pools while being cheered on and splashed by their campers!

Thursday was Topsy Turvy Day.  Campers and counselors really went all out!  There were a lot of creative outfits on display, including backwards shirts and shorts, mismatched sneakers, and flipped out flip flops.  The best part of the day was getting to have Breakfast for Lunch; French toast strips, turkey sausage and tater tops.  It was delicious!

Sports Leagues are entering into their Playoff and Championship rounds.  Tuesday saw several nail-biters for the Cherokee Boys; Blazin’ Bulldozers, Underdogs, and Crushers placing first, second, third, and fourth respectively in their Division 1 Championship Games and the Rangers and Wolves placing first and second in their Division Two Championships.

The Comanche Girls concluded their Sports Leagues on Thursday; the Smarties were victorious over the Push Pops in a dramatic field hockey final.  The results of the Comanche Boys Sports League Finals are still being calculated; the winner will be announced next week!  On Monday, the Cheyenne Boys will conclude their Sports Leagues with the Red Thunderwolves taking on The Fire Bullet Dragons in the Baseball Division, and the Golden Knights will go up against The Monkey Strikers in the Soccer Division.  Both games are sure to be thrillers!  The Cheyenne Girls and the INA Boys will conclude their Sports Leagues next week.

Senior Camp Challenge Closing ceremonies, an event of epic proportions, took place on Friday Morning, as the Cherokee and INA counselors competed in a massive pie-eating competition, with the Green Team winning out over Gray!  Congratulations to all the participants for their hard work, teamwork and sportsmanship.

The eighth and final week of Camp is sure to be an exceptional four days of fun. The Big Show is on tap for Monday evening; the Apache and Iroquois Boys and Girls and a few Cherokee boys will be performing the new Disney classic, Frozen.  Final rehearsals have been in full gear, and the show is sure to be a fantastic one.

Tuesday, the long awaited Hillard Carnival will commence. It’s also our final Tribal Color Day and an All Camp Picnic. The Special Camp Show and Charity Presentation are on Wednesday; campers will take the stage to perform some of the most notable songs from their Visiting Day performances, and we hope to have some special, furry, four-legged visitors from Heeling Autism for the presentation. The counselors have been furiously preparing for the Annual Counselor Talent Show on Thursday, which is sure to be a lot of fun.

On Thursday, we will also have a Moving Up ceremony for all the campers as they step into the shoes of their future tribe; Pawnees to Chickasaws, Hurons to Cheyennes, and so forth!  It is sure to be an exciting and memorable week.

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.

Week 6 – Another Great Week Highlighted by Swim Festivals and more Visiting Days

Week 6, Week 6!!? It’s hard to believe just how quickly the summer is flying by.  The week was highlighted by the Swim Festivals; Senior Camp on Monday, Junior Camp on Tuesday and Middle Camp on Wednesday.  There was music at the pools, treasure hunts, swim races, musical water buckets and more!

S’mores Roasts and Ice Cream Parties are in full swing.  This week, the Pawnees, the Huron boys and girls, Cheyenne and Comanche boys and the Cherokee girls all enjoyed their ooey, gooey, sticky-delicious S’mores Roast, while the Cheyenne and Comanche girls, the Cherokee and INA boys and the INA girls enjoyed their Tribal Ice Cream Party.  Nothing beats a Camp Hillard Ice Cream Party; campers build their very own Ice Cream Sundae, choosing two scoops of ice cream, chocolate or vanilla (or both), assorted tasty toppings like rainbow and chocolate sprinkles, caramel sauce or chocolate syrup and maraschino cherries.  An Ice Cream Float is another option; two scoops of ice cream, swimming in fizzy, bubbly Coca Cola.  A refreshingly tasty treat on a hot summer day!

Tribal Talent Shows are in full swing.  Tribes assemble during their Rest Periods, and campers show off their skills; the acts ran the gamut from karate chops and arm farts to hula hooping and rope jumping, to singing and acting and joke telling!  Hillard campers are a pretty talented bunch!

As we near the end of the sixth week of camp, almost every Tribe in Camp has experienced either a Visiting Day or a Visiting Evening.  Campers look forward to these very special days when moms and dads, brothers and sisters, aunts, uncles, grandmas and grandpas come to watch them swim, play sports and perform songs or put on a show at theater, while also finally getting to meet the counselors who have been essential in making every camper’s summer fun and successful.

The Pawnees and the Chickasaw Boys and Girls had their Visiting Mornings early in the summer; for many of our youngest campers, Camp may be their first full-day group experience, and moms and dads are eager to meet the counselors and see their little ones in action!  This year, the Pawnees and the Chickasaws showcased their developing athletic skills at a Sports Skills Showcase on the Main Field, participating in a mini-obstacle course which included shooting hoops, kicking a soccer ball and scoring a goal at field hockey.  On the musical side of things, they performed a few special songs that they had been perfecting for the first few weeks of the summer; Firetruck, I Don’t Want to Live on the Moon and the Camp Hillard song.

The Visiting Day programs for Hurons and older are a little more intense; in addition to participating in sports and swimming, campers perform a Broadway style show on the big stage.  This summer, the Huron Boys and Girls hit the stage for the very first time, performing The Lion King and Mary Poppins!

Visiting Day for the Cheyenne Boys and Girls included baseball and softball and swimming at South Campus Pool Complex, which always includes a ride down The Great Green River!  The Boys learned how to pick a pocket or two in their production of Oliver Twist, and the Girls were psyched to receive a Golden Ticket to Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory!

Comanches and older are always excited by the prospect of a Visiting Evening.  These Tribes get to remain at Camp after every other camper has gotten on their bus and headed home!  Dinner is served at South Campus and campers and counselors gear up for an exciting evening!  The Comanche Boys and Girls showed off their athletic prowess during games of basketball and soccer, respectively, after which they hit the stage to perform the Disney classics, Aladdin and Beauty and the Beats.

Visiting Evenings for Senior Camp take place towards the end of the summer; campers spend six to seven weeks rehearsing for some very exciting shows; the Cherokee girls in Glee, the Navajo girls in Les Mis and finally, The Really Big Show during the final week of Camp.  This year, Cherokee boys Theater Club participants and the A-I Boys and Girls will be visiting the snowy realm of Arendelle for their production of Frozen.  Do you want to build a snowman??

Next week, the fun continues!  More Talent Shows and S’mores roasts, in addition to the Junior Camp Wacky Swim Games and the Middle and Senior Camp Crazy Dive Contests.  Thursday is Topsy Turvy Day; we will be enjoying Breakfast for Lunch and as well as some other special inside-out, upside-down, flip-floppy activities.

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.

Camp Hillard Week 5 Highlighted by International Day

It’s hard to believe we have just finished up the fifth week of Camp!  Once again, it was a fun-filled and successful week, highlighted by some really spectacular weather!

The boys and girls departed for their mini-sleepaways on Sunday morning, and they had an amazing time!  Randi drove up to Iroquois Springs on Sunday to join the girls, many of whom were participating in their very first long overnight trip away from home.  Water front activities were a big hit with campers and counselors alike; the Aqua Playground offered water skiing, kneeboarding and tubing.  The girls also enjoyed a pool party and a trip to the Skate Park where they got to ride skateboards and scooters.  In the evening, they had a Bonfire S’mores Roast, in addition to visiting the Canteen nightly for soda, and chips and candy.  The food at Iroquois Springs was varied and delicious; in addition to the daily offerings of fried chicken, chicken tenders, pizza, roast beef and roasted turkey, campers always had the option of a very well-appointed salad bar, a pasta station, and fresh soups and grilled cheese.  The girls all had a really great time!

Bruce took the ride to Camp Pontiac with the boys in the Pontiac shuttles.  The boys and their counselors were all treated very well. We enjoyed a large variety of activities. All of the boys loved swimming and playing in the lake. The boys were constantly looking forward to their canteens time! Even during our down time the boys enjoyed bonding with each other in our nice air-conditioned bunk!

On Thursday, we celebrated International Day.  Campers and counselors came to Camp sporting shirts, hats, jerseys and more representing their favorite country.  We had a dance party in the gymnastics pavilion, where we participated in some international dances like the Tarantella and the Hora, as well as different styles of dancing, like salsa and meringue, Irish step dancing, country line dancing and the Limbo!  We enjoyed plantain chips for snack, Asian-inspired chicken with broccoli for lunch, a fortune cookie for dessert and a Polar Pole Rainbow Sherbet Push-Up Pop for Refreshments.

In addition to the dance party, every Tribe in Camp visited The Hall of Nations at the Creative Arts Center, an interactive journey around the world.  International sports and activities took the place of our many regular scheduled sports periods.  In junior Camp, the Chickasaw boys and girls and the Huron boys enjoyed learning and playing British Bulldog, a game of tag similar to Red Rover.  One camper is chosen to be the Bulldog, and he or she stands in the middle of the field, and all remaining players stand at the other end of the field. The aim of the game is to run from one end of the field of play to the other, without being caught by the bulldogs. When a player is caught, they become a bulldog themselves. The winner is the last player or players ‘free.’  The Huron girls enjoyed playing Hopscotch, horseshoes and bocce ball, and the Pawnees enjoyed an International Freeze Dance!

In Middle Camp, the Cheyenne and Comanche girls also played Chinese Jump Rope and Hopscotch, in addition to learning the Macarena and playing Matkot, a popular Israeli paddle ball game similar to beach tennis.  The Cheyenne boys learned how to play Flag Rugby and Cricket, and the Comanche boys played Gaga and Badminton.  In Senior Camp, Cherokee and INA boys also played Flag Rugby, the Cherokee girls played Boomerang and Chinese Jump Rope, and the INA girls played with Boomerangs and had an opportunity to play the Didgeridoo, an Australian wind instrument similar to a wooden trumpet.

It has been an awesome 5 week of camp for Here at Hillard. A little more than half the summer is done but there are so many fun activities to go!!

  • Our Swim Festivals begin next week!  Campers can expect treasure hunts, boat rides, lifeguard relay races, music at the pools and more!
  • On Tuesday, the INA girls are taking an Ice Skating Trip to the Brewster Ice Arena, while on Wednesday the INA boys will be taking in a Rockland Boulders baseball game.
  • Our Visiting Day and Evening Programs continue in earnest, with Cheyenne Boys and Girls  and the Cherokee Girls scheduled for next week.
  • Ice cream parties and s’mores roasts continue, as do Talent Shows and Hillard Idol.
  • Friday is Tribal Color Day.  Every camper should remember to wear his or her Tribal tee-shirt!

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!

 

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 2014 Charity Event for Heeling Autism began.  All money raised will be given to Guiding Eyes for the Blind’s Heeling Autism Program to provide specially trained service dogs to children with autism, offering safety, companionship and opportunities for independence. All campers had a chance to meet some of these very special dogs on Monday and Tuesday.

The dogs are trained primarily to prevent children from bolting, either into the street or away from parents in a crowded area. They also provide a reduction in family stress, improved sleep behaviors and school participation. The program serves families who live locally in the tri-state area and have a child between the ages of 2 and 10 on the autism spectrum.

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 2015.  All checks should be made out to Heeling Autism – Guiding Eyes with the camper’s first and last name and tribe and group letter on the check  Checks can be given to the camper’s bus captain in an envelope marked “Charity Event”.

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, which included getting slimed or getting pied in the face.  The Emcee would call on certain campers to play the Lucky Number game, and the winners would get to choose a counselor to slime!  One highlight of the trip was the lunch; pizza and, wait for it….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 tacos, grilled cheese, spaghetti and meatballs and fried chicken.  The Iroquois boys took on the 8th grade Brookwood basketball team, an exciting challenge for our mostly 6th and 7th grade boys.  In the evening, we enjoyed a bonfire by the lake, a delicious s’mores roast and the evening’s highlight, an outdoor viewing of Frozen.  Campers enjoyed singing along to the soundtrack!  We had a great full day of activities of Wednesday before saying goodbye to our new friends and making the return trip to Hillard.  It was a really great time!

On Thursday, the Apaches, Iroquois and CIT’s visited Playland Park in Rye.  This trip had been postponed from last week due to inclement weather, and Thursday’s forecast was spectacular.  Barely a cloud in the sky, moderate temperatures and low humidity made for an excellent atmosphere for riding the Dragon Coaster and taking the Playland Plunge.  Our three buses arrived at approximately 11am, and campers and counselors enjoyed a tailgate-style brunch in the parking lot while we waited for the park to open. Then we slipped on our wrist bands and hit the gates, touring the park in small groups of 7-8 campers along with one counselor.  We took turns on a variety of rides, played games of chance, winning oodles of prizes and we ate lots of yummy amusement park food.  It was a really great day!

Friday was our Annual Song and Cheer Contest and our second 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.  The boys will be visiting CampPontiac in Copake, New York while the girls will be staying at Iroquois Springs in Rock Hill, New York.  Hillary and Randi, the Cheyenne and INA girls Divisional Head Counselors will be tagging along with the girls, while INA boys Divisional Head Counselor Bruce, will be joining the boys on their mini-sleepaway.

It is hard to believe that Monday is the start of the second half of the summer season.  There is 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 International Day.  Campers and counselors will compete in several activities and sporting events inspired by cultures and civilizations from around the world.  Campers are welcome and encouraged to come to Camp wearing a shirt, or hat or any other article of clothing relating to their favorite country.  An Asian-themed lunch of chicken with broccoli is on the menu, and campers will be enjoying a special international snack!

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.

Camp Hillard Week 3 Highlighted By Festival of Fun

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 theater rehearsals, arts and crafts projects, and so much more.

Last week was highlighted by the following special events:

  • On Monday, 5th year campers attended a special party, enjoyed ice cream cake, and received a Camp Hillard pillow.
  • Junior campers enjoyed some exciting boat rides at the pool.
  • On Wednesday, campers who have been here for 6 or more years, celebrated with a special breakfast and received an extra special gift.
  • Also on Wednesday, Middle Campers enjoyed some exciting Boat races!
  • On Thursday, we had the Festival of Fun, an All-Camp Cookout, and received our Tribal Color Shirts
  • Senior camp boys and girls all had fun on Friday with the Senior Camp boat races.
  • The Senior Camp Challenge continues, with Green currently in the lead but there is still many weeks left of fun competition!

Camp Hillard’s Junior Camp swim program for the Pawnees, Chickasaws and Hurons had gotten off to a great start!  All campers have been assessed and placed in their appropriate swim lesson group. The campers have been assessed based the American Red Cross Learn to Swim Program and the Camp Hillard Aquatic Groups  by certified Water Safety Instructors. Afternoon swims are for play and fun. Campers swim with their friends and are able to use different pools throughout the week. Many campers enjoy a ride on the water slide, while some have fun playing with rings, beach balls or noodles. The deep water challenge is offered to any Junior Camper that is interested. Once campers have passed the deep water challenge they can use the diving board.

Our Junior campers had a great time during the annual Junior Camp Boat Rides. Everyone went for a race across the pool in our inflatable pirate ships! We also had a great time during the Festival of Fun. Junior campers got to run though the inflatable “Car Wash”. The campers had a blast cooling off in the sprinklers of the float and then enjoyed free swim! Junior camp has more very exciting special events and visiting days coming up!

The Middle Camp swim program is also off to a great start! After being skills tested, all Cheyenne and Comanche campers are completing their third week with their swim groups. They are already learning new skills and refining old ones. Our instructors are working diligently with your children to help them achieve their swim goals for the summer.

Campers are taking a break from the summer heat during afternoon free swims and enjoying all that the Camp Hillard pools have to offer! Every Cheyenne and Comanche group has taken at least two trips down the “Great Green River,” the water slide located at South Campus. At Main Complex, the campers who have passed the deep water test jump off the diving board, go down the slide, and swim in the deep end.  All campers can play in the shallow sections to search for sunken treasures, play with noodles or toss around balls.

The Festival of Fun was excellent!  All the campers loved trying to cross the enormous Tiki themed pool float.  Some fell off along the way (the giant palm trees were difficult to pass!) but many made it to the slide at the end.  Either way, the slide was a huge hit.  For many, a favorite part of the experience was sitting at the edge of the pool splashing their feet and cheering as they watched their counselors, Tribe Leaders and Division Heads attempt the challenge.

Any camper who has not yet passed the “Deep Water Challenge” can attempt it during free swim at Main Complex.

We accomplished a lot of things during the first 3 weeks of this season in Senior Camp Swim.  The first days saw many of our campers take and pass the Deep Water Challenge.  We continue to offer the challenge every single day of the summer.

All campers have been placed in swim classes.  We refer to last year’s swim records and this year’s swim profiles.  If a camper is new to camp, our staff assesses each camper’s individual abilities and places them appropriately.  By now, we have had many full days of swim instruction, and all campers are progressing nicely.

In the afternoons, many fun activities are well under way.  Campers have had the opportunity to play in a structured game, enjoy the cool water of the Hamptons (ask your kids about this) and all groups have now experienced the Great Green River water slide.

In addition, this Friday campers participated in Boat Races.  It was a relay race by letter group, and campers had a wild time paddling their boats across the pool.  We also had “Music at the Pool” the last two Fridays.  It’s a joy to watch swimmers and counselors alike grooving to songs as they relax and play in the water.

The Theater program is in full gear.  In junior camp, the Huron Girls are learning what it’s like to have the “perfect nanny” in Mary Poppins, while the Huron Boys are working on their “roar” for their production of The Lion King. The Cheyenne Girls have a “golden ticket” to Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory in their show Willy Wonka while the Cheyenne Boys are imagining what it would be like to taste a variety of “glorious food” in Oliver!

In middle camp, the Comanche Boys and the Cherokee Boys Theater Club are learning how a little “magic” goes a long way in Aladdin. On the other hand, the Comanche Girls are learning what is like to live in a world like their books, full of adventure, in Disney’s classic, Beauty & the Beast while the Cherokee Girls are having fun in McKinley High’s “glee club” with their show Glee 100!

 Finally, in senior camp, the Navajo Girls are having fun learning the songs and history of Les Miserables while the I-A girls and boys as well as the Navajo Boys, are learning what is like to live in a world full of ice and adventure, in Disney’s latest hit, Frozen.

Our shows are rapidly approaching, so please check your camp calendars for visiting days and evenings. We look forward to seeing you all soon!

The arts and crafts program is in full swing!   Since camp is doing an International Day and also celebrating the excitement of the world cup, we have introduced projects with cultural infusion.

A few of the projects in Junior Camp include tiled hand prints and suncatchers for the Pawnees, pinwheels and clay fish for the Chickasaw boys and girls, star glasses for the Huron girls and mustache bowties and glasses for the Huron boys.

In Middle Camp, the Cheyenne girls enjoyed making a seahorse fishbowl, while the boys had a lot of fun making paper rock guitars.  Comanche boys and girls made patriotic bandanas and mobiles to celebrate Independence Day.

Senior Camp art projects ranged from bracelets and note holders to clay bowls and wood sculptures, not to mention basic cartooning, Minion drawing, beading, clay and mixed-medium 3-D design!

This week will again be very busy.  Here is what’s on tap:

  • Our Annual Charity Event for Heeling Autism begins.
  • The Navajo and Apache Boys and Girls will be visiting Powerhouse Studios on Monday.
  • On Tuesday, the Iroquois Boys and Girls leave for their Overnight Trip to Brookwood.
  • The Comanche Boys Visiting Evenings will take place on Monday and Wednesday.
  • The Pawnees have their Visiting Morning on Tuesday, and the Visiting Morning for the Chickasaw Boys and Girls takes place on Thursday.
  • On Friday, it is our annual Song and Cheer contest.  The campers have been practicing every day for this big event.  Make sure to have your campers wear their new Tribal T-shirt.
  • Marshmallow Roasts continue, Talent Shows and Ice Cream Parties begin, and our regular programming schedule continues!

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.

Recap of a great second week at Camp Hillard!

The second week of Camp was a great week of Camp!

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 theater rehearsals, arts and crafts projects, and so much more.

The week started off with our Senior Camp Challenge opening ceremonies.  Cherokees and INA’s were divided into teams of Green and Gray, with everyone receiving a special t-shirt.

On Monday and Tuesday,we had our annual lollipop hunt, divided by division.  Over the long holiday weekend, fireworks went off above the Upper Field, dropping lollipop seeds everywhere.  When we arrived on Monday morning, Junior campers discovered that lollipops had sprouted and we needed to collect them so we could play ball again! Freshly picked lollipops always taste the best!!!!  On Tuesday, middle and senior campers enjoyed their Lollipop Hunt, with as slightly different twist.  Campers collected and sorted the lollipops into colors, receiving points for the most pops collected.  Congratulations to the Cheyenne AB boys, Cheyenne GH girls, Comanche AB  boys, Comanche EF girls, Cherokee AB boys, Cherokee EF girls, Iroquois Girls and Navajo Boys for being the best lollipop pickers in camp.  As a reward they will each receive a super yummy S’mores Roast!!!!

On Tuesday, July 8th, all our 2nd year campers received the traditional Camp Hillard banner, and on Wednesday, July 9th,   3rd and 4th year campers received their specially designed and highly coveted t-shirts!  Wednesday was an exceptionally busy day at Camp with group pictures during the Camp day and the INA Boys and Girls Event in the evening.  During the day, campers and counselors sported the traditional white Camp Hillard shirt and their best and brightest smile for their Group Pictures.  In the evening, the INA boys and girls enjoyed a delicious dinner and swim, before they participated in the Apache Relay.  The Gray Team was victorious for the INA boys, while the INA girls race ended in a thrilling jump-rope photo finish!

Marshmallow Roasts began with the INA boys this past Wednesday.  It was a very messy, but delicious affair.  The Chickasaws followed suit on Thursday and showed those big boys how to really get messy!!!!!

On Friday we started our summer tradition of Music at the Pools during the afternoon free swims.

It has been an amazing first two weeks of camp fun, but we still have lots of special events to look forward to. 5th year campers can get psyched for their Ice Cream Party on Monday; Apaches, Iroquois and CIT’s will be travelling to Rye Playland on Tuesday; preparations are already in high gear for our Festival of Fun and our first Tribal Color Day on Wednesday; the Cherokee boys are gearing up for their Visiting Evening on Wednesday; and 6th year and more campers will enjoy a bountiful breakfast buffet and a special gift on Thursday!  All of this in addition to more marshmallow roasts, Junior Camp boat rides, Middle Camp boat races….Phewww!  What an exciting week coming up!

See you Monday!!

Camp Hillard’s 86th Summer is Underway!

Camp Hillard’s 86th Summer Season kicked off on Tuesday, July 1st.  After a very long, cold and snowy winter, campers and counselors and parents were thrilled that Opening Day was finally upon us!  On Opening Day, campers and counselors got to know one another.  As groups got off the bus, they were brought to their respective Tribal meeting areas where campers were introduced to one another and counselors met their campers. Counselors and children got to know each other’s names by playing all different types of games. After putting things away in our bunks, we had a great first day of activities including our first swim.  Camp Hillard’s famous pizza was on the menu for all campers, and the end of day refreshment, the Crumbled Cookie Cone Ice Cream, was truly delicious!

The rest of Week 1 was also highlighted by:

  • Campers being assigned to their swim instruction groups.
  • Exciting sports instruction and games.
  • Many groups had their first arts and/or other specialty activities.
  • Our Independence Day celebration on Thursday was highlighted by an exciting Independence Day parade, an all-camp cookout, special refreshments, and other special activities throughout the day.

Next week will be another fun filled week of excitement.  In addition to all the fun of the regular schedule, we will also have the following special events:

  • The Junior Camp Lollipop Hunt will take place on Monday, as will the Senior Camp Challenge Opening Ceremonies for Cherokees and INAs.
  • The Middle and Senior Camp Lollipop Scavenger Hunt takes place on Tuesday.
  • 2nd Year Campers will receive their Camp Hillard banners on Tuesday, and our 3rd and 4th Year Campers will receive their special T-shirts on Wednesday.
  • And on Wednesday it is our Camp Pictures day.  All groups will have their group picture taken.  We ask that all campers where their white Camp Hillard T with the green logo.
  • Wednesday is also a special evening for our INA Boys and Girls!
  • Some tribes are also scheduled for their Marshmallow Roasts.

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.

We hope you are enjoying the holiday weekend!  We can’t wait to see everyone on Monday!

The Season Begins with First Year Camper Open Houses

Hi Everyone,

Last Sunday’s first Open House for First Year Campers was a great success.  It was great seeing so many of our campers, including a few returners who were there too!  Our second Open House for First Year Campers is this coming Sunday, June 8th.

Before you know it, Camp will be here.  The first day of Camp this year is Tuesday, July 1st and we can’t wait.

Shortly, our Final Mailing will be going out with all of the key information you all need including group and bus information.  Everyone should receive this about 10 to 14 days prior to the first day of Camp.

In the meantime, please feel free to contact us with any questions leading up to the summer.

See you all real soon,

Jon

Welcome to Camp Hillard’s new blog!

Since starting Camp Hillard, Westchester’s first day camp, the Libman family has been providing children with active, safe, and memorable summers. Camp Hillard was founded in 1929 by Morris and Hannah Libman. The Libman family has continued to own and operate Westchester’s first day camp and its tradition of excellence spans four generations of single family ownership.