Imagine spending a weekend in Texas Hill Country, surrounded by other adults who just want to be kids for 72 hours. The sun is shining, and the only decision you have to make is whether to pass the time kayaking, banana boating or crafting till your fingers are covered in glitter. And everywhere you look, there are cocktails and craft beer.
What is this place? Where did all this alcohol come from? And when was the last time you went this long without checking your cell phone?
It’s not a dream. It’s Camp Our Way–a summer camp created for adults who want to escape the real world for a weekend. The experience is all-inclusive and takes place in Austin’s backyard.
Camp Our Way Recreates Summer Camp in a 21+ World
The summer of 2015, Austinite Stewart Wedge decided he wanted to create an experience for adults to escape the responsibilities and limits of adulthood without having to lift a finger. Wedge was conscious of the fact that most adults do so much planning on any given day that the idea of coordinating a vacation can seem like more work than its worth. He decided to lift the stress of vacation by creating Camp Our Way, “an easy getaway” where adults were free to meet other adventurous people, play outside and not have to plan anything other than “how to get to the bus pickup location.”
Wedge has put his heart and soul into making his camp an unforgettable experience full of activities you might have always wanted to try, but never had the opportunity to because you’ve been busy living day-to-day life.
Typical Day at Camp Our Way
The days at Camp Our Way revolve around gourmet meals prepared by professional chefs, with beverages from local breweries and distilleries such as Freetail Brewery Company and Dripping Springs Vodka.
Between meals are free periods when campers choose from activities that make the camp in “The Parent Trap” look like a joke. Be crafty, goofy or zen with activities like zip lining, bubble soccer, kayaking, yoga, organic soap-making, arts and crafts, and water slides. Campers who get overwhelmed by having so many exciting options, like yours truly, have plenty of time to try anything and everything during free periods.
Every afternoon, there is a happy hour featuring games we thought we left behind in college, like flip cup and beer pong. There are also performances by special musical guests.
After washing up, socially lubricated campers make their way to the mess hall for a high-end dinner, and end the night with a themed dance party and bonfire. Costumes aren’t required, but they’re highly recommended. And just like all good summer camps, Saturday night features a talent show.
Summer Camp Social Scene
If all your Austin friends want to stay home and be lame this summer, no worries! There are plenty of other campers who come to Camp Our Way on their own, excited to make new friends. Past camps have hosted adventurous individuals, couples, groups of friends, businesses and bachelorette parties. No matter who you come with, you are guaranteed to make new friends. And the best part? Most campers will be from our incredible city, so you can meet them for happy hour after camp and reminisce about the incredible weekend you shared together.
Wedge admits the talent show is probably his favorite camp experience and the time when you can see the campers bond. By Saturday night, barriers have come down, people have loosened up and made new friends, and they’ve prepared incredible acts to share. Highlights from past camps include dramatic accented readings of “50 Shades of Gray” and pop songs belted from the tops of people’s lungs.
More Than Sun-Splashed Sports and Flowing Libations
On the surface, Camp Our Way may seem like an escape back to childhood, where adults can be carefree without the worries of normal life. And yes, the never-ending supply of booze, food, and incredible activities would be enough to convince almost anyone to say sign me up! But more than anything, Camp Our Way is meant to help campers spend a weekend living in the moment and return to their more authentic selves, uninterrupted by the buzz of the outside world.
Although there is not a ban on technology, Camp Our Way usually take place in Hill Country, with limited reception and a lack of electrical outlets. This gives campers a much-needed excuse to unplug, emotionally recharge and take in the experience for what it is– unadulterated fun.
Campers have reached out to Wedge to let him know how the experience opened their eyes “to parts of life and enjoyment they were missing out on, or overlooked, or had gotten pushed to the back burner [once] careers start[ed] absorbing valuable time.”
The great thing about Camp Our Way is there seems to be something for everyone who is young at heart. All the details have been considered. And it was created by an adventure-seeking adult who just wanted a break for himself and his friends. Wedge knows what it’s like to live in Austin. Although we love it here, sometimes we do need to unwind and kick back outside the city.
Time to Get Campy
If you want to learn more or register for Camp Our Way, head to their website. The next camp will take place August 25-28, 2016 and Early Bird registration is open now.
@theAustinot wants to know:
Have you been to Camp Our Way? If not, would you go?