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Game on

May 1. Around here, we live and die by that date. Water’s on? May 1. Landscaping finished? May 1. Blob in the water? You guessed it, May 1.

Camp is in full swing. The flowers are blooming, trees are greener every day, and construction is wrapping up. Today I sat outside for an hour and saw carpenters, landscapers, plumbers, “tile guys,” architects and contractors. We are fixing screens and mowing grass, planting flowers and pruning bushes. New bunkbeds are being delivered, canoes are back in the lake, and ThorGuard (our lighting-detection system) is up and running. Camp is starting to feel alive.

As I sit in my office and type this, I can hear the builders outside talking and laughing. Sometimes, I forget it’s still April. Sometimes, they sound just like campers.

May 1? Game on.

38 days til camp,

Mary Page

Camp Merri-Mac_Sunday Grant Photography (65 of 67)

Happy Valentine’s Day, Merri-Mac Girls!


Happy Valentine’s Day to all our Merri-Mac girls!


Today in our weekly staff meeting we mourned that we have all graduated from exchanging silly valentines day cards and candy.  With this in mind, we began to personify Camp Merri-Mac and laugh about what her Valentines Day cards would say to all of you.  We figured they would look something like this:

Dear Valentine…

“I’d walk up Senior Hill for you”

“I love you more than Lake Doris loves One Direction”

“I miss you more than S’more pockets”

“I love you like Ann Boyd loves the Tweedles”

“Me without you is like Bobby with sleeves”

“We go together like Adam and his headdress”

“I’ll run to you faster than Tweedles to tray-po”

“I’ll stick with you like S’mores and Tweedle’s hair”

“I love you more than Sunnyside loves rest hour”

“I love you even when your Chacos stink”

“My love for you is higher than The Shelter”

“I’ll love you for as long as the announcement song”

Lots of love from camp,





One of the most beautiful parts of camp is the tradition. Merri-Mac girls are part of a tradition that has persisted for over 70 years. We sing the same songs, compete with the same tribes, and walk the same pathways that Macky and Lucy did the first summer Merri-Mac opened its gates.

This winter we are doing several remodels and expansions. I live on camp property, and walking around the construction sites each day exposes nostalgia I didn’t know I had. The cabin where I lost my first tooth is being completely redone. The back porch, where my first lifelong friendships were made is getting a new exterior. The very first cabin I felt brave enough to stay four weeks instead of two is being remodeled. Many things are changing at camp.

Last week I was looking through camp’s archives. We are fortunate to have alumni that have carefully maintained scrap books and letters dating all the way back to 1945. In those files, I found a letter that Macky and Lucy, two of our founding ladies, wrote to their campers the year they bought Bridewood Acres, soon to be Camp Merri-Mac, in Black Mountain:

Dear Merri-Macs:

FlowersFlowersFlowersFlowersFlowersFlowersFlowersFrom my window…I can look out and see most all of our new camp Merri-Mac. It is all so exciting–saws and hammers going, new lumber being stacked all over the place, workmen busy everywhere you look–and our new camp Merri-Mac going up before our very eyes.

…Things here are really buzzing. Macky is really busy. I catch myself puffing and hawing just trying to catch up with her.

The Enchanted Barn is being done over and will be used as a sort of workshop for arts and crafts, photography, etc. It’s almost unbelievable when you think of it but it’s taking shape now and promises to really be “The Enchanted Barn.” The new stables will be a row of stalls–race horse style–over near the riding ring…

These Bridewood Acres are really beautiful this time of year. You can see for miles from up at Camp Merri-Mac on a clear day…It will be even prettier by the time you all get here in June–the trees will be all green again and the rhododendron have thousands of buds that should open when you arrive. Our cabins will be really pretty all nestled in the edge of the trees on “Windy Hill”–just waiting for the happy reunions of old friends, to welcome new girls, to hear tribe yells, happy laughter, and much going on all summer. I’m truly glad that I shall be a part of all this. And I know that you all want to be a part of it too. Won’t it be wonderful to all be together again and in our Camp Merri-Mac this summer?

With Love,

Lucy Turner

So, yes, things are changing at camp. They have always changed! We value traditions for the unity and continuity they bring, but I believe the tradition that we cling to above all others is that of growth. That is what we want for our property as we constantly look for ways to make it better for our cherished campers, but more importantly, that is what we want for each girl that spends her summers with us.


Mary Page