Month: March 2022

Katie Goodman

Greetings from the Camp Director

Hello Camp Chewonki Families,

I’m Katie Goodman, the new Camp Director for Camp Chewonki! I am thrilled to be joining the Camp Chewonki Community. In this new role, I’ll be overseeing the residential programs for all campers, ages 8-15.

I grew up going to sleepaway camp in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, and since my first summer as a nine-year-old, I have loved every aspect of camp. I was signed up to be a one-session camper, and the very first thing I said to my parents when they came to pick me up was, “Can I stay?” I vividly remember standing outside the dining hall in my favorite blue Mickey Mouse sweatshirt with my parents (who were also visiting my older sister, a full-summer camper). I was worried they would say I had to return home as planned, and then I began shrieking with delight when my camp director said I could stay for the whole summer. 

I didn’t know it at the time, but that was the beginning of one of the most significant relationships of my life, my relationship to summer camp. I grew to love every element of camp over the eleven summers I was there, as a camper and later as staff. And, I have found those same elements I love at every camp I have worked for since. 

Community, ritual, physical place and connection to nature, deep personal connection, safety that fosters courage and growth, opportunities to try new things, and the opportunity to enjoy all of this, summer after summer. That moment was also the beginning of a lifelong connection to my camp director. She went on to be the person who coached me through my first painful disagreements with my friends, who taught me about healthy boundaries, who encouraged me to go for challenges that scared me, and ultimately pushed me to grow into the person I am today. 

I am honored and delighted that I get to be a meaningful part of your Camp Chewonki experience, just as she was for my childhood camp experience. I have seen the profound impact camp has on a young person, and I am so grateful to continue this journey with Camp Chewonki. And I am beyond excited for the beginning of this beautiful relationship with you, this place, and this community. 

Katie

Katie Goodman
Camp Director
Pronouns: She, Her, Hers
Email: kgoodman@chewonki.org

About Katie Goodman

Katie’s love of camp started as a child attending sleepaway camp in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Her summers working as a counselor, while completing her B.A. in American Studies at Trinity College in Connecticut, solidified her desire for a career working with young people in nature-based programs. Katie spent over four years working in international service learning programs as a facilitator and program manager before returning to the U.S. to complete her Masters of Education at Vanderbilt University. After completing her studies, Katie returned to camping as the Assistant Director for Camp Cobbossee in Monmouth, Maine and subsequently for Trail Blazers Day Camp in Brooklyn, NY. Katie also has a Certificate in  Permaculture Design Certificate and has worked as an outdoor educator in California. 

Katie is thrilled to be back in Maine! She is a native New Yorker but has lived on three continents, in four countries, and in six states. In her free time, Katie does organizing work for economic justice, loves to hike and explore nature, and sit by a fire with a great book or knitting project. 

After many years of working in different types of youth programs, Katie is excited to join Camp Chewonki in a role that combines all of her professional interests. She was drawn to Camp Chewonki for its focus on cultivating a love and knowledge of nature, food systems, and outdoor exploration in a camp setting that embraces many camp classics: campfires, storytelling, singing, and the arts! Most importantly, Katie is inspired by Camp Chewonki’s mission to support campers in cultivating personal growth and community connection. 

Degrees & Certifications

Masters of Education in Community Development and Action (CDA), Peabody College, Vanderbilt University. Awarded Outstanding Student of the Year for CDA Program, 2016-2017.
Bachelor of Arts in American Studies and Human Rights Studies, Trinity College, Hartford, CT. 
Permaculture Design Certification, Oct 2019.

map

A Day in the Life of a… Trip Leader

A Day in the Life of a… Trip Leader

All camp staff go through training together; you’ll learn how to work with kids, explore the Neck, and meet lots of new people. Camper arrival day comes quickly, but music is playing and the energy is high.

Camp being divided into two, three week long sessions could mean that you’ll be doing different things each session. Oftentimes that means you’ll be leading one three week long leadership expedition as well as a session leading various cabin trips for our younger campers. Regardless of whether a trip is three weeks or two nights, the general structure of a trip rings true each and every time!

As a Trip Leader, you’ll wake up in your tent with your co-leader while the campers are in tents nearby. You might choose to get up early to make some hot drinks and have a quiet moment by the fire. Soon it will be time to wake the kids up and get the day started.

  • Breakfast time comes quick as you make food over the fire or on your stove. As breakfast gets prepared, the group works toward getting camp packed up and ready to move on after breakfast.
  • Mornings are generally spent traveling, whether that’s through backpacking, canoeing or kayaking. You’ll follow your itinerary, teach skills, have conversations and enjoy the time outside.
  • Take a Lunch Break at a beautiful destination. Whip up some chicken salad, throw it in a wrap and enjoy while bird watching along a river.
  • Afternoon: finish up traveling for the day and arrive at camp. Take some time to set up camp and then, if there’s time, explore the area, check in with campers, or play card games around the table.
  • Dinner time is always highly anticipated. Campers will start their crews, chopping firewood, filtering water, setting up bear bags and of course helping cook the meal. Cook up a classic over the fire with burrito bowls and start up the brownies in the coals.
  • Evening often looks like gathering around the fire and chatting about the day. You’ll hold an evening meeting, chat about leaders of the day and forecast the next day before heading off to bed or maybe lingering to tell a few more stories.

As the trip progresses, campers will slowly work toward becoming more and more proficient with the different skills involved both in travel and in camp. You’ll go from taking the reins on everything, to taking a step back and guiding leaders of the day through the different decisions that come up each day. It’s a beautiful thing to watch how campers evolve through the different stages of the trip.

When you return from your trip, you’ll clean up, put away gear and take some time to digest the experience you had. At the end of a three week leadership expedition, this will involve a full day back at Chewonki Neck before departure day that’s dedicated to clean up, reflection and connection. You’ll have plenty of time to hear about other trips that went out and be able to share the incredible stories that were written out on trail. At some point, goodbyes will be said and the campers will leave with lifelong memories and connections. After camp, you’ll leave with new things; memories, experience, confidence, professional references, a stronger resume, and an understanding of how you can (and did) make an impact on your camper’s and staff’s lives.

mountain

A Day in the Life of a… Coordinator

A Day in the Life of a… Coordinator

All camp staff go through training together; you’ll learn how to work with kids, get trained on your activity, explore the Neck, and meet lots of new people. Camper arrival day comes quickly, but music is playing and the energy is high.

The Camp schedule has 3 different days; Chewonki Days, Excursion days, and Activity Days. You’ll have Activity days first.

As a Coordinator, you may start your day during Pre-breakfast doing the Polar Bear, a birdwalk, or Farm chores. At 7am, you ring the bell to wake up camp!

  • Breakfast is always homemade – today we’re all eating farm eggs, or maybe homemade granola. You read a quote before the meal, and then ask for announcements. As campers clean up, you will lead or support the morning meeting.
  • Morning inspection is shortly after breakfast. Today you will inspect each cabin to make sure it is clean and organized. You will announce the different activities offered during Free Period today, and ask campers to sign up.
  • Period 1 The campers will go to one of eight activities: Natural History, Outdoor Living Skills, Visual Arts, Farm, Archery, Woodworking, Community Building, or Watercraft. The Cabin Leaders will either accompany their campers, meet with you, or have a free/planning period that they can use to plan or prepare for activities later in the day.
  • Period 2 is time that you can use to check in with Cabin Leaders, attend an activity with a cabin, or talk to other Coordinators/leadership to plan.
  • Lunch is Farm Greens, farm Tomato Soup with grilled cheese and Cheese-Its (don’t knock it ‘till you try it!). After reading a quote, you sit back, eat, and listen to the Farm Activity Head talk about a Food Fact – did you know that tomatoes have an antioxidant in their skins called lycopene? The redder the tomato, the more lycopene is in it!
  • Rest Hour happens after lunch in which everyone reads a book, writes a letter, or takes a nap – staff and campers alike.
  • Period 3 is when you prepare any materials needed for the Period 4 activities, check in with Cabin Leaders, etc.
  • Period 4 starts at [Eastside Starflower or Westside’s Lower Field]. You will direct campers to the staff/activities that they signed up for. You can help staff with their activity, plan for the evening activities, or check in with Cabin Leaders or your other Coordinators.
  • Dinner time is highly anticipated tonight – we heard a rumor that it’s blueberry cobbler for dessert (made with Maine blueberries, of course). After reading a quote and asking for announcements, the Cabin Trip Coordinator talks about who is on trip, what they’re doing, and highlighting cabins that are about to go on trip.
  • Evening Activities fall into 3 categories. Bunk nights are activities that cabin leaders plan for (or with) their campers. All Camp nights are generally campfires, skit nights, or another activity that Coordinators and leadership plan for all campers and Cabin leaders on campus. Group Night that is something that Cabin Leaders and the Cabin Coordinators in an age group plan.
    At bedtime you check in on the cabins, make sure all cabins are covered, and then you take some time to slip away and check your email, call a friend, or head to bed.

The next day may be another activity day, an Excursion Day, a Chewonki Day, or your day off!

Chewonki days and Excursion days

Chewonki Days are the Cabin Coordinator’s wheel-house. They happen every 6 days throughout the session, meaning that there are 3 Chewonki days a session. This day is focused on reflection, recognition, and selfless service. Cabin Coordinators plan a service activity that happens after the Community Reflection and the bead ceremonies. We will end the day with a Campfire and singing.
Excursion Days happen every 6 days, 3 times a session and is planned by the Activity and Operations Coordinators. This day is intended to give campers a chance to explore the Neck, have fun, and be as silly as possible. We will end the day with an All-Camp Activity that focuses on collaboration and teamwork.

End of Camp events

The end of camp is packed with tons of fun, community building, and emotion.
Chewonki Games day is the second-to-last full day of camp. As an Activity Head, you’ll take part in creating, preparing, and leading different activities throughout the day. After tons of excitement, we’ll end this day with the final campfire of the session and watch campers perform skits about their time at camp.
The Final day at camp is a day that focuses on traditions. Activity Heads will prepare materials for a few of these activities, such as plaque making. The majority of your time on this day will be spent preparing for Banquet, our last dinner at camp. Decorations, table set up, place settings, music playlists are all things that the Activity Head team will prepare ahead of time for the celebration. Everyone dresses up in their best camp clothes, and we’ll end the evening with a picture montage and campers spending time with each other and the staff that made their summer so wonderful.

Beginning of Session 2

We return from intersession to prepare for Session 2.
Session 2 starts, and it’s similar but different from last session. The energy is there, but it’s different. Campers are there, but they’re different. Fortunately, you have your friends, peers, and Directors to lean on through the transition. Before you know it, you’re in the rhythm of camp again and you’re more confident in your interactions with the campers.
As camp progresses, we get closer to the end. You’ve gotten close with your staff, and now it’s time to prepare to say goodbye to them, and to Chewonki for now. We work together as a camp to clean, organize, and store our supplies. Coordinators delegate tasks to staff, and gather important feedback about the summer from their staff. Although campus starts to look empty, it feels alive with energy and memories that you’ll remember when you come back next year!
After camp, you’ll leave with new things; memories, experience, confidence, professional references, a stronger resume, and an understanding of how you can (and did) make an impact on your camper’s and staff’s lives.

meeting

A Day in the Life of a… Activity Head

A Day in the Life of a… Activity Head

All camp staff go through training together; you’ll learn how to work with kids, get trained on your activity, explore the Neck, and meet lots of new people. Camper arrival day comes quickly, but music is playing and the energy is high.

The Camp schedule has 3 different days; Chewonki Days, Excursion days, and Activity Days. You’ll have Activity days first.

As an Activity Head, you’ll wake up in your cabin and get prepared for the day. You may be coming back from Polar Bear, Farm Chores, or Birdwalk when the bell rings at 7am to get ready for breakfast.

  • Breakfast is always homemade – today we’re all eating farm eggs, or maybe homemade granola while listening to the Natural History Activity Head introduce the ‘Natural History Mystery!’ We have a morning meeting to talk about the day, and then it’s off to your activity area so that you can gather your materials for Period 1.
  • Period 1 is Puffins today! This is your first time with this cabin, so you introduce yourself, play a quick name game, and get started on the activity for the day. If you’re a Cabin Leader, you may have this time to prepare an activity for the Free Choice period, meet with your Cabin Coordinator, or have a chance to relax and recharge.
  • Period 2 is unscheduled today, so you may use this time to prepare an activity for the Free Choice period, meet with your Coordinator, or have a chance to relax and recharge.
  • Lunch is Farm Greens, farm Tomato Soup with grilled cheese and Cheese-Its (don’t knock it ‘till you try it!) are ready when your cabin gets to lunch. You sit back, eat, and listen to the Farm Activity Head talk about a Food Fact – did you know that tomatoes have an antioxidant in their skins called lycopene? The redder the tomato, the more lycopene is in it!
  • Rest Hour happens after lunch in which everyone reads a book, writes a letter, or takes a nap – staff and campers alike.
  • Period 3 is an Owl cabin. This isn’t your first time with this cabin, so you go straight into the activity.
  • Period 4/Free Choice activities were announced and campers signed up for the activities this morning. You offer to lead a tree identification activity. The campers who are interested grab their tree ID books and journals, and you head out as a group to explore one of the points on the Neck.
  • Dinner time is highly anticipated tonight – we heard a rumor that it’s blueberry cobbler for dessert (made with Maine blueberries, of course).
  • Evening Activities fall into 3 categories. Bunk nights are activities that cabin leaders plan for (or with) their campers. Tonight is a Group Night that Cabin Leaders & Cabin Coordinators plan. Tonight is an All Camp night in which ALL campers and camp staff participate. You helped to gather the materials and made the “microphone” for the event tonight; as the emcee you get the festivities started and we all have a blast!!
    The rest of the evening is centered around washing up, checking your email, calling a friend, or heading to bed.

The next day may be another activity day, an Excursion Day, a Chewonki Day, or your day off!

End of Camp events

The end of camp is packed with tons of fun, community building, and emotion.
Chewonki Games day is the second-to-last full day of camp. As an Activity Head, you’ll take part in creating, preparing, and leading different activities throughout the day. After tons of excitement, we’ll end this day with the final campfire of the session and watch campers perform skits about their time at camp.
The Final day at camp is a day that focuses on traditions. Activity Heads will prepare materials for a few of these activities, such as plaque making. The majority of your time on this day will be spent preparing for Banquet, our last dinner at camp. Decorations, table set up, place settings, music playlists are all things that the Activity Head team will prepare ahead of time for the celebration. Everyone dresses up in their best camp clothes, and we’ll end the evening with a picture montage and campers spending time with each other and the staff that made their summer so wonderful.
As the final days of Session 1 come and go, you’ll have some new experiences to talk about. You won a game of Gaga ball, got sucked into the mud on a mud rove, and laughed as some campers “accidentally” paint themselves head-to-toe in blue paint. It’s bittersweet to see the campers go, but it’s exciting to know that Session 2 is about to begin, and you’ll have so many new moments to look forward to.

Beginning of Session 2

We return from intersession to prepare for Session 2. By now, you know what to expect, and may have new ideas for your activity.
Session 2 starts, and it’s similar but different from last session. The energy is there, but it’s different. Campers are there, but they’re different. Fortunately, you have your friends, peers, and Coordinators to lean on through the transition. Before you know it, you’re in the rhythm of camp again and you’re more confident in your interactions with the campers.
As camp progresses, we get closer to the end. You’ve gotten close with this second group of campers, and now it’s time to prepare to say goodbye to them, and to Chewonki for now. We work together as a camp to clean, organize, and store our supplies. Activity heads pack away their materials and debrief with their Coordinators. Although campus starts to look empty, it feels alive with energy and memories that you’ll remember when you come back next year!
After camp, you’ll leave with new things; memories, experience, confidence, professional references, a stronger resume, and an understanding of how you can (and did) make an impact on the camper’s lives.

cabins

A Day in the Life of a… Cabin Leader

A Day in the Life of a… Cabin Leader

All camp staff go through training together; you’ll learn how to work with kids, explore the Neck, and meet lots of new people. Camper arrival day comes quickly, but music is playing and the energy is high.

The Camp schedule has 3 different days; Chewonki Days, Excursion days, and Activity Days. You’ll have Activity days first.

As a Cabin Leader, you’ll wake up in your cabin with your co leader and campers. You may be coming back from Polar Bear or a birdwalk when the bell rings at 7am to get ready for breakfast. You and your cabin get ready, and then walk to breakfast to start your day.

  • Breakfast is always homemade – today we’re all eating farm eggs, or maybe homemade granola while listening to the Natural History Activity Head introduce the ‘Natural History Mystery!’ We have a morning meeting to talk about the day, and then it’s off to your cabin so that you and your campers can clean up for their cabin inspection.
  • Morning inspection is finished and your cabin passed with flying colors! Now, your campers will go to one of our eight activities: Natural History, Outdoor Living Skills, Visual Arts, Farm, Archery, Woodworking, Community Building, or Watercraft.
  • Period 1 Woodworking today! You may be with your campers at Woodworking, or you have this time to prepare an activity for the Free Choice period, meet with your Cabin Coordinator, or have a chance to relax and recharge.
  • Period 2 OLS! You walk with your cabin to the OLS site. After helping your campers practice making fires, you walk back to the cabin with your campers and get ready for lunch.
  • Lunch is Farm Greens, farm Tomato Soup with grilled cheese and Cheese-Its (don’t knock it ‘till you try it!) are ready when your cabin gets to lunch. You sit back, eat, and listen to the Farm Activity Head talk about a Food Fact – did you know that tomatoes have an antioxidant in their skins called lycopene? The redder the tomato, the more lycopene is in it!
  • Rest Hour happens after lunch in which everyone reads a book, writes a letter, or takes a nap – adults and campers alike.
  • Period 3 you and your campers go to the Farm and meet Grandpa, the calf who was born last summer. After learning about the compost and starting a felting project, you all walk back to your campus for period 4.
  • Period 4 activities were announced and campers signed up for the activities this morning. You offer to lead a trail running activity. The campers who are interested lace up, and you head out as a group to explore and run to one of the points on the Neck.
  • Dinner time is highly anticipated tonight – we heard a rumor that it’s blueberry cobbler for dessert (made with Maine blueberries, of course).
  • Evening Activities fall into 3 categories. Bunk nights are activities that cabin leaders plan for (or with) their campers. All Camp nights are generally campfires, skit nights, or another activity that Coordinators and leadership plan for all campers and Cabin leaders on campus. Tonight is a Group Night that you, your Cabin Coordinator, and the other cabin leaders in your age group plan. You all chose Gaga ball since there is a tournament at the end of the week!
  • The rest of the evening is centered around washing up, eating a delicious dinner. Finally, at bedtime you take some time to slip away and check your email, call a friend, and then head to bed.

The next day may be another activity day, an Excursion Day, a Chewonki Day, or your day off!

Cabin Trips (through the eyes of Camp)

Your cabin’s trip is getting closer, and it’s time to prepare. The Cabin Trip Coordinator will help to make sure you and your campers know the details of the trip, and can answer questions about gear. As a Cabin Leader, you’ll prepare them mentally and emotionally so that they feel confident and excited about their coming experience.
The day comes, and you, your co-leader, and trip leader head out to start day 1 of your itinerary!
At Camp, the Cabin Trip Coordinator tracks your progress for the rest of us to see.
When you return to camp, you see familiar faces and peers that are excited to hear about your adventures. Your campers have grown closer, there are more inside jokes than ever, and you sleep soundly in your cabin knowing that the rest of camp is going to be a blast.

As the final days of Session 1 come and go, you’ll have some new experiences to talk about. You got to judge the Blueberry Bakeoff, got sucked into the mud on a mud rove, and laughed as your campers “accidentally” painted themselves head-to-toe in blue paint. It’s bittersweet to see the campers go, but it’s exciting to know that Session 2 is about to begin, and you’ll have so many new moments to look forward to.

Beginning of Session 2

We return from intersession to prepare for Session 2. By now, you know what to expect, and may have a new co-leader, cabin, or age group to get to know.
Session 2 starts, and it’s similar but different from last session. The energy is there, but it’s different. Campers are there, but they’re different. Fortunately, you have your friends, peers, and Coordinators to lean on through the transition. Before you know it, you’re in the rhythm of camp again and you’re more confident in your interactions with the campers.
As camp progresses, we get closer to the end. You’ve gotten close with your second group of campers, and now it’s time to prepare to say goodbye to them, and to Chewonki for now. We work together as a camp to clean, organize, and store our supplies. Activity heads pack away their materials, Cabin Leaders give trip supplies to Packout, and the cabins start to look like they did when you got there. Although campus starts to look empty, it feels alive with energy and memories that you’ll remember when you come back next year!
After camp, you’ll leave with new things; memories, experience, confidence, professional references, a stronger resume, and an understanding of how you can (and did) make an impact on your camper’s lives.