Although we are saddened that this is Frost Valley’s first summer ever without camp, we see this period of pause as a time to focus on making summer ‘21 more meaningful than ever. Prior to the pandemic, we planned to – during each session’s check-out day – inform our 2020 campers that we would have new village names for next summer. Sadly, without those check-out days, we miss a valuable opportunity to connect with families, chat about all that was learned and experienced during the session, and discuss changes for the coming year, such as this.
So, now that we have opened registration for summer 2021, we want to take this time to let our camp community know that next year, our overnight camp villages will have new names. For the past year, our camp leadership team has been meeting as a group and with several of our partners to discuss how to give more consistency and better relevance to our village names, acknowledging that many of the existing names were not pertinent to Frost Valley and some used Native American terms and names, to which we have no cultural ties or right to use.
In an effort to add more relevance to how we identify each village and embody our mission as it relates to social responsibility, we will now classify our villages using the names of local Catskill mountains. Each village name will reflect a nearby mountain, with the heights of each mountain increasing with the age of our campers as they grow in our program. This will not only add consistency and relevance across all of our villages, but we also see this as an excellent opportunity to provide deeper understanding of the natural and cultural history of the region.
Over the coming year, in collaboration with our camp leadership team, partners, and potential new partners, we will work to develop experiential learning opportunities for summer 2021 in order to foster a greater appreciation for the land each village is now named after. With that in mind, we see our “overnights” (outdoor camping experiences) as the ideal opportunity for each village to connect and bond, but also to engage in dialogue that allows for deeper historical understanding of the colonized land and people of this region. In that way, these are not just new village names – they also represent a more intentional way to grow through shared learning experiences.
We remain steadfast in our June 4 commitments to make space for important conversations among those we serve, to educate ourselves and our communities, and partner with organizations and individuals who will add authenticity and expertise to our efforts to be a more anti-racist and socially just organization. As we progress in our pursuit of continuous action, we will share more details.
With that, the new village names are as follows:
Camp Henry Hird
- Hunter Mountain Village – Girls Grade 10
- Slide Mountain Village – Boys Grade 10
- Graham Mountain Village – Girls Grade 9
- Peekamoose Mountain Village – Boys Grade 9
- Plateau Mountain Village – Girls Grade 8
- Wittenberg Mountain Village – Boys Grade 8
- Balsam Lake Mountain Village – MAC Girls
- Panther Mountain Village – MAC Boys
- Kaaterskill Mountain Village– Formerly Sunburst
- Rusk Mountain Village – Girls Grade 6 – 7
- Fir Mountain Village – Boys Grade 6-7
- Vly Mountain Village – Girls Grade 5-6
- Eagle Mountain Village – Boys Grade 5-6
- Rocky Mountain Village – Girls and Boys Grade 2-4
- Barkaboom Mountain Village – Mini-MAC
- Bearpen Mountain Village – Formerly Moonshadow
*To learn more about our origins in Lake Wawayanda, New Jersey, please take a look at our historical timeline.
We cannot wait for summer 2021, when we will return to offering many of our long-cherished, values-based outdoor activities that have contributed to the growth and enrichment of generations of former campers. Likewise, we’re also eager to use this time to reflect on how we as a youth development organization can evolve and grow, learn and unlearn, and help those we serve to heal from what we know has been a tumultuous time. Thank you for joining us in this vital endeavor, and together, we will rise and thrive.