Weekend Update!

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Today on the Balcones Springs blog, we have a Weekend Update for you, covering all of the camp events from this past weekend, including Night Team Competition, our Sunday Baseline service, and the Ted 10,000 Swim and Road Relay!

After a day of activities – tubing on the lake, riding horses, and archery target practice, to name just a few – campers assembled for Saturday night’s main event – Night Team Comp! For Night Team Comp, all campers participate in a range of competitive games across the property, competing to earn points for their respective teams (the Texas Rangers, Rough Riders, Lonestars, and Silver Spurs) leading up to the term championship. The night culminates in the Scamper (Senior Camper) basketball game played between the Texas Ranger Scamper boys and the Rough Rider Scamper boys in our Hippodrome basketball arena. This Term 2 game was an instant classic, with both teams playing incredible basketball. The Rough Riders started off hot taking a quick lead. However the Texas Rangers, led by Max Torres, came charging back to take the lead at halftime with a buzzer-beater three. The second half was even more of a nailbiter, featuring multiple lead changes and fast-paced play. With under a minute remaining, Max Torres once again hit a dagger three, pushing the lead to 7 and solidifying both a victory for The Rangers and his own designation of game MVP.

The next day (Sunday), campers gathered in our lakeside amphitheater for our camp Baseline service. Baseline is what we call our Sunday church service here at camp. Although we are a Christian camp and that informs many of our teachings of acceptance and love toward one another, we also aim to be a space that is affirming and inclusive of campers from all faiths and backgrounds. Thus, our church services are accessible for all campers and do not require them to share a knowledge of or belief in the Bible. Each term, we invite a different guest speaker to camp to give an inspiring speech during our Baseline service. Sometimes these people are former campers or staff, and sometimes they are friends of Camp Balcones Springs who happen to have an inspiring story or particular bit of wisdom we think is worthy of sharing with campers. This year, we invited Marjorie Clifton to speak.

Marjorie is an incredible woman and close friend of camp who was involved in the very early days of Camp Balcones Springs. Since that time, she has committed herself to a career of making the world a better place. She has two decades of experience in communications and policy and is also a published author, speaker and media commentator, appearing multiple times a week on CNN, Fox, NBC, MSNBC, PBS, and global radio. Clifton’s projects also include developing strategic coalitions for policy initiatives, including being called upon by the White House in 2011. In addition to her many work accomplishments, Marjorie is a proud mom and graduate of the University of Texas. Marjorie’s speech centered around the story of Malala, the Pakistani activist for female education and 2014 Nobel Peace Prize laureate, and what she did to try to keep education possible for girls in Pakistan. Marjorie’s speech focused on inspiring campers to stand up for others and what they believe in even when it is scary or seems impossible to do.

Sunday evening, the annual Ted 10,000 events took place at Balcones Beach. These events are annual camp traditions, held every term, and consist of three swim races of various lengths: the Ted 10,000, 5,000 and 2,000. The day also includes a Phun Run road race and a Splash ‘N Dash swim/run relay event. Campers of all ages and cabins are permitted to enter, and the entire event is monitored by lifeguards and coaches to ensure camper safety throughout. After the races conclude, all campers enjoy ice cream sundaes on Balcones Beach.

Stay tuned for more blogs as we catch up on events from this last week of Term 2 at one of the best summer camps near Austin, Texas!