When I was eight years old,

coming to camp for my very first time

I didn’t quite understand why Mom named me “Zachary Lassen Lusby”

She told me that the only reason it wasn’t “Zachary Coppercreek Lusby” was because my Dad didn’t like it


But that’s what it meant to her

My Mom loved coming to camp more than anything else

And she worked that happiness to be in my name

Now, eight years older, and eight summers more, I finally understand what my name means


Camp means the company of people who love you

It means acceptance of others, no matter who they are

And it means finding yourself

Because camp is a haven from judgement


It’s a place where we can grow into the person we want to be

And have a lot of fun doing it

Every friend here lasts forever, even if we’re only together for two weeks

And every moment is cherished like a friendship bracelet


No matter the age, the gender, or anything else

Everyone here is our best friend

Camp is motivation; to sing, to dance, to not care what anyone else thinks

And camp is especially one thing: home


So to me, every time I sign or say my name

I get to feel every ounce of friendship, kindness, cheerfulness and joy that camp represents

I am named for every last one of you

And eight years later, I finally  understand why


It’s because camp means family

It means finding personal strength in friends

And always expressing your self

“Zachary Lassen Lusby”, as silly as it sounds,

defines camp and that’s how I define me:

Someone that is self-assured, outgoing and open

– by Zachary Lassen Lusby, Vespers 2013


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