Father’s Day

Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there!   I certainly had a great one here at High Rocks!  Sunday’s are special here at High Rocks.  We want to be sure the boys have some time for reflection and to change it up a little bit.  Rest is important.  We give the boys an extra thirty minutes to sleep in on Sundays and we also share some important lessons down by the lake. Today was a perfect Sunday morning!

After breakfast, Zoob led a wonderful service down by the lake.  The focus on today’s message was on making friends.  What it means to be a good friend and even some skills on friendship.  She did a great job of mixing it up so that all the age groups would understand.  I have compiled a little list of some of the skills here.  Why not spread the learning and joy to everyone!

  • Smile -It lets people know you might be fun and approachable.
  • Ask Questions -It shows you care and are interested in others.
  • Invite and Join -Be inclusive and include yourself with what others are doing.
  • Find the right tribe.  -Look for others that share some of your interests, ideas, and joy.
  • Share -About yourself, Your things.  Again, like everything in the world, it takes practice.
  • Enjoy Friends’ Victories -This will enhance every relationship and make it stronger.  It’s not an easy one for boys…
  • Try to resolve your problems together -You do not always have to run to an adult to fix it.  See if you can work it out.
  • Show empathy and practice kindness.  These are also muscles we need to build.  You only build them with use.

Zoob did a great job of using our dog, Barley (the lovable golden you see in pictures) as a way to explain some of the friendship skills.  “How do you know Barley is interested in hanging out with you? What does Barley do to tell you he’s excited to see you?”  Of course, hands went up all over with all sorts of way Barley shows his friendship. It was a great lesson that we all cna learn from and use.  I really enjoyed a moment after the service.  One boy even came up to me afterward and said, “Don, did you know that kindness is something even the blind can see and the deaf can hear.” I had heard it before, but I had to look it up to remember who said it.  He definitely spent a little time listening today.

The rest of our morning was wide open for the boys to enjoy some organized choice period or just plain free time.  Many activities were open for opportunity, or the boys could choose to just hang out. We all had to embrace the beautiful day and be outside.  The boys enjoyed some long games of disc golf, free swim, canoeing, kayaking, paddleboards, rounds of tennis, four square, basketball, soccer, gaga, ping pong, and even some card games. Leisure is a skill that needs to be practiced :).

After lunch, we played an all-camp game of tag that involved colors and erasers. The boys had to find the five different counselors that represented one of five colors.  The rest of the staff were “erasers” and they would chase after the boys erasing the colors they had collected. This meant that they had to go back and get those colors again. As you might imagine, the game can go on for some time. The boys run and…and run!

After a brief “shower hour” we enjoyed a cookout meal of hamburgers and hotdogs. A tradition that has been going on for some time.  We made our way up to campfire hill for some great music and a story to get ready for the week ahead.  Our week is a busy one ahead with many trips and excitement, including our evening “Chill Nights” to Sliding Rock.

I’ll leave you with what I shared with some of the boys today in regards to Zoob’s morning service.  Be the person Barley thinks you are and you will probably have a great day!

Don Gentle

Today’s Pictures 


  1. June 18, 2018 by Lee

    What a fantastic message! Love the Barley lesson. Thank you!

  2. June 17, 2018 by Lisa

    Another great post Don. I feel so blessed that my son has such a special place to enjoy that’s run be equally special people. Happy Fatther’s Day!!