Blog

The Importance of Friends

In this stressful time of Covid19, it may seem  strange to be thinking about improving relationships, but this is, in fact the perfect time since we have a little more time to think and consider what we want and need from relationships, as well as what we can give to others.  Now is certainly a time to be reaching out to others, and offering your friendship and support.

An aspect of friendship we rarely consider is the impact that our friends and acquaintances have on us.  The impact how you feel when you are around a negative person?  When your friends only want to talk about their health, how do you physically feel?  Maybe it is time to express to our friends and family, what you want in a relationship.  You need not be confrontational, but you can be direct: “I feel depressed when it feels to me that so much of our conversations are negative”.

Warren Buffet, when talking to some students a few years ago said:

“You will move in the direction of the people you associate with.  SO IT IS IMPORTANT to associate with people that are better than yourself.  The friends you have will form as you go through life.  Make some good friends, keep them the rest of your life, but have them be people that you ADMIRE as well as LIKE.”

Reading his words reminded me about one of the most important benefits that camp offers children: The opportunity to associate with people who were also willing to leave home for part of the summer, travel, meet new people, and make friend that will support, help, and inspire them.  What a unique opportunity camp gives children to expand their horizons, be exposed to new opportunities, all the while being in a supportive community.  Friends made at Kingsley Pines Camp last a lifetime!


Prepare Your Children For School

Whether the teaching is in person or virtual.

Let’s face it, life is about to change when some form of school opens. As we learned when we opened Kingsley Pines this summer, preparation and planning are everything! Whether education is actual or virtual, your children’s life (and yours) is about to change. Do you have a plan? Have you started to prepare your children for their new schedule?

Parents need to reintroduce structure back into their children’s lives NOW! We are fans of inclusive conversations that permit children to have input on issues that impact their lives. However, be aware of the difference between input and a vote! Start discussions with your children about how their lives will change. What will their schedule look like? BE PROACTIVE! How much free computer/phone time is appropriate? When is it ok to talk to friends? How can your children get the most out of school? How are they going to get exercise? When are they going to do homework?

By planning now, you can avoid a lot of anxiousness in September.  Think about the expected and the unexpected.  What happens if school opens then has to close? What happens if school does not open? Discuss the importance of safe behavior when with non-family members.  If there are elderly relatives in your home, how will the family protect them? 

The 3 “W’s” are critically important: Watch where you are and how close children are to you (Social Distance), Wear a “Mask”(It’s shows respect for the community and protects others), “Wash” your hands regularly (Every hour if possible(Soap & water or disinfectant), and BE HELPFUL and THOUGHTFUL!

These are times that challenge all of us.  Please feel free to send us ideas or comments that we can post.

Be Safe, Wise, Be Kind!


Gratifying and Successful 2020 Camp Season (WE DID IT)

Kingsley Pines Camp opened successfully this Summer and provided a fun, and meaningful camp experience for our campers.  We would like to acknowledge our 2020 camp parents for their confidence and support.  Without their hard work in complying with our rigorous pre-camp guidelines, we would not have been able to keep camp open.

When our owners and administrative staff made the decision to open Kingsley Pines for the summer, we were confident we could provide a safe, fun, and fulfilling experience to children whon needed camp more than ever.  The expertise and commitment of our staff, combined with parent support, allowed our entire community to have a truly exceptional summer.

What we were able to accomplish should provide hope to all of us that by working together, we can find ways to foster meaningful in-person engagement for our children even in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic.

If we can be helpful to any of our campers, families and alumni during the challenges of this Fall and Winter, please contact us.  Our staff is ALWAYS willing to reach out to Campers and help them through any rough spots.  We truly care about all of you.  Please stay in touch with us and your camp friends!  Being a friend means helping each other through good and bad times!

We wish our families the best in the upcoming months, and look forward to seeing everyone back at Kingsley Pines Camp next Summer!

Be Safe, Be Smart, Be Kind


WE ARE OPENING CAMP in 2020

 

Through the extremely hard work of our staff, Kingsley Pines is opening on July 12, 2020. We have had to adjust our camp season (No multiple sessions) with one 3 or 4 ½ week session. Campers must be tested within 72 hours of arriving at camp, and furnish their negative test to KP when they arrive. Basically, we are creating an isolation bubble for the camp community, where campers and staff can enjoy the many activities that KP has to offer without interacting with outsiders (See kingsleypines.com for more information).

It is amazing what motivated, intelligent, dedicated, hard-working people can accomplish when working together as a team.  The opportunity for children to be outdoors and interact together is invaluable!  Especially this year! 

Joyce & I are very proud of the camp team, and we look forward to a fun, creative, and healthy summer.


Kingsley Pines Summer 2020 Update

Because we take the safety of children so seriously, we wanted to make sure Kingsley Pines Camp could fully comply with CDC and State of Maine Guidelines for opening camp before finalizing any plans.  Although the Maine Guideline were only published on May 22, 2020, we have been discussing safety measures since COVID-19 first appeared in late January.  We have carefully reviewed our operating procedures to assure that we can make them safe while providing a fun and challenging environment for children.

We are altering our calendar to provide a single session of camp that offers families a choice of 3 or 4 ½ week stay.  By being a “single” session camp, we are able to provide a much higher degree of safety for our campers, since “new” children will NOT be arriving part way through the camp season.  We will NOT allow visitors during the summer, drop off and pick up will be contained to a specific area, and Staff will stay on our property all summer. In effect, Kingsley Pines Camp will be a quarantine space.

Unfortunately, many children’s summer camps do not find themselves in a position to open in 2020 for various reasons individual to their situation.  We believe that children are in desperate need of outdoor activities, social experiences, and just plain fun.  We are working hard to make the summer as safe as possible.

Please tell your friends that Kingsley Pines camp is OPEN this summer!!  We expect to be fully subscribed due to demand and capacity limits we have established!

Please see kingsleypines.com for rates and dates!

Our motto for the summer is :

BE SAFE

BE SMART

BE KIND

 


“What would I do if it were my own child?”

The following was written by our son, Drew Taylor, to address how the owners of Kingsley Pines were going to make decisions about opening Kingsley Pines Camp.  I believe his letter shows the “HEART” of how decisions will be made by our family.  By the way, Drew has 2 children who attend camp.
 
“What would I do if it were my own child?”
 
This is the question I ask myself as I gather the information I need to make the “right decision” about camp for the 2020 season. It guides my thinking as I speak with parents, doctors, epidemiologists, other camp owners, and our administrative team. There are still many specifics to be spelled out, but I want to share with you where I am in my thought process.
 
We are currently waiting for guidelines from the CDC, which is working directly with the American Camp Association. Child care and camps are considered essential functions under the federal plan, so I remain optimistic that we’ll open this summer. Assuming this is the case, I think it makes sense, for many reasons, to shorten the camp season to five weeks. This will give us extra time to see how events unfold and make sure we have everything in place. It will also allow us to create a fun, high-energy experience while maintaining the right pace from start to finish.
 
Our thinking is to open on July 12 and, essentially, quarantine everyone in camp once they arrive. What better place to be sequestered than on Panther Lake! Our plan will require staff members to arrive at least two weeks before campers to begin the quarantine and make sure everyone is properly trained before camp officially begins. 

To protect our community, we plan to not allow parents to visit and are considering cancelling all off-site trips.  We will limit outside deliveries to essentials, like food and supplies, and will monitor very closely anyone coming in or out of camp. We are increasing our medical staff and creating specific protocols to manage any contingency.
 
We anticipate receiving the guidelines from the CDC very soon and will send more detailed information at that time. In the meantime, we are spending every waking minute speaking with medical professionals, planning with my administrative team, and putting best practices in place to minimize exposure and avoid any unnecessary risk this summer.
 
When all is said and done, I want you to have peace of mind with your decision to send your child to Kingsley Pines Camp this summer. My pledge to you is that when I ask the question, “What would I do if it were my own child?” I am doing so with your child in mind.
 
Kind regards,
Drew Taylor
Kingsley Pines Camp 


Will Kingsley Pines Open This Summer?

The answer is YES if permitted by the Maine governor and CDC. We expect that workable and safe guidelines will be developed by the end of May which will permit camps to open in July!

We have cancelled our first session of KP from June  28 – July 11 to permit our staff to quarantine in place before campers arrive on July 12, 2020 (We offer 2, 3, & 5 week sessions). We also plan to provide reasonable screening of campers. Once on our property, campers will have over 100 acres to enjoy without outsiders anywhere nearby. Our facilities are ½ mile from the nearest public road, and there are over 500 acres around us owned by camps.

We are paying special attention to all guidelines developed by CDC and the American Camping Association.  There is no doubt that children need to get back outdoors, safely socialize, and develop new friends, and have fun again!  Worry, concern, and depression is edging into their lives. Camp offers a fresh start and new opportunities.

Unfortunately, a number of camps are not able to open this summer for various reasons.  If you have friends or family looking for a summer overnight camp, please tell them about Kingsley Pines Camp, and refer them to our website: kingsleypines.com.

Be Safe, Be Smart, Be Kind!


“Where Have All The Children Gone, Long Time Ago?”

They are home stuck inside and facing difficult challenges of isolation, boredom, lack of socialization, and exercise.  Too much togetherness can be difficult. We are all hopeful that children’s camps will be permitted to open this summer. After all, children have the lowest risk of catching C-19, and have a statistically insignificant chance of being seriously sick. Camp can be the perfect place to quarantine children away from vulnerable populations (Counselors are generally below 25 years old and camper ages run from ages  8-15).

At camp children can run, play, and socialize in an outdoor environment, all the while being isolated from the general population. They have outstanding role models in their counselors, and have many opportunities to learn new things, and meet new friends.

Joyce and I are very concerned about the negative impact enforced isolation will have on children. They are surviving on TV, computers, and mobile phones. They need interpersonal contact. At Kingsley Pines Camp there are NO electronics. Children develop their imaginations, and interpersonal skills while living in a group.  Our counselors are fun, and helpful.  The opportunity for children to “run free” was missing in society before C-19, and has only been made worse by “staying at home” orders. We have 100 acres consisting of forests, playing fields, beaches, lake, and creative arts area. Children choose their activities based on their interests.

Kingsley Pines Camp in Raymond Maine (kingsleypines.com) considers the safety of our campers first and foremost. We have consulted with some of the leading experts about how to run a safe camp in our current situation, and comply with American Camping Association guidelines.

 

 


There is a Light at the End of the Tunnel

A positive outlook is good for your health and your family’s health!

At a time when almost every news broadcast and many emails focus on the Covid-19 Virus and the danger it poses to us, our family, community, country, and world, it is very difficult to be optimistic about anything.

The endless negative news stories and e-mails keep us hyper with concerns. If you want to feel better about yourself and life, reach out to others, and be supportive.  Call/skype/WhatsApp someone who is alone and lonely. Send positive notes and emails to neighbors. Use programs like ZOOM to connect with a group like book club, discussion groups, and friends.

Programs that allow you to see people in real time are the most effective. They are VERY easy to use, and create a fuller experience than the telephone.  Stay connected!


Importance of Kingsley Pines Camp in child development

Studies by three universities show that attending camp is becoming ever more important. Schools are no longer helping children develop the essential life skills they need to succeed. Basically, children are NOT being provided sufficient guidance on “how to be a decent human being.” The core foundational skills of kindness, honesty, empathy, work ethic, communication skills, teamwork, and interpersonal skills are being substantially ignored. By providing a group living opportunity under the supervision of well trained staff, children learn to get along with each other, be sympathetic to other campers when they are experiencing difficulties, set and achieve goals, get along with others, and work as a team. There is NO other opportunity that so successfully encourages children to develop these life skills in so short a time. Kingsley Pines is a special place!!