Greetings from the Realm on the first full day of activities of summer 2019 at Camp Robin Hood! My name is Sam Jonas and I am excited to be hired as the new Head of Boys Camp. After a five-year hiatus, I am back for my 15th summer after having spent 7 years on staff and being selected as a Green and White Color War Captain in 2014. I teach fourth grade in Chicago, which allowed me to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to become more involved in this incredible camp. If you have any questions or concerns about anything during the summer please feel free to contact me at Sam@camprobinhood.com.
So, after a long 10 months, Summer 2019 is finally underway! We were blessed with clear blue skies and beautiful weather for our first full day of activities. The energy, excitement, and anticipation for a memorable summer was in the air as campers danced with their friends at meals and continued to strengthen old friendships and to create bonds with our new faces at the Realm! At the waterfront, most of the campers completed their 4-lap swim test today and two groups had the chance to be the first paddle boarders of the summer. Junior camp enjoyed a scavenger hunt that gave the campers the opportunity to run around camp with their friends while using clues to find important places on camp. It was a cooperative and fun activity especially for our newest faces to get acquainted with our camp! We look forward to another unforgettable summer!
Also, as is tradition, boys and girls camp had separate campfires to mark the start of our summer. At the campfires, our youngest and oldest aged groups introduced each other in front of their respective camps. Then, our oldest groups in boys and girls camp (Saxons and Scribes) led and taught cheers that will be used throughout the summer in the dining hall as a showing of camp spirit!
Sweet Dreams from The Realm
With more than 150 combined summers at camp our Leadership Team, affectionately called “The Brass” by campers, staff, and alumni, understands the unique responsibility of preserving the Robin Hood experience. In this series of blogs, you’ll meet each member of The Brass as they share some of their favorite memories of summers in the Realm.
Meet Scott Rimer, who has been our Athletic Director for 3 years and has over 20 years of summer camp experience before joining us. Scott also has the task of coordinating all of our campers favorite out of camp trips and excursions each summer.
- Name: Scott Rimer
- Camp Nickname: Scotty
- Years at Camp Robin Hood: I just completed my 3rd summer in 2018
- Position at Robin Hood: Director of Athletics and out of camp trips
- What’s Your Favorite Camp Memory: Obviously beating West End this year or anytime I get to go on an excursion with the Foresters of 2018
- Favorite place in the Realm: The back porch of the office or the upper basketball court
- Favorite Camp Song, Quote or Food: There is an “Andy Says” quote right outside my bunk on a set of steps. It reads, “Look forward, not backwards.” I look at it at least once a day and find that it means so much not only at camp, but also in life.
- What does magic in the trees mean to you: It means that there is some force, some impetus, some dynamic energy that exists at Robin Hood, probably from all the happy people who came before, that drives people to be one. It drives people to be kind and loving. It drives people to be accepting and tolerant. It drives people to break out of their comfort zone and live free of all the implications of the world if only for seven weeks. The “magic” does not discriminate between boys and girls, between young and old, between Americans and foreigners, or between campers and staff. It is truly a feeling you get as soon as you pass under the front gate sign. Lucky for us it gets trapped by all the majestic trees that cover the campus.
“Do not take anything for granted. Try it all. Learn from your failings and try again.” -Scott
- Advice to young campers: Do not take anything for granted. Try it all. Learn from your failings and try again. Have no regrets when you make your Saxon/Scribe (your final summer as a camper) speeches. Then take all that this place has given you and give it back to your campers when you are on staff.
Since the 1940’s, Camp Robin Hood has been owned and directed by former campers. We are proud to continue that nearly 90-year tradition. With more than 150 combined summers at camp our Leadership Team, affectionately called “The Brass” by campers, staff, and alumni, understands the unique responsibility of preserving the Robin Hood experience.
In this series of blogs, you’ll meet each member of The Brass as they share some of their favorite memories of summers in the Realm. Up first is Michelle Brockmann, Assistant Director at Camp Robin Hood and one of the many camp moms in the Realm who are available to make every camper feel at home each summer.
- Name: Michelle Brockmann
- Camp Nickname: Camp Mom
- Years at Camp Robin Hood: I just completed my 29th summer in 2018
- Position at Robin Hood: I am an assistant director at camp – I help in all areas including staff training, staff support, camper well being, logistics of transportation and money, whatever needs attending to really.
- What’s Your Favorite Camp Memory: I have so many favorite memories – the day I met Jeremy (my now husband) when I interviewed for the waterski position, our wedding day at camp, so many occasions when I saw my children try new things, make new friends, achieve new goals. So hard to pick!
- Favorite place in the Realm: My favorite place in camp is the waterski area – love looking at the lake from the dock.
“We are always here for each other, we are a family, we are home.” –Michelle
- Favorite Camp Song, Quote or Food: The welcome song. We sing it to guests who visit during a meal. “Come around any old time and make yourself at home” is the first line. I like the message that sends – we are always here for each other, we are a family, we are home.
- What does magic in the trees mean to you: The magic in the trees – to me that signifies the opportunity to create magic in a special place with great people. After many years of coming to camp I have realized that although the physical campus is beautiful, it is the people who make it magical. All of us – campers and staff alike – come with the same common goals of making friends and trying all kinds of new things while feeling safe and supported in our efforts. So we, the inhabitants of the realm in the past and of the present, are really the magic in the trees
- Advice to young campers: Don‘t be afraid to be yourself here. It is safe to be yourself here. Home life is different from camp life, home friends are different from camp friends. Try new activities here and discover new talents here.
Finally, I would like to add something that I am very proud of…our girls camp. When I first arrived here it was in its infancy – it had begun three years earlier. There were about 30 girls at that time. I have watched it grow into the fabulous program that it is today. I remember adding age groups and picking the group names over the years as our population grew and eventually our numbers caught up to the boys camp numbers… and surpassed them!
I adore watching these little girls become confident women. They are a constant source of joy in my life. I have seen so many of them transition from camper to counselor to color war captain to getting married and having young campers of their own. I am blessed to have been a witness to their journeys and to call them my friends. I am humbled by the friendships that camp has afforded me and I am eternally grateful to John and Joan Klein for hiring me and making me part of their camp family.
About Camp Robin Hood’s Girls Camp – In 1980, then owner and director John Klein and his wife Joan decided to add what is now the biggest part of our camp family and legacy – Girls Camp, making Camp Robin Hood the brother/sister camp we know today.