• Summer camp leads to self-discovery
    POSTED 12.4.17 Blog

    This post was originally written as an essay by Lady Hannah Weiner, Assistant Director for Camper Development, and published on the Summer Camp Society blog. Read the original at TheSummerCampSociety.com.

    I believe summer camp leads to self-discovery.

    When I was ten years old, I started going to an overnight camp in the Detroit suburbs. The camp, while dear to my heart, offered nothing special: Jewish programming, crafts, sports, a manmade lake. But I returned year after year, even embarking on their specialty outdoor tripping camps. I’d return home a smelly, smiling version of myself, and it would last me most of the school year.

    Fourteen year-old Lady Hannah descending Half Dome in Yosemite National Park through Tamarack Camps’ Western Trip.

    The summer I was ten, I learned I could beat the boys at floor hockey. The summer I was twelve, I learned how to hike.  Each summer fostered a love (or strong distaste) for something new: a love of stir fry, a deep hatred for the Blob, a love of kayaking. I knew my summer self strongly. I knew what I liked, I knew what I disliked, which meant I knew what I valued.

    Camp exposed me to things I otherwise wouldn’t have experienced (i.e. stir fry, kayaking, etc.). And those things are awesome—they lead to great stories and picturesque memories. Yet in between those moments of trying new things and learning to love something (or someone), I learned how to try new things, how to love something, and how to love people fiercely.

    And, if you are lucky enough, camp will teach you how to love yourself.

    Like most people who went to camp, I met many of my greatest friends from my years at camp. These people understand me on a core level. We don’t need to exchange pleasantries because we just appreciate each other’s presence. For a thirteen year-old who felt so insecure and so different from everyone else in school, it meant the world to me that I could retreat to a place where people found the good in me.

    At camp, without makeup or screens or bedrooms to disappear in, I lived vulnerably with others. At camp, our counselors taught us to embrace the weirdness and uniqueness within ourselves; sure, it was weird that I laughed much harder at fart jokes than anyone else my age, but I was accepted and loved. At camp, we could do ridiculous accents, we could do a slip ’n’ slide slide on a rainy day and laugh at our muddy faces, and we could swap secrets at night, silently understanding our cabin’s holiness was to be respected. We loved each other not despite our faults, secrets, and strange quirks, but because of them.

    Now, as a representative of camp, parents ask me at camp fairs, “So, what is your camp about?” And I respond, passionately using words like “friendship” and “leadership skills” and “self-confidence.” I can repeat those words all I want—wrap it in a bow and call it “personal development,” but camp specializes in the intangibles, the indescribables, and the invisible. Camp taught me to love, to be loved, and to get weird with others. That’s not easy to market, nor is it easy to explain the value to young parents.

    The camp experience is different for every kid: other campers hated kayaking and the outdoors or loved being the star of the camp play. Those are amazing things to recognize as a child, and maybe they would have discovered that without camp. But there is power in knowing yourself. There is power in learning how to find your niche. And, most importantly, there is power in learning yourself alongside a bunch of other kids who are learning themselves, somewhere in the woods.

    Lady Hannah and Lady Carrie during check-out summer 2017.
  • #GivingTuesday 2017
    POSTED 11.28.17 Blog

    You have probably heard the term #GivingTuesday floating around your social media pages throughout the last 6 years. Celebrated in succession after Thanksgiving (Thursday), Black Friday, and Cyber Monday, companies, and non-profits celebrate #GivingTuesday. This day of giving was created by the 92nd Street YMCA in New York City in hopes to create a space (online) in an already busy week to highlight end-of-year giving. Non-profits can ban together in an international giving campaign, and participants can enjoy the day by donating time, resources, and financially to their favorite non-profits.

    So, why not take some of your savings from Cyber Monday and reinvest them into the lives of girls that will be affected by the great things that Fleur de Lis Camp is doing in the summer of 2018?

    We urge you to join us this #GivingTuesday by donating and kicking off our year’s end campaign. From Tuesday, November 28th through the rest of 2017, we will be raising money that will help us to maintain our beautiful waterfront. When you ask any FDL Alum or current camper what their favorite part of Fleur de Lis Camp is, their answer usually involves something about the waterfront, docks, or Laurel Lake. During the non-summer months, we (mostly Richard) do a lot of work to keep camp looking great. This year, we have the opportunity to focus that work on the waterfront. Help us by donating today and making it possible for campers to continue to build memories on the shores of Laurel Lake.

    Donate Today!

    Questions about #GivingTuesday or donations?
    Please contact us: sarah@fleurdeliscamp.org


  • Why Fleur de Lis was my favorite part of summer 2017
    POSTED 11.6.17 Blog

    Fleur de Lis Ambassador Hailey Davis wrote a blog about why summer 2017 at Fleur de Lis was special:

    This summer was a ton of fun. I went to the beach, swam at the pool, hung out with my friends, went to cape cod, turned thirteen. All in all it was a very fun summer, but my favorite part by far was going to Fleur de lis sleep away camp in Fitzwilliam, New Hampshire. I stayed at Fleur de Lis camp for three weeks, I slept in a platform tent with four other girls, It was the best. We were by far the loudest tent at camp, from late night giggles to hysterical laughing during our “rest hour”.  We were like sisters, we laughed together,  cried together, threw pillows at each other, everything we experienced we experienced it together. I also loved the camp activities, my favorite was riflery.  In rifle I got two awards and multiple bullseyes it was overall my favorite activity.  A lifelong sisterhood and many memories never to be forgotten, that’s what sleep away camp means to me.

    Read More >

  • Join us for an Open House!
    POSTED 10.23.17 Blog


    Are you thinking about summer camp for your daughter and/or son? Join us November 14 at the home of the Cressey Family to learn more about all-girls Fleur de Lis Camp and all-boys Camp O-AT-KA. The Cresseys have a son at O-AT-KA and a daughter at Fleur de Lis, and they are excited to talk about their experiences at both camps! Representatives from OAK and FDL will be present to answer questions, provide materials, and chat about any concerns.
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  • After Taps Update: Where’s the podcast?
    POSTED 10.16.17 Blog

    In fall of 2017, Ladies Amy Bates and Hannah Weiner created a podcast called “After Taps” about the people, stories, and history of Fleur de Lis Camp. They interviewed alumnae, received submissions from camp lovers, and asked important (and funny) questions about FDL.

    Read More >

  • Why you should meet us on October 29
    POSTED 9.25.17 Blog

  • Why you should register early for camp 2018
    POSTED 9.18.17 Blog

    Summer 2017 has come and go, leaving behind amazing memories, photos, and the countdown for summer 2018! It’s easy to take camp for granted on a day like today: sunny and 80 degrees, the kids are at school, and your schedule is in full swing. But what will happen in May, when you have a whole summer to fill full of activities for your kids?
    Read More >

  • Watch videos from the summer!
    POSTED 9.11.17 Blog

    Missing camp already? We’re uploading videos from the summer to our YouTube account! Shots from Mid Birthday, Talent Shows, Interruptions, and more will be available to watch whenever you’d like. Head to the Fleur de Lis Youtube channelto relive fun memories from the summer!
    Read More >

  • Big and Little Weekend 2017 Password
    POSTED 9.4.17 Blog

    Thanks to Annie Lundsten for an incredible Password for Big & Little Weekend this summer!

    Annie Lundsten (center) as a camper with camp friends Sarah (left) and Emily (right).

    Fairy tales are rife with stories of people giving away their daughters in exchange for their heart’s desire. The miller’s daughter, desperate to escape a king’s wrath and become queen, promises Rumpelstiltskin her first born child in exchange for the ability to spin straw into gold. The baker and his pregnant wife, craving almost until death the taste of fresh vegetables, pledge their daughter (Rapunzel) to the witch next door for a taste of her beautiful greens. 
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  • Coronation Password, July 9, 2017
    POSTED 7.14.17 Blog

    Thanks to Susan Clinkenbeard for her beautiful Password this year for Coronation!

    Congratulations Queen Devon, and welcome everyone to another beautiful Coronation ceremony and Visiting Day. I’m Susan Clinkenbeard, more often known as Lady Clink, and I was here as a camper, CT and counselor for eleven of the best summers of my life. I am so happy to be back here with you to celebrate this special day and to participate in this wonderful ceremony for the Queen and her Council.
    Read More >