Freshman Jack Christian attended his last year as a camper at Walton’s Grizzly Lodge Summer Camp in Portola, Calif., Aug. 2-15.
Q: How many years have you attended the camp?
A: Three. I first got introduced to the camp by my friend, Seth Kelly, who used to go to Country Day before he moved to Oakland this year.
Q: Besides (Kelly), have you made any worthwhile friendships there?
A: I have a lot of new friends that I have kept in touch with, but I haven’t actually met any of them outside of the camp in person. It would just be too hard to arrange.
Q: What did you usually do every day?
A: The activities provided by the camp, like shooting, fishing and art stuff. My favorite things were wakeboarding and waterskiing.
Q: Was there anything different that happened this time?
A: Instead of staying one week like I had the past two years, I stayed two. I got hooked, and I wanted to be there for as long as I could.
This year I was also a senior boy, which meant that I was in the oldest boys’ group.
Q: Do the senior boys do anything special?
A: We were the ones who had kitchen duty. We helped set up, filled everyone’s drinks during the meal and cleaned up after. We would then eat with the kitchen staff after we were done.
We also led the younger groups in the water carnival, an all-afternoon event where the boys’ and girls’ groups (there are four of each) compete against each other in water-related activities.
I was in charge of the cubs, who are the youngest boys’ group.
Q: Youngest? How did the cubs do against the older teams?
A: Surprisingly, we did pretty well. We got fourth place, which we were all really excited about.
But they were really bad at leapfrog. (All of the other groups were) going onto the next events, and I was stuck trying to teach them how to jump over each other’s backs.
Q: Did you have any daily rituals?
A: For the mornings, we had to clean our dorms, and then every night we would have a campfire. Different groups would also do skits during the fires. I honestly can say that I didn’t have a favorite skit; they were all pretty bad.
A different person would also emcee each night. They kept the skits moving and told jokes.
Q: Do you think you’ll go back and be a counselor?
A: Hopefully. This year I practiced to be a CILT, or a camper in leadership training, which meant that I was unofficially training to be a counselor.
But I also have to apply next year if I’m really serious about being a CILT. If I get accepted, I will be a CILT when my sister (seventh-grader Meg) is still a camper.
—By Madison Judd