Responsibility Achieved through a Non-Regimented Group Experience in a Rustic Setting defines this program at Birches. Freed from the daily schedule of Main Camp, entering 9th and 10th graders will explore cooperative living and personal responsibility in a flexible program developed together with peers and counselors.
Living in platform tents at Birches, campers develop a code of conduct for the group, create and reach a consensus on a custom schedule of the group’s daily activities, help with meal preparation and cleanup, and enjoy their remote wilderness location. Time spent on team elements and Echo’s high challenge courses solidifies the group experience. The highlight of the session is a beginner level three-day-two-night canoe trip (weather permitting). On the trip, participants practice their canoeing skills, enjoy the serene beauty of the Pine River, and learn introductory camping and leave no trace skills.
Participants also have the option of embarking on a solo overnight. On the solo, each participant chooses a location near Birches, where they build a shelter and spend one night. The solo experience is an ideal time to gain self-esteem and insights as well as reflect on their RANGERS experience.
mini-RANGERS (Session 1)
Older one-week campers who are looking for adventure and want to live away from Main Camp can do miniRANGERS. Campers will experience an abbreviated RANGERS program and participate in a service project, Echo’s Challenge Course, and take a mid-week trip to Craig’s Cruisers in Grand Rapids. Due to the abbreviated schedule, miniRANGERS does not canoe on the Pine River or embark on solo overnights.