Camp Crimson leaders, campers bond over barbecue
Ryan Phillips, The Oklahoma Daily
It’s hot — almost 100 degrees — and the campers are starting to slow down. They walk toward the Oklahoma Memorial Union and start to smell barbecue and hear loud music from the front lawn. It’s definitely too hot for barbecue, but after a full day of fun, the campers need energy anywhere they can get it.
Campers file into the Molly Shi Boren Ballroom and sit wherever they find open seats. The sense of community has grown so much in the past few hours that you would think these kids have spent all summer together.
Campers arrived and bonded with their small groups, those small groups have become three big families, and those families have tethered together to create one big camp family. This dinner is one of the biggest reasons for that.
“I’m used to Texas barbecue, so I wasn’t a huge fan of the food, but I did think that it was a great place to introduce myself to new people," said Stephen Lowry, Holmberg group member from Plano, Texas.
Connor White, Carpenter small group member from Frisco, Texas, said it was taking him a little longer to make friends.
“I’m starting to open up, but there are so many people here," White said. "I’ve made one pretty good friend, but camp is so fun that I’m sure I’ll make more soon.”
The small-group leaders dressed in crazy outfits like tutus and neon bandanas try to keep their small groups together, but in the end, more friends were made at this dinner as a result of students branching out and introducing themselves to campers from other groups and families.
Tonya Kiper, Catlett small-group leader, said she loved the dinner because of the sense of community that was present.
"It’s easy to get overwhelmed at OU, but Camp Crimson is a great way to see the campus and to meet new people," said Kiper, arts and sciences junior. "This dinner is the first opportunity for that.”