“Many moons ago, the mighty Sioux settled a beautiful, magical land full of plentiful resources and a great view of the three stars: red, blue, and gold. This land was called Conestoga. On it, the Sioux thrived and grew strong and wise for many generations. Then, all of a sudden, they mysteriously and silently vanished. To protect their home, the great Sioux kept hidden the location of this utopia. But since the disappearance, several scouts have reported a strange and mysterious land to the east. Unfortunately, tribesman of the Northwoods, this sacred land cannot be shared. Therefore, only one nation will claim Conestoga and earn the right to call themselves the Potawatami. Get ready for Pugawagan!”
You’re probably reading that thinking, “What in the world is she talking about?” That was the intro read at lunch today, to introduce this afternoon’s Sunday event, Pugawagan. It was new last year and was a huge success, and this year was no different. When your camper arrives home, you can ask him to explain more about it, but the ending to me is the coolest part. The whole thing is kind of a relay race, and the last event is when leaders paddle half canoes down to the campfire ring, where their team is waiting, cheering them on. The first team there gets to light the fire and “claim the land”. This year, that honor went to Charlie Stelnicki and the Apache. Chippewa came in a close second, Iroquois third, and Navajo fourth.
And that’s all great, but my favorite part is when all the teams come down to the beach and do a giant machine gun run together into the water. And then they form a circle, all teams together, and sing Deerhorn Hall. It’s so cool to watch all four teams unite as one after a big Sunday event.
And then, of course, after they so nicely sing Deerhorn Hall together in (kind of) a circle, the end dissolves into a mass of splashing, yelling, whooping boys.
Shortly after they sang Deerhorn Hall, as they were still wrestling each other in the water, a bald eagle flew right overhead and dove into the water outside the A dock to catch a fish. They all paused, watching in amazement, and then started chanting, “USA! USA! USA!” Check out all the photos from Pugawagan on our Shutterfly site.
We slept in an hour, had cinnamon toast for breakfast, and kept busy this morning with ultimate frisbee, street hockey on the Skeeter, and finishing up those last edits on the Deerhorn Sun, as well as writing letters home to turn in at lunch for letter day. Rocco gave the Words of Wisdom at noon about success, and lunch was ham and cheesy potatoes. Dinner was grilled chicken, picnic supper on the beach, and campers enjoyed some koogee time after dinner before the campfire. All in all, a pretty great Sunday at camp!