What Makes Bryn Mawr so Special?

It is only normal for us to reflect on the summer all months, especially this month as our Winter Reunion will be in a few weeks. Below are excerpts from a letter that was send to us by a 4 year staff member. We hope you enjoy it.

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Working at Camp Bryn Mawr has been an experience that reached beyond all expectations. Here, I have been able to forge relationships that have lasted years and create new friendships every summer. It’s amazing to think that I can travel the United States or even the world and have people I love everywhere I go. That is something I owe to working at this remarkable summer camp. Bryn Mawr has turned into nothing short of my summer home, and the people there, my summer family.

At Bryn Mawr you are given the unique privilege to work in an all-girls setting. This is what makes this place so special. At camp you can see a literal transformation in the girls you work with. They step off the bus in June and immediately feel more like themselves. The atmosphere gives them a place to feel comfortable, a place where you don’t have to look in a mirror or constantly work to impress anybody but yourself.king at Camp Bryn Mawr has been an experience that reached beyond all expectations. Here, I have been able to forge relationships that have lasted years andcreate new friendships every summer. It’s amazing to think that I can travel the United States or even the world and have people I love everywhere I go. That is something I owe to working at this remarkable summer camp. Bryn Mawr has turned into nothing short of my summer home, and the people there, my summer family.

Working here has allowed me to help these young women become comfortable in their own skin, make new friends and excel at the things they love. They are given the chance to branch off from their school year expectations, and you are given the opportunity to help them find their path. To be a part of that gives me such a sense of accomplishment and purpose.

I have fallen in love with Bryn Mawr and everything that makes it so special. It has transformed me as much as it has transformed every girl who attends.

From the Outside Looking In – A Parent Perspective

Dear Jane and Dan,

I just wanted to personally thank you for all that you do to give these girls the summer of their lives. My daughter Erica, and my niece Ayla, came home with rave reviews. As impressed as I am with your program, the girls experienced it first hand. And, they are still talking about everything from the first day of camp, to the final night banquet. Even more, they have discussed their desire to come back as Bunk One Angels.

I never dreamed that my daughter, in particular, would find it such a positive experience. I feel that you definitely kept each of the girl’s personality profiles in mind, when choosing their mini groups. Erica was with a wonderful group of girls, in her “mini” group. Basically, she liked everyone in the manor house, and beyond. The Bryn Mawr Camp program allows for individuality, acceptance, and definitely helps the girls to build their self-confidence/self-esteem, just as stated in your video and during the home visit! Erica was encouraged to participate in activities, in which she otherwise expressed little to no interest. And, she loved everything. Even if she “wasn’t the best at it…”. I could not have asked for anything more!!!

In addition, I can see that all of the staff, yourselves included, truly enjoy camp. You get involved in all aspects of camp life. I appreciate that you cannot be everywhere at one time, but your presence is definitely felt by the girls! Which is, to me, exceptional. Ownership brings with it many challenges, however, you seem to have made the girls feel as though they are the top priority. I was thrilled to learn of the same!

Finally, I appreciate you for getting back to me when I had concerns. As the parents of three girls, I am sure you both understand the tricks ones mind can play, when looking at camp pictures. You helped to put my mind at ease, when I was missing my daughter, and my niece. I tried not to be “that parent”, but when I was close, you responded promptly. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!

As you know, I was a camper there, and it seems that it is even better than I experienced!!! That is a true testament to your efforts throughout the summer, and the year. Hope you get to rest for a couple of weeks before it is back to work! The girls are starting the countdown to SUMMER 2013…

Best Regards,
An Appreciative Parent of a Manor House Camper and Aunt to a Lodge Camper

Traditions and Time Capsule

One of the most endearing and sacred things about Lake Bryn Mawr Camp are the traditions: significant to each camper, each one demanding its own reverence, helping us unite as ‘summer sisters’.  These traditions are what transform Lake Bryn Mawr in the thoughts of the campers from ‘a camp’ to ‘my camp’.

In 1992 a new tradition was started at Bryn Mawr.  A time capsule was built to capture the timeless spirit of camp with each bunk and camper putting in something significant to them—there is not a list of what went into the time capsule, which is part of what makes it so exciting to open now, 20 years later.  Who knows what will come out–what favorite camp memento, treasured letter, funny memory?  The Bryn Mawr time capsule will be opened on Alumni Day, Saturday August 4th.  We have invited the alumni who took part in the time capsule as well as those who came before and after to be with us for this special event.  Back in 1992 we did not use emails—we sent out a letter in the mail to all the camp families letting them know about our time capsule.  This year, in 2013, we sent out emails to our camp families as well as putting a post and video on our Facebook page.  The time capsule has become a way to bridge 20 years of camp and we are going to use it to connect us to the future generations of Bryn Mawr campers as well.  We have invited every bunk to bring something special with them on the opening day so that we can then start a new time capsule to be opened in summer 2033.

The face of Bryn Mawr might change on the surface but the feeling it gives you never does.  Bryn Mawr is home to all of us and part of what makes it that way is that the campers know they are enjoying the same activities, in the exact same ways, as generations of campers did before them.  We might not be here in 20 years to watch the next time capsule open and to carry on the traditions we love so much–but we are confident our successors and our campers will.

Jessie Buresh, Camp Blogger

Angel Philosophy

Loyalty means being true, faith and honor in all we do.  Beauty is in more than skin, beauty comes from deep within.  Merit is working hard all day, developing virtue along the way.  Comradeship is being a friend, loving others ‘til the end.  As Bryn Mawr Angels we’ll uphold these four values: the Angel Code.

When I first started working at Bryn Mawr I had no idea just how much that paragraph up there would change my life.  I thought I was in for a one-time deal, a summer job that would let me experience the East Coast and maybe an introduction to sleep-away camp that I had never had before.  Imagine my surprise to find myself sitting here, in my 7th summer, writing this blog!

You know that Bryn Mawr is a unique place, a place that fosters lifelong friendships—‘summer sisters’.  A place where your Angel can be free to express herself and to try new things.  A place where she can roll out of bed, throw on a uniform, and greet the day where the emphasis is on her experience rather than her appearance.  It is a place where the Angel Code is so deeply entrenched that it is a part of every activity and every program lesson.

I am here to tell you that Bryn Mawr is a unique place for a completely different reason, and one you might not have even considered.  The staff, a team of professionals who are here doing what they do best—inspiring, leading, teaching.  The staff, who come back summer after summer for the very same reason your daughters do!  The Angel Philosophy and what it means in our lives also.  The staff at Bryn Mawr genuinely understand the magnitude of the responsibility they have been given for the summer—your children!  Understanding that responsibility makes the four virtues in the Angel Philosophy that much more important because in order to teach it and pass it along we need to feel it, embrace it, and allow it to change our lives just as surely as it changes the lives of the campers.  And I am here to testify that it does!

I will be writing more about the Angel Code as the summer goes on.  I will be looking for those situations that exemplify the Angel Philosophy so that I can share it with all of you and give you not only a glimpse into the summer home that your Angels love so much but also just why the staff here are so inspired and passionate and even awestruck to be working at LBMC.

Summer Sisters: Friendships, Experience and Returning to Summer Camp for Girls

Summer Sisters

Have you ever heard the phrase “summer sisters”? If you didn’t go to sleepaway camp as a child, you might not know what we’re talking about. For girls who grow up going to camp, “summer sisters” are the friends they make at the lunch table, in the bunk, on the tennis courts, or around the campfire — the friends with whom they share a special bond for life. Summer sisters grow up to be college roommates, bridesmaids, godmothers, and friends for life — the kind of friend you can call up when you’re feeling down and know she’ll be able to say just the thing to make you forget all your troubles. Continue reading “Summer Sisters: Friendships, Experience and Returning to Summer Camp for Girls”