In honor of the new Netflix show Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp, I am reminiscing about my own summers at Sleepaway Camp. Seeing photos from the show really brings me back to a place and time where teenagers, guided by a few grown-ups, run the show and take care of all the kids. Camp…A place where Jerry Garcia is still alive, flashlights are a must, girls dye their hair with kool-aid and boys play basketball for hours and hours.
I remember things like banquets, 3 times a summer. We would all put on our best and favorite dresses or borrow one from someone in another bunk. This would mean walking across camp in your towel to raid someone’s cubby. Blow drying your hair on the basketball courts…I still don’t know why they had power outlets out there but we did what we needed to straighten our hair only to have it frizz back up in the hot summer weather.
We had daily rest periods when campers were supposed to rest or play quietly in their bunks and counselors would often be found sleeping in their bed with a clip on fan blowing on them or behind the bunks with another counselor sneaking a cigarette.
Sleepaway camp always had it’s own cast of characters too! The scary Night Watchman that never hung out with the rest of the staff and spent nights walking and looking for campers or staff leaving their bunks to go on “raids” to meet up and make out. The Young Loves who might actually get married one day (at camp!) The camper/staff relationships, they are usually just a year apart. The guy that spreads the knowledge (or stoner BS) and the girl that has all the best clothes.
My absolute favorite part of camp would have to be the friendships made. The people that you can count on for your whole entire life even if you haven’t seen them for decades. The friendships created at camp are like no other. Friends that know you inside and out and love you anyway. Friends that helped you through your absolute most difficult, strange and formative years and now can laugh with you over it all. There is a love for camp friends that runs so deep inside you that no matter how far they are, how long it’s been, that love is always there.
And now on to the show… I was reminded that the new Netflix show Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp had started when one of my favorite camp friends Alana shared it on facebook aka the place I get all my news. Quickly I knew I needed to watch the show and share about it here with all of you. Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp is a prequel to the movie Wet Hot American Summer and 15 years later it brings back many of the same cast members who have aged yet are still playing characters in their teens.
With a star-studded cast including Christopher Meloni, Janeane Garofalo, Amy Poehler, Paul Rudd and Bradley Cooper, I don’t see how you could possibly be disappointed. The trailer alone will have you wanting to sit on the couch and binge for hours (I may or may not be planning on doing this today!)