Category Archives: News from Camp

At Camp for the Summer

We’re busy at camp ensuring that our 117th summer is another great one and that all of our campers have opportunities to challenge themselves, to learn and grow, and to have fun!

Throughout the season, parents will stay connected to their sons through hand-written letters.  While some correspondence will surely be less descriptive than others (many parents have received that one liner: Send cookies ASAP), all letters from camp become a treasure. Letter writing is a wonderful way to communicate and, though a dying art in most of the country, it’s alive and well at Pine Island!

If you need to get in touch with us during the summer you can call our summer number 207-465-3031, email Sarah at shunter@pineisland.org, or write us a letter! Our summer address is:

Pine Island Camp
HC0 Box 200

Belgrade Lakes, Maine 04918

Pine Island’s 117th season is going to be another great one!

A beautiful afternoon for Opening Day 2018!

Frenchman Sets Waterskiing Record at Pine Island

July 15, 2016 was a day packed with eagerly anticipated activities. All campers and staff were in residence for only the second time all summer; the annual camp photo would be taken just after lunch; it was the day of the Regatta; and that night instead of campfire it would be Club Honk, a musical extravaganza, complete with a stage, elaborate lighting, and supergroups. However, perhaps the most eagerly anticipated event would come at the end of the regatta – the annual attempt by the burly Expedition Campers paddling the war canoe to get a camper up on water skis. The search had begun earlier in the day for the perfect skier – he must be the smallest camper available who has some experience in the sport. Impromptu interviews discovered a promising candidate in Dimitri C., a first-year camper from Paris.

Dimitri seemed remarkably calm in spite of the weight of history – success in all of the three previous attempts – on his young shoulders. He seemed confident in the strength and stamina of the men of Expedition Camp. Dimitri donned his life jacket and two staff members helped him get set up in the cove with two ancient water skis while the paddlers attached the extra-long tow rope to the war canoe and prepared to paddle. A large crowd gathered on the beach and chants of “Di-Mi-Tri!” rang out. Would it work again this year? Then they are off…paddling madly…the tow-rope comes taught…the attending counselors give a push…and…his skis nearly make it to the surface but he pitches forward. The crowd groans, Dimitri waves undaunted, and the war canoe makes a long loop back around to start again. Again the big blue Old Town surges forward with cries of “Stroke! Stroke”…the line comes taught…the skier wavers briefly but leans back and…he’s up! Huge cheers from the crowd on the beach who watch as Dimitri skis out across the lake… further and further…getting smaller and smaller…far enough so that an alert counselor hopped in the Cove Boat to be in attendance when the “engine” finally ran out of steam.

Dimitri was up for 51 seconds, a new waterskiing record at PIC.   He returned to the island in the Cove Boat triumphant but humble and ready for the next adventure. Well done, Expedition Camp 2016 and Dimitri!

This article was published in the 2017 Winter Edition of the Pine Needle.

Another remarkable summer

It’s been ten days since we said goodbye to our campers. Since then we’ve been hauling boats out of the water, taking down tents, and generally getting the island ready for the winter. Part of that work has included relocating our newest sacred animal, Emery, the Spork-toothed Heliscorpion, from the mainland to the island.  This was no small task given his significant weight. Emery arrived the evening of packing day in a wonderful ceremony with lots of Henchmen.  His arrival is the pronouncement that the 2014 season was another great summer at Pine Island. Emery is by far the heaviest of our sacred animals and perhaps that’s a testament to this remarkable summer. Pine Island’s 2014 campers logged many miles on the trails and waterways; 10 campers earned their 50 mile badge, 10 earned their 100 mile badge, and 40 earned badges for traveling distances of 150-250+ miles over the course of their summers at camp. Boys became skilled in workshop, woodcraft, and watermanship, earning ranks in their favorite activities. But what made this summer so great has nothing to do with the statistics. This group of campers and staff created a special community, one in which each boy’s participation and energy was needed. We’re grateful for every camper, staff member, parent, and volunteer, all of whom made this season, start to finish, another remarkable one.

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Emery, the Spork-toothed Heliscorpion.

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empty cove

The cove.

The last dinner, takeout, for the close up crew on the Tent 12 platform.

The last dinner, takeout, for the close up crew on the Tent 12 platform.