Monday, August 03, 2009

Cub World at Camp William B. Snyder Day One

Alex and I left for camp at about three o’clock in the afternoon on Friday. After driving for about one and one half hours we arrived at Camp William B. Snyder in Haymarket, Virginia. We were late, check in was supposed to start at one o’clock, so, we had to do a little rushing around getting our stuff to camp and getting ready for the first assembly and dinner and we missed all of the orientations, including the swim test.

Just before each meal, was an assembly outside of the dining hall where all of the scouts and staff would gather report in. Before breakfast and dinner were flag ceremonies performed by the camp staff who set an excellent example for the boys. There were four staff patrols, each would do a little skit before the flag ceremony, and some of them were great, getting good laughs from both the boys and their parents. Dinner was great, but the process was even better. Having missed most of the orientation, it was a little confusing at first. Basically, before the assembly, we would set up the table, putting the chairs down, and getting dishes and silver ware placed, but most importantly, selecting a totem. While we were outside at assembly, the kitchen staff would deliver the meals to each table on platters and in serving bowls. After eating, the (staff person, Kirby, whose title I can’t remember, but sort of in charge) would give a few announcements and say “What time is it?” to which all would reply, “Song Time!” and then they would spin the “wheel of song” that would choose the staff group that would lead that meal’s song. Clean up was interesting too, after singing, the kitchen staff person would ask us to throw away all of our trash and uneaten food, clearing it from all the dishes. Then they’d call for specific items to be brought to the dish washing area. This was also a little confusing at first, but we got the hang of it.

After cleaning up following dinner we again assembled for the opening campfire. This is where the fun really started. The staff had some great skits, really great skits, all setting up for the weekend’s theme: The Cub World Detective Agency with a mission to find out which staff member was Ripley Jebediah Hemingway, an ‘enemy’ secret agent. For each camp session, the camp director draws a name from a list of staff members and puts it in a box, and then places several clues in boxes for each station and saves some clues to be given out at assembly before meals. At the end of the campfire, the staff sung Scout vespers and we returned to camp for lights out.

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