Winter Camp XXVIII - 2004

Dates:December 27-31, 2004
Location:Beaver Creek and Clearwater
Attendance:30 (16 youth, 14 adults)
Leader:Ricky Naida
Adviser:Steve Donohue
WCUES Score:301
Catchphrase:Westward ho, wagon in tow
Winter Camp adopted "Wild West" as its theme and the weekette kicked off with the Independence Hike. In this trek around D-A, campers pulled and pushed the Ranch's chuck wagon, loaded with some gear, in a loop through camp and enjoyed lunch and three other activities.

After several years as an also-ran, "Wild West" was finally chosen as the theme for Winter Camp XXVIII. Camp began with the Independence Hike, a trek throughout all three subcamps that included a meal, the North American Aboriginal Lunch (which became the first Winter Camp meal ever served in Jack Lord subcamp), and three activities: Four-Way Volleyball, Cow Chip Tossing, and the Winter Camp Survival Exercise.

Other new meals that year included the Bar Meal, a slight modification of the Hooters Dinner; and the Leftover Dinner. Planned for the middle of the weekette as insurance against too many leftovers overrunning the Conglomerate Lunch, this latter meal had to be hastily redesigned with a run to Lapeer after insufficient leftovers were generated in the first two days.

New activities beyond the Independence Hike were the Ranch Hand Games and a collection of frontier communications projects, presented by the Four Families into which campers were divided. The Murder Game was expanded to include construction of a jail and a first-class hanging. The service project for the year involved the extension of a fishing dock behind Frischkorn cabin in which a quarter-mile of nails was driven by campers. Ron Donohue and Doug Wilson joined forces to bring a pinball machine to the Beaver Creek building, which was a frequent choice for free-time entertainment. A total of 664 games were played at camp.

To the ancient Greeks, 28 was a perfect number. While Winter Camp XXVIII may not have been perfect, it was certainly good enough that Winter Camp XXIX-sure to be a prime experience-was eagerly anticipated as the temperature rose into the mid-50's and camp ended.

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