It is hard to believe how quickly another summer has come and gone! Camp Hillard’s 91st summer was another successful season, full of fun, friends and more fun! Regular programming on the fields and at the pools continued on Monday, with more campers successfully completing the Deep Water Challenge and taking a trip down the Great Green River.
On Monday night, the Apache-Iroquois Girls finally took to the stage for the Big Show. Camp Hillard’s original show celebrating American Bandstand; the cast of American Bandstand were not paid actors or dancers; they were kids, the Kids of America, and now, the kids of Camp Hillard! The audience was on their feet as Brian Childers in his role as Dick Clark, introduced the girls as they hit the stage, performing the Iconic theme song, Bandstand Boogie. The girls danced and sang a variety of iconic hits from artists like Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis, ABBA, Billy Joel and and more. Camisha Mc Kenzie brought the house down as Aretha Franklin, where she and the A/I girls demanded Respect! Weeks of preparation and hard work went into this final theater Production of the season, and it certainly showed. It was a truly memorable evening.
On Wednesday, we gathered at the stage for the Special Camper show, where the Pawnees and the Chickasaw Boys and Girls welcomed us all with their rendition of the Camp Hillard song, in addition to a reprise of songs from their Visiting Day Musical Performances; the Cye Coleman classics It’s a Good Day and Pass Me By. The entertainment continued as every Tribe was called to the stage to perform a selection of songs from their respective Theater Productions.
On Wednesday we also celebrated Camp Hillard’s 91st Birthday with the famous Camp Hillard birthday cake for everyone!
On Thursday, we gathered at the stage for one last time to give Special Recognition to counselors who really stood out this summer, followed by the Counselor Talent Show, which is always an entertaining display of talent and Camp Spirit!
Final Day Festivities on Friday 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. The fun continued with the annual Camp Hillard Carnival! This year’s Carnival theme was A Day at the Circus; every group in Camp was responsible for creating a game booth representing different aspects of the Circus. Bozo’s Bean Bags, Tightrope Tattoos and the Under the Big Top Marriage Booth, just to name a few! There were exciting inflatables and rides on the Main Field for campers to enjoy; the Dixie Swings, the Knight’s Castle Combo and the High Voltage Obstacle Course. We all enjoyed a delicious All Camp Cookout of hamburgers and hotdogs, followed by the most popular refreshment of the summer; the Lick-A-Color Sour Iced Pop!
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 91st 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 2020. 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!