This Saturday is August 8th, which is a big day for Camp Foley… It’s Father John P. Foley’s birthday!
We have a special way we celebrate his birthday every year, as it always happens during our last session of camp every year! So we always campers to help s celebrate in style, literally!
To celebrate the founder of Camp Foley, we host a Founder’s Day! This day occurs every session during the summer but is the most special on August 8th. This day involves many different traditions, some that date back to some of the earliest parts of the camp. We start with a Founder’s Day dinner, that functions quite differently than any of our normal meals in the dining hall. We come to dinner dressed up, which is always a fun shake-up for the campers who tend to Foley sweats and swimsuits most days. Once the campers get to the dining hall the real fun starts!
We set up the dining hall like it used to be in the 1970s. Girls started coming to camp in 1974 and for the first years of co-ed camp, girls sat on one side of the dining hall and boys sat on the other. Along the way, small traditions formed, like campers trading compliments when heading to different tables to ask for leftovers and beverages. This practice makes an appearance during our Founders Day dinner every year, with campers coming up with cheesy compliments to use on their friends.
While campers eat and enjoy good-natured fun, there is a talent show that takes place. Campers sign up beforehand with an act and get places in a roster. At specific times during the meal, campers make their way to the front of the Dining Hall and perform their talent. This is always an exciting time for all the different kinds of talent that is present at Camp Foley.
After this hilarious meal, kids gather outside still divided by gender and have a battle of songs. This practice also stems from the early days of camp, with the boys singing “Clementine” while circling
around the girls. The female campers then get a chance to respond with “Billy Boy” that involves them advancing upon the boys with every verse. Other vintage songs are sung throughout the night, many with unique dances and hand signals that all the campers perform together.
There is always something new and exciting that happens at each Founder’s Day and next year we can’t wait to celebrate with everyone again!
|The First Founders Day in 2014|