By Chris Pallatto
Surviving rainy days can be easy, as long as you follow some simple
steps at the beginning of the camp season.
Tip #1: Be prepared for the weather! There is nothing worse
than being wet and miserable all day. You are eventually going to have to go
outside more than your campers will, so be prepared!
- A $200 raincoat or a $2 poncho will do the trick for starters – as long
as it keeps you dry.
- Get some rain pants. The best $30 you will ever spendÛ_
- Bring an extra sweatshirt – after a few hours of dampness, you’ll need it!
- A garbage bag makes a quick (and fun) rain poncho. Bring in a box of big
heavy-duty garbage bags, and you can make rain ponchos for everyone.
- Hefty makes those wraps that look like shower caps – bring in a box for
temporary rain hats.
- Rubber bands and super market bags make great temporary waterproof booties.
Tip #2: Have a Rainy Survival Kit! Before the summer starts, make a rainy day survival kit. Preferably, use something that is waterproof. A large plastic pretzel container with a screw top lid will hold lots of items, and prevent your supplies from getting crushed as it rattles around the trunk of your carÛ_
- Have items that can be used for multiple activities, such as balloons, cards, markets, rubber bands, paper, etc.
- Laminate a list of activities that you are going to do on rainy days ONLY! By saving rainy day activities, you can make sure that rainy days are special and fun! You can even tell campers at the beginning of the session that they should hope for rain so they can play “XYZ” game. The laminated list ensures you can preserve “crib notes” for the future.
Tip #3: Make use of cramped space to get to know each other better! What better way to get to know each other than being forced to sit in close quarters all dayÛ_
- Have a “Best-Friend” game modeled after the Newlywed Game, that asks “contestants” to answer questions about how well they know each other. Give out fun prizes to the campers that know their partner the best.
- Use the Book of Questions for Kids to encourage interesting conversations. Campers pick a random number and the counselor asks the group the corresponding question.
- Do silent interviews. Participants have to tell their partner 3 things about themselves without talking by acting out “charades-style.”
Tip #4: Coordinate “stations” with your co-workers. Nothing takes your mind off of a rainy day like lots of activities.
- Plan 6-8 quickie activities that can be completed with 10-15 minutes with
- Each counselor starts by leading an assigned activity with their group.
- At the 15 minute mark – the groups rotate to the next counselor, who leads
them in their assigned activity.
- So on and so forthÛ_ The best way to make 1-2 hours fly by!!!