Social media and digital methods like email have become the primary methods of communicating with the camp community year-round, and with parents during the summer. What does it mean for a proudly offline summer experience to rely so heavily on platforms like Instagram to put the comm in community? How does our use of digital tech resonate with what we teach campers and staff?
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Spring is here! Well, technically spring is here, and I’m sure for much of the country it even feels this way. As for the great state of Maine…we will get there. Spring will come and go, and summer will be here before we know it.
With spring upon us, for many families of teenagers, it’s now crunch time in deciding what to do this summer. While many teenagers might like to get a job or simply hang out for the summer, these are often not viable options – jobs can be difficult to find or have strict age limits and demand specific qualifications. “Hanging out” is great in small doses but is not always an ideal plan for an entire summer. This leads many families to think about a summer camp, trip, or “program”. Today, we’ll consider some of the main differences between a summer at a real camp, like Maine Teen Camp, versus a summer program on a college campus or similar.
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(We will be featuring a series of guest posts on the MTC blog over the coming months. This post is contributed by Todd B., camper parent 17/18).
I am the dad of a thirteen year old, strong willed daughter and this is my story.
From the age of seven to sixteen I went to a renowned summer camp down south. Not only did my two sisters go to the sister camp down the river, my wife did as well. All of us lived for this camp. We thrived in sports, earned ranks as we mastered these sports, belted out camp songs year round and made a few memories along the way. It was a no brainer for my wife, my sister and I to send our children to the same camp where we spent our summers. So we did.
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(We will be featuring a series of guest posts on the MTC blog over the coming months. This post is contributed by Tracy Preston, MTC parent summer 2014 & 2017.)
When I was a teen in 1970s London, I dreamt of going to one of the Camps in the USA that I had seen in the movies. Camps looked fun, inclusive, and full of activity and new friends to make – usually set on a lake in a beautiful location. At that time in my life – I would have been lucky to get a summer day to trip to a beach in grey old England, and my dreams of camp life in America – would remain just that – dreams.
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This post is contributed by Joe Mankowski, MTC Camper'05,'06,'07,'08,'09 & Staff Member'11
They say time flies when you’re having fun… but here at camp there is no time, there are only bells, bells that ring within a blink of an eye. How has it been already an entire session? How has an entire community of strangers become one of the single most treasured memories in my heart? I don’t know, and it seems as though I never will.
I was a camper here for five years and have finally returned to be apart of the staff… to be apart of the great group of people who make this place a bubble. Now, I have lived both sides to the story and I am still in awe at how different life functions within the perimeter of Maine Teen Camp. It takes years, back at home, to make a best friend: to trust, to care, to love. Here at camp it’s been only one session and I have yet again, met people I can’t imagine my life without. One month here is like a decade out in the real world and I believe it’s partially do to with the fact that we are all “unplugged.”
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Two weeks ago, Monique and my world changed fairly drastically. Our son, Tanner Rhodes, was born in the early morning of May 4th. A healthy, wiggly, happy little boy, we had been waiting to meet this little guy for a very long time. Now he is here, and we are feeling incredibly lucky, tired and very happy.
One aspect of the whole experience has added a wonderful depth to our happiness. That aspect is the outpouring of congratulations, expressions of joy and welcome, from the massive extended family that is the camp community. While we are always aware of the connections made at MTC, and how strong those connections are, it is not so often that these connections are mapped out. In the days and weeks since Tanner was born we have been simply inundated with well wishes from near and far.
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As part of our attempt to keep the entries on the teencamp.com blog a little more diverse and interesting, we will be posting some thoughts on camp from guest writers, mostly camp alumni - campers and staff alike.
Today's guest, Max Jahn - MTC Camper '96 - '98, MTC Staff '02, MIT Sloan MBA Class of 2011. As staff Max taught soccer, running, and Viennese Charm (the seed from which grew MIT Sloan's Joie de Vivre club).....
"When I was 14 years old, my parents sent me off to summer camp. I left my family in Austria and knew I would only see them eight weeks later, after a full summer at the Maine Teen Camp. I was not scared or afraid stepping on the plane but curious to venture into the unknown. I had followed the ascent of the Chicago Bulls and enjoyed the occasional chicken McNuggets at McD’s and now would finally get a chance to explore the New World.