My Summer Home

In 1982 my parents packed up my oversized hard trunk and put me on a bus. At the time I had no idea what to expect and I watched nervously out the window until riding under the Camp Saginaw arrow at the entrance to camp. I had no idea that I had just entered a place that would become my summer home and a huge part of who I would be for the rest of my life. For ten years I took that bus ride; each year with more excitement than the last. I couldn’t wait to see my friends, meet my counselors and set up my area in my bunk. I was excited to sing in the dining hall, play with my leagues team, hang at the canteen, and laugh with my bunk all day and all night. Days filled with bunk activities, swims, and milk bar. Nights filled with dances, games and trips. From canoeing to Big Rock, from the pool to the lake, I had found my happy place.

It’s now 30+ years later and I’m lucky enough to be back at camp. As Hera XVIII I have the opportunity to witness camp from a parent’s point of view and see amazing camp moments. I see kids laughing, playing, running, singing, hugging, working together and sharing, and that’s before any of the scheduled activities even start. I watch girls walk around camp arm in arm or hand in hand with huge smiles on their faces. I cheer on campers who become athletes as they dig deep and play hard on the fields and courts. I listen to divisions stand on chairs and sing their hearts out in the dining hall with pride. I witness girls learning to live with and getting to know other girls who they might not have looked at in the halls at school. I love seeing kids engaging and giggling with each other all day without once posting a picture or sending a text. I am a witness to these campers learning about who they are and becoming better versions of themselves on a daily basis.

The memories and experiences I have from camp are engrained into who I am as a person and as a mother. I am very fortunate that my children spend their summers at Camp Saginaw. I am also very lucky to spend my summers with so many other amazing kids too. They are making memories and creating friendships that will last a lifetime. They are free from technology and academic stresses. They are gaining independence and learning to share space and respect others. And, they are continuing to enjoy and pass on the traditions of my summer home, Camp Saginaw.

- Remi (Cohen) Tammaro