JR. HIGH  I | 2019

Barefoot Welcomes Jr. High One – First Day of Camp!

Junior High week 1 is ~finally ~ here and we are excited about it!! With “Wobble” by Family Force 5 playing in the background, the staff and campers are pumped to see what this week has in store! This week, Barefoot has a wonderfully diverse group of campers from multiple backgrounds, cultures, countries, languages and more!

Today was the first day of full camp!! Campers began their day by participating in team building activities at the low ropes course and unity games in the UN Gym! This was a wonderful time for campers to grow in their friendships with one another as well as grow in their own self-confidence while being vulnerable with those around them at the same time!

The day continued into daily activities; a time for campers to explore all the wonderful specialties Barefoot has to offer! These specialties range from musical arts such as vocal performance, film production, drama, and dance, to sports such as basketball, football, and even water sports on the lake! These activities can also include outdoor adventures such as the ropes course and everyone’s favorite – TREE CLIMBING! Campers are given this block of time to explore twice a day and to say it’s a camper favorite would be an understatement!

Finally, the day came to a close with a wonderful worship time lead by this weeks leader Chris Connors and Andrew Harper (also known as “Chris and Harper”)  followed by a moving and empowering talk about the way of salvation by Camp Director, Kat Murphy.

Kat gave a talk entitled “Barriers to Belief”; the story of Nicodemus and his interaction with The Lord from John 3:1-21. In her talk, she shared the way Jesus taught Nicodemus to approach salvation and the new creation of Christ. At the end of her talk, she had campers identify the barriers in their lives that are keeping them from fully walking with God. Campers did this by standing under various signs hanging throughout the gym. They were also asked to write down specific things that were standing in the way of them seeing themselves the way The Lord sees them. This was a powerful time for both the staff and campers to see and experience.

The night then came to a close with the annual Block Party (aka: dance party)!! After spending time in their cabins, reflecting on the powerful discussion they just had, campers all gathered back to the UN Gym for a time of dancing, and even a few spontaneous lip-sync performances from some of the staff!

It was a wonderful and powerful first full day at camp!!

Until next time,

Brooke – Barefoot Summer Staff


Today we get to learn about Ayout and her experience at Barefoot! Ayout is an 11-year-old who has been coming to Barefoot for five years! Her favorite activity at camp is her art class with Ms. Alex and Ms. Tariyah! “I love it because of the color!” she said! Ayout says that she loves to create art back at home by drawing and coloring, so she exceptionally loves taking that hobby with her to camp every year!

Ayout says that she usually goes to Barefoot with her cousins, but this is year is the first time she has come alone and she has already had a blast meeting new girls in her cabin and creating bonds with her counselors. She said that she met her new camp friend actually in her art specialty!

She expressed that it has been because of her experience at Barefoot, she has now learned how to see people different from her in a new way! “People would say that others act a certain way or are only good at certain things but they actually are all different and nice” she expressed. Ayout expressed that Barefoot has taught her to see past stereotypes and see other people for who they are despite their background or how they look.

Lanterns, Ironman, and Outdoor Worship OH MY!!

It is day 3 of camp!!!! After an amazing first full day, campers and staff had high expectations for today and man did it live up to the hype!

Campers started their day on their normal schedule; beginning with worship and quiet time followed by team building and cabin family devotional!! Campers talked about the story of the paralyzed man whose friends lowered him through the roof to be healed by Jesus while he was visiting Capernaum. Later that night, speaker and Camp Director Kat Murphy also gave a wonderful talk about the importance of faith and choosing friends that will take you to Jesus.

The day continued with fun specialties and exciting free time – filled with horseback riding, the GIANT SWING, and so many more fun activities!! All before campers got geared up to compete in the challenging Ironman Competition!

Republic versus republic- campers ran around camp completing multiple tasks and challenges from the over-under water game, to a volleyball and football challenge, mind games, and a three-legged race. Finally, they ended at the center of the soccer field where republics were tasked to make a three tear human pyramid and then prompted to walk across the field to the finish line arm in arm. At the end of the relay and by a landslide, REPUBLIC 9 took the winning place for the guys’ cabins, and REPUBLIC 4 won their match for the girls!!!

Jumping, high-fiving, and celebrating, campers ran to the cafeteria for a pizza dinner followed by a powerful worship session at the outdoor amphitheater!!

This is always a special time for campers as they experience worshiping and learning about God under the trees and stars!

In her talk, camp director Kat Murphy asked campers too, again, think about what specifically is holding them back from fully walking with Christ and what specific things do they want to cast on to the Lord. To symbolize this reflection, campers were instructed to gather with their republics and write down these obstacles on a paper lantern for them, in teamwork with their republic members, will light and release into the sky. Filled with deep reflection and heaviness, campers made their way to the soccer field to release their lanterns before going into a time of prayer with their cabin.

Overall, day 3 at camp was truly special for campers and for staff.

Until next time,

Brooke – Barefoot Summer Staff


H E L L O DAY 4!! 

Day 4 at camp is always a really special day! This is the day where campers, having established their stronger relationships with their counselors and other campers, they can take on the activities of the day in full excitement and joy!!

Campers began their day with an all-camp team building exercise amongst their republics at the low ropes course. They practiced working together with one another, leaning on each other (literally) and using each other’s strengths to complete a common task.

Their day progressed with and a fun free time!! All before they were instructed to gather on the soccer field for an activity called “Right Foot Left Foot”. This is an activity where the whole camp, campers and staff, are instructed to form one large line. Lead by head boys counselor, Adam Watkins, a series of statements were read off followed by an instruction for campers and staff to either step right or left if that statement identified as true for them. These statements ranged from “step right if you love Jesus” to “step left if you have ever been bullied”. The objective of this activity is for campers to not only be given an opportunity to be brave and vulnerable to their peers regarding their past and even present but for a picture of broken unity to be shown. After the activity, Adam gave a brief talk about how the world wants to divide us based on our past, our backgrounds, privilege, culture, race or belief; but that Christ comes to unify us all and the Kingdom of Heaven does not divide but celebrates the unity we have in Jesus!

After this activity, campers were instructed to spend time with their republics, reflecting on their thoughts about the activity and how it made them feel. After, republics made their way back to the DC Building for a unity circle before heading into the Diversity Dinner.

The night continued to a session of prayer stations in the UN Gym. These stations were created for campers to travel through with their republics as a time of prayer and reflection about what God has done in their hearts this week. This was an exceptionally special time for campers to experience and for staff to witness. This activity ended with a worship and talk by Kat Murphy that eventually turned into a group prayer and several campers making Christ Commitments. It was so special and The Lord moved in dramatic and clear ways!

The night finally came to a close with the LIP SYNC competition!! After only 24 hours to prepare, campers competed with their dances and performances for a winning title for the week-long republic competition. After a very impressive and creative competition filled with costumes, dancing, Moana and The Greatest Showman singing, there was a TIE! guys Republics 7 and 9 TIED and Republics 4 and 5 TIED!! Wow oh wow!! Was it a Lip Sync to remember!

It was such a wonderful day 4 at camp!! Filled with special movements, unity, sweet and divine community, and FUN!

Until next time,

Brooke – Barefoot Summer Staff