TheGoodLife! “Camp Nice” 2016 – Super Re-Cap Extravaganza!

Living in New York City is still an endlessly unpredictable and addictive adventure. The city satisfies our craving for unlimited experience, a single place where all of the world’s wonders are available to sample. But it’s absolutely true that the more time we spend in this mechanized, man-made grid, the further we get from the parts of us that are connected to the earth. While this may sound to some as a bit of over the top romanticism, we can say with certainty that our week-long camping experience known as Camp Nice had a profound effect on the diverse group of humans who attended. A week of communal living, for some with total strangers, a week of both trust and dependence, a week of learning and sharing, a week of reclamation, Camp Nice was all those things and more. Over the course of the week leading up to the Autumnal Equinox, more than forty New Yorkers came to the same realization that giving up everything the city provides us is also the way to stay in love with it. Along the way we made new friends and learned that together we could thrive anywhere as long as we did it together. In the weeks since Camp Nice, we have all become closer and its apparent even in the small details, we’re no longer just “city friends” prone to leaving a text unanswered or plans vaguely committed to, we are now Camp Nicer’s and will forever be on call for our fellow campers. Thanks to our friends at Burton Snowboards and Burton Girls for being an integral part in the Camp Nice experience and of course thank you to everyone who attended. Now get ready to relive the entire experience in beautiful photography by Craig Wetherby, Dean “Blotto” Gray, and Eddie Grams. We can’t wait to see everyone and more next year! Words by Tim Brodhagen.

The first settlers had arrived! Welcome to Camp Nice!!

Next up was Blotto…

Jaziah & Nianga set their new Burton home up with the quickness…

camp_nice-2016_45Home Base was looking very official!

We settled in to our comfortable new digs quite nicely…

Camp Nice was starting to come together …

Ranger Larry didn’t waste any time setting up his hidden lair either…

As night approached we had to get the fire started and Jaziah was first up to earn his Fire Badge.

EARNED! Thanks to Blacksand Supply Co for the sick custom merit badges!

Larry was on Grilled Cheese duty and got right into it with a nice addition of some Prosser’s Sauce!

Perfection!

Some were not so perfect…

Practice makes perfect tho…

Ranger Larry & Blotto were up bright and early, excited get their float on and start to earn some Boating Badges.

First sail was a success!

Larry cast his hook out to try and reel us in some dinner…

As some were out enjoying the lake, Nianga made sure the campfire was smoking hot!

But was also right at home in the hammock zone…

Creatures of comfort…

camp_nice-2016_08Even the locals came by to welcome us in to our new home for the week…

Little critters were everywhere…

Our Camp Nice mascot, Gilbert, was watching our every move…

Status Jeff settled right in!

Lakefront property was the move…this was our view every night! Shit was LIT!

Our High Priestess, Chenoah, gave thanks & praise to the gods for blessing us with a perfect sunset once again!

Nianga was feeling amazing too!

The first shift of Camp Nicers was proper!

Ranger Larry had the first and only catch of the trip and earned his Fishing Badge!

After dinner we got started on dessert…

S’mores & Dominos! A winning combination!!

Honorable Mel made sure we had plenty of kindling on deck.

Every morning someone took on the task of starting the fire the ol’ fashioned way.

Shadi might be from the Bronx but didn’t have any trouble earning his Fire Badge in the woods!

He was the most gracious host who even hand delivered breakfast down to the lake…

And was determined to master the Grilled Cheese!

Jeff was eager and first up to earn the coveted Gaming Badge! Time to celebrate!!

But sometimes when celebrating too much you get a visit from the local authorities! First warning…

Proper camp coffee set up over at Blotto’s Lakeside Cafe…

Once nice and fired up Blotto was next to try to take the Gaming Badge by beating the current horseshoe champ…

It was a close one but Blotto came out victorious!

Champion Status Earned!

Mel & Timbo did enough early morning laps around the lake each day to earn a Fitness Badge if we had one…

Pretty nice roads for a cruise…

Boating Badge EARNED!

There were still plenty of Fire Badges to be earned too…

Timbo & Gui got theirs next…Mo Fiyah!

We were burning at a heavy rate so needed more firewood…

So Mecca got to cutting!

Some of the troops got slightly delayed on the way but we really needed more wood…

Thanks George! Appreciate all the wood & good vibes!

George heard about the rare Pocono Mermaid and was on high alert!

He got a quick glimpse of something that popped up in the distance but wasn’t quite sure what it was…

As he got closer he realized he might have been onto something…

Yup! They were really real!

He noticed they were of the friendly kind so he got closer…

Our first encounter with the rare mermaids of Promised Land was serene…

They started to appear all around us…

We lured them in with fancy beverages…

They started to climb aboard our vessels…

Some were frisky…

And began to overheat from being out of their aquatic environment for too long…

After cooling down a bit and acclimating to being out of the water…

We brought them on land to mingle with the others…

Of course we kept them hydrated and they fit right in at Camp Nice!

They never seen views so majestic…

Our Vermont fam was definitely in the house!

camp_nice-2016_50Josie earned her Arts & Crafts Badge with a little stick & poke on Courtney…Very impressive FeistyInk!

camp_nice-2016_49DOMINO!

We were warned about the Brown Recluse Spider…

So Gui made sure to keep his tent zipped up!

Timbo kept watch for bear but none would dare step into our zone once they caught a glimpse of his mighty staff!

Craig secured the perimeter while on his daily eagle patrol.

Spotted this fine specimen feeding right across the lake from our zone.

Our zone was pretty nice!

We adapted to our surroundings…

We were surrounded by goodness…

camp_nice-2016_112Our camp library was even on point!

Blotto’s Lakeside Cafe stayed busy for his famous breakfast wraps!

Grilled Cheese sandwiches were on the grill all day & nite…

camp_nice-2016_92The local eggs were kinda strange…

camp_nice-2016_76But The Green Fairy’s frittata’s were next level!

camp_nice-2016_103Cass’ tie-dye arepas were a camp favorite!

YUM! Arepas for every meal!

camp_nice-2016_68Cass got her Arts & Crafts on and showed us all how its done…

camp_nice-2016_86Class was in session…

camp_nice-2016_69Tie-Dye workshops were in full effect!

camp_nice-2016_113All the lovely ladies got their creative on…

camp_nice-2016_47Josie even blessed us with an original piece of her art…GRATITUDE!

camp_nice-2016_66Making art can be pretty exhausting…

camp_nice-2016_02The hammock village got plenty of good use…

Yet another beautiful tie-dye experience…

Once the sun set the nighttime vibes began…

Things started to get a little psychedelic…

It felt like the whole planet was spinning on turbo mode…

camp_nice-2016_51We were burning everything we could find to keep the party going…

We woke up to yet another warning from the local authorities…but that didn’t stop us from enjoying life!

Timbo & the boys went out to gather more firewood!

camp_nice-2016_39Success!

camp_nice-2016_09While the ladies prepared the fixins for another fire back at camp…

camp_nice-2016_19Cass & Chantal were on a serious mission…

camp_nice-2016_21Fire Badges EARNED!!

camp_nice-2016_102We were grateful to have a warm fire on the chilly Fall nights…

camp_nice-2016_101Ahhhhh…

camp_nice-2016_119Melaney was up nice & early to get her Fire Badge on…

camp_nice-2016_120With a little help from Becky we had combustion!

camp_nice-2016_114Fire was life!

camp_nice-2016_128Time to celebrate life!

camp_nice-2016_127Carol earned her Cooking Badge with her special Cider Donut Sandwich!

camp_nice-2016_129Siggy & Justin definitely earned their Fire Badges too!

The fire was blazing hot!

camp_nice-2016_56Becky’s Dutch Oven Peach Cobbler was pretty ridiculous!

camp_nice-2016_130But not as ridiculous as us trying to make ice cream at camp tho…All our team efforts didn’t quite work out!

camp_nice-2016_95Our camp masseuse got busy to make sure the zen vibes were in full effect…

camp_nice-2016_97VIBES!!!

camp_nice-2016_41Lakeside morning vibes were the best vibes…

camp_nice-2016_15Chantal & Melaney got their yoga on…

camp_nice-2016_14While Siggy & Justin got their float on after some morning coffee…

camp_nice-2016_83Myriam & Carol enjoyed their laps around the lake too…

Courtney held it down back at camp…

It really was Camp Nice!

Bishop was in the Arts & Crafts zone too…

camp_nice-2016_37But Siggy was determined to earn her Gaming Badge,,,SKILLZ!

camp_nice-2016_40The competition was pretty tough!

camp_nice-2016_67Chantal wasn’t going to make this easy…

camp_nice-2016_42Cheers to the good times!

camp_nice-2016_104We made sure to have our twilight Safety Meetings each night too…

camp_nice-2016_93Our sqwaddd was definitely safer than most!

We all made it back to shore just in time for dinner…

That’s right…Pizza Party!

We all settled into the zone and enjoyed our last fire of the week…

Burning of the Torch Rituals!

Thanks to everyone who survived with us in the wild! We truly appreciate all the good times!!

camp_nice-2016_96Eddie & Wiz are really gonna miss Camp Nice…

dsc09489And the brisk morning walks down by the lake…

And all the family style meals…

Fall has arrived so we’re going to have to wait til the warmer weather comes back around for our next one…

See ya’ll in Spring! Camp Nice definitely was a hoot!!


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Camp Nice 2020 is Coming!

Camp Nice 2020 is Coming!

Just a lil something to get you in the mood! Camp Nice 2020 returns September 18th – 27th. Space is limited, register now! See you at Camp!

CAMP NICE VIBES!

CAMP NICE VIBES!

Camp Nice 2020 is going down 9/18-9/27! Can’t wait!! Photo: Craig Wetherby