UUSM Family Camp 2023 at de Benneville Pines

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, September 15, 16, and 17, 2023

UUSM Family Camp Photo 2023

It felt like things were back to normal. We had an almost-full camp, there were lots of kids, and the mountain was still as beautiful as ever. Yes, the remains of the recent burns are still evident, and yes, the road is still being repaired after the damage of Hurricane Hilary. However, while the electricity was still out as a result of the hurricane, and Camp was running on generators at first, almost as a metaphor for things returning to normal, Edison got the electricity back up on the second day of our weekend. No one complained when the noise from the generators abated.

This year we were joined by folks from previous Young Adult Group de Benneville, who have aged out of YAG. We got to calling them the FAYs (a cart-before-the-horse acronym for ‘former young adults), UUs from several different churches including UUSM.

We played games, we had archery and hikes and yoga and a drumming circle and lots of good food, and plenty of conversation. Lots of tie-dying. The hot tube was operating, and the kids were free to run around, the one precious commodity that Camp offers that is only minimally available in the city. The ukuleles came out and the songs flowed. So did the water (stay hydrated!!),

but so did the wine, toward the end of the day. Still, the conversations, especially intergenerational, are something to behold.

The Talent Show was a big success. Lots of acts, with the children topping the bill. Kirin gathered a panel of four “experts” (Zia, Quin, Norah, Mariah) who were

capable of answering the most difficult questions ever considered. And ALL the answers were correct! What smart kids we have.


And the grown-ups did their share. The electric bagpipes had not been seen before.









Two new attendees, Richard and David, jammed for us. And we got to hear from the first woman to hike the Pacific Crest trail alone, Teddi, who has been around Camp as long as anyone.

We owe a huge thanks to FAYs’ Buuddha, Rebecca, and Eric for skillfully managing not only the talent show, but also the live auction that was folded into the event and with which we raised $950 for UUSM, and also $2000 for Camp.




Worship on Sunday offered some nice echoes of our values, as expressed in our hopes and reflections, recorded on cards and then allowed to flow in the breeze.

And then it was over. Goodbyes were said, rooms cleared, trash emptied, tips for the staff left, cars loaded. New friendships were made, and memories reaffirmed.

Ahhh… parting is such sweet sorrow.

See you next year.

Photos below shared by Greg Wood.
Photos below shared  by Roy Patience.
Talent Show photos below shared by Roy Patience.