Family Camp News-Single Parent Camperships and More!

We still have plenty of room in our family camp session, July 26-29, so please help us spread the word!

Are you a single-parent who would like to bring your family to camp? A MFC donor has generously offered full camperships to help single-parent families. We also have partial camperships available for any family for whom cost would be a barrier, we want everyone to be able to attend Mountain Friends Camp!FamCamp3sm

See the Family Camp page for updated information and a new Frequently Asked Questions document. We’re looking forward to building community and lots of fun activities like nature hikes, creating art projects, story telling, music making, skits and cooperative games, Quaker worship, and time to relax and simply enjoy the beautiful outdoors and our camp community. Contact the camp director with any questions

Thanks to Brooke, Brad, Beverley and the Santa Fe Meeting for organizing a visit and photoshoot at the Tree House Camp this spring!

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Board Weekend in Denver

Mountain Friends Camp thanks the Mountain View Friends Meeting for your warm hospitality during our annual board board meetingweekend March 20-22. Board members were joined by campers, young adult staff and a few interested local Friends for a fun weekend of worship, discernment and plork (play+work) for our Quaker summer camp. Nine of us traveled from four states plus DC, and nine came from around Colorado. Our focus for the weekend was visioning and planning the next 5 years. We spent time considering the locations we’ve held camp at so far and what we need and want in a permanent location (and how to discern the difference between needs and wants!). Our recent 501(c)3 status, camp policies, staff orientation, support for grieving campers, 2015 plans, finances and outreach kept us busy. We divided up board tasks into three main committees for the next year, and invited campers and others join and participate in committee work. Of course since this was about camp we also had great food, singing, games, worship, fellowship and outdoor time in the beautiful Colorado sunshine.
Big thanks to Paula and to Ruth for hosting so many out of towners, and to Penny and Judy for bringing us delicious that gado gado dinner Saturday! Most everyone stayed for Meeting for Worship on First Day, with a few of our camp staff taking the First Day group to the park for some camp games. Afterwards we enjoyed a bountiful potluck spread, and showed some pictures for a MFC Q&A. We left with warm hearts and renewed resolve from the many reminders of what we love about Mountain Friends Camp!board meeting
REMINDER: We still have plenty of room for campers age 10-15, family campers, and are looking for 1-2 medics and a few male counselors. Learn more, sign up, refer a friend, contact Ana, or donate to support our camp

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Letter from a Camp Mom

Dear Friend of Mountain Friends Camp,

I hope this letter finds you well and surrounded by love, light and laughter, wherever you may be. As the land sleeps and the days begin to lengthen, the MFC board is busy planting the bulbs that will grow into next year’s camp. We are so grateful to all the campers, families, staff, volunteers and donors who share their light with us each year. If you have one of those in your family, give them a big hug from us!

In this cozy season of gratitude, my own little family gives thanks for many things ~ among them our far-flung Quaker community, and Mountain Friends Camp. Even now, my 10-year old son Orion is singing snatches of MFC songs, regaling me with stories of camp that I have heard a dozen times, and planning epic skits for next year. (Anybody else remember “Manhattan Friends Camp”? Or Ana and Ari’s anniversary? Or spaghetti tacos!!??) In preparation of the new year, his father and I are also thinking of next year’s camp ~ the saving, prioritizing, and late-night conversations are well underway. What will best serve his growth as a person?

Here’s what keeps coming up about MFC:best reduced size (6)

  1. Fun. It’s fun. Like, really fun.

  2. Plork. Plork is so cool!

  3. Quaker Values. Nowhere else in his life encompasses the Quaker values of peace, community, simplicity, integrity, equality and stewardship all at once.

  4. Inner Light. MFC nurtures the light within him and strengthens that quiet inner voice so essential to a meaningful life.

  5. Staff. The staff is extraordinary ~ we want him to grow up to be like them!

  6. Teenagers. The teens at MFC are as rare and precious as gold. Where else can he learn to navigate the coming waters of teenhood with graciousness, simplicity, playfulness and service? They are silly, kind, thoughtful, and hard workers. They love themselves, each other, and the littler ones. He may not know he is looking up to them, but we do, and we are so thankful.

  7. Relationships. Orion is building long-term relationships at MFC with staff and other campers. Friendships based on Quaker values will help him keep a calm center in the storms of life, and give him friends all over the country who care about humanity, ecology, and service as much as he does.

So yes, Mountain Friends Camp is important to us.But here’s the thing:without scholarship help, MFC would not be a priority; it would be a pipe dream. Twice now, MFC has come through with scholarship assistance for us so that Orion could attend. Thanks to generous donors all over the region, (and some help from his grandparents) we have twice been able to say “Yes!” to Orion and watch him caper about the living room in delight. I am now honored to serve MFC in return by sitting on the board and working to make sure that every child who wants to can come to camp. I learned that Mountain Friends Camp has not turned away a request for financial assistance yet, and I hope we never have to ~ times have been hard and Orion might need assistance for another year as we get our feet under us. And there are far needier families than we, with children who have only dreamed of going to summer camp, for whom Mountain Friends Camp could be an island of peace and play in a year of hardship.

As lights of gratitude and celebration are sparkling within homes and hearts all over the world, please consider sharing some of your light with MFC in the form of a donation. Our financial needs are modest but substantial, as we work to insure that MFC can continue to welcome an increasingly diverse group of young people. In 2015, over 50% of campers received need-based financial aid, and we plan to increase our outreach to under-served communities in the region.

One of the testimonies we value at camp is stewardship~ of our precious environment and our own resources as a community. We envision a future in which my 3-year old will share his brother’s experience at camp, and their children will one day come home from Mountain Friends Camp with stories of their own. After four locations in three states in our first five years of camp, we dream of a home for MFC where we can settle in and focus on nurturing the light in each generation that comes our way.

Yes, those are some big, meaningful goals: Service and Sustainability. And with your help, we think we can do it. The board has been working very hard laying the groundwork, and is so grateful for all the support we have received. We have recently completed the process of acquiring our non-profit status, and your donations are tax-deductible just in time for the end of the year!  If you are called to donate to us at this time, here are some ways you can do so:

-$56 will pay for one week of food for one hungry, hard working camper

-$125 will pay for enough tie-dye and silkscreen supplies to decorate t-shirts all summer

-$546 is the real cost for one week at camp. (We charge $400 for the week, and offer camperships as needed to families who need additional assistance)

-$800 will pay for Wilderness First Responder training for a medic at camp

-$5,800 will pay for our space for this summer!
Click here to visit our donations page, with options for donating by check or online via Paypal, as well as matching and other forms of donation.

Thank you all for sharing with us in all the ways that you do, and we hope to see many of you this summer!

Bonny Moss, MFC Board Member and Mother of a Camper

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Reflections from Campers and Staff 2014

Mountain Friends Camp 2014, reflections from campers and staff.

“Amazing aspects. 23 young Friends with some friends in the mix with lots of grown-up to
help; we were able to maintain relatively silence for an hour a day for the seven days I shared. I was impressed and the spirit-lead communication during meeting for worship felt inspired! After the hour of silence we had time for affirmations and conflict resolution. It was so effective to start with praise and frame conflict in solution focused communication. It worked and conflicts were resolved, while (F)friends were held in the light as afterthoughts and forethoughts when conflict emerged.

(F)friendships were forged and the entire time was both exhaustive and inspired in ways that will stay in my heart for years to come. I felt some irony as the continuing committee representative advocating for non-support, while I personally benefitted so greatly from camp. I have decided to ask Las Cruces Meeting for Worship (with the intention of business) to reconsider our choice and include this funding in our IMYM allotment. I think the way to raise Quaker kids is to support them- even if we don’t directly benefit from this support. Knowing that this is happening creates a sense of peace in my heart in ways that I cannot express. I would invite us all to have such an innocent and invaluable experience. Not exactly one paragraph but as close as I can get.

Love and Light,

Erica, adult volunteer”

“There are so many amazing aspects of camp it’s going to be hard to just pick a few. Though I’m sure we all missed Tin Cup, the site was beautiful. I loved all the hikes and getting to sleep several feet off the ground was quite enjoyable. And last but not least, it’s the people that make that wonderful place what it is. From the youngest camper to the oldest coordinator/visitor, each and every person contributes their own spark that makes the camp glow with an irresistible warmth.

For me what makes MFC a Quaker camp is the undeniable sense of equality. It’s amazing, a 5th grader can feel comfortable talking to a senior in high school, which definitely is not something that happens often in an everyday setting. MFC no doubt,has effected me as a person, and as a Quaker. When I get back from camp I seem to forget that not everybody out there has the same beliefs as I do. I see people saying awful things to each other and physically harm them as well. It’s hard to watch,but i try to keep up that never ending feeling of love at camp for even the people who were the ones harming others. With that said, since I got back from camp I have sometimes gotten strange looks for my numerous hugs.

And last a thanks to CO Regional Meeting for their support and donations. It’s so amazing for them to do so. I hope that the donations continue and that they know how much we appreciate their support.

-Nicola, camper”

Quotes from Evaluations

Campers: “MFC will affect my life after camp , because I will take the Quaker testimonies every where I go.”

“I liked meeting people. I learned how to be a better person. I made friends.”

“It’s a lot of fun. They included everyone. They have awesome food. It will affect my life by using all of the SPICES. It’s the Most Amazing thing in the World. I love Mountain Friends Camp”

“I like the activities, the ice-cream, the soda, all the people here, all the meals, and my cabin and small group and the CIT alien day”

“Maybe I’ll do my dishes more when I get home from camp”

Staff: “The kids were amazing and embody Quaker ideals in ways that could inspire ANY meeting.”

“I really liked the Shaggy Peak hike & the overnight, as well as the tradition of all staff having an equal voice in program planning (instead of staff just showing up to director planned activities) I hope these traditions continue.”

Beverley (68)

Beverley (255)

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Marathon Matching Grant Challenge!

Dave Wells is a Friend from Tempe Monthly Meeting, a parent of Mountain Friends Camp campers since our first 2010 pilot program, a fantastic vegan cook who brought solar ovens to our 2013 camp, and a marathon runner too. On April 19 Dave is running the Wenatche Marathon in memory of two beloved IMYM Friends who have recently passed away, Carl Wallen from Tempe Meeting and Rebecca Henderson from Santa Fe Meeting, and as a fundraiser for Mountain Friends Camp. Thanks to Dave and an anonymous donor, all donations up to the first $1500 will be matched dollar for dollar, so give now and mark “marathon fundraiser” in the memo line to double your impact! We rely on donations from our entire community to help Mountain Friends Camp grow sustainably, and remain affordable for lower income families. All donations and pledges received by the end of April are eligible for the matching grant; for more information or to make a pledge, contact our treasurer Eric Wright.

As one returning camper told me recently, “at Mountain Friends Camp, not only do I feel accepted for who I am, I feel cherished for who I am.” Won’t you help more young people come to Mountain Friends Camp, where they can experience a supportive Quaker community, enjoy simple outdoor living, and make lasting friendships?
Thanks Dave, and we’ll all be cheering for you on race day!
Cooks 2013
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How Time Flies, When You’re Growing Quaker Leaders!


Mountain Friends Camp 2013 is quickly approaching. We’re putting together another amazing group of summer staff, including some of our favorites from 2012 and newcomers from outside the IMYM sphere. Camper registrations are coming in fast as well. There are only 5 more spots for week one, so if you’ve been meaning to register, send in your paperwork or contact me today!
An exciting milestone for me this spring is reading counselor in training (CIT) applications from several of our pilot program campers. These wonderful young people were 12 years-old in 2010, and made our first year so much fun. Now they’ve grown up into new positions of leadership and responsibility. One CIT application reads:

I’ve been coming to Mountain Friends Camp since the year it opened it’s doors, and I want to continue to enjoy a wonderful summer there again. I also want to get to be more of a role model for younger campers, and learn how to become a more responsible person. . . I enjoy painting and drawing, so I would be more than willing to help lead any art workshops or even do some face painting. I also love to hike and play sports, and could help supervise either activity. :)”

We had many goals in mind when Mountain Friends Camp was nothing more than a blip of a committee and big dreams-living Quaker testimonies, deepening our spiritual connections, playing cooperatively, working joyfully, increasing nature intelligence, changing the paradigm-and a central component was growing Quaker leaders. I know I have grown in my four years as a summer camp director, and I’m so proud to see the commitment, compassion and creativity our campers and CITs bring to the camp community. We are lucky to have them at Mountain Friends Camp, and I know they let their inner Light shine wherever they go.

Campers at Ariel at the Wolf Sanctuary

2010 campers with Ariel at the Wolf Sanctuary

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Epistle 2012


To all Friends everywhere,

Thirty friends (week one) and twenty-eight friends (week two) gathered in the shadow of the Swatch Range in Tincup, Colorado from June 23 to July 7, 2012 for fun, community, and testimony of our Quaker values.Mountain Friends Camp week 1 group pic

As the sun rose each morning, friends were awakened by the joyous voices of singing counselors spreading inspiration. As everyone gathered in a quiet ring before each meal, lovingly made to suit every dietary need, the smells of the meal filled our hearts and prepared us for the coming activities.

The volleyball court was a place of gathering and free time activities every day. As sand flew up and screaming and shouting filled the air, the volleyball bounced back and forth and our ever-shifting “Quaker Rules,” made sure that everyone had a good time playing.

The collaboration of the group was truly remarkable. We worshipped every day, with each person’s silence illustrated by a doe walking in the woods during one memorable meeting. When we broke the silence with affirmations one could tell by the meeting of eyes across the circle that a powerful sense of unity existed among us.

Mother Nature challenged our spirits during both of our all-day outings. Pine trees blew in the wind and hail pelted the tarps that our groups huddled under. At times, it seemed as though the elements were relentless. But the rain was appreciated given the fires blazing in other parts of Colorado, and being cold was the least of our concerns because we had laughter and hugs to warm our hearts. The canoeing adventures were particularly memorable. When the sky cleared and boats were pushed into the water, everyone took a turn paddling around the placid lake. And at the end of the day we cuddled by a warm fire in the rustic lodge with hot cocoa and singing into the night.

Another particularly memorable activity was playing “predator and prey” in the woods behind camp. Carnivores stalked omnivores and herbivores who hid breathlessly behind young aspen trees and who cooperatively protected one another by darting out and distracting the outnumbered predators. Food and sustenance wandered the woods while human impact and natural disaster played their part too.

Hiking, plork (play+work) and arts and crafts were daily events, as was having a “secret friend” where we exchanged notes and trinkets. Of course plork, which followed morning meeting, never seemed like work as we cleaned, shoveled, hammered and chopped together, and hiking opportunities allowed us all to be carried away by the majestic beauty of the high Rocky Mountains.

In Tincup, Colorado, nestled at 10,186 feet warm hearts huddled around a fire that will blaze for many years to come.

Respectfully Submitted,

Mountain Friends Camp 2012 Epistle Committee
Maygen, Henry, Jonas, Ceryn, Tynan, Will and Julia

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