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Unlike many of my Great Neck classmates, I did not spend my summers at sleepaway camp, so Ashokan was really my first experience away from my parents for more than a casual one-night sleepover with a friend. I remember being both excited and nervous on what seemed like a long ride to the Catskills on the school bus, hiding behind the high green seatbacks, too nervous to chat and plan with my classmates-- then hustling into the cabins and being assigned to our beds, nervously unpacking and setting up our linens, everyone joking and comparing what we’d brought. I only vaguely remember the organized activities, just wisps of a feeling of independence tinged with anxiety, the joy of being out in fresh air, the jostle and noise of other kids all around me.
I remember a huge dining room where we all ate together. The food was better than I expected but very different than what we ate at home. Somewhere I have a photo of my friend and I trying to feed the chipmunks on our hike. I'll post it if I find it.
I also remember making this pewter leprechaun at one of the Colonial craft activities. I still have it (see photo)!
Great Neck North
I remember much jousting over the usual pre-teen social status in sleeping arrangements and who sat with who. What else to expect when kids are away from home together?
I am a second generation Ashokan alumni. Here is a picture of me with my mother who went to Ashokan, too!
Great Neck South
I remember Mimi the pig and feeding her all our leftovers.