Break out the sleeping bag and slather on the bug spray. We’re headed to the woods for this week’s Summer Fridays collection all about sleepaway camps, pitching a tent, and the surprising things that happen when we step away from our regular lives to commune with nature.
I Went To A Summer Camp For Adults And It Was Weird
Scaachi Koul, BuzzFeed
There were open bars, Slip’n Slide competitions, and hookups, but trying to recapture childhood can turn dark really fast.
The Gooey Story of S’mores
Rebecca Rupp, National Geographic
The classic dessert’s long yet vague history, dates back at least to 1927.
15 Classic Summer-Camp Movies, Ranked From Worst to Best
Brian Moylan, Vulture
Summer-camp movies have less to do with the experience of applying bug spray, and more to do with groups of like-minded people banding together to make something impossible and wonderful happen.
My Daughter Went Away to Camp and Changed
John Dickerson, Slate
The best moments of childhood—the memories that stay with you into adulthood—are ones where your parents aren’t there.
How I Lost My Faith at a Boot Camp for Christian Kids
Leanna Moxley, Narratively
At twelve years old I was sent away for one long hot summer of obediently serving the Lord. But instead of finding God, I discovered my rebellious streak.
What Happens to Your Marriage When Your Kids Go to Camp
MZ Goodman, Cup of Jo
“I’m alone with my husband for the first time in 10 years.”
Camping with Kids: A Non-Primer
Reid Doughten, Longreads
Revising the simple equation for combining camping with parenting toddlers.
I Slept Outside for a Week and It Changed My Life (Really)
Erin Berger, Outside
What a restless coffee drinker learned from going to circadian-rhythm rehab (a tent in the woods).
Dickens in Eden
Jill Lepore, The New Yorker
What would Charles Dickens say if he knew that two hundred and sixty people had given up a precious week of summer vacation just to talk about him?
The Long Summer
Elissa Strauss, Longreads
Every year America’s schools shut down for nearly three months—leaving families like single mother Olympia and her 6-year-old daughter Raina struggling to keep up.
Pocket Pro Tip
Sharing a tent (or hotel room) with family members this summer? Set your Pocket to dark mode so you can read in bed without disturbing anyone. It cuts back on blue light and keeps your screen nice and dim.