A Tribute to Our Benefactors

By Joe Shapiro

As the sun peeks over the roofs of the Sherman Division cabins, the youngest girl campers begin to stir and awaken.  Similarly, the Point Judith Lodge is seeing the same thing with the youngest boys in Camp. The cabins will soon be an organized chaos of getting dressed, making their beds, going to the Palace to freshen up and soon one camper from each cabin will head to the Mess Hall to set up their respective breakfast tables.

The Climbing Wall "Sugar Mountain"
Telephone Pioneers Plaque on Climbing Tower

Within the Mess Hall, the benches are arranged around the tables in the new addition.  Plates are set on the tables and cutlery is placed at each setting.  Soon the entire camp will descend onto the Soccer Field in front of the Climbing Tower to welcome each other and raise the American and country flags on Flag Hill before heading into the Mess Hall for breakfast.  Laughter echoes through the rafters as songs are sung and announcements are read.

Turner Point Project Ribbon Cutting

After breakfast is eaten and cleaned up, the campers and staff head back to their respective divisions, clean their cabins and prepare for a day of activities.  Some will head to the waterfront for swimming lessons, or congregate in the Boathouse, awaiting either dry land instruction or head down to the docks and into the sailboats and head out onto Great Salt Pond for sailing.  Maybe some will head over to the Skateboard Park and test their skills to grind the rails, do an Ollie or perfect their heel flip trick.  Others may head to Windsurfing and wait to set up the boards, attach the sails and feel the freedom as they cut through the waves.

Original Windsurfing Area
Windsurfing Instruction

Sunday evening, the entire camp enters the Council Fire ring, staring at the totem pole, sitting on benches and performing skits, singing songs and listening to various versions of Greenie, the Walker or going on a lion hunt.

So many activities, so many choices, so much to learn, so much to have fun at.

Without the words in bold print, the campers would not have a place to sleep, eat, or attend activities.  These buildings, activities and equipment are there due to the generous nature of many years of benefactors.  Campers too might not have been able to attend Camp without these benefactors. People (many of whom are Alumni), organizations and endowments have stepped forward and provided the leadership, sweat equity and funds to bring these items to fruition. The generosity of people to step forward with their foresight, ideas, muscles and designs allowed Camp Fuller to continue what has been in existence for over 130 years.  Our love of what Camp Fuller did for us, by helping us grow, helping our children grow and maybe even our grandchildren.  While we drove down the Camp road for years for the first night of the session and until we left after that last campfire, we took for granted all that is there.  Whether it is the cabins, sailboats, mess hall benches, buildings or activity equipment, it was always there when we pulled up in front of the Admin. Building.  Truth be told, many (most!) of those assets are donated by our many benefactors. Again, not all donations are monetary. Many of our benefactors provided leadership skills, materials, expertise, blisters, and yes, dollars.  

Council Ring - 1950s
Renovated Council Ring - 2019

Over time, we will highlight some of these benefactors.  Who they are, what they did, why they did it and when.  Some benefactors will wish to remain anonymous, but other names will surprise you as you find out who they are.  Some names, you will say, “who’s that?”  Hopefully we will be able to fill in the blanks. Lastly, hopefully, you will join us to write an article about one of our benefactors. Maybe you are a benefactor who wishes to tell their story.  Maybe you want to expand your knowledge or the knowledge of others about the behind the scenes of what makes Camp continue to upgrade itself.

Til we meet again, we will always faithful be.