St. Vladimir’s Camp. FROC Camp. Camp Greene Acres. Camp.
No matter what it was called when you (or your kids) were there, the mere mention of the word Camp will flood the mind with memories and bring a smile to your face.
Starting when my sister and I were 7 and 8, my parents packed us up and dropped us off for a week at FROC Camp—presently known as St. Vladimir’s Camp and Retreat Center. Every year, it was a glorious week, the best week ever, the week I never wanted to end! The counselors were so cool—especially when they would climb on top of the chapel or high into a tree during a Counselor Scavenger Hunt. Sharing a cabin with my best friends in the world, swimming, playing softball and Stump the Monk; it was a week to remember for sure!
Almost 35 years later, we look around at many of those same best friends who are now dropping off their own kids at camp or even crazier—being the Camp Directors! Like so many amazing volunteers of the past, I’ll join my mom and sister, pack up a suitcase of clothes and a basket of bedding and move into the Cook’s Cabin for a week of cooking for the newest generation of campers. There’s a sense of nostalgia as I pull into the long driveway that takes me past the caretakers’ house and into camp proper. No matter how many campers are in residence, how rambunctious they may be, there’s a calm feeling that settles over even the most high strung or stressed out adult.
Many of my non-Orthodox friends and co-workers ask why I give up a week of vacation only to spend it on my feet in the sweltering heat of an Ohio summer in the middle of nowhere cooking 3 meals a day for a bunch of kids. The response? It’s more than just a sense of nostalgia and fond childhood memories. It’s because during that week, there is no more important place to be--not in the office, not on a business trip, not at home in the air conditioning. The most important place that I could possibly be is in that kitchen doing whatever small part that I can to make sure that there IS a week of camp for the children who want to attend.
2016 marks the 50th Anniversary of our Camp property, as it was purchased in 1966. As we all are too well aware, the older we get, the more things begin to need repair. The same is true with our Camp. In the last few years, we had to make several maintenance upgrades, including the purchase of two new boilers (approximately $9,000). After 40 years, our swimming pool needs to be replaced. Many Camp memories are centered around three things – the Campfire, the hay rides and the pool. It will cost approximately $60,000 to replace our pool.
We would love to find 100 people who are willing to donate $100, as this would be a huge kick-off to our fundraising campaign! If $100 is not in your budget, that’s just fine. No donation is too small, and we appreciate every last dollar that we get!!
Keep a record of your donation as all donations are tax-deductible.