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"Reflections"
Looking back on
FNCA 1998

One of the most exciting parts of the 1998 Assembly session was the return of several Old Flames: three people who attended in their youth in the 1920's and 1930's — some of whom had not seen each other in five decades. They had helped start the Flames way back in 1928, and now returned after so many years.

A great big WELCOME BACK to Agnes O'Keefe, John Swanton, and Marjorie Tuzik. (l. to r. in the photo) Hope you'll be back every © Nancy F. Little 1998year! They rattled off a long list of 1998 highlights, including: catching up with old friends, seeing the Assembly after so long, the lectures, the special camaraderie at camp, the 4th Alice F. Vigerstad Memorial Old Lady Canoe trip (notice that that's John Swanton's photo of it below), togetherness on the porch again, sharing meals, and some of the special events.

© John Swanton 1998

And the current Flames? They liked: the group of teens © Nina Sasser 2015from the Mid-West, the Corn Boil, the unity among the Flames, NOT fighting with Ellen (the camp president), not eating before meals, Emerald Pool, Sabattus Mountain, lots of singing together, having Flames Games more often, the new Bunkhouse floor, "class was good", the Dorm Moms, the food, the new bathroom ceiling in the dorm, the dining hall supervisors, and being able to run the dining hall service their own way.

As for the Sparks: swimming, crafts, Sparks Games, Outing Day, treasure hunt, dessert, "not having to listen to Mom all the time", class, the Sales Table Auction, Colgate's village in front of the Bray Cabin, the daily Faxon Trail nature hike, the Banana Hunt, Spark Hunt/Flame Hunt, eating with friends, and Rev. Ken Turley's kids talk in church on Sunday.

And speaking of which, Rev. Ken was talking to them that Sunday about "Getting Ready", asking them what's necessary to get ready for things like school, bed, supper, etc. In response to the question, "What do we have to do to get ready for heaven?", one of the children cheerfully piped up loud enough for the whole church to hear, "Die."

Young adults thought it was very nice to have several new and some not-quite-so-new couples at camp, including Greg Gilman & Julie Dupre, Todd Woofenden & Lisa Wesel, Andrieanna Foster & Dan Sullivan, and Trevor & Nancy Little, among others. Also well liked were © Holly Bauer 1998prompt and courteous table service by the Flames, the lectures, porch sitting, Dole Wing lounging, coffee lingering, and other forms of general lollygagging, the newly reappeared beach, the return of the Old Flames, Colgate's village, our springwater passing the state inspection(!), the salad bar, the films and slide show of early days at the Assembly, the adult "Getting to Know You" session at the beginning of each week, and all the special music, including: the lively hymn playing of Joshua Grams, Trevor's concert, hearing the Flames singing Sunday School songs and pop hits, and the special choir and church soloists.

And what about the older adults? First, there was lots of praise for Our Fearless President's leadership. Ellen was mentioned over and over by this group as a blessing and a godsend to the camp. Many thanks to Ellen for all her hard work, organization, leadership, and willingness to make the hard decisions. Next was the yearly visit with old friends and relatives who many don't get to see anywhere else. Many folks mentioned the variety in the lecture schedule. Plus, "seeing families together" got a lot of air time, as did our wonderful cooks.

And finally, my 1998 favorites include: Setting the new © FNCA 1998FNCA Polar Bear Club world record — 41 Polar Bears (32 in the photo) with an all-time low  Polar Bear Quotient of 0.87!, Sparks Games, Flames Games, and adult game times. Daily nature walks on the Faxon Trail, and clearing the trail on Work Day. The Old Lady Canoe Trip. The hilariously entertaining (and profitable) Sales Table Auction. The fabulous treasure hidden in our kitchen: our cooks, Sally Riley-Fernald and Cindy Bouffard, and their new assistant Cliff Archer. Seeing the Flames working, playing, singing, and hanging out together with so much togetherness. And most especially this: getting engaged to Nancy on top of Jockey Cap the last Saturday of camp! That I'll never forget about FNCA 1998!

1998 All-Camp Group Photo

© Richard Cook 1998

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