Category Archives: summer camp

Reflections on 2016

As the Winter Solstice approaches, Wildwood’s bare trees reveal wider views of Hubbard Pond. The grays and browns of mid-December create their own stark beauty. During this quiet time, we reflect on the year that has gone by and prepare for the one to come.

Thank You for Your Support

We are grateful to the 104 families who donated to Wildwood in 2016. Because of their generosity, we were able to offer over $50,000 in financial aid to campers who might not otherwise have been able to come to camp and we were able to fund the construction of two Wooden Tents in the Fossey Unit. Truly, the generosity of our camp families reflects the spirit of Wildwood—together, connecting with nature and each other, we can make a difference.

Wildwood Camp Director Welch Narron with campers

Wildwood Camp Director Welch Narron with some happy campers.

Making Camp Possible for All

We have more big plans for Wildwood in 2017. One important initiative is our effort to provide new ways of offering camp scholarships by partnering with elementary and middle schools in urban areas of Massachusetts. Our hope is to widen our camp family by finding and inviting to Wildwood children who might never have considered overnight camp on their own.

New Wooden Tents for Fossey Unit

As for progress we can see and feel, this winter and spring our construction crew will finish the second and third Wooden Tents in the Fossey Unit. In 2017, all Fossey campers will be sleeping in Wooden Tents! After that, we will look ahead to funding and building three Wooden Tents in the Thoreau Unit.

New Wooden Tents in the Fossey Unit at Wildwood Overnight Camp

Cranberry (right) and our newest Wooden Tent (left) in the Fossey Unit

Registration is Open for 2017!

Finally, registration is underway for Summer 2017! You may register now via our website. Be sure to check out the 2017 camp brochure also on our website. Watch for the paper version in mailboxes and at your local sanctuary soon. Register for camp by January 15 to take advantage of the Early Bird discount.

Will You Join Us?

In closing, we want to thank again all of our generous donors. Will you join them? Please consider an end-of-year gift to Wildwood. Donations toward our general operations, scholarship program, and our Wooden Tent Campaign are truly appreciated. Thank you, and best wishes for the holiday season.

Donate Today

Session 6, 2016: Part Two (end of overnight camp!)

Session 6 is sliding into home with an incredibly strong finish! The past couple of days’ highlights have included Zip Line at the high ropes challenge course, raft building at the waterfront, and Tie Dye. Lots of campers have had the opportunity to try new things throughout the week.

The Leaders-In-Action (second year LITs) have been a big part of camp this session. They’ve taken a lot of ownership over this week’s evening programs and continuing their success from last week’s campfire. They even planned and helped facilitate the Unit Night activities this week. Everyone seemed to be having a great time!

The Caves and Waterfalls trek group have visited close to half a dozen waterfalls at this point and two separate cave formations. They’ll be visiting the Ward-Gregory cave system in eastern New York on Friday which should be their most in-depth cave experience of the week. We are looking forward to great photos and stories once they return.

If you have any pictures you or your camper took this summer, please send them to us! We’d love to have those photos for future blog posts, brochures, and the website.

Thank you all for a great summer of camp! We’ll see you all next summer. Be sure to subscribe here to stay in the loop of the year-round happenings at camp.

Session 6 (and 5 week two), 2016: Part One

It’s hard to believe that the final week of overnight camp is here already! We are so lucky to have such an amazing group of campers here this week enjoying the last little bit of summer. The days and nights have gotten much cooler and some birds have been sighted beginning their southward migrations. We’re keeping an eye out for raptors and nightjars flying across the skies above the pond.

We closed out Session 5 last week with an amazing campfire hosted by our Leaders-In-Action (second year LITs). They did an excellent job of creating a fun theme along with skits to carry us through the history of Wildwood throughout the campfire.

We also received some pictures back from the Caves and Waterfalls trekkers who spent their day along with guides from Adventure In Adventure Out exploring cave formations in western Massachusetts. That was after a day exploring the Quechee Gorge area of Vermont which included a visit to the amazing VINS Nature Center.

The forecast looks great for the week ahead so we expect lots more fun over the coming days. Enjoy this peek in to camp and see you back later this week!

Session 5, 2016: Part Two

We’re back with another peek into Session 5! The second half of the week has included many more great activities. One of the favorites was “Super Seine” where campers used seine nets to catch fish and other organisms in the shallow area of the pond. Archery is of course always a popular activity and plenty of campers have had the opportunity to practice their skills at the range. Many are becoming quite talented! Tonight’s evening program was a camp favorite, Capture the Flag! Both sides played their hearts out and at the end, no one was really clear who was the victor.

Our backpacking trekkers will be back at camp tomorrow after a full week of hiking some high peaks in the White Mountains. They stayed in an AMC cabin on Tuesday night, and spent the rest of the week in other huts and shelters. Soon they’ll be back hopefully with some great pictures and stories to share.

For those campers who are staying for one week, we will have a great send-off for them on Saturday at 10:00am. We’ll certainly miss them, but our two-week campers will be great ambassadors for another batch of one-weekers arriving on Sunday.

We’ll be back again with another update next week. Have a great weekend!


Session 5, 2016: Part One

Just like that Session 5 has begun! Tuesday was our first full day of programming and we began the day with Interest Groups (IGs). This week’s choices include New Hampshire Explorers, Sailing, Service, and more. Tie Dye was a huge hit this afternoon during DGs, which means lots of campers will be bringing home bandanas and tee-shirts with a little more camp flair at the end of the session.

The skies cleared up throughout the afternoon which allowed activities like Wetland Kayak to spend some quality time out on the pond. They explored the shores and coves with an eye out for wildlife moving around in the misty afternoon.

Our Backpacking the Whites group made it up to their first summit today! They’ll have an easier go the rest of the week as they hike along ridge lines before arriving back at their starting point on Friday.

There’s so much more to come as the session is only just getting warmed up. See you back here on Thursday for another peek into camp!

Session 4, 2016: Part Two

Big update for the end of Session 4! We have had such a blast this week, we couldn’t contain it all in just a few photos. There was a little bit of rain on Wednesday morning, but it certainly didn’t keep us indoors for long. That afternoon you’ll see campers heading enthusiastically to the waterfront even among cloudy skies and a little bit of drizzle.

On Thursday, everything brightened up and we had a full day of programs and activities. The camp store has also been a busy place as campers pick up some drink mix to keep themselves hydrated throughout the day. Of course on the warm days also, the waterfront was packed with people as everyone was in line to run around on the lily pad, or take a slide down the iceberg.

Our trekkers who are visiting Lake Champlain this week met up with naturalists from the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum who led the campers on a journey in row boats to islands and other fascinating areas of this important northeast waterway. They’ll be arriving back to camp on Friday, just before dinner, with plenty of stories to tell.

It’s hard to believe that Friday is the last day of the session! We’ll make the most of today before seeing families back at camp tomorrow between 9:30 and 10:00am. See you then!

Session 4, 2016: Part One

Session 4 is off to a great start with the first full day of programming. Campers began with the first day of their weekly Interest Group. The IG options this week include Outdoor Living Skills, Sailing, and Farm to Table. Those groups will meet every morning this week and learn together about their chosen topic.

This afternoon also featured the first sampling of Discovery Groups. Today’s offerings included “Life of a Dragonfly”, where campers checked out all phases of a dragonfly’s life cycle up close. They began by exploring the water for signs of dragonfly nymphs, before moving to the field to see the adults hunting for food among the tall grass.

Today’s lunch was also our first theme meal of the session. The theme today was “Twin Day” so many campers came to lunch in matching outfits. It was a great time and we are looking forward to some more exciting theme meals throughout the rest of the week.

Stay tuned for more photos and updates later this week!

Session 3, 2016: Part Four

It has been a spectacular Session 3! It’s hard to believe that tomorrow is our last full day of programming. Yesterday we were treated to a special medieval-themed day full of activities, costumes, and a whole lot of fun. Our camp staff took on special roles as they led the day, including the most wonderful Princess Karim.

The 2-week Great North Woods trip finished up their paddle down Bear Brook today as they took out by Pontook Dam. They will head to Squam Lake campground this evening and stay at a campsite on an island just off-shore. Tomorrow they’ll visit the Loon Preservation Committee’s nature center before heading back to Wildwood. We can’t wait to hear more about their adventure and see some of the pictures that they weren’t yet able to send over.

See you all on Saturday for the closing ceremony at 10:00am!

Session 3, 2016: Part Two

We’re back with another set of pictures of fun-filled days at camp. We begin with an update from the Great North Woods trek who arrived in Pittsburg, NH yesterday. They had a stop-over in the northern end of the White Mountain National Forest which included a day-hike into an overnight camp out. From there, they made their way up the rest of Route 3 and arrived in the Great North Woods where they are camping at Lake Francis State Park.

On camp we had plenty of exciting things going on as well. With the warm weather this week, the waterfront has been a popular spot during OATs almost every day. The Outdoor Living Skills IG practiced their fire building skills today and everyone had the chance to build and light their own fire. Of course with fire building at camp, we had to roast some marshmallows or it would have been a waste of a perfectly good campfire!

Unit groups will be heading out on their overnights starting Friday afternoon. We are looking forward to a busy weekend with lots of great stories to tell once everyone gets back. The LIT and JC groups will be departing on Saturday, and we sure will miss them a lot.

See you back here next week. Enjoy your weekend, I know we will!

Session 3, 2016: Week One, Part One

We so happy to be back into the swing of camp after saying good-bye to Session 2 and welcoming Session 3 to a fun-filled two weeks at Wildwood!

We got off to a great start with opening campfire on Sunday evening, before orientation day on Monday with swim checks, health checks, and some free time at OATs in the afternoon. Tuesday marked the first full day of activities with programs like sailing, Life of a Dragonfly, and archery.

The LIT group made it back from an awesome weekend at Mt. Greylock in Massachusetts on Sunday and have been telling us all of the stories about their adventures. The Great North Woods two-week trek made it up to Sugarloaf Campground before heading off on their overnight backpacking excursion up to Percy Loop. Hopefully we’ll have some pictures from that group to post on Thursday.

Enjoy this look into Session 3!