Spirtual Retreat Summary
My account of the Spiritual Retreat at Tracy’s Camp
When the Camden Military Academy bus turned onto the road that lead to Tracy’s Camp near Sumter, South Carolina I initially thought I was going to end up in the middle of no where. But once we entered the Tracy’s Camp main facility a sense of being at home hit me and the anxiety I just had was gone. The cadets unloaded their luggage and made them selves at home in either the blue or red cabin (group 2’s cabin was the best) and the activities kicked off immediately.
While group 1 ventured to play paintball, group 2 headed to partake in a low ropes course and team building exercises. I was in group 2, so I can’t speak for the experience that group 1 had during the first few hours playing paintball but from what I was told it was exciting. There were 4 different courses/exercises that we attempted all of which were challenging in their own way. My personal favorite was the monkey swing course (you can already imagine what we had to do for that challenge, lets just say everyone looked like a monkey in some way during the exercise) were our group had to work together and figure a way to get each person onto a specific log. Trust me, it’s not as easy as it sounds.
After the various courses and activities the two groups came back together to share their experiences in the first hours of the retreat briefly before we walked to the chapel up the road to listen to a brief sermon. After the influential speaker concluded the cadets walked back to the dining hall and enjoyed a delicious steak dinner prepared by the dining facility staff.
Once everyone had a full stomach we had a briefing outside and were told that we had another activity planned, in the dark. The staff of Tracy’s Camp guided through the pitch-black woods to a maze. We were then told that we had to navigate through the maze in the dark, without any form of light. ‘Chaos’ ensued inside the maze until the staff light up torches to help us see our way to the end of the maze. I’m not going to spoil the reasoning behind this, so if you want to figure out you are going to have to go on the retreat and see for yourself. Once that was over everyone gathered by a bon fire and roasted hot dogs and marsh mellows until it was time for bed.
At 9:00 AM Monday morning everyone was awake and preparing for breakfast. When the time hit 9:30 the breakfast line opened and everyone enjoyed a nice egg, sausage and grits breakfast. When breakfast ended the groups were split up again and switched activities, it was time for group 2 to go paintballing. Before we even got within 200 yards of the paintball field, the dream team was established and it was proven multiple occasions that we were unstoppable. After 2 hours of paintball we headed back to the cabin to clean up and start to pack up to return to CMA. We then ate lunch and once that was over we headed back to CMA.
I personally had a great time on the retreat and if I could do it again, I would in a second. The messages from the sermons were amazing and the fun we had was almost as good!