Camp Connections: The Power of Lifelong Camp Friendships

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Meet our Alumni – Rachel & Danielle:

camp friends in the chadar

We met at nine years old when both of us arrived at Camp George knowing no one else our age – it was 2004 if you can believe it! We were placed in the same cabin and did not really become friends that summer. Mostly, this was because we were complete opposites. Rachel was outgoing and energetic and Danielle was shy and quiet. However, the following winter we were the only two campers our age who showed up at the yearly Camp George reunion. It was then that we bonded and made the active decision together that we would become best friends. The rest, as they say, is history. 

Every year after that we anxiously counted down the days until we could return to camp again. Our MSN statuses had a countdown to the start of camp by the hour. We were lucky kids who got to spend their summers swimming, sailing, climbing ropes courses, and hanging out by the lake with our best friends. Over those early years at camp, our friendship only continued to flourish and our lifelong camp friend group only continued to grow. 

camp friends

During the school year, despite going to different elementary schools, we never spent much time apart. When high school was on the horizon, we decided to go to the same high school. From sleepovers and Bat Mitzvahs to road trips and tagging along on each other’s family trips, we got to experience both the high points (and sometimes the low points) of life together. When we ultimately went to different Universities (Rachel to Guelph and Danielle to Queen’s) we spoke every day we were apart.

When we both “grew up” and stopped going to camp, our lives kept intersecting with our camp friends in everything we did. The summer after we graduated from University we backpacked around the Canadian west coast with our friend Dana. In 2018 Rachel started working at the same company as our friend Leah. Just last week, we traveled to Mexico City to visit our friend Rachel. We each went on to meet amazing partners, who became good friends as well. When we both started planning our weddings in 2022, we were lucky enough to share in that experience and become brides and bridesmaids together. One of the most special parts of both of our weddings was getting to celebrate with our camp friends from near and far, who had driven or flown in from Buffalo, Vancouver, Mexico, and Australia to be with us. We were even joined by our newest “camp friend”, Zoey’s baby Asher. 

camp friends as bridesmaids

From our awkward middle school years and Taylor Swift dance parties, to our high school proms and university graduations, we’ve all gone through life together, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. And we have supported each other during our hardest moments and biggest losses. To be together at our weddings, dancing to Taylor Swift, was a full circle moment we’ll never forget. We look forward to so many more years of best friendship, including more dance parties, time spent on the lake, traveling, and more, with Camp George as the foundation for it all. 

We highly recommend talking to the person in your cabin who is the complete opposite of you – you probably have more in common than you think! And you never know, you may become lifelong best friends. 

camp alumni weddinh