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20 tables of 8 Celebration at Pinewoods

CDSS camp

Scene from camp (photo by Sarah Pilzer)

It will come as no surprise to anyone who has been to a CDSS session at Pinewoods in the last 20 years, that the camp is a special place for me and my family. Meg, Ruth, Sam and I were all at the recent celebration of the rebuilt kitchen: “Twenty Tables of Eight.” It was a very nice event with representation from the four user groups, pond neighbors and former crew. We were entertained by an Early Music wind ensemble, a morris team and a longsword team, each boasting at least one Pinewoods board member. After the very nice dinner and a fun and successful auction, we went to C# for a mix of Scottish, English, American and International dances. Most of us were bumbling beginners at some part of the evening, but we all jumped in and had a great time. This was a wonderful coming together of the various communities that all use and love Pinewoods Camp.
With the reworked kitchen and dining area, there will be some earth-shifting changes for us to get used to:

  • There is a large serving window between the kitchen and the serving area of the dining hall so only the crew and the dishwashers will enter the kitchen at all; the rest of us don’t need to know about IN and OUT doors.
  • The bell is in a cupola with a bell pull ending in a wooden handle that I just brush my head on; harder for kids to ring unassisted (aw shucks), not deafening to those already in line, audible from further away, and useless in shushing a chatty dining hall to cue announcements and/or dessert time. Time for a new cue: Bosun’s whistle? Hand bell? I guess I will stick with: “Good Evening Ladies and Gentlemen and Welcome to …” and look for Dining Hall managers with a good set of lungs!
  • The line of people delivering dishes and leftovers to the dish window will not block the exit; we will have to find other places and excuses to stop and chat with each other.

Beyond those jolts to our habits, I think we will all recognize the place, the great food, the refreshing swims, the starlit nights, and, above all else, the friends, new and old, gathered for the dancing, singing, and music making.

If you are not already registered to a CDSS week at camp and scheduled to experience these delights, there is still space at 5 of the Pinewoods weeks as well as at Timber Ridge. Come join us for English and/or American dance, singing and music making from across the centuries.

~ Steve Howe

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