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Robin Hood Legacy is Alive in The Realm

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What a great few days it has been up here. Yesterday we celebrated Chuck Illig’s 50th summer at Robin Hood. Over 50 ex-campers and staff members came from all over the US to surprise and honor Chuck.  We had a special dinner in the dinning filled with laughter and stories about Chuck.  A dozen or so people dating back from 1951 rose and honored a man who has given his life to the Realm. Chuck has touched over 15,000 lives during his tenure here. He has worked for all 3 owners of RH and is a person who DC and I look to every day for guidance and support.  He truly is Camp Robin Hood- a walking and talking history lesson about all that is right in the Realm.

Two of those people who came back to honor Chuck- one a new mother herself and both of whom worked for DC and me our first few years asked a favor of me. They as Scribes of 2002 buried a time capsule behind their bunk. They wanted to dig it up and go back in time. I asked for permission to join them and to also invite this year’s Scribes….the girls started to cry in the dinning hall when we discussed it this morning.  Thirty minutes later we hit gold. It was amazing to watch our old and new Scribes cry tears of joy together. I asked all the girls to assemble back here in 10 years. Scribes of 2002 will be parents of campers and some lucky few Scribes of 2015 will be visiting Judges for GW. It made my whole summer – seeing my daughter (currently a Scribe) and all of her friends explode with emotion.  Watching these girls lead Girls Camp this summer and knowing that they will be the backbone of the next 6 years at the Realm makes me so proud.

Day four of Color War has begun. Chuck’s 50th year celebration has concluded, Saxon and Scribe speeches are around the corner, Scribes of 2002 accomplished a long standing promise to one another. We all move forward here at the Realm, a special place where 88 years later it is still all about the people….


Founder’s Day 2015

Camp’s a buzz with Green and White energy.  Campers are back from excursions and they know that color war can break at ANY minute!  We resumed regularly scheduled activities today with double canoe trips for the Squires and Quills, lots of team sports including softball, ultimate Frisbee and basketball, gaga tournaments, Danish long ball, and more.

Today is a special day in The Realm… it’s our founder’s birthday.  Andy Friedman is remembered and honored today at camp.  Tribute was paid all day in many ways.  Of course, we sang happy    birthday to Andy first thing this morning at breakfast.  Campers continued working on, and finishing, their Founder’s Day presents throughout the day.  Our Art and Woodshop teams have been working with our groups to gift camp with useful and memorable items.

Decked out in Robin Hoods, dinner began with a bang!  Literally, Chuck fired a cannon during flag lowering to get campers excited for the night.  As we began grace, our Saxons and Scribes came running through the dining hall, decked in Green and White.  The campers went crazy… was this the moment they’ve been waiting for?  Running and dancing through the dining hall, our oldest campers jumped on stage and chanted FAKE BREAK!  This was not it…

Group leaders and the “brass” served our camp family a delicious dinner of chicken kebabs, twice baked potatoes and corn on the cob.  Another stellar and delicious job by Yensi and his crew.  As dinner was ending, a storm warning was in effect.  Campers began to say that Green and White was breaking and that DC and Woody created the storm as a way to break color war!  This is how much they have Green and White on the brain.

We all headed up to the Chuck Illig Theater to celebrate and honor Andy and his band of merry men and women.  Tonight was a night to look back on the history of Camp Robin Hood and honor those milestone moments for campers and staff.  Gifts were presented to the camp and DC and Woody recognized campers and staff for different milestones.  Our first year campers receive a Robin Hood waterbottle.  DC mentioned the importance of this milestone in a camper’s life and how it often doesn’t get the attention it might deserve.  A first time camper, unsure of what Camp Robin Hood is truly about, has their life forever changed with one summer in The Realm.  That deserves to be acknowledged and celebrated.  We are so proud of those campers who have been given that recognition.  Our third year campers receive a Robin Hood banner and our fifth year campers receive a coveted five year shirt!  One of the biggest gifts of the night went to our 10 year campers and staff members.  10 years of commitment to this magical place and we are so happy that they continue to return home to The Realm year after year.

A HUGE shoutout to Steve Rupp, our Riflery Specialist, for his 25th year at Camp Robin Hood.  Steve is an integral part of the success at Robin Hood and is a model staff member.  He never asks for anything, is always on time, has what he needs, lets those who work under him, and the campers who come to his activity, shine above all else.  He is a true leader at Robin Hood and we look forward to many years ahead with him in our family.

Tonight we also recognized Chuck Illig’s 50th summer at Robin Hood.  He is the longest serving member in the history of Camp Robin Hood.  He embodies Camp Robin Hood and all that it stands for.  He loves the kids and the staff and has impacted thousands of campers and their families throughout the year.  He is humble and grateful and we are so lucky to have him in our lives.

A great night ended with all groups singing our goodnight song and bets on when Green and White would break…

Until tomorrow… Sweet Dreams from The Realm.

Five Weeks and Going Strong

As I sit along the shore of Lake Ossipee watching our Bards enjoying a game of Greasy Watermelon with the sun setting, I can’t believe we’ve been here for five weeks already!  Our last two groups have set off on their excursions and by tomorrow evening the entire camp will be back in the dining hall.  One BIG HAPPY FAMILY!

Bows and Archers pulled out early this morning and set out in different directions, set to meet up shortly for an evening activity.  Bows headed to Whale’s Tale water park and had a beautiful, sunny day.  They enjoyed waterslides and wave pools, a lazy river and more.  With the chance of rain, we had to “THINK BLUE” and it worked!  The weather held up and they spent the whole day splashing around before heading to their campground to set up camp and cook dinner!

Archers headed off to Monkey Trunks in Weirs Beach for a morning of high ropes courses and adventure.  They headed out for a picnic lunch on Lake Winnipesaukee and went to Kellerhaus, an ice cream shop over 100 years old, for a cool treat.  After ice cream they headed for bowling and arcade games at FUNSPOT before heading ot their campground to cook dinner before their evening activity.  Both groups are meeting up for a drive-in movie tonight at one of the few New Hampshire Drive-In theaters.  Minions or Inside Out… we’ll have to wait for them to come home to know what they’ve decided.

Our Quills continued their trip by heading to Hampton Beach a day of relaxation before mini-golfing and heading to Prescott Park for an outdoor showing of Peter Pan, The Musical.   Yeomen went to Attitash Adventure and had the most incredible time.  A pizza lunch was brought in before finishing up with their mountain coasters, water slides, zip lines and alpine slides.  A dinner at Applebee’s before heading to an evening of mini-golf was a great way to end the day.

Camp is getting fuller every day with more groups returning home to The Realm.  The lake was a buzz with boat rides, sailing, paddle boarding and canoe/kayak and the fields are filling up with soccer and softball.   Open Tennis during third period and the woodshop and art shack are busy with Founder’s Day gifts being made.  All in all, it was a busy and productive day in and out of camp.  We can’t wait to see what tomorrow will bring.

Until tomorrow… Sweet Dreams from The Realm!

Happy Campers All Over The Realm

A gorgeous day in The Realm today, from start to finish. Our campers who are out on excursion had an amazing time!

Arrows went to SkyZone in Massachusetts today for dodgeball and bounced around before heading to Laser Tag later in the afternoon. They ended their day with a Chinese dinner in Portsmouth before heading back to the campsite for a campfire!  Lancers went to Water Country today to splash around before heading to a Nashua Silver Knights baseball game. They are having so much fun together. Tomorrow will be an amazing day for both groups.

Our Friars started their day at the Basketball Hall of Fame before heading to Six Flags New England for the day. After many hours in the sun, the boys headed to see Ant-Man and cool off before heading back to the campsite for a late dinner and campfire. Bards also enjoyed an afternoon at Six Flags today before heading to see Minions in 3-D. These girls were so excited to see this movie… we’re so glad they’re happy!

We welcomed home our Shires and Foresters after their four-day excursion to Boston. They ended their trip with a day at Water Country and it was definitely a perfect day to be at a water park. We missed them so much and are so happy that they had a memorable time.

Today couldn’t have been more perfect both in and out of camp! With temperatures reaching close to 90 degrees and the sun shining all day, it’s no surprise there was a ton of water activities going on at Robin Hood. But what I love most is that Robin Hood campers work hard and play hard! We work hard to balance our schedules with just the right amount of active play periods, whether it be team sports or individual sports like tennis or soccer, and waterfront activities like sailing, boating waterski or swimming. So we love how excited campers are when they love their schedules each day. After a day of activities, we spent last period with POWER HOUR and followed it up with an all-camp general swim and cookout on the lake! Now that’s what I call perfection.

Until tomorrow… Sweet Dreams from The Realm

Trips, Trips and More Trips!

A case of the Monday’s isn’t so bad when you’re living life in The Realm! As we begin the second half of camp, our groups are gearing up for excursions. This is such an exciting time for our campers! We won’t divulge too much information because campers don’t know when or where they’re going. What we can tell you is that so far, our Foresters and Shires have headed out to Boston for a 4 day excursion and have already seen and done so much! Yesterday they enjoyed Faneuil Hall, a Duck Tour (quack quack!) and dinner at Fire + Ice. Since we became friends with people at the Red Sox Foundation and hosted them during this year’s Robin Hood Gives Back, we were lucky enough to send our Foresters to Fenway Park for a game and a chance to run the bases last night! Our Shires enjoyed a day at the New England Aquarium, dodgeball at SkyZone and an evening at Blue Man Group. Both groups, after spending years of excursions at campsites, are spending their time in hotels in Boston proper. More on their excursion in the days ahead.

Today, we’ll be sending four more groups out on trips. Lancers, Arrows, Bards and Friars will make their way out in the morning and explore different areas of New Hampshire and Massachusetts with lots of adventure along the way!

Junior camp has run of The Realm while our senior campers are away. All of their favorite activities are available to them! Waterski, boating, tennis, riflery, soccer, art, woodshop… you name it, they can do it! We’ll even be offering more choice to our campers with the addition of POWER HOUR in the afternoons.

Time to run… the Bards are the first ones to head out!