August 28, 2016
It was still dark at Camp Ak-O-Mak when the bell rang at 5:30 this morning to wake us for an early breakfast. It was Parry Sound Triathlon Day! Before we knew it we were boarding the 2 school buses and following the big U-Hauls carrying camp’s bikes bound for Parry Sound.
Once at the tri, no time was lost donning timing chips and body markings and then all were off to cheer for our counselors and cabin 1 friends competing in the Sprint, Try-a-Tri or duathlon events. Seeing their counsellors race (some for the first time) not only excited the campers but helped calm some of their nerves as well.
The ‘Kids of Steel’ events unfolded by age group and made for an exciting day!
Ak-O-Mak spirit was high and our team’s energy was infectious. Many people commented on how much they enjoyed the camp’s presence at this triathlon with everyone cheering for each other and singing songs. Imagine 60 girls on the beach bursting into song with “Eye of the Tiger”… "dun, dun dun dun, dun dun duuuuuuuuun". After that I think we all felt like we could do anything! The Ak-O-Mak girls were fantastic today and they should all be very proud.
With races finished the bikes were systematically stowed in the U-Hauls and the busses loaded for the return to camp. It wouldn’t be an Ak-O-Mak road trip without ice cream so a “pit stop” at Duck Rock satisfied a lot of tummies!
Tonight was campfire and barbecue cookout, a weekly favourite with campers and staff alike. It’s where the roasting of marshmallows is elevated to an art form. It was a special treat when the culinary staff surprised Rosie with a beautiful chocolate cake decorated as the flag of Trinidad and Tobago in honour of their Independence Day.
The sun was dipping below the trees as the campers shared their individual triathlon stories around the camp fire… stories about overcoming fear, friends helping friends and the pride felt in their accomplishments.
We then sang songs so loud they could probably hear us at across the lake! As the darkness of evening and the fatigue of the day crept in everyone was ready to head back to their cabins and crawl into bed for a well deserved sleep.