It was an absolutely perfect final day of Second Session here at Camp Timberlake. Clear skies and sunny weather mirrored all of our moods as we enjoyed a fun-filled day at camp. After a delicious breakfast of eggs, sausage links, and blueberry muffins, our intrepid white water rafters headed out to enjoyed Section 9 of the French Broad River. Our rafter today were: Connor S, Julien A, Giles H, Cam M, Will P, Carson K, Brit M, Simeon S, Chance S, Patrick B, and Powell M. 

Morning activities found campers finishing up bars and enjoying all of their favorites things. Daniel V, Hutton S, Matthew H, Braden M, Eli G, Elliot D, Charles D all got their bronze in Tennis, while Blake P, Elias W, Hudson L, and Davis G all received bronzes in Disc Golf. At lunch, we wolfed down our Hamburger and French fries, and Hawksbill exploded with cheers when it was announced that they had won the golden plunger. The golden plunger (which is, of course, a plunger of pure gold) is awarded to the cleanest cabin at the end of each session. The winning cabin also receives a pizza party on the last night of camp. Needless to say, the boys in Hawksbill were pumped. Finally, we announced the winner of last night’s game of Commando…Black Bears! A big late push from the Black Bear tribe means the Banner has once again come down to the wire and campers were excitedly debating who they thought would come out on top tonight at Final Campfire. 

This afternoon was a big day for Basketball as Big Slaty and Greybeard played a decisive game three of their cabin series during free time and in-class James M, Wait M, Wes L, Pace L, Jackson M, Joe M, Christian M, Matthew H, Jake O, Grant D, Trace S, Bishop D, and Barnes Z all received their bronzes. Garrett S also showed his skills on the court and earned his gold. 

Out on the lake, the boys enjoyed the sunshine and did free swims during swimming class. The blob and rope swing were rocking all afternoon as boys showed off their tricks. Over in the boating area, Wells F, Evan B, and Charlie V all earned their gold bar. And impressive feat to say the least. 

After dinner, we headed up to our Final Campfire ceremony where we celebrated an amazing second session. We began by recognizing some more bars in activities. 

Airsoft Bronze: Bishop D, Brit M, Charle C, Luke H, Kirk F, Radford W, Colt P, Julien A, Patrick B, Jake O, William V, Hutton S, Jackson G, Preston H, Teddy M, Davis G, William M, Black P Jack W, and Larkin Rike. John W also got his silver!

Backpacking Bronze: Evan B, Will P, Connor S, Gavin W, and Trey W. Charlie V and Wells F received silver, and Spencer M received his gold!

Parker H got his gold in wrestling. Graham W and Radford W got gold in Swimming and Ford B and Reid S received their Gold in Mountain biking. 

There are many more bars that were earned throughout the session so be sure to ask your son to see his “Skin” where we record all the achievements and history of a boy’s adventures at camp. The ‘skin’ is a piece of leather each boy is given in his first summer (Parents: It will be in the yellow envelope zipped into your son’s suitcase!!) and campers bring them back every year. We keep track of their years at camp, bars in activities, tribe, commendations, and ranks in the little chief system on the skin, and it’s something you definitely do not want to miss!

We Also recognized counselor and camper commendations for the week. 


Camper: Nicholas P

Counselor: Max D

Finch’s Landing

Camper: Ryder W & Charlie S

Counselor: Harrison B & Mick L 

Further Up

Camper: Barnes Z & Christian M

Counselor: Thax M & Tristan D

Further In

Camper: Will M & Nikola G

Counselor: Joe M & Gray W


Camper: Bishop D & Simeon S

Counselor: Emerson F & David Allen B


Camper: Britt M & Andrew R

Counselor: Gary M & Andrew R

Little Piney

Camper: Jude H & Hudson L

Counselor: Jackson M & Carson B

Big Piney

Camper: Charles D & Nolan S

Counselor: Hayden C & Graham W

Stomper’s Knob

Camper: Wells F & Charlie V

Counselor: Robert S & Wait M

Little Slaty

Camper: Logan O & Ford B

Counselor: Ean M & Logan O

Big Slaty: 

Camper: Brayden C & Garrett S

Counselor: Nik P & Jack D


Camper: Lance H

Counselor: Max C

Finally, we also celebrated those boys who had taken the next step in the Little Chief System and earned a promotion. 

Scout: Harrison B, Tristan D, Luke H, Joe M, Peyton N, Benjamin P, Colt P, Andrew R, Trace S, Simeon S, Ryder W, Nicholas P

Guide: Bishop D, Sanders H, Benjamin P

Pioneer: David Allen B, Nikola G, Thax M, William M, Barnes Z

Ranger: Mac C, Britt M

Tracker: Julien A, Carson B, Hayden C, Jude H, Connor S, Radford W

Hunter: Parker D, Jack D, Parker H, Daniel V

Warrior: Ford B, Max C

Pathfinder: Wells F, Andrew R

Little Chief: Ben C

While each of these promotions are remarkable, we would be remiss not to take a moment to say how rare it is to have a little chief awarded this session. For context, only about 2% of campers ever earn this rank and it was wonderful to celebrate Ben C’s accomplishment tonight. 

To close our session, each activity recognized a most outstanding camper and most improved and each of those boys received a certificate to commemorate the accomplishment (parents, these will also be in the yellow envelope). Each cabin also recognized an honor camper, voted on by the cabin. Our honor campers are: Benji P, Harrison B, Christian M, Gray W, Ben Price, Gary M, Jude H, Powell M, Andrew R, Mac P, Eli G, and Ben C. 

We then moved into the land of memories and “Remember When’s” as our counselors shared some of the best and funniest memories from the session. Our graduating Greybeard campers then came to the front to address the whole camp community. They reflected on their years as campers and shared what had made Timberlake special to them. It was wonderful to hear testimonies of the power of friendship and community from each of them and special to hear them encouraging our younger boys to continue returning to Timberlake each summer. 

After sharing memories each camper then came forward to add a stick to the campfire located at the center of the council ring. This is a tradition that has gone back decades at Timberlake. As each boy adds his stick to the fire, he is reminded of the part of himself that he will leave here at Timberlake until we are all back together and lighting the initiation fire again next summer. After adding his stick to the fire each boy gets to walk through the staff and shake each counselor’s hand. Once everyone goes through we all circle up to sing one last camp hymn and the trees were absolutely shaking when we hit the refrain tonight. 

All that was left was to announce the winner of the banner. Who would emerge victoriously? Which tribe would have its name written down in history as champions. We all waited with bated breath until the sultan of fun screamed … GOLDEN EAGLES!

The Golden Eagles celebrated their win in style singing their tribe fight song and hymn while sharing high fives and hugs all around. It was an amazing session, and the only thing we can say is that it has gone by too quickly. Thank you for sharing each of your sons with us this summer and we can’t wait to see them all back at camp next year!

Until then, 

John Menendez

Director, Camp Timberlake

Former Big Piney, Big Slaty, and Greybeard Counselor

Sultan of Fun Emeritus 

PROUD Golden Eagle.