6.04.2014

Hashtag Camp Throwback.

The idea of sleep away camp always terrified me as a kid. As a chronic bed wetter, and full on awkward geek, I always dreamed of going to camp and finding my long lost British twin sister, but knew that with my fear of meeting new people and over protective parents, that the dream probably wouldn't happen. I mean, sure,  I went to sleep away camps with Girl Scouts, but my mom was the troop leader and we never actually camped...it was more or less in a hotel or something a la Troop Beverly Hills style. Not to mention that every patch I earned on the coveted Girl Scout sash was an indoor activity like cleaning or visiting nursing homes.

Bottom line: Camping was never something that I have done in my life, so when my friend Brittany Gibbons asked me to be a part of her crazy and off the beaten path idea called Camp Throwback, my natural reaction was "Hell yea" because with all of my camp "experience" I was obviously the logical choice, right? Luckily Brittany was able to see past my affinity for speaking with authority on topics completely foreign to me and allowed me to help her brainstorm ideas and interject my two cents....even if sometimes it was a dollar short. 

But what a cool idea! Going back to Camp as an adult...with alcohol? Genius I tell you. And as a total Brittany fan girl myself (remember my Facebook stalking is what led me to Last Call with Brittany) I knew she was on to something big. 

I'm not going to lie, the whole process was a bit nerve racking. Planning a weekend spa trip getaway? Easy peasy. Planning an adult camp that had never been done before in the history of ever? A bit tougher. But you know what? I think all of those nervous dry heaves made the weekend that much better, because the vibe at camp was epic, and I hate that word. 

 Now I say the term weekend loosely, because as the campers that were there will attest, I was only there for one day on the count of me pushing my little Minnie Sue out of my lady bits just two weeks earlier...so my camp experience was a bit different. 

I arrived on Saturday nervous as all get out. I literally sprinted to the porta potty immediately upon arrival because I was that nervous. Here's the thing though, I had been talking to Brittany and she had been keeping me updated on the happenings of the weekend, and things seemed to be going well. So why was I so nervous? 

Two words.  Field day.

 The same day in school I dreaded because I was always picked last for everything. The day that I was always Red Rovered over first because scrawny Jess was never going to be able to break through the arm chain. The day that I always found myself at the height of self consciousness. So Saturday was no different. Even though I'd agreed to take the reins and organize the Dodgeball tournament and help coordinate activities, I was shaking in my boots. Would everyone like the games? Worse would they like me? 

Here's the thing about Brittany Gibbons that you may or may not know. She has this amazing way of making everyone around her feel important and special. And the same goes for the people she chooses to surround herself with. It's super refreshing. From the moment I began to introduce myself to the internet celebrities that I communicate with via the internet (hello curvygirls) I realized that "these were my kind of people". Everyone there had been cut from the same cloth. No one felt the need to "put on airs" as my mom would say. The Camp Throwback campers were real, and in a world where we all tend to fake it till we make it every day, it felt great to embrace each other as authentically and awkwardly as you would expect drunk people who only know each other from the internet could. 


We started the day with Bloody Mary's and delicious breakfast burritos courtesy of Chili Dan's. . You know, the breakfast of champions and all that. Seriously though, that burrito probably saved my life, not having drank for the last 9 months really messes with the tolerance level and after one Coors Light I found myself slurring into the megaphone.

The Dodgeball tournament was amazing, even though it took me way longer than any person holding a high school diploma should take making a bracket out of 8 teams. Everyone gave it their very best, but in the end Cabin 4 was victorious. Hooting and hollering ensued followed by an ample amount of shit talking about how next year everyone is going to take them down...doesn't healthy competition bring out the best in all of us? Oh, and have you seen their trophies? 

Field day brought the usual suspects, watermelon eating contest, waterballoon toss (uh water balloon fight), and of course, the obligatory three legged race. Oh but before you say anything, I will take the full blame for the twine being the rope of choice. I tried to stick with the outdoorsy theme but didn't realize that the twine burns ( is that a thing?) would overshadow the actual race. Noted. On behalf of all the rug burned ankles I apologize whole heatedly. 


Have you ever tried NOT smiling while watching/riding a Slip N' Slide? Physically impossible I tell you.

But my favorite part of the day by FAR had to be the Slip N' Slide. Seeing grown adults just throw all caution to the wind and go balls to the walls on a $10 piece of plastic just made my heart sing. Even better, Brittany added dish soap to the mix and the redneck void I didn't even know was missing in my life was immediately filled. Due to the post partum-ness of my body I didn't participate although I'm pretty sure the giant old lady pad would have really sent me down the slide faster than the inflatable floatie.

The perfect day was ended with a hilarious concert by the amazing Jenny Talia and a bonfire sponsored by Duraflame. After all, what's camping without a big fire worthy of eyebrow removal? 

All in all, I'm so proud of what Brittany has done with Camp Throwback and I am honored to be  part of something so revolutionary. For most of my life I've felt like I was never cool enough to sit with the cool girls at lunch when in reality it just took me 28 years to find the actual cool girls worth sitting with anyway.

Ps. I can't wait until next year when I'll skip the Day camp charade and actually spend the night instead of worrying about nipple creams, breast pumps and hemorrhoid pads. Isn't my life so glam?

The countdown is on for Camp Throwback 2015....be there or be square fools.  



^Special thanks to Mercy Hangover cure, Duraflame, Crotchgear, and the TravelSmiths for your kind sponsorships. 

2 comments:

  1. You are AMAZING! I could not have done this without your help, and I am SO excited for next year:)

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  2. "For most of my life I've felt like I was never cool enough to sit with the cool girls at lunch when in reality it just took me 28 years to find the actual cool girls worth sitting with anyway."

    This is the truth!! So glad you found the right lunch table!

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