On Tuesday, we started off our morning with a skills session on firebuilding. We asked the campers to go into the woods and find what they thought would be good to use to start a fire. This material is called "tinder." They each got to take their match and see how flammable their tinder was. It's important to choose the right kind of material in order to create sustainable heat to ignite the kindling.
We offer a lot of activities and structured instruction of outdoor skills, but it is important that we also include ample time to just relax and have fun around our campsites. These guys work hard, and they deserve some down-time!
Our main activity on Tuesday was paintball. Two of our counselors joined our forces before camp started and helped us with campsite and ground improvements. One of their tasks was redesigning the paintball course. The new layout offered us some great new options of gameplay. The campers had a blast creeping around in the ferns and sneaking up on the other team! You can always count on leaving the paintball course with three things: great memories, bruises, and wood ticks. Yes, part of team building is to help do a "tick check" after time in the woods.
We spent several hours on Wednesday on the Menominee River. We are blessed to have a beautiful river just a few miles away from our property! The campers were instructed in some basic canoe strokes and maneuvering. After paddling down the river, we parked at one of the islands and enjoyed a sack lunch and the rope swing!
Here we go! On Sunday, we began our two-week adventure with these ten young men. We threw a challenge at them right away by taking them out to our obstacle course. When they arrive, they are not yet placed in a team. Part of our orientation process is to see how they interact with one another in a competitive setting. We are looking for their strengths and weaknesses in leadership, teamwork, problem-solving, ingenuity, and other areas. Getting a brief glance at these things helps us separate our campers into two teams. So far, the teams are staying close in their competition and are displaying excellent team spirit!
Every morning, we start our day with a flag-raising. This is a time that we use to teach patriotism, respectful handling of our flag, and to give thanks for the freedoms that God has given us as a nation. After flag-raising, we have a skill session that purposes to teach and hone important outdoor skills. On Monday, Mark Hawkins from Hands on Deck joined us to teach blade handling, basic carving, and woodworking designed to improve life at a campsite.
Dan Raught closed out our first day with a biblical discussion on worldviews. He compared a worldview with a pair of glasses - it modifies our sight and offers a differing perspective of the world around us. This week, we will be encouraging our campers to consider the worldview with which they are currently believing. The truth is, ideas have consequences. Good ideas have good consequences and bad ideas have bad consequences. So, what kind of thoughts dominate our lives? Biblically speaking, we will either be a captor or a captive.