Then and Now
by Dr. Jamie Kissick (74-76,88-96)
I had the extremely good fortune last August  to attend the closing banquet for HSR Staff. This was the 4th closing banquet which I have attended, the previous one being in 1976! It was certainly great to be back for this very special event and it was remarkable how much of it seemed so similar to that which I remember from the ‘70’s. Shirley Whitwell (81-96) and her staff prepared a fantastic meal and it was evident from all the staff attending that there was a great deal of pride in a summer’s job well done.
As was the case in my earlier tenure at the camp, the high point of the evening was the presentation of the various awards. I kept a rough tally of the number of awards given out which I have subsequently managed to misplace, but what was striking was the extremely large number of awards, particularly Wozzles, RCB’s, and Pitter’s Chips. Certainly the criteria for earning one of these awards seemed to be quite different from that which I recall in the mid-’70’s. My understanding at that time was that an RCB had to be a spontaneous act which was well, to put it simply, really cool! Spontaneity was the key, anything which was planned was not considered for the award. A Wozzle was awarded for a more, shall we say, klutzy move, but one that retained an element of “cool” (the fact I tended to win Wozzles as opposed to other awards would tend to support the klutzy part of the argument). Finally a Pitter’s Chip was not an award for simply being lazy and not getting the job done, but rather a recognition to someone who always got the job done with the minimal amount of exertion necessary. I thought it would be very interesting to hear what other people’s experiences with the awards were, particularly with those who developed them in the earlier years of the camp.
The only award which I really had a hand in introducing was really a re-introduction of the Purple Bead which was a composite award at the time and which we applied to the staff. The initial criteria which I recall for this award, was the member of staff you would be most comfortable being lost in the woods with, in that this person would demonstrate the qualities of leadership, ingenuity etc.. to deal with a situation such as that. I recall that Tracey Stock (74-78) was the initial winner in 1976, I believe.
One other award which I recall fondly from that era in the Crashing Boor award which, probably quite justly, is no longer awarded. One year, the winner was Mike Jansen who worked in the Country Store. As his name was called, Mike proceeded to walk across the fully set banquet table to the head table where, after accepting his award, he proceeded to take a picture of himself with his own camera. Certainly a performance supporting him being named the award winner! It would be interesting to hear more about how the awards were developed, what their original criteria were, and some stories about award winners and what they did to achieve their prestigious decorations.