With the last day of Color War upon us, everyone was working hard, having fun and giving it every ounce of effort they had. It meant that much to all of us. Win or loose, each team put their heart on the line and played hard. Each field and court was full of Red and Gold spirit, chants and cheers. The feeling on camp is just plain inspirational. To see groups of kids rally around one another in the true sprit of competition and do it in a way that is uplifting and encouraging is awe-inspiring. It’s the way it should be and it exists here at camp.
Tonight was a silent meal and never was The Lodge so quiet. It was oddly silent as this is the place where we dance and sing but tonight in Color War tradition, we ate silently. The campers wanted more than anything to talk but knew that every word spoken would loose points for their team. Try and visualize The Lodge full of campers and counselors that just don’t speak. It was a sight to see and a hilarious buzz of silence.
As both teams entered into Shields Hall dressed as Cowboys and Indians, there was a sense of elation and true Color War pride. This was it, and everyone knew it. Each team presented their plaque and banner and they were truly works of art. Masterpieces if you will. It was time for Sing and both were ready to perform the songs they worked so hard on and had so much meaning in every verse. There were tears as Red Cowboys sang their Alma Mater and included beautiful lyrics that embodied the feelings they have as their summer comes to an end:
We stand here, looking at the faces around
At this amazing place and friendships we’ve found
I have been changed because of you Even when I didn’t know, I need you
But in these next few days, we’ll go our separate ways
Tears fall from our eyes as we start to say goodbye
It was emotional and everyone knew that the end of Color War signifies the end of camp. What we have all gone through will be with us forever but for now is ending and the last five days as two teams are now back together as one amazing unified camp. Gold Indians so poetically conveyed in their Alma Mater:
Chenny’s far from ordinary, nothing can compare
‘Cause this isn’t the end of our story, I’ll leave a page for you so don’t worry
I’m telling you to take one look at what we’ve been through
Just keep in mind, that a piece of you will always remain here cause going on without you will always be my fear
In a Chenny tradition of musical chairs, the last Judge to grab his seat was Red and that relayed the winner of Color War 2015. This years Color War was so close, a mere 21 points separated these two incredible teams. There was joyous elation throughout the Red team but just for a moment until they realized that their fallen Gold comrades suffered feelings of defeat. What amazed me in Shields Hall tonight was to see the empathy and compassion of the Red team embracing their friends on the Gold team. There was that moment beyond the win, it was true friendship and respect. There was honor and good will, there was pride and compassion. We all put into practice what we learned all summer long. That kindness matters more that winning and true friendship is more important than competition. This is the essence of Camp Chen-A-Wanda. There were so many tears tonight. Some were of joy from winning this 5 day battle, some were of loosing and the heartache of defeat but regardless of why we all began to cry we all ended in tears because we know the end to summer 2015 is near.
We walked into Shields Hall tonight as two very separate teams, dressed head to toe in costumes representing our separateness but we all walked out back together as one camp. Sad tears quickly turned into tears of joy as everyone held onto one another and walked back to their bunks and cherished the night being together. We have three more days and much more fun to be had here at Chenny. Though the end is near, Life is still so great at Camp Chen-A-Wanda.