A home away from home ...
I've always thought that God has a special place in His heart just for Camp WaMaVa. It has felt like home to me since I was 8 years old. When my family was barely attending church, camp became the place where I could find God. I had counselors who inspired me, helped me, and taught me, and the things I learned at camp helped me to hold onto my faith even when it felt distant. I even made the decision to be baptized largely because of the way camp shaped my faith, and actually being baptized at camp made the experience even more special. The people there are more than friends; they're family, and when I come to camp, it feels like I've never left. It's the source of my best memories. It's a home away from home and always will be.
Jayne R, former camper and counselor
Sharing the love of God with the next generation is still #1 priority ...
My WAMAVA experience started way back when I was around 10 or 11 years old. My parents took a summer trip around the US and one stop was to visit Jim, Pix and the girls, at camp on the way up the coastline. At that time, I didn't think anything of it, but little did I know how important that place would come to be to me. My birthday is in July, and I wouldn't have thought of a better place for me to celebrate my birthday all those years, as to be at camp during that time.
The year or two after that trip, I literally got "shipped off" with the McCall's to camp. I was a Jr. Staff on the weeks I was not a camper, or helped in any areas that needed help. At first I wasn't happy being there (because of not knowing ANYONE except for Jim, Pix, Trudy & Lydia) but as I met new people and made friends, I began to like it there, and ended up going back with them year after year. I am thankful for the McCall's including me as one of their own, for nearly 3 months out of the year, for so many years!
Each year, I was excited to spend my summers in Virginia, in such a beautiful area and see all my new friends, whom I would keep in touch with throughout the year. Any of them will tell you that I was a great at mail correspondence. Now with email, Facebook and text messaging, I can talk to any of my still forever-friends any time.
I worked my way up from camper, Jr Staff, Kitchen Staff, Arts & Crafts "Assistant" to Counselor for several years.
All the way through Jr High, High School and even some college, I spent my summers at WAMAVA. Some years, I wished I didn't have to come home. The friendships that I made at camp will always be such a cherished part of my life...the laughs, tears, the deep conversations on the hill, and even the summer camp romances, are precious memories that will not be forgotten. Even to this day, I have longings for a trip East, and often go through camp withdrawals of those special times.
When I got married in July 1995, my new husband and I took a somewhat unconventional honeymoon to Washington DC, partly so he could be introduced to my East coast friends (adopted family) and to Camp WAMAVA. It was such a part of my life, I wanted him to see why and know that part of my life as well. We have been back a few times since then, and even joined two of my very special friends at their weddings (one of which I was blessed to be in the wedding party).
Now, we have a 7-year-old son, whom I look forward to the chance to share the special memories of camp with, and have him experience the amazing WAMAVA experience for himself. Although the camp and staff have changed so much since my time, keeping the heart of Christ in the camp experience and sharing the love of God with the next generation is still #1 priority. That's what it's all about!
Sheryl R, former camper and staff member
It is no overstatement when I say Camp WaMaVa changed my life...
As an 18 year old first time staffer, I had never been to a summer camp. By the time the first summer ended, it felt like I'd been going my entire life. I stayed 6 summers and loved every minute of playing a small part of what WaMaVa does. I made lifetime friends. One of those friends later introduced me to my wife. It is no overstatement when I say Camp WaMaVa changed my life.
Jeremy W, former staff member
WAMAVA is the best!!!
Greatest sleepaway camp in the world! Flushing toilets, air conditioned cabins, 45 minutes away, wonderful staff, volunteers and campers. The price is unbeatable! Plus you get a discount if you register before June 1st. My kids have been going to Camp WAMAVA for years and love it they consider it their second home…as they come home from camp they can't wait to go back next year!!! WAMAVA Is the best!!!
Lana L, camper mom
WAMAVA is a blessed place and has touched many, many lives...
My sisters were campers in the 50's and 60's and have their names in the old cement pad where the camp bell used to be. My Mom (Dora Campbell) would give the cooks a "break" and cook/bake for two weeks every summer. She made some awesome rolls and learned this from her time as a Sergeant in the US Army in WWII - she ran a tight kitchen. I started going to WAMAVA in the later 1960's and accepted the Lord in baptism in the "old" pool with about two dozen frogs and other creatures. I also remember opening up the camp during the Winter - snow on the ground and deer all around - we would have church retreats there and think of ways to support the camp. I still have an original "stock certificate" that my parents purchased way back in the day. My Dad and I would go to the camp in the off season and repair structures - lots of hammer time! We were members of the Falls Church Church of Christ at the time. WAMAVA is a blessed place and has touched many, many lives. TY to those that watch over it today - God bless.
James C, former camper and volunteer
They truly care about your child(ren) spiritually, mentally, and physically ...
This camp feels like home to me, even though I was only there a summer as a counselor and the following summer as a weeklong volunteer. Each year, the staff and volunteers that help make this camp possible are top notch. They are all great Christian examples and want the best for everyone, including your child(ren). They truly care about your child(ren) spiritually, mentally, and physically.
Rachel G, former counselor and volunteer
There's no better place to send your kids...
My 2 children have been to camp Wamava the past 4 years in a row, and they have simply loved it more and more each passing summer. They couldn't wait to visit each summer to learn new songs, make new friends and do fun activities. From the time I pick them up at the end of the week-long camp they would talk non-stop about all the fun they had. This is a great Bible based camp for any child at most any age. They make it fun for the younger kids and those sometimes hard to please pre-teens! There's no better place to send your kids and be confident that they will come home a changed person because of the staff and activities that this camp provides! Keep up the great work WAMAVA!
Christine L, camper mom
Lots of great memories of devotionals, friends, activities, and feeling like I belonged...
I went to Wamava in '65, didn't like it, and did not go back the next year. In '67, my parents talked me into trying it "one more time". I made a couple of friends the first day, loved it, and it became the highlight of my year for the next several years. I spent two summers on junior staff and then was later a Bible teacher and a member of the board (as was my father at one time). Lots of great memories of devotionals, friends, activities, and feeling like I belonged. I just wish we were close enough for my boys to go now.
David K, former camper, volunteer and board member
Our family has been making an annual pilgrimage from Colorado to Camp every summer for the past 10 years
My wife grew up going to WAMAVA in the late 70's thru the mid-80's, and our family has been making an annual pilgrimage from Colorado to Camp every summer for the past 9 or 10 years so that our kids can attend (and now staff) that wonderful place. I've gotten to work the kitchen and teach Bible classes over the last handful of years, as well as playing "handy man" at other times. It has been neat watching Joe go from counselor to our son, Nathan, to director - a job at which he is excelling, IMO. It was never part of my own childhood, but I feel very much welcomed and part of things now just as if it had been.
Bob L, camper dad and volunteer
I will keep trying to encourage more kids from our Church to find the joy of attending WaMaVa...
I have volunteered the last three years for the kitchen and am doing it again this year and I would not miss it for the world. When I was younger I attended camp WaMaVa as a camper from 1956 to the summer of 1960. My two sons also attended camp. It was greatest days of my life. Watching the sun rise and thanking God for a new day and enjoying the beautiful world He has made. Now all six of my Grand Kids are attaining Camp. It is a joy to seeing Kids having a great time together, caring, playing and Loving one other. I will keep trying to encourage more kids from our Church to find the joy of attending WaMaVa. My Grandson did not want to go the first time but when he did go, he would not miss it for the world. He is also doing Jr staff. My three Grand Kids will be going again this year and there are 28 Kids from Israel who are attending this year. God is good.
Avery S, former camper, camper dad, camper grand-dad, and current board member
My daughter never missed a year at Camp...
even when we moved, one of the first questions she asked was, "Can I still go to Camp?" When my special needs son was old enough, I was nervous about him dealing with the schedule, strangers, and self control issues (he is autistic). But many of the Counselors are pursuing special needs-related degrees in college and he felt very accepted. I was amazed at how well they took his unique quirks in stride!