The WARM Place was excited to host its first family camping experience, Camp Remember Me, over the first weekend of November at Camp El Tesoro in Granbury, TX. Camp Remember Me was created to provide an opportunity for WARM Place families to grow together in their grief journey. This fun camping experience was packed to the brim with exciting activities for the entire weekend!
We were thrilled to have 15 families and several dedicated volunteers join us for this fun-filled weekend. All families arrived at camp on Friday evening. Once everyone was unpacked and moved into their cabins, each family made a lantern in honor of their loved one. To kick off the weekend festivities, families hiked to a location where we opened our weekend with a campfire ceremony in which each family lit their lantern in memory of their loved one and concluded the campfire with s’mores!
On Saturday morning, our WARM Place families had the opportunity to experience several fun camp activities in their peer groups including hiking, archery, and strategic games! Saturday afternoon consisted of rotating activities as a family where they made a few art projects and got to experience the challenge course.
Just like the name, the challenge course was filled with many difficult tasks to overcome. The first task is getting to the platform at the top of the tower which sits 35 feet above the ground, the options were to climb up the rock wall or climb a telephone pole and walk across a 15ft log.
Each option is difficult in its own way, but not impossible to overcome. Once on the platform, the participant would sit on the edge, feet dangling over the side. The next task was getting up enough courage to lean over the edge of the platform and begin the zip line. Once the zip line began it felt freeing, but getting to that point was a very difficult thing to do! Saturday ended with a glow in the dark scavenger hunt around camp that led to a fun glow-in-the-dark party complete with games, face painting, and dancing!
On Sunday, the last day of this memorable weekend, we concluded our camp with a very special closing remembrance ceremony at the chapel. Handmade family flags made the previous day lined the walls. One by one, families found their hanging flag, unclipped it, and made their way to the front of the chapel and were asked to share their favorite part about Camp Remember Me. Each family had something unique to share ranging from the glow in the dark party to archery.
One of the family members shared that their favorite part of camp was seeing smiling faces that have been gone for so long. To conclude our ceremony, each family was gifted a walking staff from camp that had the words, “Camp Remember Me” wood burned into it. The walking staff was given to them to be used as a flagpole to support their family flag. This is a representation of the support that The WARM Place hope to be for their family.
The WARM Place’s first Camp Remember was fun, memorable, and special. We are already looking forward to Camp Remember Me 2019!