As I reflect upon my time here at Camp DeWolfe this summer, there have been many highs. For me, one of the greatest things has been the team of counselors that I have worked alongside this summer – their unending support and friendship has been such a blessing to me and I will always be grateful to them for that.
All the children that were placed in my care this summer brought with them a variety of dynamic personalities, which meant there was never a dull moment each day. Living with and teaching them taught me the importance of having endless patience and enthusiasm, to maintain discipline and keep them entertained.
I thoroughly enjoyed coaching ‘Street Hockey’ as one of my main activities this year. The kids in my team were motivated and many of them had played before and so were of a good skill level. Coaching this activity increased my leadership and planning skills.
Overall, I have many memories from this summer and have grown a lot as an individual. The experiences I have had will be of great benefit to me in the future.
By Lucy Boyd
Summer Camp Counselor
My summer at camp has been an adventure from start to finish. Although often stressful, seeing the campers energetic and having fun is rewarding proof that our efforts were worth it.
Being able to lead or join in with activities was the highlight of my camp. Teaching paddle boarding every morning alongside Cam was daunting at first, but soon became my favorite part of the day. Being able to take part in activities, such as archery and street hockey was a great opportunity to connect with the campers while also having fun.
I have worked alongside a great team all summer and couldn’t have wished for better colleagues/ friends during this time. Through highs and lows, they have been a great support and exceptionally hard workers, for which I can never thank them enough.
By Alasdair Taylor
Summer Camp Counselor
I am by no means a professional photographer. I’m more of a self-taught wanna-be. As a girl I wandered around my neighborhood with one of those disposable cameras, trespassing on our neighbors’ lawns to take pictures of their flowers. Once I filled the roll, I’d run home and beg my mom to have the pictures developed. Waiting at least a week for my master pieces to be developed seemed like ages. Most of the time my finger would cover a corner, or the flower was blurry.
A joy of my role is getting to capture the camping experience through pictures and videos. Over the years, my eye for the right frame has been sharpened and I no longer have blurry fingers on the edges of photos. I know just enough about photography to be dangerous, but it is a skill that brings so much joy. Thanks to modern technology friends and family can see what goes on at camp the day it happens. After snapping a photo, I can immediately show the campers their smiling faces. If a shot doesn’t turn out quite like I like it, then I can take as many more as I want until the frame is just right. Results are immediate and there is a chance for do-overs in this digital age.
What a gift it is that I get to capture a piece of God’s beauty in the smiling faces of campers. Capturing the moments around the campfire, competing on the sports field, or raising a sail forever reflect God’s beauty. In this fast-paced life, it is a struggle to go slowly and notice God’s beauty. As I flip through the photos from this summer I am again reminded to thank God for the memories made at camp and the beauty that surrounds us.
-By Lizzy Rice
I enjoyed the water front throughout the summer – it was hard work every day, but I was happy when at the end of a session, with a group of campers, they were all able to paddle board to a high standard.
I also enjoyed being able to be a leader throughout the summer with certain tasks, such as overseeing my own cabin – it was very stressful, but taught me skills such as patience.
I was happy when I saw the kids having a good time and it helped a lot more when it was because of me that they were enjoying them self.
It was also nice to get away from the insanity’s of city life for a while.
By Cameron Morris
Summer Camp Counselor
Travelling 10,512 miles away from my home, Australia, to get to Camp DeWolfe is one of the scariest and best things I could of have ever done. It’s crazy how quickly I have became friends with twenty strangers from all different walks of life.
I’m really thankful for the staff training to aid me on how to handle the kids. When the kids came, it was like walking into a whole new experience and I’m glad that I have made this choice to come to America.
Working at a summer camp is one of the hardest job that I have ever done. Looking after the kids for 24/7 for six weeks definitely has it’s ups and down. But for every bad moment, there was always a good moment just around the corner. And there will always be a memory I can look back on and have a good laugh about it.
-By Chelsea Martin
Summer Camp Counselor
Travelling 3,373 miles away from home to a camp seemingly in the middle of nowhere, to work with 20 strangers from around the world was believe it or not the scariest experience of my life. To say that I wasn’t ready to hop right back on a flight to England as soon as I landed would be a lie. However, the fact that I didn’t do this turned out to be the best decision of my life.
Camp DeWolfe is a place where I got to meet the most amazing people, living with people 24/7 for 9 weeks was far less difficult than I expected. Particularly because my fellow counselors turned out to be the most supportive, loving and strong people that I’ve ever met.
Camp DeWolfe is also a place where new skills are learned and an impact on campers lives is made, this happens all whilst being surrounded by the most beautiful setting, one that I could never tire of even if I tried.
Throughout the summer, I definitely experienced my fair share of highs and lows. However, I’ve come to learn that even on your bad days something will happen that makes everything worthwhile. For example, when a camper you thought was paying no attention all week, tells you he bought the camp sweatshirt just to remember all the counselors by, or when a camper works so hard everyday only to tell you he’s just trying to earn the most improved award, or even when you’ve told the same camper for the tenth time that day that you don’t live in Buckingham Palace at home – it all makes it entirely worthwhile.
By the end of my time at Camp DeWolfe, I realized just how much I learned about myself in one summer and for me, that’s what made this a truly unforgettable experience.
-By Erin Lond
Summer Camp Counselor
Camp was very fun this year and was a great experience, changing from a counselor to a unit leader. I had a lot more challenges and responsibilities this year, which was difficult at times, but much more rewarding at the same time.
For me, not many moments stood out, but times where everything has gone to plan and the program or activity ran smoothly. When everyone is having fun, full of energy and bounces of each other.
A fun time was when we were playing Save the King and Queen. I was a dungeon master. Campers and staff had to do many funny challenges to get out! Some examples were:
*I’m a little tea pot
*Best counselor impressions
*Best dance moves
*Best prayer song
Be another wonderful year at camp and hold lots of memories!
By Alex Pond
Having flown from Northern Ireland, being a part of the staff at Camp DeWolfe has been a new experience for me. I have enjoyed getting to meet amazing people, building new friendships and experiencing American cultures through daily routines on site.
During my time here, I have been given the opportunity to learn new skills that I have attained through the various programs they run here at camp, in which I have gotten to use during camp activities.
I have experienced a lot of the natural setting here at Camp DeWolfe, through constantly being out in the fresh air, through activities that take place on the beach front, and worship, to hiking to Wildwood State Park with the campers, which is an enlightening experience, by seeing the joy the campers have through the new friendships they’ve made here at camp.
-By Hannah Bennett
Summer Camp Counselor
Hello Camp DeWolfe Family!
It’s hard to believe we are finishing up are last week of camp for the summer! It’s been an awesome summer full of camp! Week Three of Adventure Camp was packed with a lot of extra fun.
This week we had our Wildwood campouts. Campers hiked down the beach to Wildwood State park. They slept under the trees (and stars) in tents with their cabin groups! Campers created some of their own culinary treats and learned how to cook over the open fire. Upon returning back to camp, campers learned to work together as they went to tackle some challenges on the Camp DeWolfe Challenge Course.
On Thursday there were some boat races! Campers paddled in canoes from the Camp DeWolfe beachfront to the Wading River Inlet. The journey is about one mile and all our racers completed the race in less than an hour, even when the headwind was not on their side! Today, the kayakers and paddleboarders will see who will reach the dock at Wading River first. It is fun to be on the water!
We had a couple of theatrical performances to finish the week out as well! Our counselors competed in some “Minute to win it” competitions on Thursday. It was quite hilarious to watch them perform some bizarre tasks, ie shooting cans off a table with rubber bands or getting an Oreo from your forehead into your mouth without using their hands! Tonight will be the annual Camp DeWolfe Talent Show. We are sad to see everyone leave this week, but it has been a great summer! To God be the glory!
On Saturday August 4th 2018, Riverhead Town Supervisor Jens-Smith presented Camp DeWolfe with a proclamation, celebrating the “Wading River Radio Station”, now known as Benson House, designation on the National Register of Historic Places. Governor Cuomo made the official announcement in March 2018.
The Benson House building was used during WWII as a Top-Secret FBI Radio station, which transmitted true and false information to the German High Command. Supervisor Jens-Smith addressed members from the Society of Former Special Agents of the F.B.I, Camp Board, summer campers and their families. Those also in attendance were Riverhead Councilwoman Giglio, Councilman Wooten, Richard Wines – the Landmarks Preservation Commission Chairman and Sid Bail, the Wading River Civic Association President.
Dr. Raymond Batvinis, a F.B.I. Historian and Member of the F.B.I. Society commented that, of the most significant World War II contributions of the “Wading River Radio Station” was the receipt of a German message in April 1942 instructing its spies to obtain information about American atomic bomb development; an order that helped influence President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s decision to pursue an atomic weapon. Additionally, messages transmitted from Benson House helped deceive the German high command about the timing and location of the June 6th, 1944 Allied invasion at Normandy, while others misled Japanese forces about U.S. advances in the Pacific Theater of operations.
Camp DeWolfe is currently owned by the Episcopal Diocese of Long Island and is a year-round retreat center and summer camp programs for youth ages 7-17. The public are welcomed to tour Benson House and view some of the newly added historical displays. The camp hopes to install more historical signage within the next year to further preserve the history of Benson House.