A new tradition is being born. For the second year in a row, on May 20, friends and neighbors gathered at Highland to kick off a new summer season. One neighbor from Matthias, WV, commented that he had not been at Highland since he was a camper more than 30 years ago. There were activities throughout the day: birding, swimming, a Walking Roots Band concert, and plenty of activities for kids!
At lunch we served close to 250 friends and so many commented on how delicious the food was. Three volunteers perfectly grilled Angus burgers, hot dogs, and Beyond Burgers. Highland staff prepared burger toppings, watermelon slices, a savory broccoli salad, fresh strawberries with pound cake, and more. Friends from Harrisonburg Mennonite Church donated 18 homemade pies! Everything came together so smoothly that staff commented that we could have easily served 400 people… and we hope to at next year’s Celebration!
Throughout the meal, prerecorded music helped create a joyful atmosphere as The Walking Roots Band ate lunch with their families and set up equipment for their concert. Those talented musicians are so good at entertaining in a way that is both fun and worshipful. By singing familiar hymns, children’s songs, and crowd favorites like “Sing Me High,” their music appeals to so many!
Our maintenance team rose to the challenge of having the pool ready a week before Memorial Day. It was an extra challenge this year, since we had to replumb the pumproom, ready the girl’s bathhouse, replace pool pumps, and make green water crystal clear for swimming. On the day of the event, families with children thoroughly enjoyed swimming on the 75-degree day. Children ran back and forth between the kitchen deck area, where they enjoyed fun activities, and the pool area, where they claimed free ice cream bars, one of the participation prizes.
Most of our Celebration guests came just for the day, but the three families who stayed overnight had such a good time that they all wanted to rebook for next year’s Celebration. Next year, we hope to fill the cabins and campgrounds and extend the Celebration to a weekend event for anyone who is interested! If you are looking for a special weekend with family and friends, make sure to reserve a campsite or cabin in advance and join us for the 3rd annual Highland Celebration, the weekend before Memorial Day.