Seniors Reflect on Their Time at Camp Kern

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BY OWEN DINGLE

Senior year has its perks: senior lot parking spot, senior lunch, seniority above all, and Camp Kern. Camp Kern was a great experience when we were in sixth grade, but recently we got to experience what the lives our counselors got to experience–managing 6th graders 24 hours a day.

6th Graders face a towering ropes course in the outskirts of camp. (PHOTO BY MARIEMONT)

Almost all of the senior counselors said they loved the experience.

“I think we bonded with our grade more.  It wasn’t just for the sixth graders,” Sydney Huber says. 

Seniors also noticed some differences between the time we went to Camp Kern in 2011 and 2017. For instance, there was a new schoolhouse building, as well as a new bathroom house.

Some of the counselors reminisced on their 2011 and 2017 Camp Kern experiences. 

Terrace Park native Cole Harden said, “I remember in 6th grade we had bandanas for my cabin. Fletcher Wells, (his co-counselor) brought bandanas for our cabin’s kids and it was pretty cool.”

Abby Dodson, senior, said, “In sixth grade I hated Camp Kern because it was in an extremely awkward stage of life for everyone,” Dodson said. “But when I was there this time it seemed like all the kids were super comfortable with each other. A new breed of sixth graders.”

Logan Campbell, senior, remarked on his sixth grade experience while he was at Camp Kern.  “When we were in sixth grade, we were nowhere near as crazy as these sixth graders.” Campbell said. “The food this time was better though.”

Senior Luis Hernandes stands with his 6th grade brother, Eli Hernandes, after participating in the Rockets activity. (PHOTO BY MARIEMONT)

There were a few seniors who had younger siblings in the 6th grade, who joined them at Camp Kern. Senior counselor Luis Hernandes has a little brother in the sixth grade, Eli Hernandes.

“It was cool seeing him there. I wish I was in more groups with him, though,” Hernandes said. “It was cool seeing him out with his friends and how much joy his friends give him. We got a lot of bonding time too, and we did stuff we’ve never done before, like shooting rockets,” says Hernandes.

There were a few perks from being a counselor rather than a camper: you could come and go from your cabin without needing a “buddy”; you weren’t as obligated to participate in the group activities (even though all the seniors would); and we were allowed to drink from the coffee bar.

Will Kemper, an avid coffee drinker, said “As a camper, my favorite activity was swimming, but as a counselor, my favorite activity was going up to the coffee bar.”

Trail Group E posing after conquering a team building exercise. (PHOTO BY MARIEMONT)

Senior Maddy Kromer, came to the Mariemont School District when she was a freshman. She didn’t go to Camp Kern with Mariemont when she was in sixth grade, but she did go with her old school, the Guardian Angel School.  

“I went to Camp Kern with my old school, but we were only there for three days.” Kromer said. “We didn’t get to do everything the Mariemont 6th graders did, but we did get to do the hoedown.”

“It was great.  It was a good time,” Kennedy Moi says.