Teen Campers also enjoy all the benefits of living as part of our Base Camp population when they are not out on trips taking in new views!
Dear Camp WA WA Families and Friends,
As our last overnight camper session of the summer wraps up, we are looking forward to extending our summer on Harmon Pond at Camp WA WA Segowea as long as possible!
Labor Day Weekend is our final weekend of summer programming and we will be bringing together families and friend groups of all ages for the best end to summer.
Labor Day weekend Family Camp features numerous ways for families to unwind, including:
• Delicious made from scratch meals three times per day.
• Unlimited boating and swimming on our spring fed pond.
• Hikes, ball games, and daily activities perfect for all ages of kids and adults.
• A break from electronic entertainment, wifi, and cell reception (we do have a landline!).
Group cabins are $500 (for up to 8 guests) and include all programming and meals, individual bunks are $125 per person. Registration is found at app.campdoc.com/register/
For questions, email our camp director, Lily, at email@example.com or call 413-229-9110 by August 10.
Lily Mercogliano Easton
Camp WA WA Segowea
Campership scholarships have been a part of the Camp WA WA Segowea tradition since the camp first started in 1913.. Back then, an ad posted in the Poughkeepsie Journal reached out to “Boys in need of assistance to get to camp” (because it was an all boys camp way back then…). Those youth in need could write to the camp director and secure their spot in a cabin for the summer.
Today, I am so proud that camp is continuing to ensure that kids make it to camp each summer regardless of their family’s ability to pay the full fee.
In the past year, Smith Park of New York, the parent non-profit organization that operates Camp WA WA Segowea, increased the campership fund to $40,000. With camp just a month away it is time to raise the last funds needed to get all the kids to camp!
Last year before we launched this final campership scholarship push, I wrote a blog post about why so many of us give to make Camp WA WA camperships possible.
And this year, I wanted to focus on what we receive when we remain committed to camperships.
Including campers from diverse economic backgrounds at Camp WA WA means we get to run a bustling program in the summer that creates a true form of community, one built on support, understanding, perspective-taking, and empathy. It introduces everyone to the ways we all live, play, and learn together on our 450 acres of Berkshire woods.
When I was a camper at Camp WA WA, receiving a campership scholarship meant I got to learn how to swim, and become a strong enough swimmer to swim across the lake and back. It also meant I got to grow friendships that are now going on 27 years old. And, perhaps most importantly, I was given a stake in a program and set of traditions that strengthened my character in more ways than I will ever be able to count.
For this summer, giving to camperships means we ensure that youth who have experienced homelessness, major family changes and losses, big ups and downs in school, and pulled through numerous other challenges during this past year, can count on Camp WA WA to be a timeless and consistent part of their summer experience. Giving is our tradition. It’s the WA WA way.
Starting on Monday, June 10 we will launch our annual Director’s Campership Drive to raise the last funds needed for this summer’s camperships. You can make a donation to the Director’s Campership Drive via our Facebook Fundraiser found HERE or by donating through our website below.
You can also send a check to Smith Park of New York, Inc. at P.O Box 4994, Poughkeepsie, NY, 12602.
I will give generously to the Director’s Campership Fund Drive because knowing that I’m doing my part to keep nature, adventure, friendship, community, and endless summer days a strong part of all WA WA camper’s summers means the world to me. I hope you will join me and make a generous donation too!
Lily Mercogliano Easton
Camp Director, Camp WA WA Segowea
- Vassar Farms corner of Raymond and Hooker Ave. Map
- Sunday May 12th, 2019 (Mother’s Day)
- Race Day registration 7:30-9:00 am
- Kids 1 mile 9:00 am (free if you preregister $5 on race day)
- Kids Rugby Field Rush 100 yards 9:15 am (free)
- 5K Run/Walk 9:30 am ($20 preregistration $25 race day)
- Awarding of the Pies around 10:30 am
- T-shirts to the 1st 150 Registered 5k runners
- Free games, face painting and balloon animals for the kids
Register online here
Visit www.wallywaddle.org to learn more.
For those that spent time at Camp WA WA Segowea, located on over 450 acres of secluded land in the “5 Towns” area of New Marlborough County in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, there are a whole bunch of things that can seem like a fairly normal part of a summer vocabulary. There’s doing “Campers Kapers” (chores) every day, hiking to “Ump” (Umpachene Falls, the nearest waterfall), walking on the log (it floats, and rolls, in the camp lake), and looking forward to the “Gold Rush” (a popular game that involves searching for gold painted rocks) to name just a few.
To people that have never been to Camp WA WA Segowea, all of this can be pretty new and confusing! It is common for new friends and families to notice the unabashed love alumni have for our special summer home and also wonder, “What is ‘WA WA’ and what do kids do there?”
And while camp’s website has lots of information about Camp WA WA’s summer programs, getting to talk with someone close to Camp WA WA about the underlying culture of the camp and about what they understand to be, “the WA WA way” is usually the most helpful route to understanding the answers to that question.
When asked, “What do you love most about Camp WA WA?” on their surveys, many campers write in, “EVERYTHING.” For them Camp WA WA is much more than a sleep-away camp, it is the place to meet new friends, see old friends, and build memories that can be indescribable to anyone that wasn’t with them for their time there.
Alumni have said that their take-aways from Camp WA WA are life-changing, and see the impact of being together in community with campers within a similar age range and also from a wide-range of backgrounds as a cornerstone of the program. More than the small details, like what skill classes they chose to take in the afternoon, it is the larger traditions of sleeping in simple cabins to the sounds of crickets (and pirates- but that’s a whole other blog post!), increasing self-sufficiency skills like how to build a fire, or swim, or row a boat, and the tremendous amount of singing and laughter (sometimes at the same time!) that fill summer weeks that leave a lasting impression.
As Camp WA WA’s 91st summer in the Berkshires approaches, everyone is looking forward to many more families joining the Camp WA WA Family. Those interested in learning more can meet our Lily Mercogliano Easton, our Camp Director and an alumna of the camp from 1993, at one of the following upcoming information sessions:
BROOKLYN, NY: January 12, 12pm-3pm, “Schools Out for Summer” Fair at P.S. 321 in Park Slope, Brooklyn, NY.
CAPITAL DISTRICT: March 13, 6pm-8pm, “Slingerlands Elementary School Camp Fair” at Slingerlands Elementary School in Delmar, NY.
DUTCHESS COUNTY: April 28 & 29 at “Kid Venture” at Dutchess County Community College in Poughkeepsie, NY.
DUTCHESS COUNTY: May 15, 9am-11am at the 10th Annual “WA WA Wally Waddle 5K Race and Walk” at Vassar Farms, Poughkeepsie, NY.
BERKSHIRES: June 1, 11:30 AM- 3 PM at “Planting Day Spring Open House” at Camp WA WA Segowea in Southfield, MA.
At the end of each two week session, camp is closed with a candle light ceremony and the words, “May the light of Segowea stay with you all year long and bring you right back here next summer!” Summer 2019 will be tremendous, and welcoming new families and youth will be one of the biggest highlights.
Camp WA WA Family Camp over Labor Day Weekend is an opportunity for everyone in a family to unwind and take in the very last moments of summer!
Our Camp Director, Lily Mercogliano Easton, brings her family of four to Camp WA WA Family Camp and in this latest blog post she shares her three favorite features of this unique summer escape.
1. Building Community With Other Families! A vacation with other people for my kids to meet and play with is my favorite kind of vacation because it is easier for my husband and I to relax while they are off having fun!
2. Natural Wonders Provide Endless Entertainment! Searching for frogs, tossing rocks in the lake, running across the field, watching for beavers, taking out a canoe, and collecting sticks provide my kids with endless ways to have fun. It is magical to watch how that final walk down the dusty camp road into our lakeside valley pushes away digital needs and replaces them with the strongest desire to explore outside!
3. Cooking is Optional! Camp WA WA’s Camp Cook prepares delicious hot meals all day Saturday and Sunday, and breakfast on Monday. All meals are served family style in the dining hall. A cereal and yogurt bar at breakfast, and lunchtime and dinner salad, soup, and PBJ bar in addition to the main courses means everyone can find what they want. Campers help set and clear the tables, and can join in with meal prep only if desired!
Camp WA WA Family Camp 2018 is Friday, August 31 through Monday, September 3. Day passes are available for Sunday, September 1. Rent a family cabin for the whole weekend or come visit for the day!
Registration for Family Camp is completed online at campdoc.com. Group Cabins are limited to first come basis. For questions, please email our Camp Director by August 12.
The idea of giving back is central to the “WA WA Way,” our unwritten code of how we treat each other, and our beloved camp, when we are at Camp WA WA Segowea (and hopefully, when we are out in the wider world too!).
We all participate in chores every day, and we all extend the gift of friendship to our fellow campers. We also keep in mind that camp is home to wildlife for the entire year and we are only guests during the summer, a notion that requires we give our furry friends and local fauna both space and respect at all times!
And we extend the camp experience to as many campers as possible each year, regardless of financial ability to cover all of the costs of a camp session.
Smith Park of New York, Inc., the non-profit organization that runs Camp WA WA Segowea, gives generous “Campership” scholarships ranging from over $1,000 to $100 to meet the needs of our families. In 2017 Smith Park gave out over $25,000 in Camperships to 36 campers! This year our program capacity has expanded, and over 40 campers have applied for campership support to attend camp.
We continue the tradition of “Campership” scholarships because we know that every camper that comes to Camp WA WA will give back in one way or another. And with this in mind we celebrate each and every camper that makes the effort to attend for the very first time or return for another year!
Starting this Monday, June 18, we are launching our second annual “Director’s Drive”- a special fund intended to get our final campers to camp this summer! You can donate to the Camp WA WA Director’s Fund via our fundraiser on Facebook HERE or directly through our paypal account found HERE.
I will give generously to the Camp WA WA Director’s Drive because I was once a kid who needed campership in order to attend and I want all campers to have the same chance to experience Camp WA WA! I hope you will give generously too!
Lily Mercogliano Easton
Camp Director, WWS ‘93