A night full of funny costumes, sincere yet hilarious songs, and over the top dance moves. That’s Vespers in a nutshell.
Every Sunday evening after pizza is cheered and eaten, and the sun has slowly set behind the hills, a slight buzz moves along the Guadalupe River. Music fills the air and whispers line the steps overlooking the Cypress Hollow.
It’s go time.
Vespers is something looked forward to by every camper, counselor, and staff member alike. These songs are practiced in secret because the songs are needed to be kept quiet until the big reveal. Counselors start practicing for their small concert the first day of Orientation.
For those that don’t know what Vespers is, let me try and explain. Both tribes and counselors pick five songs to sing to one another. This happens, each in turn, on Sunday evening at the waterfront. The counselors go the first Sunday, then one tribe goes the following Sunday and the other tribe the last Sunday. Off-the-wall costumes and make-up are expected and are part of the magic. The 16 year olds of each tribe tribute a song to the others of the opposite tribe, causing tears to flow and the somberness of their last year sets in.
In all honesty, Vespers is one of my favorite parts of camp. The girls practice extremely hard to make sure it’s just right for the other tribe; the counselors want to make certain that the messages of their songs connect with each camper in some way.
The costumes, odd make-up, and sometimes ear-splitting high notes help make Vespers special but it’s the message that means the most. These songs are here to make you think of camp the next time you hear it on the radio. They are here to let you know that you are always welcomed and loved at this place. They are memories that nobody else but your fellow campers could relate to, and will never be erased.
Vespers is a night unlike any other and luckily we get it three nights each term. <3
Lots of love, Fal