Wednesday, July 10th, 2024

RAINBOW THEATER circa 9:00pm—The Grim Reaper takes the stage to perform a soothing lullaby. All manner of pirates, witches, fairies, and sleazy salesmen from New Jersey sit in a semi-circle, looking on in fearful reverence. Campers still giddy from the evening’s festivities chat and squirm in the theater benches. Another Adventure Night has arrived at its final conclusion.

“We are the children of Camp Winnarainbow,” he begins in a low, gravelly tone. The crowd giggles at the monotone rendition of the classic Camp lullaby. His serious demeanor is undermined by a lapse in lyric recall, sending the campers into rages of laughter and heckling.

After finishing the song he utters the famous words of Wavy Gravy, “Brush ’em if you got ’em,” signaling the transition from showtime to bedtime. The campers rush from the bright Theater to the darkness of the Tipi Circle in a babbling wave, waving flashlights in search of toiletries.

Preparations for Adventure Night began this afternoon with the creation of two large 2-sided dice—or D-20’s as gamers may know them—out of cardboard, duct tape and acrylic paint. It was then determined that a large amount of counterfeit money would be required. This was accomplished through the implementation of Camp’s trusty paper cutter, likely dating back to the Wilson administration.

After dinner it was deemed prudent to hose down the wood chips before flour lines were laid. The plan was to turn the entire Tipi Circle into a giant board game. Once 7:45pm arrived we gathered campers in the Circle for an explanation of the rules. Each tipi had been assigned a large object for its game piece, such as a unicycle or an art easel. The campers were instructed to participate in activity sites to earn fake Camp money, which could be used to buy dice rolls and advance their pieces.

All chaos broke loose at the sounding of the starting conch. We stoked the madness by blasting dramatic movie soundtracks over the PA. I did my best to stop a few campers for quotations, though the frenetic drive to earn fake money was working against me.

“It’s amazing!” said Rowan, 10, of the Sky Blue Tipi. “I’ve only gotten two bucks so far but it’s good. It took me forever to finally get the ring toss. My favorite part is all the dust.”

“I rolled an 18 and then a 15!” said Micah, 10, of the Flame Tipi. The rest of his statement was blurted out too fast to comprehend, let alone record. In an instant he had darted back into the fray.

“Adventure Night is straight ‘W’,” said James, 12, also from Flame. “We should just keep doing this, maybe not every night but most nights. My favorite is the quests we get from the Wizard. My quest is five yellow leaves. Does this look yellow enough?” he asked, holding up a very orange leaf.

“It’s one of my favorite nights because you get to play games,” said Asa, 10, also from Flame. “It’s all about the obstacle course.”

“Adventure Night is cool because we finally get to swing on the trapeze,” said Z, 10, of the Yellow Tipi. “Death is my favorite character and all the money is cool.”

“In my opinion, limbo is underrated,” quipped Art Instructor Rose Moylan. “We just saw the unicycle advance 20 spaces, and Blue Tipi has already completed a full lap. Everyone is just playing; the Camp magic is alive.”

“I did some ring toss and it took a while but I got two eventually,” said Miles, 11, also from Flame. “Can I go now?” he asked before scampering away.

“I think it’s pretty good and competitive,” said Kori, 12, of the Rainbow Tipi. “Even if someone beats you, you’ll still never lose.”

“I think there’s a lot of things to do and it has a good deal of money,” observed Jojo, 12, also from Rainbow. Just then the announcers reported over the PA “Rainbow has taken the lead,” and off ran Jojo.

“My tipi has a lot of money, and that means we might win,” boasted Ella, 13, of the Orange Tipi. “Crate ball is not going well for me; I have no strategy. But my teammates are very solid. Overall, awesome-sauce.”

At the stroke of 9:00pm we sounded the conch to end the game. We gathered in the Theater for a debrief from site leaders. It was announced that Rainbow Tipi emerged victorious, which entitles them to a custom candy prize of their choosing.

Stay hydrated,

—J. Payseno, Editor