Monthly Archives: August 2014

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!