Social Media is tricky. In one way it’s a struggle, distracting us from homework and family dinners. One reason we love “un-plugging” at camp every summer is how much more we see around us when we aren’t immediately gravitating towards a screen.
On the other hand, it can be a truly remarkable tool for facilitating connections with friends and family who aren’t immediately nearby. When the Acting Manitou directors went to camp we looked forward to getting everyone’s addresses so we could write letters to our friends throughout the year. Admittedly, and to our own parents’ dismay, we probably chose to call on the phone on the weekends when long distance rates were lowest. Phone calls have given way to emails and texts and video calling. (Back to the Future II was right!) Now it’s almost as easy to stay in touch with friends across the world as it is with our friends down the block.
The joy of this technology, and the challenge (whispered, “Challenge Yourself”), is using it to continue the kinds of communication and friendships that are so special at camp. Whether it’s a quick compliment as you pass someone on the hill, a longer walk with a friend at downtime, or a bedtime story with a director, at camp we try to focus on quality moments shared with each other. How can we practice the same behavior during the year, even if it’s done virtually? Can we use our time on Facebook to lift up other people, perhaps sharing a “Break a Leg” on opening nights? Can Instagram be more than simply a way of documenting our current life and perhaps also a way of sharing memories or inspiration?
We think so! That’s why we are committed to celebrating our camp family, campers and staff, year-round through AM365. The AM Blog will bring you longer musings about how we are all living the spirit of camp in the off-season. AM Photos is a great way to look back at this past summer and will also include galleries of AMDay and events throughout the year. AMPod is going to be bringing you past campers and staff, as well as special guests who are friends of camp, sharing their stories and memories from Acting Manitou.
Of course, our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter will also be sources for quick inspiration. We consider this the equivalent of a quick hello on the hill, which we all know can easily be your Rose for the day!
Thats what we are excited about. But, AM365 is like camp. It works best when we all take part! How are you going to continue to share the joy and inspiration that Acting Manitou is all about?