If you are not an MTC alumnus, please forward this email to the person in your household or family who is and get them to sign up with their e-mail here!
Welcome to our new Alumni newsletter “The Traffic Circle”. As you know the traffic circle at camp is where people gather and mingle before or after meals, in between classes, during free time. You often see campers and staff in The Traffic Circle for games of 4 Square, Roof Ball, Ladder Ball, Can Jam, 2018’s sensational new game “9 Square in the Air” (Google it, seriously). Also, those of a certain vintage will recall that The Traffic Circle was the name of our old website forum in the early 2000’s, back in the time before everything online was ruined by bots and spam.
Some of you we’ve been in regular contact with, and others…it’s been awhile. Some of you come to Maine to visit us regularly, some we haven’t seen since you had tears running down your face, crying as you left on the last-day-of-the-best-summer-of-your-life. Regardless, we’re excited to start communicating with you on a more regular basis, 3 or 4 times a year, and we are really hoping we’ll be hearing more from you as a result.
Whether via email, the website alumni form, or our FB/Instagram pages, we want to keep up with what is going on in your world. 2019 represents 35 years of Maine Teen Camp. We have alumni from the 80’s and early 90’s sending their kids to us as campers. We have camper alumni from the 00’ and 10’s working at camp during the summer. We have more former campers going to college, graduating, travelling, working incredible jobs, making amazing and inspiring art, getting married, having kids, changing the world for the better than we’ve been able to keep track. We’ve had two awesome reunion weekends of Alumni, once for 25 years and once for 30. With this new outreach, we are hopeful that in time for the next reunion, we will have so many Alumni attend that we will have to rent out extra space in large tents!
We want to start keeping a bit more of a record of where you’ve gone and what you’ve done, as a service to the greater camp family. When we have a 16 or 17 year-old camper going to look at colleges, it is so beneficial to be able to connect them with some MTC alum who studied there, as an extra resource. When a camp alum travels to a different country, it is insanely cool to be able to connect them with an MTC alum who lives there to pass along some local knowledge. When former campers and staff move to a new city and don’t know anyone there - well, they really do. They know the inevitable crew of camp people who live in that city. By expanding our reach more formally, we hope that there’s even more connections made successfully, to all our like-minded camp folks who are willing to lend a hand, extend a welcoming smile, or offer a guest room in their home.
And not to worry, we don’t want to bombard you all with camp emails or anything. We’ll send out a newsletter 3-4 times a year, with updates about what’s happening at camp, alumni comings and goings, and just stuff about camp and community that might be of interest. And blogs. We write some really great blogs. Be sure to check those out too.
So reach out to us. Say hi. Let us know what’s going on. And know that your extended camp family is expanding every single summer.
For those who haven’t visited MTC in a while, we think you’d be delighted if you did. Camp still feels, and mostly, looks the same as it always has. That is, it’s still the an absolutely gorgeous slice of heaven. Depending on when you were last at camp, you might find some new cabins, a new program area or 2, lots of lovely new gardens, a lot of upgraded bathrooms (yay!), and oh yeah, another lake… Over the last two summers we finally opened access to Trafton Pond, cleared space for a natural amphitheater and stage behind the fire circle, built stairs and dock, and now offer canoeing on Trafton Pond. Of course, it’s amazing.
One thing that everyone would recognize, regardless of your camp era, is the tech-free nature of camp. As the wider world has become saturated with technology, we’ve recognized that camp is one of the few places left that prioritizes in person contact over smartphones. Campers are not allowed any sort of phone, and staff are required to restrict use. And, what’s great, is that everyone accepts it, and totally buys into it; appreciative of the time given back, and the face to face interactions that increase the value of connectiveness.
Of course, MTC is still a very relaxed environment all round. It’s still super diverse, with kids and staff from all over the country and the world, from a wide variety of backgrounds. MTC has been in a leadership position when it comes to inclusion from all nationalities, all gender expressions, and sexualities.
Most importantly, MTC remains a space for kids to just be themselves, make life-long friendships, try a bunch of engaging new activities that they otherwise wouldn’t have the guts or opportunity to work on, spend time in the beautiful woods of Maine, and enjoy being away from the pressure of school, family, and media for a while. Ultimately, gaining independence and figuring out a bit more of the adolescent struggle to gain an identity. And, post-summer feedback from parents declaring - ”Thank-you for giving my son back to me”, with its simplicity stacked in underlying, heartfelt meaning.
Working at Camp
Word of mouth isn’t just great for helping new campers learn about MTC, it’s also incredibly important for our staff recruiting. Whether former campers returning as staff, or friends of current or former staff, students/co-workers/neighbors of former staff, having someone who knows and loves MTC recommend a new staff goes a long way. If you know someone who you think would be an excellent addition to staff, please direct them to the website here, and encourage them to reach out via email as well, just to let us know how they heard about us through you. We receive a lot of applications, so it’s nice to get special attention.
We want to hear about where you are and what you are doing. Off to school? Graduated school? Started a new job? Got married? Had a kid? Wrote a book? Wrote a song? Traveled somewhere? Met up with camp people? We want to know about all of it!
And starting with the next issue of this newsletter, we will be highlighting what one of our amazing alumnus is working on. So if you’ve got an album out, a unique business or not profit you're running, art that you want share with us, have a cool announcement to make, or want to share a recent award with us, please email Matt (email@example.com). We'll be reaching out to interview and learn a little more, and then share those stories.
Subscribe to our YouTube page!
We have a little favor to ask everyone. We need your YouTube subscriptions!
After much deliberation, we've decided to make the move to YouTube! So from now on, all of our new videos are going to start showing up there. Subsequently, we need all of your help to get the channel off the ground!
First of all, please click this link to head on over to our YouTube channel and check out or new activity videos. But second of all and arguably more important. PLEASE SUBSCRIBE.
The way YouTube runs a lot of its business plans is that you need a certain number of subscribers to utilize key functions and being fairly new to being on YouTube seriously every new person to subscribe pushes us ever closer to being able to take advantage of those functions. Tools that will better help us share our videos with all of you wonderful people out there in the MTC Community!
As many of you know, summer 2018 was Marilynn’s last summer working at MTC. Starting in 1988, Marilynn became an essential part of the MTC experience for campers, staff and camper parents. A constant as reassuring and reliable as the sound of the loons on Stanley Pond each summer, Marilynn decided it was time to try something else for the summer. We miss her already and wish her all the best with her new summer travel adventures in her retirement (and we hope she sends us a postcard).
Did you know MTC rents out the facility for weddings, reunions, parties, and corporate events in the Fall? If you know someone looking for the most amazing venue for their big day or event, please have them check out our website, www.mainecampweddings.com, or FB page. And please pass along our email to them, firstname.lastname@example.org
Did you know that word of mouth referrals are the single biggest way new campers find MTC? Former campers, staff and parents recommend us to family, neighbors, co-workers, classmates all the time. What’s truly amazing to us is the growing number of children of alumni who are now attending camp as campers and staff. MTC is proud to offer a 20% alumni discount to all former campers and staff who now have kids of their own ready for camp. Be sure to contact us before you register to make sure we apply the credit. Let us know if you’re spreading the word about camp, we’d love to know how we can help.
Visits to Camp
Remember to look us up if you are intending on wanting to visit over the summer. We LOVE to have alumni visits, just be sure to contact us ahead of time (so we can expect you), and while you can’t bunk it in with us overnight, we can surely offer you a nice visit and camp lunch for old time sake!
Of all the major holidays on the United States calendar, Thanksgiving is the holiday that totally “gets” camp. There are so many parallels – it’s not associated with any particular religion, rather, it’s all about getting together with the important people in your life. And there is lots of food (!), some sort of field sports, lawn games, or board games! Make sure to check out our post all about why being thankful is a great skill for improving your life in the MTC Blog here!
The MTC blog is pretty active, with at least a couple of new posts per month. Check back frequently for a wide range of topics, one post from a couple of months ago was about how spending summers at camp talking to each other might just help us be better participants in civil society. More importantly, if you would like to submit a guest blog post, about any aspect of your camp experience that you think might resonate with campers, staff or parents, please email email@example.com. Please, we do love to receive guest blogs!
Daily Camp Photo/Video
Did you know that during the off-season, we post a photo or video to camp every day, to the Instagram page @mtc365.
So cool to see the seasonal progressions at camp.
MTC Legends Campership Fund
Did you know that MTC has a campership fund? Every year we’re able to bring several campers to MTC who would not otherwise have the opportunity to attend. In recent summers, MTC Legends Campership’s have allowed…
-a young man whose family lost everything to a house fire to attend camp for 2 summers;
- a young lady who arrived in Maine as an unaccompanied refugee from Burundi to come to camp for her second summer in 2018;
- 3 different campers from Maine, including 2 from immigrant families, who otherwise wouldn’t have the chance to attend a camp like MTC
No matter how much, please make your donation to the Campership Fund, or simply learn more about it here.