Camp Ocean Pines means family. The main reason I continue to return every year is because when I do, I feel like I am home. When I first discovered Camp Ocean Pines I was living in Carmel, California. My family was on sabbatical from State College, Pennsylvania after initially moving there from Davis, California. I had missed the state where I had lived for 12 years and so I wanted to do a camp that was unique to the area, and to California. I saw the website, and the smiles on the kids faces, and immediately, I was hooked. That summer we drove down Highway 1 to the small town of Cambria. It was a beautiful drive that had amazing views of the coast and the Pacific Ocean. The next year, I came to camp from Carmel again. But the drive before that was much lengthier. Since we had moved back to State College, we drove across the country for the summer. That drive was five days long, but well worth even the week at camp. Last year, the last year of my camper life, and the first of my CIT one involved me flying by myself from Washintgon D.C. to Los Angeles and then getting in the camp van to COP. In between the two sessions I stayed with a friend in Los Osos.
The amount I have traveled does not begin to show the love and commitment I have for this camp. No matter the journey, I will always try my hardest to make it to camp. Camp Ocean Pines is one of the few places I can be myself. It is loving, caring, accepting, nurturing, and a great place to stay. If I could, I would stay at camp for the rest of my life. Sadly, but also one of the reasons camp is so special is that it is only for one a short period in the summer. The second I get into my car, I begin to miss camp. Another reason it is family is because of the people. Every counselor, director, and all of the staff members try their hardest to make your camp experience as incredible and fun as possible. They also have fun doing this, which makes them happy as well. Happiness is contagious and at Camp Ocean Pines, it is an epidemic that everyone will catch. An example of this obvious contentedness in the look on every camper or counselors face while they are participating in an activity, or even just laying around at camp. They are all genuinely happy, something that is hard for some people to achieve, that is also incredibly prevalent at camp. A reason that this camp has happy staff and such happy campers as well is because they pick and choose each counselor out of a pool of many. Every person that ends up working here seems to love their job. You will never see them frowning or looking discouraged. The attitude of camp keeps people content and excited for their activities. There is little room for sadness and with counselors like these, there is no reason to be sad.
Camp Ocean Pines is and always will be family. No matter the day, I am looking forward to seeing my second family and spending time at this amazing place.