At RKD, guests can renew their minds in two different, but important ways: through stimulation or relaxation. For some, mental stimulation is what they need, and Camp Arcadia provides that through activities like the dean’s program, skill-building classes, and interaction with new people. The dean’s program is the oldest and most fundamental activity at Camp; the entire point of establishing a Walther League resort was to provide Christian education in a beautiful, restorative environment. But campers also enjoy mental stimulation every time they try something new, whether it’s archery, making crafts, or learning a line dance.
Not everyone needs stimulation: folks who are mentally taxed may seek out opportunities to “tune out” and relax. Camp initially included a “Quiet Hour” where guests could write, nap, or “untangle [their] reel”—which was meant literally but works metaphorically, too. This tradition continues during Teen Weeks with daily reflection time, and while no longer scheduled during Family Weeks, there are many spaces where guests can unwind throughout the day. Some go to the beach, some find a rocker on the Inn porch, and others choose an Adirondack chair on the boardwalk to sit and read, meditate, or nap. Others may go for a quiet walk in the woods or meander along the lake looking for Petoskey stones. Sometimes, the best afternoons are the ones where the only program is allowing the mind to rest and recharge. At RKD, guests can decide every day which activities are best for their particular needs, even if those needs might change from day to day or year to year.
RKD is also a balm for those who need healing. The community is such that campers often find themselves very quickly unburdening themselves or listening as others share their troubles. As years pass and relationships deepen, those moments become part of a shared history that doesn’t even have to be spoken—a look, a hug, or smile reminds both that they know each other’s struggles and still care.
This is an excerpt from Days Filled With Sunshine: 100 Years of Camp Arcadia written by Dr. Stephanie Jass. This book will be a must-have for members of the Camp Arcadia family, including never-before-written stories from Camp’s history, anecdotal tales from community members and full-color photos all the way through. You can order the book by contacting the office (231-889-4361) or visiting Camp!