Reflections From a Camp Pinnacle Alumni

John Dockendorf09 Apr, 2016
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The Brand New CP Arts Center
The brand-new Arts Center

By Fayssoux Evans, assistant director and camper from 1998–2002

Growing up, my favorite part of summer was always Opening Day at Camp Pinnacle. As a child I attended Pinnacle for five summers. Every year, my mom would drive my sisters and me to camp, and without fail, I would get sick on Little River Road. I don’t know if it was the curvy roads or the excitement of heading back for another summer at Camp Pinnacle, but it was inevitable. My mom would roll down the windows, hoping the fresh air would help make me feel better. That’s how we would drive into camp every year—windows down, breathing in the smell of white pine and hemlock trees.

Today, when I drive through the new entrance gate at Camp Pinnacle, I still roll down my windows and breathe in the scent from the very same trees. And while camp still feels the same 15 years later, it’s a different facility in 2016 than it was my last year as a camper in 2002. There are new trails, new people, new buildings, and new activities.

New porches, and a treehouse enhance the cabin experience but cabin life remains rustic to preserve the Pinnacle experience!
New porches, and a tree house enhance the cabin experience but cabin life remains rustic.

Over the past few years, Camp Pinnacle has been in a constant state of improvement. There isn’t one area of camp that has not been touched—from the new cabin porches, wooden walkways, treehouses, and the new Arts Center, to the new mountain slide, Lakeside Amphitheater, and water zipline, along with miles of new mountain biking and hiking trails. What has been particularly exciting is that all the new facility improvements have been intentionally designed to enhance camp’s youth development goals such as community-building, immersion in nature, and improving communication and collaboration skills.

The maintenance team led by Tom McCartney and George Nagel has been hard at work restoring Camp Pinnacle to its once pristine condition. But don’t worry, there’s still a rustic feel at camp. It wouldn’t be Pinnacle without the moss growing on the cabin roofs, the loud BAM of wooden cabin doors closing, or the simple joy of communal bathrooms (though they are a lot nicer now than in my day!). You still get the same wonderful, peaceful feeling when you sit in a rocking chair on the front porch of the dining hall and look down the front lawn towards Wolfe Lake.

The Girls cabins have all been updated for 2016!
The girls’ cabins have all been updated for 2016!

Camp is, as it always has been, a beautiful place, one of the few special environments that still exists for children. Campers continue to spend their summers without television, cell phones, or video games in a rustic camp setting surrounded by nature and excellent role models—that hasn’t changed. But Camp Pinnacle is growing and updating, and I’m proud to be a part of it.

P.S. If any alumni find themselves in Henderson County this summer, come join me on the front porch for a Scooter Crunch Bar.

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