At Camp Kweebec, we believe in the power and importance of camp traditions. We have many traditions that have developed over the years and have helped to define what we are all about. It is these very traditions that our campers often write home about and that keep our staff returning each summer.
Throughout each summer, campers become increasingly aware that their lives are being woven into a story larger than their own – the decades-long story of Kweebec and the many who have called our camp their summer home.
The key to successfully upholding rich tradition is to strike that balance of embracing the past without being stuck in it. Camp Kweebec is constantly updating and modernizing our programs and facilities, but some things that make CK special will never change. Second and third-generation Kweebecers are currently attending camp and participating in many of the same traditions that their parents and grandparents did decades before them.
Campers can’t wait for it! The staff counts down the days until it! There is nothing quite like a Color Competition at Camp Kweebec! For 5-6 days towards the end of the summer, camp is divided into two teams – Blue and White – for an all-camp friendly but spirited competition. At Kweebec, Color Competition is a mix of events, both the usual – basketball games, hockey games, swim meets, track meets – and the unusual – Water Carry, Treasure Hunt, Trivia Relay, Candy Hunt and much more. The Color Competition “break” is unpredictable and often one of the highlights of the summer. Campers and staff alike show support for their team by dressing each day in head-to-toe blue or white, and even though the competition is fierce, good sportsmanship and camaraderie are valued above all!
BIG PAL/LITTLE PAL & BIG SISTER/LITTLE SISTER PROGRAM:
At Kweebec, one of our oldest and most impactful traditions is our Big Pal/Little Pal & Big Sister/Little Sister program. Our younger campers are connected with a Big Pal or Big Sister during the first few days of the summer. Many of our campers – especially our newer ones – find that having a Big Pal or Big Sister as a role model and confidant plays a large role in helping them to adjust quickly to camp. Throughout the summer, our Big Pals/Little Sisters gather with their Little Pals/Little Sisters for campfires, games, barbecues, hangout time, and periodic check-ins. It is a timeless tradition – and relationship – that connects our Kweebec family well beyond just one summer.
What could be better than sitting around a crackling fire under the stars with your best friends? Each week we gather together to participate in one of Kweebec’s long-lasting traditions: the campfire. An evening of telling stories, eating s’mores and singing songs is the very setting where many campers recall the moment when Kweebec transformed from a camp to their camp. Each campfire has a specific theme, and perhaps one of the more meaningful moments of each campfire is when campers are acknowledged and given a CK bracelet for exhibiting one of our core values: FRIENDSHIP, COURAGE, ACHIEVEMENT, SPORTSMANSHIP and UNITY.
Beginning in 1985, our oldest girls’ bunk has participated in an event that is not only unique to Camp Kweebec, but is also one of Color Competition’s best events. The Chariot Race, a competition to build and race a chariot, is a milestone to which every Kweebec girl aspires. Each team spends several days practicing, working on the nut-bolts combinations and creating a hand-painted plaque that goes on the front of the chariot.
For our oldest boys, their rite-of-passage event is called Rope Burn. Another highlight of Color Competition, Rope Burn, works like this: For each team, there’s a rope tied between two metal poles and the object is to build a fire that will climb high enough to burn through, with the first team to burn its rope declared victorious. Everybody watches in awe, and our younger campers can’t help but dream about the day when they get a chance to engage in this life-altering event.
BATTLE OF THE COUNTRIES:
One of the single-most exciting days for our younger campers is another one of our enduring traditions at CK: Battle of the Countries. This is when our junior campers are split up into four teams and compete in a series of crazy-fun events such as Capture-the-Ball, Ultimate Gaga, Human Spelling Bee, Kayak Racing, Simon Sez and many others. The four teams – representing 4 countries around the world – spend the entire day dressed in their country’s colors, learning about the rich heritage of each, and working hard all day at their respective games. The competition ends with the culminating event at night – the Battle of the Countries Song Presentation, an opportunity for each country to show off both their singing talents and display their knowledge of their country. After the winning team is announced, all four teams come together and enjoy a special treat and dance party in the Rec Hall.
A tradition dating back to the 1960s, Color Leagues is a division-wide, summer-long competition that involves sports and games that are unique to a sleepaway camp setting. Divisions are broken into teams of six; campers are placed on different color teams and receive originally-designed CK Color League shirts to wear during the summer. Sports such as BBS (a Kweebec-created game that combines elements of baseball, soccer and basketball), Flickerball (
BIRTHDAYS, “KWEEBEC`` STYLE:
Having a birthday while at camp is definitely a reason to celebrate. Campers whose birthdays fall during their stay at Kweebec have an amazing day from start to finish. Your special day kicks off with the entire camp singing “Happy Birthday” in our dining hall at breakfast. Typically, after breakfast, birthday phone calls are arranged with parents and/or guardians. As the day continues, there are constant cheers and hugs from our entire CK community, who are just as excited about making the day even that much more special. During lunch, campers celebrating their birthdays will get a special birthday cake to share with their bunkmates. Last, but certainly not least, pizzas are delivered at dinner for the special birthday camper and their bunk to celebrate!