Two years, one month and 26 days. That is 788 days total. That is how many days went by between the 2019 LIM359 Youth Camp and the 2021 Youth Camp. There was a point where we were wondering if our camp would ever happen again. We experienced hardships, loss of loved ones, and sacrifice over the last two years. Many of us continue to experience these struggles. Through LIM359, we were able to recruit some rockstar volunteers and excited campers to make this one of the best camps to date. Labor Day Weekend 2021.
A good camp is nothing without a great swag bag and LIM359 did not disappoint. The extra time between camp in 2019 and 2021 gave us time to stock up on hoodies, t-shirts, water bottles, stuffed toys, toy boxes, pop sockets, beach towels, and cool down towels.
We held the 4th Annual LIM359 Youth Camp at Clement Park right outside the Denver city limits in Littleton, Colorado. The weather could not have been better. Our campers were able to experience two full days of sunshine. We had plenty of sunscreen on hand, and it definitely got used. 300 days of sunshine did not disappoint.
Two action packed days full of activities. Crutch Rocket Sports set up field games with accuracy games and ball launching. The kids and adults loved it!
This year, Adaptive Action Sports participated by putting on a show and teaching our campers about skateboarding. We made sure each child had a helmet available and provided enough space and room so that if anyone took a tumble, we would be there to help anyway we needed. It was an added treat that Paralympic Athlete Mike Mynor showed off his Olympic medals in snowboarding and let the campers wear it.
We had glitter glue, glitter pipe cleaners, glitter paint ,and to top it all off we had two large containers of ready-to-use silver and gold pieces of glitter. Unicorns and fairies would have felt at home in our glitter station. Campers used these supplied to make their own glitter robots!
Each camper with their parents and siblings had plenty of options to tie dye shirts to take home. We also had an early tie dye session during registration that let the campers tie dye hair ties, bandanas, and headbands. Based on survey results, tie dye was a family favorite!
Hungry Hungry Hippos. The name speaks for itself. Can’t go wrong with a camp classic.
Our campers were able to enjoy America’s pastime and worked with their groups to try and hit some home runs and swing for the fences with our wiffle t-ball game.
The campers were physically challenged on the obstacle course that had campers hopping, jumping, running, and sometimes even falling. It was a tough course by any standards. I heard a few ankles got twisted in the process.
We were able to divide the campers in age groups and get them playing the beautiful game of soccer. The sport that is enjoyed all around the world was enjoyed at the LIM359 Youth Camp just the same. I think there are a few soccer stars waiting to make their debuts.
SPLASH PAD! This one was a hit. In the Swag Bag we provided each camper with a brand new towel so they would be able to enjoy the splash pad. Some used it as a time to relax while others took a more active approach and did not sit down once!
Snacks, snacks and more snacks. There was not a shortage of snacks, juice packs or cookies at this year’s LIM359 Youth Camp. Animal crackers, Veggie Straws, and my personal favorite, Cheeze-Itz. If the campers didn’t like the snacks they were doing a bad job of showing it because snack time was always a popular event.
Bubble Station. Cariciture artists. Balloon Artists. Story Time. Photo Booths. Movement and dance. Cute Dogs and plenty of smiles to go around.
With camp tradition we ended it with a bucket full of water dumping over Emily Harvey’s head. Our fearless leader.
The only way to really know what goes on at camp is to be there yourself and sign up! What about next year?
Next year is already in the works and our Board and Camp Committee could not be more excited to start planning. We are ready to try and make 2022 an even better experience for the campers, volunteers, and parents. Before Covid-19 the LIM359 Youth Camp was on track to reach 100 campers. This year we had a significant reduction due to world circumstances. However, this did not impact the amount of fun we had. We are hoping to grow our camp even more. As our campers get older, hopefully they will want to become volunteers and grow our community even more. We want to share this camp with as many children that have limb loss or limb difference and their siblings as possible. We will continue our effort to empower youth through activity and spread as much joy as we can in the process.
After all the bags are unpacked, the temporary tattoos have been scrubbed off, and tie dye has finally washed off our stained hands I cannot help but to reminisce on this year’s camp. Without the campers, the volunteers, sponsors, donors, and the parents, none of this would be possible. As I put away my things I am ready for next year and excited to see when and where we are in 2022!
Just when I thought there would be no more reminders of the camp and everything was cleaned up, I find myself smiling every time I see a piece of glitter that made its way back to my home from camp. I may find glitter forever, but that is okay considering each piece is a pleasant reminder of the laughs, activities, and smiles that were had on that weekend in Clement Park.
Photo credit for photos used in this post: Jason Langberg & Jim McBride