Campers' Week at Pinewoods

August 22 - 29, 2015

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Program Staff                 Pinewoods Camp
Tentative Schedule        Camp costs

Printable information

Program Description: a 1 page version of this page

Daily Schedule: a 1 page daily timetable

Description of Classes: a 2 page description of the classes

For accepted campers: Links to a few important pages and surveys.

Program Description

Campers’ Week is pure magic. Young, old, and everyone in between attend as couples, singles and families. People who fell in love with dance and music just recently, others who have been doing this since the cradle -- together we make the woods ring with song, dance, music, stories and laughter from sun up ‘til the wee hours. Most of all, Campers’ Week is about YOU! Anyone can teach a class or workshop at Campers’ Week, or lead a song, play a tune, call a dance, tell a joke or story, host a party, share a skill . . . We start out with a basic schedule of classes offered by the talented staff, and then together we add to it, embellish it, improvise and surprise each other. Past camper-led sessions have included crafts, storytelling, instrumental workshops, jam sessions, song swaps, joke sessions, games, yoga, theater, collaborative construction projects, bird watching, swing, tango, morris, sword and every kind of dance you can imagine. No one knows exactly what to expect this year, because each Campers’ Week is unique.

The basic schedule includes one period each morning and each afternoon when younger campers join with others their age for classes in music and dance, while the rest of us choose from dance, music, song, crafts and whatever else people dream up. Teens are an integral part of adult activities, but also have a daily class of their own. Twice a day, the whole community gathers together to enjoy performances, dancing, singing, stories and silliness led by the campers and staff. After the evening gathering, there is an evening dance, where those not past their bedtimes can enjoy a lively combination of American and English social dances. After-dance activities include skit night, an auction, a “pub sing”, jamming and dancing.

Campers’ Week offers a special opportunity to camper musicians, who form the bands for the evening dances and who have many chances to play for the varied daytime classes. Musicians at every level are welcome to join the Community Band and if you don’t play yet, maybe you’ll learn the basics from one of the many talented people who are happy to share their skills. Love to sing? Join the Harmony Singing class or an informal song swap on the porch. Why not try a new dance form or craft. And of course, there are always games, swimming, boating, relaxing, and just chatting with new and old friends. Come be part of the joy that is Campers’ Week!

-- Margaret Bary, Program Director

Class Descriptions

The Basic Program – to be added to by campers

Wee Ones (ages 0-3): Every morning, Kathy Reid-Naiman will engage our youngest campers and their caregivers with songs, rhymes, fingerplays and dances.

Smalls (ages 4-6): Robin Davis and the Smalls will begin the day with fun songs, singing games, and making art. In the afternoon, Betsy Blachly Chapin will lead them in making up songs and stories, and playing drums and ukuleles.

Middles (ages 7-9): With Hannah Naiman, the Middles will start the day off singing and dancing. In the afternoon, Andy Davis will teach an English long sword dance, with a "calling-on" song. Storytelling and social dance will fill out the class. Children should bring any kind of tie shoes that are comfortable for dancing.

Talls (ages 10-12): In the morning, the Talls will learn Cotswold and Border style English morris dances from Chris Levey, and invent their own morris dance using traditional elements. Later in the day, Nils Fredland will teach dances from his varied repertoire of singing squares, ranging from silly and simple, to challenging. Bring your favorite songs to turn a couple of them into square dances.

Teens (ages 13-17): Hannah Naiman will lead the teens in an array of square dances, Irish set dances, contra dances, clogging steps, games and songs.

Adults and teens can start their day with a rousing session of Contras and Squares led by Nils Fredland. Nils will also be offering a Callers Workshop for those wishing to develop their calling skills. In the afternoon, Scott Higgs will teach English Country Dancing. This session features a wide range of styles and moods, each notable for memorable music beautifully paired with movement. Selected dances will be accessible to all, yet feature special delights for experienced dancers to savor. Gillian Stewart will teach Rapper, an energetic sword dance from northern England. Open to both beginners and experienced dancers, participants will learn new figures and sharpen up the ones we know. Bring comfy clothes and hard-soled shoes.

All ages are welcome to Harmony Singing with Andy Davis. Songs will be taught both by ear and written music. The class will explore rich harmonies from a number of folk traditions, including pub song, spiritual and shanty. Or join the Community Band conducted by Ross Harriss, where campers of all skill levels will learn new tunes, play old tunes, harmonize, and more. Feel like singing during morning swim time? Singing on the Porch will be led by a series of camper and staff crooners. Eager to play for dancing? Michael Gorin will coordinate daytime musicians, matching up willing players with classes or workshops that need them; and Kathy Talvitie will make sure that our evening dance bands run smoothly. Everyone at camp is encouraged to share something with the rest of us at our daily gatherings. Andy Davis will organize talent for Morning Gathering; Evening Gathering will be programmed and hosted by Henry Chapin.


Each evening at Campers' Week ends with an all-camp gathering, an evening dance, and post-dance activities. As dusk settles over the Camphouse gathering, a Pied Piper leads families with children age 8 and younger to their cabins, where the parents put their children to bed. 9-12 year old children can enjoy participating in the first half of the evening dance before their bedtime comes. While adults and teens are at the evening dance, roving monitors listen for wakeful children. If a child is uncomfortable, the monitor will alert the parents at the dance. Families are expected to prepare their children for these scheduled bedtimes.

Printable Information for Accepted Campers

Here are links to further details:

The Program: one page Program Description

Getting Ready: Details for being at camp.

Getting to Camp: Driving Directions

Tentative Schedule

7:45-8:15 Hot Breakfast served cafeteria style
8:15-8:45 Cold Breakfast Coffee/Tea available
10:00-10:15 Refreshments
10:15-11:00 All Camp Gathering with Andy Davis
11:10-12:00 Swimming, Bookstore staffed
12:15 Lunch
3:30-4:20 Swimming, Bookstore staffed
4:00-4:20 Tea
5:30 Play Party Games
6:00 Dinner
7:30-8:25 Evening Gathering with Henry Chapin
8:00 Pied Piper/Bedtime for children 8 & younger
8:30-11:00 Evening Dance Party
9:20 Bedtime for 9-12 year olds
11:00 After-dance Activities