By Pati Egan

Since Camp opened, campers and staff have assembled on the “Parade Grounds”  – also known as the parking lot – to lower the American Flag and the other flags on the five poles.  Campers are taught flag etiquette in an informal way. They learn by doing this time-honored tradition.   CITs & OWLS learn the proper way to lower the flags and how to fold the American Flag. This is something Camp has always done and the campers of today take this activity just as seriously as the campers in 1959. Enjoy taking a look back at inspections 60s, 70s, and 80s style.

Inspection Camp Ondessonk

1980s girls’ staff waiting for the campers to walk onto the parade ground.

Inspection Camp Ondessonk Girls 1980s

An announcer bomb was shot into the air to announce the beginning of lowering the flags.  The puff of smoke is from the bomb. This picture was taken prior to Central being built. Notice only three flag poles.

Inspection Camp Ondessonk 1960s Announcer Bomb
1960s boys’ staff and CITs lowering the flags

1960s girls’ staff inspecting the campers.  Notice the three flags each unit had – the unit flag & two other flags marked A and B.

Inspection Camp Ondessonk 1960s Girls three flags

Camp usually had one person who could play the bugle or trumpet.  In the 80s, our supply of trumpet players dried up! The Office Manager would have to listen for the sound of the staff’s shoes scraping the parking lot, doing about face to face the flags and the bomb going off, and would then play retreat on the loudspeaker.

Inspection Camp Ondessonk Drums  and Bugle
Boys’ inspection

1960s girls’ season. The girls in cowboy hats are CITs.

Click here to learn more about Camp Ondessonk’s history.


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