After Taps Episode 1: Three Cheers for the Director

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Our first podcast episode is officially online!

In our first episode, we talk with Diane Foster who served as interim director for a year at Fleur de Lis Camp. Now, she’s the Vice President on the Board of Directors at FdL, but also a parent of two awesome campers. Di shares her views on camp, the camp community, nd why she thinks Fleur de Lis is an “extraordinary place.”

The podcast will be available on iTunes by the end of the week, but for now, listen on Soundcloud or by clicking here.

Italian food, camp friends, and charity

On Friday, November 4 at Salvatore’s in Boston, Fleur de Lis Camp alumnae will gather to eat seafood and raise money for Circle of Fleur de Lis. We’ll have great Italian food, dancing, and a silent auction to top off a fantastic Friday night on the seaport.IMG_2108e.jpg

Circle of Fleur de Lis turns five years old this year! Everyone involved will tell you that it has been an exciting, challenging adventure that has resulted in many smiles and close friendships that otherwise wouldn’t have happened. In 2016, Circle of Fleur de Lis had close to 50 campers for a week of free camp. We sang songs, jumped around on the water mat, made some fun crafts, and watched campers bond over the experience of losing a parent.

This incredible program can only happen because people like you – kind, compassionate people who understand the importance of camp – donate time and/or money to Circle. Now is your chance not only to donate, but to join in on a great time!

Get your tickets here!

A camp podcast: stories from you

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We have exciting news!

Fleur de Lis Camp is starting a podcast called After Taps. Each episode will feature a different camp alum telling a story about their time at camp. Episodes are less than 10 minutes and will be shared two times a month. Every month has a different topic, too! In November, we will kick off the podcast with stories from Fleur de Lis Camp directors.

Camp is such a special place for everyone who has attended as a camper, worked as a staff member, and visits as an alumnae. Yet sometimes, it’s hard to explain why camp is so special! We talk about the incredible community, friendships, and memories all the time – but now, we want to actually show you what those things mean by sharing the stories with you.

Have any thoughts or questions? Want to submit a story for the podcast? Email hannah@fleurdeliscamp.org.

Why our camp has an Ambassador program

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Here’s something that’s true: no one knows camp like campers do, no one loves camp like campers do, and no one is more excited about camp than campers are.

So during our recruitment season, why would we rely on someone who hasn’t been a camper for at least 10 years talk about the awesomeness of camp? Of course, an adult can speak to the important bullet points: the safety, the accreditations, the skill-building, the housing. But is that really why people go to camp? Don’t they go for the friendships, the memories, the chance to build confidence, to learn new things?

Our Ambassador pilot program launched in the Spring of 2016. We chose a handful of camp lovers; kids with strong leadership skills from areas where we generally have interest in camp.

These Ambassadors are all different ages but focus on one thing in particular: helping to recruit new campers. They are responsible for finding girls who might be good “camp kids,” ideally ages 8-10 years old, who would be interested in camp. Ambassadors then host an Open House at their house (or public space) for families interested in camp. This is where the Ambassador parents come in: they help their camper market the event, and they help speak about camp.

Our first Open House season is underway, and it has been amazing to see how supportive and excited our Ambassador families have been! We are so proud of the girls and their parents for helping pilot this program.

Have any questions? Comments? Ideas on how we can make this even more stellar? Post below!

What is the best and worst part of camp?

This part isn’t out of the ordinary:

Every summer before campers depart, we hand them a piece of paper that asks a lot of questions. Things like: “Were your counselors welcoming?” and “What activities did you want to try, but didn’t?” and “Rate the camp food on a scale of 1-5.”

Most of these are simple multiple choice answers, where we get wrinkled papers with scribbled, scraggly penciled circles around each answer. But our favorite part is reading what the best and worst part of camp is for each camper.

This individualized feedback gives us such great insight into what the Juniors dislike about camp (hint: they sometimes miss their parents), how we can improve for Mid campers (hint: they really don’t want to learn about fungi on trips), and why Seniors keep coming back to camp year after year (hint: something about their best friends, right?!).

Every day for the rest of September, we’ll be tweeting our favorite responses on our Twitter profile. If you don’t have Twitter, you can still check our public profile and read some of our tweets.

Why are we doing this?

Some of the responses are incredibly cute and worth sharing, like my personal favorite: screen-shot-2016-09-13-at-10-26-05-am

But a lot of them may also resonate with current and past campers: the themes of friendship, being yourself, being comfortable at camp, and most campers’ answer to “Worst part of camp?”: “Nothing.”

Keep following our tweets and other social media for fun projects like these. We also welcome feedback! Have a cool idea for a social media campaign, or absolutely hate this one? Let us know: hannah@fleurdeliscamp.org.

A day in the life of a camper at FdL

By Edie, 3rd year Mid

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Morning:

6:55am – Warning blows. I stay in bed.
7:00am –  Reveille blows. I stay in bed.
7:20am – Table blows. I stay in bed.
7:25am – I sit up, throw on shorts and my newest tie-dye, and realize I’m late for table squad. Oops. Running up, I’m not the last one (luckily) and I squad table 9. After setting the table (napkins, silverware, plates, cups, etc.), I sit down and wait for staff and CTs to arrive. After a yummy meal of waffles, I help clear, and then stay after to clean the table.

After breakfast, all the Mids go to the barn to clean up for Mid Birthday, the Mid campers’ play. It’s Aristocats. We have been practicing since Monday and it looks pretty good. After cleaning, we head to the fields to clean up our tents and cabins. In my tent, we have a chart with who does what to clean today. I look around the tent for trash, Brenna takes out the keg (trash), Eve checks to see if stuff on the lines are dry, and Michelle sweeps. Then the trumpet blows for 1st activity and…my  bed isn’t made.

Once everything is neat, I rush up to swim class where I realize it’s Endurance Day! 20 minutes of continuous swim and 20 minutes of treading. After that, I walk ALL THE WAY down the road to Archery, where I shoot a 33, and can count towards my award. After Archery, I walk ALL THE WAY back up the camp road to Stained Glass where I continue grinding the glass for my gold award. Only 6 more pieces!

I get to table first, and start setting napkins and go change out of my lake-smelling, slightly damp bathing suit.

Afternoon: 

Lunch is fried chicken (yes!), mashed potatoes, gravy, and veggie medley. After cleaning, all the Mid go to the fields for our first rest hour in a week because of Mid Birthday. I finish writing a letter to my sister, Molly, and then I practice my lines one last time.

Fourth activity blows, and I have waterski. I walk up to the Old Dining Hall (ODH) with Adele and Isa. I go first and get around the lake twice and I glide in, but I didn’t go all the way in and out of the wake, so I almost passed my bronze. Isa goes next, and gets uno n one ski, goes around twice, touches the water and hops the wake.

At rec time, I shower and change into my dress for the dinner tonight. I’m at the April table, since my birthday is in the month of April. I make cat ears for the play tonight and finish my final Spirit Sister gift! Then, table blows and it’s back up the road to help set tables again for dinner, although it is a different set-up. Dinner is chicken salad wraps (yum!) and vanilla cupcakes with pink frosting.

Evening:

After dinner, Juniors go down to the fields, Seniors do dish and clean the tables, and Mids get into costumes for MID BIRTHDAY!

My costume for Duchess is a long white dress with lots of lace, along with ears.

The play goes well and then we have our Spirit Sister party, where Mids find out who has been giving me gifts (secretly) and the person who has been getting gifts from me finds out who I am.

Night:

After the SS (Spirit Sister) party, we head down to the fields to get ready for bed. I brush my teeth at the Wogs (bathrooms) and then go back to the tent and change for bed. After Lady Maddie reads us Harry Potter and the Cursed Child for a while, Taps blows, and third-year Mids get 20 minutes after Taps to read. So I continue reading and go to sleep.

by Edie