Camp started and ended with rain- the first and last two days were wet, but in between it was a phenomenal season as Towanda Sports Center raised the bar even more since 2014. It was a summer that flew by with visiting teams coming and going as well as Towanda teams traveling and hosting. We had the highest amount of camper participation in recorded Towanda history, as well as the highest amount of teams wishing to come to Towanda to play. Our teams and facilities looked the part and acted the part.
Consolidation of Our Code
The Philosophy continues, and others continue to recognize it. In sports, just as in life, you need to have focus, balance and a good sense of humor. Our teams were continually complimented on their ethics of teamwork, excellent sportsmanship and fair play among other things. Furthermore, we generally managed to achieve one other important goal: playing attractive sports that are skillful and pleasant to watch, whatever the result. Once again we are proud of all our kids and coaches as they had lots of fun in all their efforts and moved forward.
The results- not a top priority as we have stated before- reflected the spirit. Every age group to win at least one title in many different sports. This is most welcome and if you read on, you’ll see the details!!
Towanda’s most successful sport had five teams in Wayne County Finals, as well as a number of successes at invitationals. Some great soccer was played, but two highlights caught the eye: The“Miracle Cadet” who were 0-2 and 1-4 down at half time of their semifinal and final whistle and won both games in shootouts amid amazing celebratory scenes, while acknowledging excellent opponents in Equinunk and Wayne. The junior girls also flexed their muscles after scoring 32 goals in their Wayne County games!!
Four finals, four Wayne County championships in Basketball! The most dramatic came when the tweens traveled to Trails End and won 22-20 in triple overtime in a very exciting final. The Club/L.I.T boys also triumphed in a tournament that traditionally consists of some major competitors overall, the coaches and kids had a very enjoyable season, playing many, many games with a lot of playing time for everyone.
Junior Girls Repeat
The girls also kept home their basketball Championships as well as the soccer, and they came close to causing upsets in softball and lacrosse. This is a fun-loving group that loves its sports!!
Tennis on Tour
Continuing our tradition of playing good tennis, both our individual and our team tennis groups enjoyed a fine season, the cutest moment being when a Towanda brother/sister team of 9th/10th grade mixed doubles made it to the Wayne County semifinals.
Baseball/Softball is Back
The senior (9th grade) girls went the distance and brought home a much-awaited softball Wayne County championship. They hit confidently and swept aside champs Bryn Mawr and Tyler Hill on their travels, which speaks volumes. All our teams pitched and fielded very well and look forward to a great 2016 season.
After reaching two finals last year, our super-enthusiastic staff made it three this year. The junior (6th grade) boys lost in overtime, as did the Club/L.I.T (10th/11th grade) boys against very strong opponents. But our national/senior (8th/9th grade) boys went one better as they triumphed over the likes of Indian Head, Starlight and Wayne on their way to the title. Their shooting was fearless and decisive and lacrosse for both boys and girls is expanding hugely ahead of the 2016 season.
Flag Football Promise
Many participants enjoyed some great games. Our coaching staff ensured that all involved learned techniques as well as plays for all ages. We are looking to expand into tournaments for our girls in 2016 as powder puff grew in popularity within Towanda’s girl camp.
All three of our teams in boys and girls upper camp showed much spirit and enthusiasm as they worked hard with their coach to improve. This brought a very welcome championship home as the Club/L.I.T. boys triumphed at Island Lake with the whole team serving effectively a multitude of aces. Lower camp has taken to this and volleyball is yet another area that is growing at Towanda.
Hockey Players and Swimmers
Hockey continued to develop, thanks to our All-Canadian staff this year, building the skills of all levels and hoping to mount a challenge competitively in 2016. Additionally, our hugely enthusiastic swim team staff led our campers to 3 swim meets for boys and girls. The boys did especially well in all strokes, as did the girls in both freestyle and medley relays.
Undefeated Jets and Debs
These playdates for our youngest campers resulted in much, much fun for kids and staff, and an interesting statistic was discovered after the last playdate: in all the sports played (soccer, basketball, kickball,gaga, newcombe) we did not lose any!! We’ll happily take that!!
Win, lose or draw, it was a superb summer in sports. The concept remains- we love sports!! And, they are available for everyone. We focus on safety, sportsmanship, camaraderie, fun and playing well. This is what brings victory, whatever the results of the game.
We have some really nice surprises in store for next summer. You’ll have to wait and see what they are!! Meanwhile, a big well done to all the campers and coaches, and the very best to all our kid, families and staff for a happy and healthy winter. Looking forward to seeing everyone again in June 2016. Congratulations to everyone who participated this season and our champs and runners up below…
This is Coach Lee with Towanda Sports Center
Wayne County Champions
Wayne County Runners-up
Renegade Tournament Winners
Invitational Tournament Winners/ Runners-up
Towanda Tournament Champions
Can you believe the campers come home this week?! Where did the summer go? As you anxiously await their arrival by bus, plane or car, it’s good to think about where they are really coming from- emotionally.
For seven weeks, they have been part of a constant community, living in a bunk with a dozen friends, traveling in a pack to activities, eating together family style and always in motion. When they return home, it’s good to grant them the space they may need to adjust to a different pace of living and decompress. Here are a few things you can also expect:
No more homesickness, but now they are campsick. Remember when you told them that it’s okay to be homesick because that means they have a home that they love? Well, now get ready for campsickness. Camp is now their happy place, filled with cozy memories of friendship, family and fun. Just like homesickness, they will acclimate and get back into the swing of things. They just need time, space and the support of friends and family.
They mostly want to connect with their camp friends. Even though you may think they want to be with their home friends who they haven’t seen in weeks, you will probably find your campers texting, chatting and connecting with the friends they just left behind. The inside jokes, the rich experiences and life at Camp Towanda are only things they understand together. Their camp friends actually help make the transition easier if they can share, laugh and keep up their friendships in the “off season”.
They have manners and responsibility. At camp, we expect a lot of our campers in order to live together in harmony. They will come home wanting to make their beds and help with chores. Use this as an incredible opportunity and a gift to start off the school year on a great note! Even if their bed isn’t made perfectly, or all of their clothes don’t end up in the hamper, empower them with these jobs and reward their motivation to contribute and help their home family.
They haven’t touched a remote control in weeks! Card games, diablos, yo yos and books have replaced their devices (or appendages) for the summer. It’s a great time to dial back the dependance on electronics. Carve out an hour of the day and call it “camp time”. Have them enjoy technology-free eating, an old fashioned family board game or face-to-face conversation. They can do it! Trust us..when they are unplugged, they function even better!
Before long, you will feel like they were never gone. Parenting is tough and don’t let it wear you down. Keep up the good work and try to make the magic of camp last beyond October. Before you know it, it will be June again! And we can’t wait to have our summer kids back. We already miss them and they haven’t even left yet.
Here’s another great blog from last summer about homecoming. You can never be too prepared.
About Camp Towanda:
Camp Towanda is an independent, traditional, co-ed sleep-away camp in the Poconos in Pennsylvania. It is privately owned, operated and directed by Mitch and Stephanie Reiter (who are celebrating 25 years as owners and directors). For over 90 years, Camp Towanda has continued to define what camp should really be. Our program offers state-of-the-art facilities, an excellent and professional athletic department, waterfront, extensive arts, drama and adventure programs, and special events. We are highly regarded and respected as an industry leader and are involved in giving back to various organizations throughout the year. Camp Towanda is accredited by the American Camp Association and a member of the Camp-Alert-Network, Wayne County Camp Association, Camp Owners and Directors Association and the Pennsylvania Camp Association.
This is it- Camp Towanda Olympics 2015! Get all the details from Mitch’s email to our parents this morning, describing the scene at Camp Towanda, starting at 3:30am! Good luck Red Team. Good luck Blue Team!
I’ll try my best to capture what transpired; perhaps you even caught some of it on the live camp cam if you dont sleep!
A few “on a need to know basis” personnel assembled at four different points at key locations around our 235 acre complex; connected through special coded radio channels. The truck moves in and out the darkness of the night, a pyramid is assembled near The White Rock. Simultaneously, the Generals slither to their starting points, get into costume and the Camels unload from their carrier (they came from Wisconsin).
Time: 5:59 AM
All ready, all get into place and at exactly 5:59 AM a special, extra loud, remix of REVEILLE, THE GOAT ALERT ALARM, IS ANYBODY OUT THERE AND WALK LIKE AN EGYPTIAN blasts the campuses over the P.A. system.
Screams, cries and shrieks bounce across campus; the kids come running out of their bunks at dawn in their pajamas, bewildered. They see a camel surrounded by a harem of Generals walking through campus.
The music continues to blast; the horns shreek and the head Judgie, Bob Miller declares: THIS IS IT Towanda, OLYMPICS 2015!!!!”
And with that, a door opens on the Pyramid and four generals emerge with the team banners!
The generals are announced, the camper captains are announced, the lieutenants and the sergeants. They all come running towards the Pyramid which was flanked by the Camels!
The bewildered look and disbelief that there were camels on camp was great!
After much more excitement and team meetings, everyone went back to the bunks, to wash up and get ready for Olympic lineup and then breakfast!
Another team meeting, coaches prep and at 10:30 the activities start; I’ll be on the GHOST COURT.
Feels like a complete day already and we are pumped to get more in. The breakout was incredible and the games have begun!
Here at Towanda Sports Center, every age group, boys and girls, has been very busy having fun on the courts, fields and inside the rinks. It’s great to see our campers getting whatever level of play they want throughout the summer, without the pressure. If they want travel, rec or just fun, our program continues to offer them so much. It’s been rewarding to watch the camaraderie, competition and team spirit develop throughout the summer. And along the way, the kids, as well as the coaches, have also learned a thing or two!
We’ve had some amazing games – too many to mention including Wayne County Tournaments, invitational tournaments and good ol’ intercamps! As we head into the home stretch of camp (before the grand daddy of all competitions begins- Olympics), we have every age group represented in Wayne County Championship Finals across all sports. Our kids have been really into the Wayne County Tournaments with a very healthy attitude, all about having a good time, looking ahead and enjoying the competition. They play hard, but they are not cutthroat. We tell them if they lose a first round game or win a championship, they get treated the same here. Just go in with your head high and leave with your head high and that’s what matters most.
Although we’ve made it to over a dozen Wayne County finals – and won a few already, way to go Cadet Soccer, Junior Girls’ Basketball, Club/LIT Volleyball and Club/LIT Basketball! – we are equally proud of ALL our teams, win or lose! The Cadets 4th Grade soccer team won their Wayne County Semi Final and Championship and are now All County Champs after two great comebacks to defeat Equinunk and Wayne both in overtime shoot-outs! Goes to show, you can succeed if you have a lot of heart and never give up, just like in life! The Tweens Basketball team is also in the Wayne County final. This team has a habit of scoring half its points in the last 3 minutes!! But it seems to be working!Win or lose, we’ll keep enjoying our sports, as always!!
-This is Coach Lee with Towanda Sports Center! Da da da, Da da da!
About Camp Towanda:
Camp Towanda is an independent, traditional, co-ed sleep-away camp in the Poconos in Pennsylvania. It is privately owned, operated and directed by Mitch and Stephanie Reiter. For over 90 years, Camp Towanda has continued to define what camp should really be. Our program offers state-of-the-art facilities, an excellent and professional athletic department, waterfront, extensive arts, drama and adventure programs, culinary cooking classes, and special events. We are highly regarded and respected as an industry leader and are involved in giving back to various organizations throughout the year. Camp Towanda is accredited by the American Camp Association and a member of the Camp-Alert-Network, Wayne County Camp Association, Camp Owners and Directors Association and the Pennsylvania Camp Association.
When parents come to camp just four weeks into the summer, they say “how could it get better than this!?”. Well..it’s official, we have hit our post-Visiting Day, Week 5 stride! It’s not from the candy (that’s long gone)- it’s all natural, wholesome, organic, incredible, exhilarating, edge-of-your-seat fun!
This week alone, we packed so much in and we all know it’s just getting better from here on out! Casino Night, All Star Basketball Game, Gold Rush, Counselor Hunt, Intercamp games, Backwards Day, Wayne County Championships, waterparks, Inters to Cooperstown, Senior/Club Dorm Trip to Boston, LITs to Niagara Falls, Nationals Canoe Trips, General Swims, Culinary Classes kitchen raids (with Mitch–shhhh) and then our Lower Camp play Annie!
From the beginning of the summer when we had those very wet rainy days, the theme song was, “The Sun Will Come Out Tomorrow”. So it was only fitting for lower camp to serenade us and knock our socks off with an incredible production!
The entire camp gathered, as we do most evenings, all together, young and old, boys and girls and staff. The production (song, scenery and costume), blew us away. Over 140 cast and crew participating, beyond adorable, beyond cute, it was broadway caliber. The crowd was silent in awe as the cast performed with pride, passion and gusto!
On stage, your kids (our kids) had the biggest smiles, their self-esteem and confidence bursting! Some of these same kids were shy and crying upon arrival just a few short weeks ago or clinging onto their parents legs just last week! Amazing what camp can do! This was different than if it was a home school play, because the parents weren’t there, they were in the moment and shining from the stage right up to the full moon, experiencing a big sense of accomplishment for themselves.
We had never witnessed such a show here before. The crowd rose for an honest unprovoked standing ovation! As tears were running down our faces (honestly), we turned to look at the audiences, and we thought- THIS IS WHAT LIFE AT CAMP TOWANDA IS. This is what you want your kids to get from the camp experience: pride, support, confidence, accomplishment and enjoyment. This is what kids thrive on, need and get here.
And as if the week couldn’t get any better, we had a couple of fake outs, one of which was pretty convincing! Here’s what went down.. at the end of Annie, we showed this week’s Friday Nite Flix (again on a Saturday) which culminated in a series time traveling movies, followed by the two teams coming up on screen: The Red Dimension Sliders vs. the Blue Time Travelers. The horns blared and “Is there anybody out there” played. Banners were ushered out from the fiedlhouse. They called down Generals and started calling down Camper Captains (CCs)…there was 1 Blue CC, then 2, then 3, and then they went to call down the Red CCs and FAKE OUT!
The fever is hot, the excitement is high; camp is on the move; hitting our stride; this is now the time we start reaping what we sowed! And it will only get better each day…