Posted by: campkehonka | February 15, 2011

Camp Kehonka: Vintage Goose Quills (July 10, 1945 edition)

Excerpts from the July 10, 1945 edition of “Goose Quills,” compliments of Gretchen Hurlburt Thompson’s kind ephemera donation.

NOTE: at this time, as in the 20s and 30s, “Goose Quills” were published weekly while camp was in session.

Fourth of July Millinery

At service on the morning of the fourth, campers were told to wear original hats to dinner.

About 12:30 the procession started led by a band composed of ducks and ducklings. The hats were marvellous. Miss Ackley wore an arrangement of wool and knitting needles. Bally sported a huge red fire-cracker. Jo and Donna had little ones. Cary Noble appeared supporting an oatmeal box with a flower sticking out of the top. Peggy Swart made her hat from a monkey. Watch Kehonka for the latest style trends.

A Trip to Mt. Jewett………

Tuesday, the ducklings went on a trip to Mt. Jewett. First they dropped their bathing suits at Kehonka Point Beach. They started on the trip and walked along the beach to a house of one of Mr. Sear’s friends. They walked up a hill with an electric fence along it. Finally they heard some cows mooing and across the way saw some chickens. The chickens started to follow the campers in a straight [line] but were soon left behind. After crossing a meadow the started climbing Jewett. Pretty soon they were at the top and were they hungry! Farther along they came to the lean-to. They started climbing down and in the middle of the field there was a great commotion because of a baby toad. Carol picked it up and carried it back with her. After a cone at Beaverbrook and a swim at the point, they came back to camp.


We are proud of our camp for the high standards it sets for its campers and counselors. However, it is not enough for us to be merely proud. Let each one of us strive to attain these high goals, imagining that each one is a star in the sky, brilliantly ahead of us, beckoning us to stretch to reach it. The stars which lure us here this summer are:

  1. good sportsmanship
  2. strength, courage and other virtues
  3. strong, lasting friendships
  4. happy memories
  5. knowledge and understanding of nature and people
  6. skilled craftsmanship

There are six steps on the ladder to these stars which are a minimum requisite for reaching them:

  1. Wholehearted participation – in camp activities.
  2. Living each day courageously and confidently.
  3. Cooperating in our work and play.
  4. Sincerely desiring to do the best we can.
  5. Having a faith that we can do a thing and finish strong.
  6. Going the extra mile – i.e., volunteering for a task and doing more than is required of you.

If we all make a definite effort to practice these steps this summer, we can be “Swinging on a Star.” —-

   “Would you like to swing on a star?
   Carry moonbeams home in a jar,
   And be better off than you are,
   You could be swinging on a star

      – Anne Noble


The second council fire of the season was held out-of-doors last Saturday night. Mary Foster lit the fire. Mr. Sears opened by reading a poem describing  a beautiful day and one concerning that famous anthem, “Chopsticks,” by Ogden Nash. Congratulations to all who received swimming certificates. They are: Joan Dennison, Janet Haenlein, Mary Hazard, Gretchen Hurlbert, Ann Johnson, Gail Kepner, Pat Meister, Sally Parsons and Betty Potter. Joan Garvin conducted a potato race and Karen Lindesmith and Gretchn Pendill acted out “Veranda Romance.” With the aid of the Kehonka ducks, Harvard again beat Yale. Gretchen Pendill exerted her powers of concentration and Miss Ackley closed the program with the wonderful story about the little boy and the bear.


Tuesday afternoon a group of loons left for Mt. Major. As they were preparing to leave they came upon the fruit truck. The driver was very kind and generous and gave us a watermelon for our trip. With a little help from Nancy (she supplied a knife for our melon) we set out.

Bally left us at the foot of the mountain where we hid our melon in a little brook. Then we started our climb. At the beginning it was very marshy but it improved as the trip wore on. Finally we reached the top where the wind was blowing fiercely. By that time we were positively famished. After we had eaten we bathed in the sun for awhile.

Other people were also interested in climbing for we saw many other seekers of adventure.

Soon we decided that we should start down for the feast of watermelon. My, it was delicious.

We arrived at the foot of the mountain a little before Bally. When we got back to camp we were welcomed by a cool and refreshing swim. It was a perfect day.

   – Nicky MacDuffie


Friday evening an amateur hour was sponsored by Pat Patterson. Many campers and several counselors participated in the event. Talent included Miss Ackley songs, a skit by Toni and Nanci, a solo by Sylvia Bernard, a violin piece by Anne Lyman, a dance to “Au Clair du Lune,” Ellie Borden on her harmonica, and some of Joyce Miller’s acrobatics. A highlight of the evening was a quartet playing “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” and “Joy to the World.”


Being patriotically inclined, Kehonka held a fitting celebration for the fourth of July. In the morning the gong called the entire camp to a special Independence Day service in the lodge, with Anne Lyman and Sylvia Bernard officiating. All saluted the flag and the choir sang “Finlandia.”

We were then given a chance to show our creative ability, for campers and counselors alike were put to work making some sort of hat to wear to dinner.

In the afternoon regular activities were held followed by a hot dog roast at Kehonka Point. Then all adjourned to the lodge where each group in turn presented an original, patriotic skit, aiming for the grand prize – a trip to Bailey’s. It was a hard job but the judges finally proclaimed the Ducks and Geese the lucky winners.

Then came taps, bringing to a close a day of fun and entertainment.


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