I remember the summer of 10 years old so clearly. It truly was the greatest summer of my life. I was so excited to go to the best girls’ summer camp in Ontario: Camp Ak-O-Mak. I was also a little nervous, spending the whole summer sleeping away from home! I had had a great year of school, feeling accomplished in my work. Nonetheless, I was ready to finally “be in nature”, to be as active as possible and to find new friends to whom I could grow close. Here are some suggestions on how to make the most of your girl’s summer camp experience:
It’s challenging to wake up feeling anything but happy at Camp Ak-O-Mak. The camp prides itself in gifting all girls a rural, genuine Canadian camp experience that is completely “unplugged” (no cell phones, no laptops). I loved training and competing in my go-to sport in a picturesque, natural setting and waking up and going to sleep in my cozy wooden cabin without electricity. I had 10 other girls with me in my cabin that summer, with three of the most supportive, inspiring and caring counselors. I felt so happy discovering my appreciation for the gorgeous nature that surrounded me 24/7. I woke up every day with the intention of making the most of what was in front of me: engaging campers and counselors, delicious food, and beautiful forests and lakes.
As a competitive swimmer, I was always swimming indoors. Perhaps this is why I craved the opposite. Perhaps that was why I craved being outside all summer long. The fact that I could continue honing swimming skills in a fresh water lake surrounded by beautiful trees made me feel “super-stoked” for what was to come! Waking up to a run or a swim always set up my day to be a good one, and jumping into the fresh, clear lake became meditative for me. There was no better place for me to advance my swimming abilities than in an invigorating environment with 50 and 25-meter pools built right into the lake! Being encouraged to do my best in a very supportive and natural environment increased my confidence both as a swimmer and as a growing pre-teen.
The coolest part about Camp Ak-O-Mak is that girls from all over the world spend their summers together. The summer of being 10 was when I made the most lasting friendships of my life. I learned a great deal from the girls I met and shared similar passions with them. This made me feel really secure in myself. I was excited to keep in touch with them throughout the school year and even more excited to see them every summer to follow. I was rarely homesick because Ak-O-Mak became my home away from home and my new friends and awesome counselors became my summer family. Ak-O-Mak is truly the best girls’ summer camp ever!
So, 10-Year-Old-Self, be happy. Be open. Be ready to experience only the best in what an all-girls summer camp has to offer! You will have tons of fun during the day and have the best sleeps at night. You will make lasting friendships and feel good as you discover how awesome you are! Get ready to embark on the best summer of your young life!
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