Patriot Day

Fellow Patriots,

A country will have its share of joyous occasions along with its hardships and sorrows. Being involved and remembering those times is what being a patriot is all about. Not to be confused with Patriot’s Day—which celebrates a battle during the Revolutionary War—Patriot Day memorializes the loved ones we lost on that horribly tragic morning 14 years ago.   Patriot Day never forget

On Patriot Day, we remember the horrible attacks our nation suffered on September 11, 2001 as well as the heroes who sacrificed themselves to save the lives of others. Having hijacked four, large passenger planes, the terrorists responsible for 9/11 crashed two into the Twin Towers and another into the Pentagon.

The passengers in the fourth plane managed to force their plane to crash into a field in Pennsylvania, preventing any further damage the terrorists would have otherwise caused.

Communities and individuals demonstrate their remembrance and patriotism in a number of different ways. Flags are flown at half-mast, bells are tolled, presidential speeches are given at the locations of crash sites. The most important and impressive part of the observance, however, takes place at Ground Zero in New York City where the Twin Towers once stood.

A moment of silence is held at 8:46am (eastern time)—the time when the first plane struck the North Tower. This time is meant not only for remembering the victims of these terrible atrocities, but also for reflecting on the heroes who helped save lives that day.

Another important, commemorative element at Ground Zero is the Tribute in Light, inWe wil never forget the tragedy of terrorism 14 years ago.stalled six months after the attacks. Two beams of light shine straight up into the air from the two reflecting pools, perfectly matching the footprints of the Twin Tower buildings. Inscribed in the bronze panels found around the outside of the pools is the name of everyone who died in the attacks.

Join the nation in our remembrance of this unfortunate anniversary. Thanks for reading.

- JohnTribute in Light

It’s Brown Ledge Camp for Arden!

Hey, Camp Fans!

In mid-July, I asked you guys to share your camp stories. We got a great response with nearly 30 entries so we’re happily publishing each and every submission right here on the Blog! Everyone who submitted got $15 gift certificates and seven lucky winners got larger prizes of $25, $50, and the grand prize of $100. I’m announcing the fourth $25 winner right now! And it is….

Arden H.! You’re our fourth $25 prize winner! Thanks for your Camp Story!

Arden tells us about her summer atHave an awesome time like Arden did next summer at Brown Ledge!“This summer I attended sleep away camp for the first time at a camp called Brown Ledge. When I left for camp, I thought I was fully aware of what my experience would be like. Maybe I would make a few good friends and try a couple activities. I’m usually not a huge fan of water activities so I thought maybe I’d visit waterfront every once in a while. Even I, who was so sure I’d have a great experience at camp was not prepared for the amount of sheer joy, friendship and knowledge that I would come home with after those glorious 4 weeks.

When I first arrived at camp, I expected to make friends in a day or two. Boy, was I wrong. As soon as I walked in, I was greeted and befriended by three girls. I still think that was truly amazing. I have NEVER made friends that fast in my entire life.

That night, I hung out with my bunkies and fell asleep thinking about just how lucky I was to be in a place so welcoming, friendly and beautiful. Later, I found that my bunkies and I would be essentiallly joined at the hip and would go from activity to activity together. I am sure that the friends that I made this summer at Brown Ledge are some of the most genuine people I have ever met and I will always cherish our friendship.

Then there were my counselors, my counselor was probably the brightest, kindest person I could have asked for. She always made the best of every situation we put in front of her and we could talk about literally anything with her. My Junior Counselor was the sweetest person I have ever met. Every day, I looked forward to rest hour because that’s when she would come to visit my cabin. She did the best french braids and was the stealthiest card player. Whether we were playing some card game, MASH, talking or just laying there doing nothing, I felt like I was the happiest I’d ever been. My JC always looked out for me no matter what and that’s why I call her the big sister I never had.

At the end of the summer, I received a Brown Ledge ring. This ring means the world to me because it symbolizes every memory (great and small!) of my summer. It stands for the bonds I formed with all of my friends, the countless hours I spent in the barn working with horses, the refreshing coolness of Mallet’s Bay, the sound of the dining hall at dinner when it erupted in song, all the activities that I improved in and the happiness that still burns within me. So, I guess you could say that I love Brown Ledge more than I could ever put into words and I can’t wait to go back next summer.”

Thanks again for your submission, Arden. You can check out Brown Ledge right here to see if you might like it as much as Arden did. As always, thanks for reading!

- John

Molly loved her time at camp!

Hey, Camp Fans!

In mid-July, I asked Blog readers to share their camp stories. We got nearly 30 entries so we’re posting them on the Blog now! Everyone who submitted got $15 gift certificates and seven lucky winners got larger prizes of $25, $50, and the grand prize of $100. I’m announcing the third $25 winner right now!


Aaaaand… Molly Y.! You’re our third $25 prize winner. Your Camp Story was great!

Molly tells us about her summer at CampGet a load of the fun times at Camp Ton-a-Wandah

“My name is Molly Young and I am writing about my camp, Ton A Wandah.

Chapel is where you wear green and white. You sit on benches.Then our camp owners say a prayer. After the prayer someone speaks, after that there are singing teams that sing for our camp. Before chapel we go to breakfast in our green and whites or our pajamas. For breakfast, doughnuts and bagels.

On the last chapel two girls on Hilltop made a song and sang it. It was called Sisters.

The lake is very big. You can go on a water slide or do the blob with a water trampoline and a floating dock or a high dive and diving board. Also paddleboarding, kayaking, canoeing and if you like Weezie’s 20 laps is going on a paddleboard, canoe, or kayak around the lake 20 times before breakfast.

Archery is behind tennis. There are a lot of bows and arrows. I shot and almost got a bullseye. Archery is the best sport in the world.

The barn is where the horses and ponies stay with two donkeys. 28 all together. You can do daily riding, ride, or horsemanship, and the horse show. I did daily riding and was in class two with my friends. The riding instructors are Kendall, Ashley, Shonna and a B.I.T. Bella (and more).

I wood burned a lot of wood. I once wood burned a puppy in a yard for my sister, more stuff for me and some for my mom and dad.

On Wacky Wednesday, you eat wacky food and dress up wacky. In daily riding you teach your teachers. Wacky Wednesday is very wacky! It is the best day at camp.

Camp TAW has been open for eighty-three years now. Before Camp TAW was old it gave Camp Merry Times (cancer kids) to come and stay for watching and doing. Ms Judy and Captain Billy’s family have been the owners of Camp TAW for eighty-three years now. An Indian village used to live there. Their chief’s daughter was named Tonawandah.

Tennis is very fun. Tennis is a sport on tribe day. Racquets and balls go together like peanut butter and jelly. There are two kinds of courts: a single court or a double court.

In Secret Agent, we once had to go from the hilltop showers to the gym. I got caught, but my friend Eleanor did not. My sister was in my class too. Once a girl from woodburning got out of class to make sure we got to the gym.

In paddle boarding one time we played charades on paddle boards. We did jumping in the water competitions. My teacher was one of Emily’s counselors. I wanted to get in the water so much. I so so so loved paddle boarding.

One day in Crazy Cardio we danced to Bumpy Ride. Now I love Bumpy Ride. Once we went one a hike. It was so much fun. We ran some times and mostly stretched.”

Thanks again for your submission, Molly. Everyone else, you can check out Camp Ton-a-Wandah right here. And, as always, thanks for reading!

- John

Theodore (Teddy) Bear

Hey, Teddy Bear Lovers!

Among all the different kinds of stuffed animals you have or have owned in the past, a classic Teddy Bear was almost undoubtedly one of yours for everybody! Teddy Bears are everywhere. Everyone has one. We all love them! After all, we have a dThis is one oooold teddy bear from Germany.ay for them; and that day is today. Grab your bear and enjoy today’s post together in honor of National Teddy Bear Day.

The Teddy Bear is named after the 26th president of the United States, Theodore (or, Teddy, as he hated being called) Roosevelt. President Roosevelt earned himself this endearing honor thanks to his compassion for a specific Black Bear. The bear had been brutalized and tied up by other hunters that Roosevelt was competing against. They tied the bear up for the president to shoot.
The cartoon that sparked the teddy bear.
However, deeming the conduct in which this bear was treated unsportsmanlike, Roosevelt suggested somebody else shoot it to put the poor thing out of its misery. This hunting episode quickly became the subject of a political cartoon in ‘The Washington Post’.

When a man named Morris Michtom spotted the cartoon, he found inspiration to make the world’s first Teddy Bear. He made a cute, little bear cub and placed it in the shop window. The nearby sign read: ‘Teddy’s Bear’. He sent a Teddy Bears have evolved over time.bear to the president, asking permission to use his name. Roosevelt (despite his hatred for the name Teddy) agreed and the stuffed toys became an instant success!

Teddy Bears have certainly evolved over time. Originally, they were made to resemble real bears, sporting beady eyes and extended snouts. Modern Teddies have accentuated ‘cuteness’ with smaller noses and bigger eyes. A perfect day to go give your Teddy Bear a squeeze, enjoy National Teddy Bear Day and, as always, thanks for reading.

- JohnTeddy bears galore!

Josiah joined Camp Sweeney this summer

Hey, Camp Fans!

In mid-July, I started asking our customers and Blog readers to share your camp stories with us. We got nearly 30 entries so we’re excited to share them now with our Blog followers. Everyone who submitted got $15 gift certificates and seven lucky winners got larger prizes of $25, $50, and the grand prize of $100. I’m announcing the first of the $25 winners today—right now. Get re-e-e-a-a-a-dddyyyyyy….

Congratulations to Josiah R.! You’re our second $25 prize winners for your Camp Story! Josiah tells us about his summer atListen to Josiah R. talk about his time at Camp Sweeney.“When I first came, all I thought I would do was have a bit of fun, learn about diabetes, and leave, but, I had a lot more than just that. We were inside this place called the S.A.C. They checked my temperature and checked for lice, I also chose my meal plan. We drove down a road which a cabin labeled “Brown Boyz” and I spelled that correctly, “Brown Boyz”. This, was my cabin, the youngest of 4 boy cabins. I walked in and immediately started making friends before I could even unpack my things. Lunch was fun. That lunch we ate chicken strips, and every time this camp has chicken strips, they sing a chant and make noise… Each table makes as much noise while saying “We love chicken strips yes we do, we love chicken strips how about you!” as loud as you possibly can. After lunch, we go to med lecture, Med lecture is where we actually learn about diabetes, each Brown boy camper had a little brother group, one counselor was there big brother. In our little brother group, we did beading, beading is when we talk about the other campers in the brother group, we said good things of course though.  After we leave here, we will usually go to the cabin and clean up, everyday every little brother group (except 2, and those to groups change daily) had to do one “chore”, weirdly, my little brother group usually didn’t even get a job, even though it was the oldest group. After we did this, we go to our 4th activity, mine, the first week, was Ultimate frisbee. Before we go to 4th and 5th classes, we go to “snack attack”  we usually had different snacks each day, my favorite snack was the chex mix, just because I love chex mix, and because we get a bigger quantity then other snacks. Ultimate frisbee is fun, you throw the fribee across the field to someone else, except to another goal, there are a few people on your team, once you have the frisbee in your hand, you can’t move to another spot, you can only swivel on one foot. Once you get to a goal, you score. After ultimate frisbee, there’s usually diet soda’s outside, inside an icebox, or cooler, when I finish drinking some Sprite zero (My favorite), I go to rock climbing, rock climbing was especially fun, I thought I was good at it. Dinner is pretty much the same as lunch, but, no mail call. After dinner, there is flag lowering, flag lowering is when they… well, lower the flag, we also stand and watch as people get called up for word of the day, the people are campers, and they answer a question, when they answer the question right, they choose an envelope, which, has either bonus, winner, or 10 tokens. 10 tokens. I think either is really cool. 10 tokens is 10 merit tokens, which you can use to buy things at the camp store. Winner chooses either a kindle, or Flip speakers. Bonus is really just a random prize everyday, like a Nintendo DS, or a hammock, or a puzzle cube. We then do a night activity, which is different every night. Once we’ve left here we eat a bedtime snack with our bedtime insulin. The snack varies, but is usually better when we eat it during a night activities, like at a lot of campfires, we’ll eat burgers, but in the cabin the best thing was a delicious BLT, but…. the burgers were more delicious. We get in bed and they will occasionally give out free food, which is carb-free foods, our foods that contain less than 5 grams of carb, which, I had learned in med lecture. This schedule is the same throughout the same, but somehow it was totally different eachday, like, even though everyday we played ultimate frisbee.”

Thanks again for your submission, Josiah. Check out Camp Sweeney for yourself and, as always, thanks for reading!

- John

Taylor’s Time at Camp Mystic

Hey, Camp Fans!

About a month ago, I started asking our customers and Blog readers to share your camp stories with us. We got nearly 30 entries so we’re excited to share them with our Blog followers. Everyone who submitted got $15 gift certificates and seven lucky winners got larger prizes of $25, $50, and the grand prize of $100. I’m announcing the first of the $25 winners today—right now. Drumroll, please….

Congratulations to Taylor P.! You’re the first of our $25 prize winners for your Camp Story!

Taylor tells us about her summer atLook into this great camp for your daughter!“I like summer camp because it is lots of fun at Camp Mystic with all the activities like camp craft, horseback riding, drama, and swimming. In drama we did a play called Lizzie Mcguire. It was really fun because I was Fronkas’ helper. We also got to play some fun acting games. In horseback riding we went down some very beautiful trails and in the ring we practiced for a horse show. I had to carry a tennis ball under my neck and walk around a barrel, then a pole, and then another barrel with bucket on top to put the tennis ball in. There’s the same thing but with a bow and arrow and you have to balance it on your arms.

 In camp craft we got to tie dye t-shirts. I tie dyed mine royal blue, turquoise and yellow. We also hiked up to Sky High and saw the ‘Mystic’ sign there. There was a little shade area that was nice because it was really hot that day. We also hiked up to God’s mountain. You could see the whole camp. It was awesome! We also made banana boats and orange cakes. A banana boat is where you cut a banana open and stuff it with marshmallows and chocolate chips, then put it on the grill. An orange cake is where you hollow an orange and put cake batter in it and put it on the grill. I got a spoon full of batter for each time I massaged a counselor! They were delish!

We also got to see some cool animals. During instructional swim and free swim we got to go on some really cool water mats and awesome buoys. In instructional swim we did some strokes and we had extra time so we got to go on the water mats. In free swim we did water mats and the buoys were so fun.

That was about it for my activities, next is about the tribes. There are two tribes, Tonks and Kiowas. I am a Kiowa and I wanted to be a Kiowa. Kiowas color is royal blue and Tonks are red. How you get your tribe is you draw out of a hat and if you get a blue piece of paper you’re a Kiowa and if you draw a red piece of paper you’re a Tonk. Then the older girls pick you up and run you down the aisle and put you in your tribe. There is tribe hill and tribe period. Tribe hill is where you have a secret song that you can’t tell the other tribe and if you follow your tribe training rules you get your tribe letter and tribe period is where you cheer for your team. There are tribe games on field day and one of the games for most points is KT trivia. You have to study for it. Kiowas won that game this year and the other game is the camp relay race. Kiowas also won that game, but the Tonks won a lot of the tribe games. But the Kiowas won this year!

On Sundays you have church. On the second Sunday you exchange warm fuzzes which are little fuzz balls. Its about giving and not expecting something back. The food there is so good you get ice cream every lunch and you get dessert every dinner. When your parents come to get you, a buffet brunch is set up. You get two hours to rest, then it’s commissary which is where you mail your letters and you get to get a drink and snack. The counselors are awesome and the people are so nice at camp Mystic. It’s awesome. I cant wait to go back next year!”

Thanks again for your submission, Taylor! Check out Camp Mystic for yourself! Tune in tomorrow to hear our next $25 winner and, as always, thanks for reading!

- John

What I didn’t tell you about Labor Day

Hey, Labor Dayers!
Happy Labor Day from Everything Summer Camp.




A year or two ago, I told you about the history of Labor Day. I posted about how, despite the fact that today it means a relaxing day off, people were working twelve hour shifts, seven days a week throughout the 1800s, just to keep America—the New World—running properly. Here are a few interesting items that I didn’t include in that post:

Labor Day nowadays means picnics in the park, cookouts, and a three-day weekend because Labor Day is always on the first Monday of September. But, the first official Labor Day took place on Tuesday, September 5 of 1882. It wasn’t until after the first year’s celebration that the first Monday in September was set as an annual day of observance.

People often think of Labor Day as a last call for summer fun, bookending the tail-end of the season. But it was very nearly a springtime holiday, set consistently on the first of May. May 1 is the observed day for many other governments and countries to support their working class. President Grover Cleveland decided to move the date since May 1 held bad memories for some of the Haymarket Riot in Chicago.

Though it’s considered to be such an American holiday, we actually owe our Labor Day celebration to our northern neighbors in Canada. Their worker parades were first held in 1872 after some labor disputes in Toronto. It was a whole ten years later that union activist, Peter McGuire (who some say is the founder of Labor Day in America) introduced the idea of the day.

The entire feel of Labor Day could have ended up an entirely different one if history had gone down several different paths. But thankfully, it ended up just the way it is. I like it that way. Enjoy your Labor Day and, as always, thanks for reading!

- JohnThe workforce relaxes on Labor Day!

Patriots’ owner, Kraft, went to camp

Hey, Camp Fans!

That autumnal chill is in the air again. As we see the end of August and the return of September, we’re reminded of the approaching fall season. It means apple-picking excursions, it means perfect campfire weather, and—who could forget?—it means football is BACK! Robert Kraft at Super Bowl XLIX

Everyone’s ramping up for the new NFL season! The first game premieres Thursday night on September 10 with the Steelers taking on this year’s champions in Massachusetts—the New England Patriots. In honor of the Patriots, I’m posting about Robert Kraft, Patriots Owner and former summer camper.

Having spent a week or two at summer camp certainly gave Robert an excellent life experience at an early age. He attended Camp Androscoggin, located in Wayne, Maine—20 minutes west of the state capitol. There lie 120 acres of beautiful campground, situated on the northern shore of Lake Androscoggin.

After graduating from Brookline High School and Columbia University (where he played running back and safety in his freshman year) Robert went on to build his healthy business career. By the time he was 31, Robert was in control of two companies. Combined, these companies make up the biggest privately-owned paper and packaging companies in the country.

With an interest in sports, Robert found himself refusing a proposal of the then-Patriots owner, James Orthwein. Orthwein’s deal would have moved the Patriots team, placing them in St. Louis. But Robert countered the deal with a record-breaking offer (for the time) of $172 million to outright purchase the team. Orthwein accepted Robert’s proposal.

Eight years later, Robert financed the construction of New England’s new Gillette Stadium and has continued to serve as nothing but a positive impact on the success of the Patriots. Be sure to watch next week Thursday as the Patriots kickoff the new football season!

With beginnings at Camp Androscoggin, Robert Kraft grew into the successful and passionate businessman that he is today. Who will you grow up to be? And, as always, thanks for reading.

- John