- There was no shortage of smiling faces at the Camp Wayne Girls' campus this week.
Camp Wayne is a traditional brother-sister camp and was established in 1921. The camp covers a sprawling 450 acres that include a groomed campus, forests and a private spring-fed lake.
The goal of Camp Wayne is to give children a healthy, happy and rewarding summer camp experience.
Children from Preston, PA and Hancock, NY were able to take advantage of all that camp has to offer at no charge.
The only thing the children have to do is promise to stay in school and strive to do well to come back next summer for a few days of fun in the sun.
Co-director of the Preston/Hancock Experience Mike Corpuel said that "we open the camp up for one week" after the regular camping season ends.
The five-day program, currently in its third year, is staffed by volunteers and gives the children a true camp experience.
The kids get to participate in tennis, CircusYoga, tye-dying, ceramics and swimming.
Mike Emmerich is a camper-turned-couselor who returns to Camp Wayne each year.
He has been coming to Camp Wayne since he "was 10 years old."
He was also a participant in the CIT program, which takes campers interested in becoming a counselor and provides the training to make that happen.
A favorite part of a day camp for Emmerich is "the kids are excited and ready to go every morning. They never need to be warmed up."
One of the favorite activities of the day camp is ceramics.
In the art room, the children are given the tools to create pottery with a pottery wheel.
Then, the creations are painted and have designs carved into the surface for a more unique look.
The campers will always have their work of art as a token of their time at camp.
Another popular activity is swimming in the lake. After passing a swimming test, the campers take to the water to experience a giant slide and water trampoline.
Campers can also learn to play an instrument, like Emmerich did.
"I learned to play guitar at camp," he said, saying now he gives lessons.
For counselors like Emmerich, the camp experience is about much more than activities.
The camp experience is something that he, and the others at Camp Wayne, are more than happy to provide to their eager day-campers.
"Camp gives you an opportunity to be exposed to role models," he said.
"I learned how to become a leader at Camp Wayne," he said. "I wouldn't be the same person without the camp experience."
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