I’ve never been one to put bumper stickers on my car. It’s not that I don’t find some of them clever, thought-provoking, and amusing; they just don’t say enough. While they could be great tools for starting a conversation, how many of us really engage the owner of the vehicle to learn more about "dog as co-pilot" or why they support a particular candidate or the various ways to "think green?" Of course, I know that the purpose of these slogans is not to create fellowship, but rather to advertise (i.e. "See Rock City"), show support for some organization, promote a position or philosophy, or simply to be humorous. One's car can become a reflection of who they are, but for me, too much may get lost in interpretation.
The same is true of much of our social media technology. While I acknowledge that it has its place for disseminating information quickly and broadly, for me, it is a stunted form of human connection. A smiley face just can't replace the joy of shared laughter. An exchange across fiber optic cable often misses the subtle nuances of a lunchtime chat.
If the blur of a slogan on a passing car, the interruption of an Instant Message, the brevity of a Twitter Tweet, and the impersonal nature of a blog post leaves you wanting to retreat to the front porch for a cup of tea and a good old-fashioned face-to-face conversation?then take heart because the directors of Camp Rockmont have begun their travels to do just that. They want to meet you, dialogue with you about how your boys are growing into young men, and share with you the impact a session at camp can have upon their development.
Earlier this week, Jon Brooks and Matt Ragland traveled to Columbia, South Carolina where they were hosted by Rockmont alumnus, Rob Bethea and his wife, Joy. The gathered crowd had the privilege of learning about the influence of Camp Rockmont across generations as they heard explanation of Rob's camp awards from 1986 that were on display as well as his son Ridge's enthusiasm at the thought of taking blacksmithing next summer, his 6th as a camper.
Dan Davis and Shawn Marler were in Birmingham for two nights this week to kick off their travels. On Monday night, they were welcomed with genuine southern hospitality by Rebecca and Ben Morris whose son, Gordy, has been a camper for two summers. After proper introductions and a viewing of the Rockmont video, Shawn took all the boys outside for a taste of fun camp games while Dan visited with the parents. Wednesday night's get-together was held at the home of Missy and Stewart Cox whose boys, McKinnon & Miller, are Rockmont campers. The bustling crowd of boys and their families feasted on pizza, asked plenty of questions, and together imagined the thrill of being upside-down in a kayak.
We extend a huge thanks to all of you who have graciously offered to host us in your homes. We are honored that you believe in us and in the value of a camp experience for young boys, and we appreciate your efforts to help share the Rockmont story with others.
Sure?we could send you a bumper sticker for your car, but we'd much rather visit in person.
Holding out for a cup of tea.