Back in the day, the use of the word “raid” meant when one group of campers or staff did something to make another group laugh or be surprised or think to themselves, “Oh! How clever!”. A few classic Runoia raids had to do with major shenanigans by counselors.
Moving canoes to the Kickball Field and decorating them with a tapestry of multi-colored spinnaker sails running off of a pole erected between the maze of canoes. Level of effort = 10, level of cleverness = 10, level of surprise = 10, level of regret raiders had when they had to put everything away in the morning = 100.
Taking an entire dining hall table with place settings and plates taped to it, benches and chairs and moving it to the Majorie (float). Level of effort = 10, level of cleverness = 10, level of surprise = 10, level of anxiousness by cooks when table was missing = 100.
Placing Betty Cobb’s car keys in a Pine Island Camp hat in the parking lot and moving her car to the lawn at the beach. Level of effort = 10, level of cleverness = 10, level of surprise = 10, level of furiousness Betty Cobb displayed upon discovery = 100.
As time went on, raids morphed into a surprise trick or act that often left one group mad at the other. Somehow, the name raid also morphed into prank and they were less complicated and less clever:
These included stunts like taking a person’s under garments and running them up the flag pole only to be discovered in front of everyone in the morning. Level of effort = 2, level of cleverness = 1, level of surprise, embarrassment and humiliation = 100.
Or taking everyone’s pillow in one cabin and hiding it in the Pix of another. Level of effort = 1, level of cleverness = 1, level of surprise = varies but enraged campers who had gross pillows became a directors’ problem.
One entire cabin of shoes all tied together and strung around the dining hall. Level of effort = 5, level of cleverness = 5, level of surprise = 10, level of effort by raiders who had to untie and return all the shoes = 10!
Right around that time, Runoia directors decided raids were not such a great idea as children’s feelings were getting hurt or they lost belongings or campers were prowling around at night and safety was a concern. The concept of doing nice things for others came up but never really stuck year after year (people still do a lot of nice things for each other in that pay it forward kind of way). The concept of doing funny, surprise things around camp like: random fairy houses, 4 and ½ shack built at the flag pole, honey bears being painted and left on the tables, still happens.
A new tradition emerged about 7 summers ago where the oldest campers in Senior Village (SV) at Runoia get to do a fun prank/raid type event that is meant to surprise and leave an indelible impression of our graduating campers upon others without wrecking anything or hurting anyone or wasting resources. These 15-year-old seniors have been thoughtful and fun and funny over the past few years. An all-time favorite that is the prank that keeps on giving:
Tiny SV14notes stuck everyone all over camp that we are still finding four years later in 2018!
Level of effort =10, level of cleverness = 10, level of surprise = 10
Keeping it fun and clean; the Runoia way.