By Chris “Yuma” Young, National Alumni Board
The friends I made while working at the A/U Ranches have had the greatest impact on who I am and what I do now. I’ve been able to stay in touch with some of my camp friends over the years; working at Principia College, I often run into people I worked with or even was a camper with.
Every time I do visit with someone from camp, I’m reminded of how special our time was together at the Ranches. It doesn’t take long to reminisce over some story of laughing so much it hurt or overcoming some limitation that I marvel at today. These encounters are special and help me keep focused on the things in life that matter – love, laughter, friendship.
Last August, I attended Mini Camp at the A/U Ranches. While meeting with friends from my time at Adventure Unlimited is always worthwhile, meeting them in the place where we share so many memories magnified the experience. I had a chance to engage in some of my favorite activities from camp, spending the day with both new and old friends at the ropes course and out at Turtle Rocks. It was amazing how quickly I found myself laughing and supporting others as we challenged ourselves. I remembered how important it is to be able to smile at challenges instead of gritting my teeth, to laugh at my mistakes instead of lamenting them.
I have spent this past year trying to apply in my life these lessons I learned while living and working at the A/U Ranches. I was also lucky enough to have family with me last summer, and sharing that time with them has helped us all deal with our challenges this past year.
I know that it isn’t easy to find time in our busy schedules, but I’m here to tell you that the benefit of reminding ourselves what we learned in our time at camp is well worth it. If you haven’t talked to some of your friends from your time at the Ranches, call or email them – now. Remember why we loved being in the shadow of Five Fingers. Better yet, get a group of your friends to meet you at the end of summer. Any Mini Camp can become a reunion with just one old friend.
Whether you missed the 60th Reunion last year or loved it so much you want to come back, you can get your friends together for a mini reunion at Mini Camp this summer, August 21-27. To get started, email [email protected] with your ideas and we’ll help you get the word out.