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Week three of Dream Day was the annual Cape Cod Day Camp Week. We hosted five separate groups from the local area. Each group brought dozens of children at a time, all with smiles on their faces as they got to enjoy a break from their usual schedule. 
 
The campers were showed around Rafe Pond. Many fish were caught, along with Urtle, unfortunately. When our snapping turtle gets caught on the line, it can be frightening, but as always, the campers were calm and the counselors handled the situation with grace. Some visitors even got the chance to go canoeing for the first time. The breezy conditions added for a refreshing cruise on the pond. 
 
Up at arts and crafts was “Pet Rock” making. With beautiful exemplars from a camp volunteer, it was easy for the kids to paint the rocks in a creative fashion. Googly eyes were then glued on to really make the pet rocks come alive. At the end of the activity, every camper left with a new friend to play with. 
 
The last activity the campers got to enjoy was archery. They were able to use our handmade crossbow stand to shoot at the target. The stand makes it much easier for children with disabilities to be a part of something they wouldn’t normally be able to do. A lot of the enjoyment came from when the kids realized they were doing a sport they had only seen in the movies. All of the campers smiled when the counselors called them Katniss Everdeen or Merida. 
 
We would like to give so many thank you’s to Cape Cod Collaborative, the Cape Cod Challenger Group, Monomoy Schools, Nauset Schools, and the Latham Group for making day camp week so enjoyable. And to the United Way of Cape & Islands for sponsoring the week! It was wonderful to see the local families and children being able to be a part of Dream Day. This Sunday we are back in the routine bringing in another eight families for a week of fun! 

Week TWO!

It’s hard to believe week two was six days long- time flies when you’re having fun! The beginning of the week was brought in by an amazing whale watch out of Barnstable harbor. With three families in tow, the Dream Day group encountered many whales, and even dolphins, on a wonderful boat trip through Cape Cod Bay. All of the kids were beyond excited to learn about the whales, and being able to witness the gentle giants in their natural habitat.

On Tuesday was a trip to Crosby, one of Brewster’s bay beaches. However this week was different from the first. The campers and their families were able to enjoy the low tide and the flats to walk on. The sunny day allowed for fantastic sand castle building conditions.

Fishing and boating was also a huge success this week. Counselors were able to help the campers overcome their fears of facing the open water. Some kids truly showed how brave they were when faced with challenges with the turtles in the pond. Trying to fish around the turtles without catching them is an obstacle in itself.

Week two was the first time Dream Day ventured to the National Seashore in Eastham. Coast Guard beach welcomed us on a Thursday afternoon. The campers were seen having so much fun running out to the sandbars and splashing in the small pools of salt water. Some families took the plunge into the cold Atlantic water. Jumping over the waves was also a kid favorite activity at the beach.

As the staff said goodbye to families on Friday morning, we were reminded of the true meaning of what Dream Day stands for. Watching the smiles on all of the children leaving camp shows us that with fun and silliness, we can bring a ray of sunshine to these families. Thanks for a great week everyone!

DSCN0891Week one of the 2014 Dream Day Summer has been deemed a success! The week opened up with the first campfire of the season. The campers laughed and played along to Dream Day classics, like Moose Juice and Banana Pudding. Some kids couldn’t wait to share their very own made-up jokes!

The fun continued to Tuesday with a beach trip to Crosby, one of Brewster’s best bayside beaches. High tide allowed families of all abilities to take a swim in the refreshing ocean. As the tide retreated, sandcastles were built on the shore using damp sand, seashells, and some pretty rocks the campers had found themselves.

Later on in the week was the Dream Day Talent Show. Campers Kassidy and Kayla sang and danced together to their own rendition of Frozen’s Let it Go. Another highlight was a skit of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, with handmade masks and all, put together by campers Leighton, Jamison, and Charlie. Even some counselors joined in at the request of the campers.

Paint the Counselor was also a huge hit this week. A handful of staff were covered head to toe in bright colored paint. By the end of the activity, the majority of kids, and parents were doused in paint. This was definitely a camper favorite.

Looking back on this first week of joy and sunshine, it is clear that many campers were exploring out of their comfort zones. Facing fears of canoeing out on Rafe Pond, and pulling back just a little bit further on their archery bows, campers became braver than they could have ever imagined. The staff witnessed first hand how children of all ages became stronger and more courageous every day at camp.

Goodbyes were hard on Friday morning, but with full hearts we welcome in week two families and the rest of an amazing Dream Day Summer.

Families are confirmed. Our waitlist is growing. Staff are making plans to head to Brewster at month’s end for orientation. If we close our eyes, we can almost smell the campfire! Soon enough, twelve staffers will come together and start creating the summer 2014 program during their orientation and training week! Shortly thereafter, eight families with eight entirely different stories, will arrive at Nan-Ke-Rafe. We’ll show them to their cabin and direct them to the bathhouse. We’ll give them an activity schedule and tell them about meal times. And those of us that have been at camp for a while will smile in a knowing way. Families may not know it, nor do new staffers – but what is about to unfold in coming days at camp is nothing short of magical! We’ll kayak and canoe. We’ll fish and sing silly songs. Whale watches and baseball games – beach and pond trips – a little tie-dye thrown in for good measure. Simple family fun. Friendships will be forged among the most unlikely. Collectively, we breathe a little deeper, smile a little wider, and feel a little lighter. 

And then, we do it again. And again. And again – refreshing with 8 new families each week until mid-August.  We can’t wait. 

Until then, the incredible amount of work that has been done by our loyal volunteers is unprecedented and must be acknowledged. Since late winter, volunteers have worked tirelessly and continue to work to prepare the facility. 

A grassroots nonprofit like Dream Day relies on volunteer support. And twenty years of successful operation has everything to do with our committed Board members, our volunteer facilities workers, our event volunteers, and our camp volunteers. Thousands and thousands of hours have been logged over the years on Dream Day’s behalf: giving hearts giving forward. 

Today we recognize those we GET to serve and those who make it possible FOR us to serve. 

We are prepping for an amazing summer here at Dream Day!

It is now time to send your family applications to us right away! We have a rolling application process but PRIORITY is given to new families who submit their applications before April 1st.  Send it in!

Click here to download the 2014 application.

For those families who have already applied, hold tight! We will be in touch in early April to notify you of your status.

Thank you! And, spread the word!!

 

 

buildd_logo_final

It is through the help of generous volunteers and donors that Dream Day on Cape Cod is able operate. BUILDD projects are what started our camp, and what continue to help us grow.

BUILDD Projects:
The Great Cape Cod Contractor Challenge

October 17, 1999
Over 150 volunteers, gathered for one day, and built 8 family cabins and our dining hall addition!

Volunteers & Suppliers: Andersen Windows; Brian Basler; Brockway Smith Co.; Boston Sash; Cape Association; Cleary Construction; Steve Creswell; Furman Lumber; Georgia Pacific; Golden Hammer; Greater Harwich Construction; Don Harkenrider; Pat Lancaster; Martin Millwork; George McMahon; Dave Milliken; Mike Reddish; Rugby; Shepley Wood Products; John Skarupa; Bruce Wilcox; Steve Wilcox

Field of Dreams

Spring 2011

Six acres of tree-filled land was cleared and leveled, the camp road widened, an irrigation system installed, grass seeded, playground land was cleared, back stop was built to create our very own Field of Dreams!

Volunteers:

Special thanks to Chris Cooney, CC Construction, for bringing together these volunteers!
Acorn Builders; Atlantic Irrigation; Rick Bates; Mike Bosetti; Jeremy Buck; Cape Cod Docks; Cape Cod Fence; CC Construction; Robert Childs; David Gibson; Shawn Harrington; Chris Hutton and Sons; Nick Mitchell Landscaping; Dennis Mulcahy; Pine Harbor; TJ Rebello; John Senate; Bob Theibault; Peter Wall; Jeff Wragg

And here is what is up next!!!

Water Works 2014

March 1, 2014

8 builder teams, landscapers, excavators and engineers will volunteer their time to build private bath facilities attached to each existing family camp.

Volunteers and Suppliers: A&E Forms; Anderson Framing; Bob Perry-Engineer; Bosetti Construction; CC Construction; Jeff Wragg Crew; Harvey Industries; Matt York Crew; Mike Pimental Crew; PKM Construction; Shepley Wood Products; The Hoagie Bear Boys; The Jones Boys; Wilcox Construction

Plumbing Palooza 2014

May 3, 2013
Students and community volunteers will complete the plumbing portion of the private bath facilities for each family cabin. Volunteers & Suppliers: Cape Technical High School Students; Snow & Jones

Blessings

We are coming off of a beautiful holiday weekend and our hearts are full. The amount of people that come together to make a weekend special for 20 Dream Day families is nothing short of amazing! The Clarion Inn of Cape Cod has donated dozens and dozens and dozens of rooms for YEARS and YEARS! The kind hearted staff attending to everyone’s needs. Dunkin Donuts donates breakfast for the weekend — no questions asked — 10 dozen donuts are just waiting for us at 8am. The Hearth n Kettle hosts our beautiful luncheon with the sweetest staff and management you could ask for! Our summer staff – the loving core of our camp – comes back to the Cape to volunteer — to give and give and smile and smile. These men and women have no idea how they light up our Dream Day kids’ hearts. 

Dream Day Holiday Weekend is like all of our programs – based in love and simple goals of family, fun, and respite. Families that have a sick child don’t often get the space and place to just relax and enjoy those around them. When you create the space, and you add in some love and laughter, what takes place is magical! 

 

And so, it is with full hearts that we share our gratitude and say to Dream Day families, loving donors, and caring staff Happiest Holidays to you and yours. 

To warm camp days ahead!

Love, 

Dream Day

 

 

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