A Day in the Life of a Mowglis Camper
From the First Bugle to the Last
A Mowglis day is a beautiful thing.
Although no two days are exactly the same, every day is built on routine. Clear expectations and schedules provide a comfortable framework for the boys to grow within.
Our routine doesn’t make Mowglis feel like a boot camp. Far from it! But we do borrow youth development principles from a variety of places, and you’ll notice a few nods to the wonderfully transformative practices of the military.
One central part of a Mowglis day is working towards earning ribbons. Ribbons are our version of Boy Scout badges and require dedication and proficiency. Boys need multiple weeks — or even multiple summers — to fulfill the requirements for each ribbon. They have the freedom to choose their daily activities and how aggressively to pursue their ribbon goals.
Here’s what one day in the life of a Mowglis camper could look like:
7:15 a.m.: Wake-Up
You roll over in bed as the sounds of Revelry waft through your dorm window — the first bugle of the day. It’s a familiar sound because bugle tunes play throughout the day, signaling a new session.
You get out of bed, brush your teeth on the back porch, get dressed in your uniform (simple gray top and blue shorts, same for everybody) and fold up your sheets and blanket.
7:50 a.m.: Walk to Breakfast
You wash your hands and tuck in your shirt before entering the Dining Hall, knowing a day of The Mowglis Way has begun.
You load up your plate with pancakes, real maple syrup, sausage, scrambled eggs, and fresh fruit to fuel for a busy day! Then you go sit with your friends and chow down.
During breakfast, clipboards are circulated to pick your Sign-Up activities for the day. You look through the long list of options — swimming, archery, drama, crew, riflery, kayaking, soccer, rock climbing, photography, tennis, woodworking — and decide on today’s two. You sign up for Arts and Crafts (a tried and true favorite) and axemanship, which is completely new to you. You want to test it out and see how you like it.
9:00 a.m.: Duties Time
You check the duties board to see that you’re assigned to The Mines today. Cleaning the bathroom building is far from your favorite duty, but it’s not that big of a deal because you’ll rotate to something new tomorrow.
Plus, it’s The Mowglis Way to bring your all into everything you do. So you do your best in wiping down the sinks and scrubbing the toilets, knowing you’re playing an important part in keeping camp clean for everyone.
When you’ve done your best, you stand up straight and say “I have done my duty to the best of my abilities!” and the supervising counselor checks your work. He approves and you head to your first industry of the day.
9:30 a.m.: First Industry Period
Unlike Sign-Up periods which can be different every day, each Industry activity lasts for two weeks. The goal of Industries is to help campers develop and see a noticeable progression in their skills. To learn more about our Industries, click here.
Your first Industry period is Archery. Yesterday, you learned all about the different parts of the bow and arrow and today, the instructor teaches you how to safely load it. At the end of the period, you practice loading the arrow yourself and the instructor tells you that tomorrow, you’ll start shooting at the target. You can’t wait!
10:45 a.m. First Sign-Up Hour
You head to your Arts and Crafts session. You’ve been working on your pottery skills and your latest vase is ready to be painted. You grab a shiny black glaze (to match the Black Ribbon you’re working towards) and a paintbrush and get to work.
12:15 p.m.: Lunch
After heading back to your dorm to freshen up, you walk to the dining hall for lunch.
On the menu today is tomato basil soup, grilled turkey and cheese paninis, and fresh green salad. You grab a little of everything and chill with your friends while you eat.
1:00 p.m.: Rest Hour
This is your time to relax — an unstructured hour to socialize, sleep, play games…whatever you want to do! You go to the tetherball court for a lazy game with a few friends.
2:00 p.m.: Clean Up Time
It sounds crazy, but you actually kind of like getting the dorm ready for daily inspection. You feel a sense of pride when your space looks sharp. Plus, your dorm is only two “10”s away from earning an ice cream party!
You organize your belongings in the dresser next to your bed, put away your flashlight, and make sure your bed is properly made. You finish with a few minutes to spare so you grab the broom and sweep the common area (it’s The Mowglis Way).
Then you stand at the foot of your bed and salute the counselor of the day as he comes in to make sure your dorm is sufficiently clean. He awards you a 9 — someone forgot to put away their shower caddy on the porch. You’ll have to pay closer attention to that tomorrow!
2:30 p.m.: Second Industry Period
You head down to the waterfront for sailing. You’ve been in this Industry for a few sessions now (you can’t get enough!) and you’re really starting to master the activity.
Today, the sailing instructor is teaching everybody how to rig a 420. She lets you show the younger campers how to get the sails ready before you take the boat out onto the water, which is really cool. You like helping the younger guys learn the basics and help them grow as sailors.
3:45 p.m.: Second Sign-Up Period
For your second Sign-Up of the day, you’re trying axemanship. Because it’s your first time, the instructor starts by showing you the different parts of an ax. He explains the proper way to hold it, how to use it in a safe way, and how important it is to be mature and respectful when handling any sharp tool.
Then, he hands you the ax, handle-first. You gently take it and feel the weight in your hand. Under the instructor’s watchful eye, you chop up a piece of firewood — which you walk over to the campfire circle to use for tonight’s campfire.
At the end of the session, you’re not really sure if axemanship is for you. But you’re glad you tried it.
4:45 p.m.: Soak
This is the all-camp swim. Everybody goes down and jumps in the lake.
There’s no instruction (that only happens in the Swimming industry) so you can do whatever you want. You and your buddy take a raft out and float on the lake for a while. Then you head back to the dorm to get dressed for dinner.
6:00 p.m.: Dinner
At Camp Mowglis, we take great pride in offering varied menu options and using high-quality ingredients. We source all of our produce locally, all of our beef is grass-fed organic, and we aim to work with farmers who use sustainable and ethical farming practices whenever possible.
Tonight is your favorite: Taco Tuesday. You grab two ground beef tacos and load on the shredded cheese, guacamole, tomatoes, and lettuce. You wolf them down and are still hungry so you go back for seconds and take a grilled chicken and veggie fajita back to the table.
Once you finish dinner, you’ve got some down time to unwind. You see a few guys from your dorm playing frisbee on Gray Brother’s Field and you join in the game.
7:30 p.m.: Colors Ceremony
After checking that your uniform still looks presentable, you walk down to the flag and line up in formation.
The camp has a proper military colors ceremony, complete with the bugle playing, as they lower the flag.
7:35 p.m.: Evening Campfire
You sit around the campfire circle with your dorm mates for the day’s wind-down.
Today, there’s a visiting alumnus who talks about his engineering job — while eating s’mores, of course.
It’s really cool! He tells you how he travels around the world setting up electronic equipment for USTA tournaments. He talks about what you need to do to become an electrical engineer and it sounds like a job you would really enjoy. (Note to self: see if you can add another science class to your schedule next year.)
8:45 p.m.: Call to Quarters
You go back to your dorm and get ready for bed. You brush your teeth, change into PJs, and play a game of Rummy out on the porch.
9:15 p.m.: Taps
Taps is the last song played on the bugle for the day. Everybody stops moving and talking when it plays and all the lights get turned off — the whole camp goes quiet and dark.
As soon as Taps ends, the lights come back on. You read and chat for a little bit until lights out at bedtime. You shut your eyes and quickly drift off to sleep, exhausted from a fun, full day, and ready for a new one tomorrow.
The only way to truly know what a Mowglis day is like is to experience it firsthand.
Click here to view our 2019 Dates & Rates. We fill up every summer so register soon to secure your son’s place!