Leaving home to go to a new overnight summer camp can be an emotional experience. Some campers might feel anxious about fitting in at camp and feeling like a new camper. But don’t worry, these feelings are normal! Whether it’s a camper’s first overnight camp experience or a veteran overnighter attending a new camp, we know that it’s only natural for a teen to be apprehensive and uncertain. Thanks to our pre-camp outreach, small size, and culture of fun and acceptance, new campers at Stone Mountain Adventures easily feel connected to our wonderful summer community.
Serving great food to hungry campers has been a cornerstone of our camp since our founding in 1983. We eat in our dining hall, a building we call “The Rhino,” and because we’re a small camp our exceptional kitchen staff and veteran cook can focus on the quality of the food rather than the quantity. We have fresh, healthy food (often local!), including a delicious vegetarian option at each meal. All meals are served buffet-style; help yourself, to as much as you’d like. Plus, if you sign up for the cooking activity, you can help prepare dinner!
The journey to camp can sometimes be an apprehensive one, but our camp culture of acceptance is strong from the moment you arrive! Campers and staff run to greet each car and meet their new friends. It may sound overwhelming, but it’s hard to beat a genuine warm welcome. In fact, our first priority on the opening day of camp is making sure that campers and their families feel welcome.
One of our greatest strengths at Stone Mountain Adventures is our amazing staff of camp counselors! They are dynamic, responsible, skillful, funny, and fair. Our staff listens, cares, and treats everyone with respect. Most of all, our counselors put the needs of our campers before their own. They are all over 21 years old, well trained and equipped to lead groups both outdoors and in the cabins, and excited to spend their summer with teen campers. Our awesome counselors specialize in cool things like wakeboarding, rock climbing, mountain biking, music, and horseback riding!
Thanks to our small number of campers (around 60 or so per session) and close-knit staff, Stone Mountain Adventures feels just like family. This ensures that campers connect with everybody at camp within just a few days! This feeling of connection is very powerful, and a central part of why we make the decision, year after year, to stay a small summer camp.
Each cabin at Stone Mountain Adventures has at least two counselors who serve as bunk captains, and one of them will sleep in the cabin each night. Having the same 2 counselors in a cabin throughout a session really helps our campers to bond with each other and the staff, which is an essential part of feeling comfortable at SMA.
Before each session starts, our staff makes sure to reach out to every camper individually to answer questions and address concerns. We find that it’s comforting for new campers to speak to our friendly staff just before camp. We love doing this because it makes opening day a little less stressful, as it gives each camper a connection at camp even before it begins.
Hearing a familiar voice on the other end of the phone line can be very comforting and telling camp stories is always fun. Campers and parents can call each other once during a 2-week session on a set day and time. Parents can call e-mail campers once a week as well, campers do not have access to computers so cannot e-mail back.
Stone Mountain Adventures was founded in 1983 by Pam and Biff Houldin. Current Camp Director Jud (son of Pam and Biff) grew up at the farm, attending SMA as a camper and later working as a counselor. Jud and his wife Anne bring a combined 40+ years of experience teaching in traditional and non-traditional school settings, coaching youth sports, leading international trips for high school students, and leading wilderness and mountaineering trips. They live at camp with their two children Wyatt and Molly, and a whole bunch of playful animals. We find this family atmosphere helps to create an intimate and comfortable vibe at camp each session.
Telephone calls are made by camp staff prior to the opening day of camp to answer any questions and address any particular concerns.
At the parents request we are happy to put your child in touch with one of our Veteran Campers who will be returning to camp.
Camp counselors and Directors work to meet the needs of our campers each day with the goal of helping our campers to feel like they have a “summer home away from home.”
Campers are assigned to cabins where with two camp counselors called “Bunk Captains,” one of who sleeps in the cabin each night.
New campers can call home once during a 2 Week Session. Parents can e-mail campers every four days, campers do not have access to computers so cannot e-mail back.
Jud and Anne Millar foster a nurturing environment that encourages campers to be kind to each other, challenge themselves & broaden their horizons.
We send each camper a Reflection Packet from camp reminds our campers of the wonderful memories from the past summer.
CD Slide Shows are sent to each camper.
Newsletters keep campers current with improvements and changes occurring at the camp and in touch with fellow campers.
Being attentive to each camper’s individual needs assists with the transition of being away from home and helps to assure a positive experience and summer they will never forget.