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Camp Stories

Read & Share

Read stories from other Keystone Alums!

If you have a story you’d like to share, please email it to

Keystone Camp was such a wonderful experience for me. I was quite a homebody before venturing to Keystone and they managed to make this extremely homesick girl, a camper in no time! Many great memories of my Elementary/Middle school years were spent at Keystone and I still talk about my experiences from time to time up to this day!

Briana Stewart – 2001-2005

I went to Keystone with my elementary school friend Haley Tanner from RPDS in Jacksonville, FL. I vividly remember being awed by the morning fog in mid July (who knew it could get cold enough in summer to make fog?), bright green grass, and the "pool" which scared me half to death because you couldn't see through the water. I remember scavenger hunts with spray painted gold rocks in the trees between the pool and the lake. My favorite horse was Biscuit, perhaps the most gentle of them all. I actually enjoyed mucking her stall! Archery was my best class…I can still hit a bullseye. I remember one hiking trip which turned into a disaster with rain! We were soaked to the bone, but we weren't allowed to turn around. I learned so much about what I could accomplish, and more importantly, I learned to listen to my Irish counselor when she said pack a poncho! Even now I can awe my husband with what I learned about hiking, shooting, riding, golf, tennis, and canoeing. I can't wait to have a daughter to send to Keystone!

Jennifer (Elliott) Sombutmai – 1988-1992

“I began my camp days in 1938 as a little girl, an Elf, living in Skylark with my counselor-mother. She had also attended as a camper and counselor in the 1920s. I wrote an earlier piece about 10 years ago about all that. I write again, because in my earlier recollections, I lamented the fact that I had no grand daughter to become the fourth generation. Well, this summer (2008) my 9 year old grand daughter, Sophie Greco,was a happy first time Keystone Camper. Her mother,Gina Gill was also a former camper and this year was the photographer for a week. What a moment to be able to bring Sophie on opening day and sit on the porch reminiscing with Bill Ives with whom I played in the 40s and who then hired me as a counselor in the 60s. Page is doing a wonderful job carrying on the traditions and building on the foundations set by Miss Fannie Holt, Catherine Ives, Bill and Sue. I knew them all!The legacy lives on…

Suzanne (Scollard) Tomlinson – 1938-1941,1945-1948,1966-1970

“My family always stayed at Lake Summit, NC the week before we would go to camp. My sister, Michelle, and I would be chomping at the bit to get there. Wow! You would think that it would take some goggling of the memory to think that far back, but nope! It’s right there. I left the 6th grade with a bad perm and crooked teeth, but from my first day at Keystone, I was so comfortable. You can’t explain to anyone the joy, friendship, confidence, and fulfillment that is at Keystone. Like so many, Keystone was a gift to me and my sister from our grandparents. We didn’t come from an extremely wealthy family, but we were so blessed to receive this opportunity from them every summer. And, every summer it became more and more of a gift, as our stay increased. As for the memories, I have no idea where to begin. It all seems like it is still right there. The rocks under your feet as you hiked up to the lake…that crazy horse, Bumper, bug juice, cheerwine at Tuck, falling off the top bunk in Four Winds and never remembering a thing, hiding with Jessica Gilmore time and time again in TreeTops during activities (and if anyone knows of where I can get in touch with her, I would love it), Edie Brickell’s music, Sunday service with the Church Is One Foundation- I still get teary eyed when that is one of our selections at church. How about packages…only got a few over my years, but boy did they excite everyone! Creekstomping had to be one of the best things to do at camp. Of course, nothing could ever top those awesome uniforms. As far a s counselors…a couple stick out more than any others…Andrea Bailey, Katherine Butler and Louise Reeves. Don’t know if it was because they demanded the most attention, or if they were just awesome…probably the second. We still go up to Lake Summit every summer…now with my husband, daughters, Eliza (8), Laura Ruth (5) and my son, Sam (4). We have just started visiting each year with the girls and Eliza is so excited about starting soon. Tears stream down my face now, knowing that soon she will have the chance to grow as a young lady with the same foundation that I had laid for me at Keystone with her sister soon to follow! It is so great to see old friends names and memories on this page. Caroline Pickney, Amy Latiff, Louise Reeves, can’t wait to get in touch with you. As for Jessica Gilmore, I still think of you a lot and would love to find you soon (kipsings@yahoo.com) Page, thank you! See you in July.”

Kipper (Edens) Ackerman – 1986-1993

I can't believe how much Keystone has changed me. It has taught me so many things. I also love it because I don't get home-sick, I get parent-sick so I always sing the song when I can't go one year: "Oh I love Camp Keystone, and I don't want to go home!" and another: "Keystone's Spirit's never dead, Keystone's gonna rise again! Knock'em in the jaw, hit em in the head, Keystone's gonna rise again. I know it know it, indeed I know it sister, I know it! Hey! Keystone's gonna rise again!" I would always sit by the computer and share my memories when I can't go. I will never forget my years at Keystone Camp.

Eirini (eirini) Moforis - 2005, 2006, 2007

“My memories of Keystone are endless. Most of them make me laugh until it hurts. But more importantly Keystone helped me to define my trueself. One day I hope to send my daughter there. One of my funniest memories was ringing the camp bell at midnight the first night of camp. We thought it was so funny, but unfortunately nobody else did. Ami,Ginny and I proceeded to do this several times throughout our session and to us each time was funnier than the previous. Ami Burbridge and I were in charge of getting the horses from the fields to the stable and I am not sure how this happened, but the gate stayed open and off went the horses. There was another time the Page was doing inspections found that Ginny Coffman, and Ami and I had written our names in the cabin. For this we had to scrape all the gum off the tables. To this day I can’t chew gum and I still gag if I encounter a piece on the bottom of the table. There are so many more wonderful memories I wish I could share them all. Oh Page, we all had a crush on your brother. Thanks Keystone.”

Patty (Freyre) Wieschhorster – 83 and 85

“My summers at camp are some of the most fun times that I ever remember having! I was never a camper, but I was a counselor for 4 years and the friendships that I made at Keystone are some of the best that I have today. The THINGS that we all did in the summer time are thnings that you only do at camp!!! How about the rain?…..Katherine, Andrea, and Amy down on the red clay tennis courts? Or my ENTIRE pig pin being put on top of Lakeside when I came in from a night out. Lindsay Mace and Marci Umberger? Great nights out and 24’s with others like Kiki Prats, Angie Dorn, Cathy Gross, Jenni Portman and on occasion, Page herself. I think the only time in her life that Page has ever gone down sliding rock was with us! (when it was closed, of course) The time spend with the campers was the best though. I cherish the memories of just hanging out in the most beautiful part of the country singing, goofing off, partying, and playing tennis every now and then. Bertha fed us and Ms. Ives paid us. What a summer job! I made it to the reunion last year, and yes, everything still smells the same. But we have got to get EVERYONE back to camp for the reunion in May 2011. Make your best effort to be there. The s’mores will be waiting. My email address is weezietyme@yahoo.com Please email me so that we can catch up!!!”

Louise Reeves – 89-92

Keystone Camp is the greatest camp in the world! even though I am only in the 7th grade, I will always remember my last two years at Keystone! I'm still awaiting for the 3rd year. I always loved all of the activities and the dances are fantastic! I was only home-sick once, my first year, but now, I will never be home-sick in any year of Keystone! I remember the Climax Competition in Asheville! We came in 4th place in the 2006 year. I was also very good at gymnastics! I'm waiting for camp this year because my very good friend/counselor is coming back to teach gymnastics! She is coming all the way from Australia! I will definitely miss Keystone greatly when I am older. Maybe I'll work there!

Eirini (Rini) Moforis

“HAPPY BARN!!! Working at the barn all day with Louise, Helen Miller, Caroline McCall, Crystal, and of course, Lance, was delightful! So many healthy, jumping horses, gorgeous trails in woods, and fun campers. It was great seeing campers improve from Hilltoppers on their first day to taking small jumps after several weeks. From a conversation with Bill at lunch one day sprang the cross country hunt course built by Oliver in a week! 4th level riders rode it for the whole camp at the end of each session. Thrills. No good idea lies dormant here! Meeting Catherine Dorn, Angie, and Anna led to a long friendship. Betty Boop!! Anna and Root Beer..“yes, I DID ride him”! Louise as Statue of liberty on July 4th; Drill team on horses; trail rides by Nancy’s tennis courts “who are you riding?”; seeing horses cavort Saturday pm in a new field of grass; enjoying all the beautiful flowers tended by Bill; campfire, singing, awarding levels on Sunday evening; mist at flag raising; Joyful days! Thanks to all the Ives for wonderful summers. I am sending my granddaughter and namesake, Mary Margaret Jenrath, this summer! I hope she loves it as much as I did.”

Margaret (Cothran) Randolph – 1981-2, 85-89

“Favorite memories include: spending the night in the barn, riding the horses bare back to release them at the end of camp camping in the mountains and waking up with a horse sniffing my nose my favorite horse Toni campfire and Bill’s stories and encouragement laughing at the teen who streaked naked through camp green paint on my pillow following our cabin being raided chocolate on my bed for our cabin winning the daily cleanliness award blackberry pie from fresh picked blackberries made with love by the best cook in the world who loved us all (oh yeah, fried squash….”…This is not a horses’ table, this is…”) The pleasure of catching someone else with their elbows on the table. I still have to think twice before I put my elbows on the table. * I was the first child/human to go down the waterslide and I shot over the edge and through a pile of bricks – All I remember is looking up from the pool and seeing a hand (Bill’s hand – I thought it was God for the a few seconds) reaching in to rescue me — still laugh about that story, hate waterslides but love Keystone and hope to send my child next year. I also had to get a tetanus shot due to my injury, still laugh about my fear of needles and relief to have Bill’s support and encouragement through it all. I also remember feeling proud at canoing in Pisgah Forest and camping along the way; staying on the horse that went nuts from a horsefly sting —- I am still a great shot and can out shoot my husband even thought I went over 15 years without practice. Oh — the spooky house with all the steps where the pile of shingles was supposed to cover the head of the women who haunted the woods and empty home —- still remember the hike behind the archery range and praying a ghost would not jump out and get us. So many fun memories.”

Beth (Gray) White – late 70’s

I attended Keystone camp as a counsellor and Horseriding instructor in 2001. I am from Johannesburg in South Africa. I have never enjoyed a trip in my life as much as that summer. I made more friends than i could have ever imagined. I would love to come back soon. The fun I had at Keystone will live in my memories and heart forever and so will the campers and counsellors I met and made strong bonds with. I still one the award for having the loudest mouth which still hangs in my room to this day. For those who dont know the wide mouth frog joke, I will have to come back soon to tell it to you. All my love and Kisses. Kelly (South Africa)

Kelly (Wide Mouth Frog) Davidson – 2001

I love keystone soooo much and I will come back every year!!! My favorite part of camp was the friends and activities!!!! I was so homesick the first week but then at the end with the candles and bark, . . .making our cabin wishes and putting the candle and bark into the lake was a moment I will never forget!!!!

Hannah Custy – 2006-?

So many memories… winning Molly the Mop every week and having Dolly's 'Moose Tracks' ice cream as a reward! The sound of the water trikling in the swim lake as I lay in Crow's Nest listening. Camp outs where myself and co counselor Chris couldn't get the camp fire started, and the girls were getting hungry! Lip sync nights watching renditions of NKOTB and talent show, hearing stories about the 'Loud Mouthed Frog'! Very funny! People always ask me if I enjoyed my time at camp and I tell them I can't explain in words how wonderful it was and how the memories and friendships I made that summer will be in my heart forever, never failing to put a smile on my face. Thank you Keystone, Keystone, I love you. xxxx

Sarah Linton – 2001

“I was a young nine when I came to Keystone (my aunt Eleanor Barker had been to camp there). Even though I was homesick, I still have wonderful memories of a camping trip and camp songs I still remember, a horse named Charlie Brown (that by running away with me back to the barn earned me an honorable mention for staying on), Christmas in July in the pavillion, an amateur hour where I got into my role as a roach in a Raid commercial and purposefully fell from a bench on my back on the stage when “sprayed”, and wonderful canoeing in the lake. I now own and operate a rafting company in Montana, so the early water craft experience must have been positive. I don’t remember the name of my cabin, but I do remember that the cabin counselor was named Sissy, as well as a fellow camper Sissy Sanchez, so they called me Milly (a name I still won’t use). Even though my two girls did not have the chance to attend Keystone, I hope one of my granddaughers might get there. Thanks for reminding me of these memories with your web site. Sissy (Milly) Hampton (1961)”

Millicent (Sissy) (Hampton) Hampton – 1961

I was the dance teacher at Keystone in 1988. The time spent there was so much fun. I would love to hear from fellow campers, Kathy Bryan swimming coach and Tanya and Carol from Ireland. We all went on to Florida to stay with the Bryan family. Keystone Camp was a great experience and I would encourage all to go on Camp America. Page was in charge. The lake was freezing and we rescued a turtle from certain death. Canoeing, tennis , horse riding and camping…the time of our lives.

Debby Cook – 1988

Thanks to Peggy McGowan's family introducing some of us Georgia girls to Keystone Camp, I have had a lifetime of wonderful memories. I loved the note from Flo Adams – she really made it seem like we were just there yesterday. I first attended camp as an elf – and the last time as a counselor. Since I have been living in Maine most my adult years, I had lost touch completely. I've never forgotten borrowing a beautiful pair of hiking shoes from my counselor in order to endure one of Bill Ives "hikes" through the mountains. When I returned them to the counselor, all wet, covered with mud and totally "broken in", probably ruined – she just smiled – what grace! One of my good life lessons! Ten years ago, I visited the area and was so happy to see that it was still being run as Keystone Camp. Greetings to all of the late 40's and 50's crowd. I've missed you much.

Carol Ann (Jernigan) Cagle

Wow what amazing 3 years I have had at camp. My friends(too many to name), my muscles after three weeks of walking up and down hills and my memories all have made it hard not to come back. I had friends that were more important to me than anything in the world. Three years doesn’t seem like a long time but it is. Maybe I will come back as a counselor for a summer job. Bye Keystone! You made memories that will last forever. If I have a daughter I will definitely send her here.

Shelby Pierce

“Soooo many memories, so little writing space. Here’s a few… Sue Ives teaching me how to drive the camp truck in the riding ring( Highrocks bus pulling into the camp at the same time!) All major birthday’s at camp, 10, 13 16, and yes 21! Bertha made all of my cakes, and we always had a cake fight walking back to our cabin! My buddies..Fran Maxwell, Laura Maxwell, Carrie Hendon, Anna Montgomery, Jessica Burney, Angie Dorn, Louise Reeves, Katherine Butler. Lifelong friend, Ellen Magevney, and of course my childhood mentors, Page and Brooke. Came to Keystone to play tennis all day long!! Hiding from Bill Ives in the cabin while he did inspection. Waiting up until 10:00 just to eat a blow pop from the CIT room from Fran M. Cutting friends hair for Tuck. Playing blackjack with bullet shells in Fairview during rest hour. Shaving half of Reid Woods head with Anna Montgomery using a bic razor. Writing my name in every cabin that I’ve ever been in, and Page never found them. Calling home after a session ended to stay for another… Page having Anna M. and I do all of the camp laundry in between sessions for Biltmore ice-cream. Camp Carolina…need I say more Ellen!! My bridesmaids were camp buddies. My daughter Elizabeth in Pisgah with Hannah L. sharing clothes and coloring princess pictures. My son Josh riding his bike all over camp at 3. Bertha still making cookies in 2006. I was the tuck mom (sounds so old, no offense, Brooke. Memories still being made as my daughter, the third generation camper age 6 cried all the way to Hendersonville after leaving camp. It must be in the blood! Amy Latiff Jones”

Amy (Latiff) Jones – 80-2000

Trail rides to the upper pasture as well as overnight camping with the horses. Campfire and singing songs. I find myself now singing camp songs to my children. Scaring our couselors in Dogwood, we tape recorded Laurie Kepcke limping on one leg on the gravel road and moaning “my leg, my leg” and then that night we snuck out and played the taped recording by the counselors(Margaret Taylor and ?) window. They were so scared they came running up the stairs.

Caroline (McCall) Gaynes – 1976-1986

“Wow-reading all of the posts literally brings tears to my eyes…all of the names mentioned bring back SOOO many fond memories of my many years at Keystone. Never have I had an experience such as my summers spent at camp, and now that I have a daughter-I hope to give her the gift of spending her time there as well- I sit and sing to her the only songs that ALWAYS come to mind, camp songs of course! I wish that there was a songbook that you guys sent out to alumni and campers- If you do-send me one :-). Getting the Silver KC still is hands down one of my biggest accomplishments that I have had so far in life-I worked towards a goal and completed it! You can not do any better than that….To all of my friends: K.C.; Claire; Elizabeth; Farish; Anne; etc…I hope to see you all again…Maybe we can do a reunion! Please get in touch: carolinepinckney@hotmail.com xoxoxo”

Caroline (Pinckney) Fitzgerald – 80’s-90’s

“As a camper, I remember being in a play Page wrote for Drama, and I actually had the first line in the play-“Romeo, Romeo, where are ye?!”. (Later that night, back in the cabin, I remember Margaret Grayson saying she didn’t know I could talk that loud! Guess I found my voice that night!) I also remember the campfires, square dances with Camp Deerwoode, canoe trips down the French Broad, the trail rides (only horse names I remember are KC and Casey), trips to Sliding Rock, singing camp songs (including one about Cathy Blackman), Christmas in July, trips to Biltmore House in our camp uniforms, the nature trail, and ice cream parties for inspection. I also loved the team game day and Ghost Court, though I never got called up for Ghost Court until I was a counselor (something about singing and dancing to Boy George songs, I think!). One year as a camper, my cabin decided to do a good raid, so I wrote to my dad (who worked for a candy company) and had him send a box of lollypops (enough for everyone in camp) to our counselor’s attention, since I couldn’t receive candy. After the package arrived, our counselor helped us get up in the middle of the night to deliver lollypops throughout the camp, which was fun!

Lesley (Looper) Looper – 75, 77, 83, 84

So, so many memories…from the songs, to the activities, to the amazing experiences I’ve had at Keystone, I’m not sure even where to begin. Keystone is a dominant part of my childhood memories and I feel so fortuante to have had the opportunity to be have experienced camper and counselor life at Keystone.

Kristy Sauers – 5+

“Since this is my daughter Fowler’s 10th year at Keystone and I look at the pictures nightly, I saw an entry from my best friend at camp, Bambi, and was inspired to write down some memories. Some memories: riding the Greyhound bus to camp(parents had it easy then)and stopping in Hoboken, Georgia to pick up the rest of the gang; thinking my sister Brooke, and Buff, Inez, and Clarkson were cool and probably at Bagwells; Charlene Thiem-the one and only-and probable instigator of cementing in the bell and making Bill have to drive around camp honking to wake people up; the dining hall being set on the roof; bras up the flagpole or a horse hitched to it; bumping your butt on rocks tubing down the French Broad; mudsliding; the blue bus and the van to the ski lake honking around all the curves; the incredible anticipation and amount of curlers for the dance; ping pong and sodas under the pavillion; S’mores and those yucky jelly roll things on campouts; finding rubies at Horseshoe Cove; not finding the stupid bullfrog on the scavenger hunt; buying silver dogwood rings at the Craftsman Fair; Welsh Rarebit, Shepherd’s Pie, fried chicken on Sunday, and bug juice; 10 scoops of Biltmore ice cream if you won inspection; Page and Bradley as babies; Mickey and Augie doggie; running on rocks back to the cabin freezing after 9:00 swim class; the counselors’ death grip on you when you were trying to pass Sr. Lifesaving; the counselors’ death grips on each other trying to get the greased watermelon; chipping mt tooth bobbing the canoe in the races(Go Apaches!); thinking the Loch Ness Monster was going to eat your foot while doing the 30 minute swim in the canoe lake; having double riding; hand-churned peach ice cream after trail rides; laughing at my friend Thomasina Ulmer because she said she always got stuck on Dan or Oakey due to her lack of riding skills, and also her joking about my pushing her up the hill since she got put in Faraway with her heart condition(sadly she passed away in 2001-love you, Tommie); loving to ride Goldie; seeing the Brown boys’ fannies as they ran from behind the archery range hill; fireflies, crawdads under rocks in the creek, the crunch of gravel under counselors’ feet at night, rain on the roof; the songs whose words you never forget; treasuring my Silver KC and passing 4th level in horseback riding; the beauty of taps on the hill and the emotion of the bark boat ceremony; friends you remember like it was yesterday; sadness at seeing the pavillion burned down. Hopefully, in this time of internet Myspace, video games, and cell phones, the “new” campers appreciate the simple pleasures of Keystone as much as we “old” campers do. Bon Barnett Martens 60’s, early 70’s”

Bon (Barnett) Martens – 8

“Don’t know where to begin. I remember the first year I was there and our counselor Nancy.. boy was she a great help. I also remember that my mom sent me a care package with candy in it and crying because it got taken away. (she didn’t know I couldn’t have food) and then being excited when I found some that the store mom had missed. That year was my first introduction to Spaz day and to my first dance with boys. I remember Elizabeth D from Venezuela and all the fun we had. Spent 2 years in Dogwood and then finally went to Treetops. Creigh Wheeler and Julie Miles, made it an interesting time and there where others,but I can’t think of everyones name at the moment. Oh, almost forgot about the time we snuck up the back trail from Treetops and went to the canoe lake and let out all the canoes in the middle of the lake. I know Page stayed frustrated with us in Treetops. We made our counselor cry and lost our priveledges to town, we had to do everyones laundry in camp. I remember our canoe teacher and the time that Creigh had to sing to him at taps, “Me and my shadow”. I had my nose broken playing capture the flag and also had someone pierce my ear using a piece of ice and an earring.. boy was that an adventure. There was also the trip to the house with the 99 stairs and the story about the ghost that lived in the house. Singing at campfires, Poison’s Every Rose Has its thorns and reading from Shel Silversteins books. Now I have 3 daughters and hope that one day they will be able to experience Keystone and make some wonderful memories of their own!!!”

Susan (Perry) Mills – 1985-1988

Too many memories to write down! Lisa Pratt, Beth Stark, Slee Crocker,Lisa Hart, and oh so many more! This will be my 18th summer at Keystone. I'm proud to say that this will be my daughter Kirby's third summer. She is the third generation of my family to attend. And believe it or not Page lets me come back too! I love Keystone!

Ellen (Dutton) Chaffin – 1966-1976

“I have so many memories of the campers and counselors that there is not enough time nor room to put them all in! I taught dance and aerobics at Keystone for 2 summers during my freshman and sophomore years at UT Knoxville. I never knew that those summers would turn my life around and make me the person that I am now. I am a high school French teacher and I still teach dance and judge indoor winterguard throughout the Southeast. I passed the Brevard exit this spring and the memories kept flooding back for me. To all of the girls, Henrietta, Lucie, and all of the others…I love you still and I am sure that you have turned into wonderful young ladies! To my CITs, especially Stephanie Bigman, I miss you desperately, and I am still in Knoxville! To my dear fellow counselors, Deborah, Louise, Kathryn, Andrea, Fleur, Kiki, etc., my memories are still warm and sometimes painful to remember since all of us have gone our separate ways. It doesn’t seem that long ago! Paige, thank you for giving me the opportunity of a lifetime to work for you in such a wonderful place. I hope that your family is doing well! It has expanded since we last spoke! To all, it is amazing how time flies! I now have a daughter, Chloe, who is ten. I plan on sending her to Keystone next summer to learn, laugh, and love as I did so long ago. Korey (Fleenor) Wheatley koreywheat@gmail.com”

Korey (Fleenor) Wheatley – Counselor 89 and 90

There are so many memories I have of my years at Keystone and all are cherished. The jokes, campfire, the songs, even to the HOURS of crying on the last night listening to Leaving on a Jet Plane-how torturous having to say goodbye for one more year! I have to say my best memories through all those years were with Tricia Denman, Julie Miles, Emily Arthur, Catherine Donahoo, Amy Latiff, Kate from Amelia island, Stacy Green, and so many more! One of my best memories was getting to run with the Olympic Torch! I am living in Mexico now so I will not make it to the reunion but please KIT if you read this! carofutch@aol.com

Caroline Futch – 80's

“My mother brought me to Keystone in 1938 at the age of 6…Pinky Prileau from Charleston SC was in Skylark with us and Beth Mixson was the third camper . It was war time and Miss Fannie was the Director. The next year, Blanche Ulmer was my counselor and the Nature Counselor and I remember after supper walks along the railroad track learning how to identify wild flowers. Blanche and Nita Chesnut were great at the piano. My mother, Fannie May Scollard, ran Tuck Shop.I came back as an aide and Junior Counselor in the late 40s..Edith Tobin “Toby”,Pat Hand, Ty Thebaut,Brownie Carter, Naudain Ives, and Little Bill, Claire Chesnut ,Sally Barker, Sara and Blandy Dew,Nep and Catherine Holloway, JuJu and Armstrong, Anne Monroe..,and so many others. Then, in 1964, a grown up Bill Ives hired me as the camp secretary and I brought daughters, Kathy and Gina Gill for four summers. One year, I helped in the kitchen and on Thursday night we had cookouts. I prepared boxes with spaghetti and jars of clean water and a pot for the campers to cook the spaghetti. One group came back starving because they stirred the dry spaghetti into the boiling water and it turned to paste! I also remember Kamp Key,The Call of the Fire, pranks like greased wake up bell and dining chairs on the roof of the lodge with Bill leading us in the pledge as if he did not see them there, and the morning all the toothbrushes in Kevashee were hung together in like colors so no one could tell theirs apart. Keystone Camp, just the best ever and my one regret is that I have no granddaughters who can be there now!!!”

Suzanne (Scollard) Tomlinson – 1937-39,1947-49;1965-1970

Learned to swim by Lydie Swann and Margaret McQueen. My favorite horse was LoCal.

Gayle (Knowles) Davis – 58-59

So many!! Too many to count! My favorite memories of Keystone are the friendships that I developed there. I miss it so much and hope to send my daughter there when she gets to be old enough. One of my most interesting memories was as an aide I would get up in the morning and go led the horses in and one morning I was heading out of the tree house and somehow slipped at the top of the stairs and fell all the way down to the bottom. I had the biggest bruise on my tush! I also got a splinter in my botton once from sliding across the benches and didnt want anyone to know so I kept it in there for the entire camp session! LOL

Carey (Lucas) Nikonchuk – 87-92

“After reading all that Flo Adams and Jan Dickinson said, what more is there to say except that Keystone made some of the most memorable years of my life; as a result, both of my daughters went, and I took my son at age 5 for two weeks while I was “camp nurse.” We all loved Keystone and have many, many fond memories. One thing Flo and Jan did not mention was Toby and Novice ringing “Rainy day in the pavilion,” which was much more fun than expected. Of course, sliding down the path to the pavilion gave a slight extra added attraction of lots of clay. Rainboots and raincoats were the necessity at Keystone! The days at Keystone taught me not only tennis, canoeing, archery, riflery (I have enjoyed shooting with my son over the years), and other activities I would have never known, but those days also provided friendships, memories, songs, responsibilities, and much more that I still carry today. I hope to see, at least, Flo, Jan, and Ellen at the reunion.”

Marianne (Taylor) Luckie – Late 50s-60s

“I remember it all with love and affection, and seeing Bambi Braden post made me laugh! I am sitting here at my computer with my fiance in Wheat Ridge, Colorado, and we were showing each other our camp web sites, and it all spilled back. I can smell the clay. I can see Paige at her 6th birthday party. I can see baby Bradley. I can smell the soft air as we sing a round on a Sunday evening, with fireflies starting to come out and sweet young voices in lovely harmony. I can see Bill laughing and reading the “Weekly News” (what was that called, that wonderful thing we put together?). The lake was freezing cold and wonderful, and swamping the canoe was always fun. I remember Alex running down the hill after her horse, determined not to let him get the better of her. I remember giggling so hard with Patty C at “rest hour” – oh how I wish I had one of those now! And the oh-so funny skits – heck, I still sing the lyrics of the songs we made up then, have taught them to my 12-yr-old son (“Becky Huggins Lemonade” is a classic I will never forget). The sound and smell of the rifle range, brushing the horses, getting to do “double riding”, catching salamanders in the creek for hours on end, canoeing the French Broad, and Gingy P playing taps at night to end it all. Even greens for dinner – “Pass up!” Margaret, Trisha, Whitney, Patty – I miss you!”

Marilyn (Gobbel) Walker – 1965-1972

The best was when I was a counselor and Liz, my sis, and I were in charge of scouting a hike before any campers got there. We got hopelessly lost "Liz – I know where we are now", I got really bad chaffing up and down my legs from falling in the river with my pack on MULTIPLE times, and we thought we would run out of food! Maybe it was the anticipation of the look on Page's face when we knew we would have to call for a pick up after we finally found a road. And to think….we were supposed to be the responsible ones!!! Not to mention practically snapping a canoe in half on a trip (thank goodness it didn't happen). Barry was no help. He couldn't wait to have to watch me tell Page I broke a canoe and had to leave it behind. And once again….I was the responsible one!!!

Amanda Spann – 80's-90's

“I was a good child and a good camper, but sometimes, even the good get in trouble. When I was an Aid living in Treetops, Bev Morris and I decided to go and scare “hill duty”. It just so happens that Ellen Dutton and Slee Crocker, who were CIT’s at the time, were the ones we were going to scare. We waited on the trail from Tree Tops to the swimming lake until Ellen and Slee walked up toward Faraway on their rounds. When they left, we snuck over to the Nature trail and waited for their return. It was hard to keep from giggling, but we did. As soon as Ellen and Slee were back by the nature trail, we jumped out at them and screamed!! I thought Ellen and Slee both were going to have a heart attack! They screamed at the top of their lungs and cut a trail up the side of the hill. We could not get them to stop screaming, so we ran back to Tree Tops, knowing that help would be on the way. Sure enough, Lucy Walters was standing at the bottom of the stair of Tree Tops. She said, “ I had a feeling you two would be behind this”. Busted!!! Sorry Slee, sorry Ellen. Our punishment? We paid at Ghost Court!”

Margaret Taylor – 1970-1985

Mud sliding from Lorioso down, fried squash, Ms Virginia, posion ivy, horse named Sundance and Biltmore ice cream, Cabin mate “Kathy” last year together in Lakeside (from Atlanta). New born calf, learning to water ski letters/snack boxes from home, Richard Nixon’s resignation viewed on TV, But most of all the friends I met and the memories I hold dear.

Kim (Cole) King – 70-75

Singing by the campfire, visiting the old abandonded house where a ghost supposedly lived and "raids" on other cabins!! I also remember and cherise a time where girls were so supportive of one another and competition was left at home. I kept in touch with my cabin mates several years after leaving camp. Those were great times.

Kirsten (Gravely) Moss – 3 ('91,'92,'93)

I was one of Novice’s assistant riding instructors along with Sunny Davis, who was from Florida if I remember correctly. My Aunt Bet was the camp’s nurse for quite a number of years. I just read the note from Flo Adams (Rubel) and she mention my Aunt Bet. Flo she just celebrated her 99th birthday on December 13th. Still going strong. Jean Martin martinj@ftc-i.net

Jean (Montgomery) Martin – 1956

“I remember evrything as if it were yesterday! The smell of the rifle range, the freezing water in the swimming lake, the hikes, skiing, the barn, the little creek that ran across the rocks and made that soothing sound, the year I finally got to live in FarAway, the skits, the songs (they still run through my head…black baboon!)the year I was supposed to be there for 3 weeks and Bill called my parents to see if I could stay another 3 and then after six weeks the call yet again to see if I could stay ANOTHER 3. If he would have let me stay all year I probably would have. I also remember Paige and Bradley as little tiny kids…but now I’m telling my age. One of the things I still hold dear is my Silver KC…the thing that made me realize how hard you had to work to accomplish the things in life you want to! I wish everyone could experience the joy I felt during those years! Thanks!”

Bambi (Braden) Berman – 1965-72

Yes, 13 years is correct. I was the youngest camper at age 7 and then kept coming until I was head of the waterfront at 19. I don't know what Bill was thinking putting me in charge of a cabin of 13 year olds and the waterfront. I definitely grew up at Keystone. Too many memories to tell. Everything was a lasting memory. I didn't read any fond memories of sneaking out of the cabin and hiding under the flagpole in the pitch black night, or meeting the town boys at the big lake. That one might have to be bleeped out so the youngsters don't get any bright ideas. But starting with my mother (Sis Fisher) being close by as the camp secretary I was never home sick. Who can remember 5 cent Cokes on the Lodge porch? Keystone was where I learned how to eat the most delicious vegetables anywhere. Of course they were just outside the door. It goes on and on. Then I brought my 3 and 4 year old sons to canoe the French Braod and slide down the water slide. Maybe I'll get a graddaughter soon. See everybody in 06.

Jan (Fisher) Dickinson – 1953-65

*“I love getting to know all the campers and conselours so well…. it is so hard to leave them all when I leave camp, but i know ill see them next year because i have been coming to camp for six years and i know i am never going to leave!!!EVER!!!! i am 13 years old and am probaly going to be 20 when i leave camp!!! i first started coming here when i was 7 and i just had to come back there was no way i wasnt going to!!!!!well these are my FAVORTIE FRIENDS AND ACTIVITIES AT CAMP!! friends amelia warriener!!!!!!!!!! Gibbs Cullen(my cousin) Carolyn Fester Jill Griswold(flamingos)LOL Gabie Spangenberg Sara Mushkin Morgon Crumbaugh……..and many more!!! thanks for letting me share my memories!!!”

Amelia Baker – 99-00-01-02-03-04

Keystone camp is one of the most enjoyable places I have ever been. I loved my time there. It's a place where I always had a good time and felt comfortable with everyone and everything except maybe the horses. The air smelled good. The weather was always cool and cold at night as I remember sleeping under blankets back then in our wonderful screened in cabins.The trips to bagwell's store,rainy afternoons spent in a cabin playing the latest rock and roll music on someone's record player. I am still trying to learn the jacksonville shag. The swimming shows where we held lighted torches blazing above us. A few years ago I was in tallahassee and ran into sallie whitelaw. I had my daughter, ginny, with me and introduced them. As ginny and I drove home I started talking about sallie and other friends at camp. Ginny said to me that she thought it was funny that we were dressed alike after all these years. I guess we were. I had on my favorite turtle neck and sensible corduroy jeans. I even think she said our hair was cut very much alike. I hope we have a big turn out for the reunion.

Ellen (mcculloch) styles – 50's-60's

There are so many, where do i start? Let’s see there was the squirl that we thought was a rat in Dogwood. There was the tying up of the counselors in Dogwood. Remember this: “you’ve gone straight to my heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeead!” The Keysone bite is still alive and well, the tears when we said goodbye and the feeling that I still get in my belly when I think about all the friends I lost touch with. I love all of you!!!!

Mindy Berry – early 80’s

“My first memory of Keystone was being so afraid to get on the bus bound for NC. When we hit GA and picked up the Augusta girls, my fears no longer existed. Some of us still stay in touch and relive those wonderful Keystone memories. The Augusta girls, Karen Carr, Jan Blanchard, Sister Claussen, Kay Hodges and Susan Rucker were just a few of the many friendships I developed over the years that helped mold my life. One of my fondest memories is the Welsh Rarebit. I’ve tried to make it and it is never the same as we had at camp. We would fight over the last bite and would lick the bowl with our fingers, when Bill was not looking! Other memories include working like a dog to get my Senior Lifesaving certificate and trying to stay afloat with the very tall Augusta girls. I was about a foot shorter than the instructor and everyone else in the class. I was always last completing my laps in that cold, cold water. I felt happy to make it! Of course there were all the fabulous activities – horsebackriding, canoeing, archery, riflery, and so on. My favorite was the campfire time and the singing. I have shared the Keystone songs at Girl Scout camps, etc. I’ll treasure them for life. My least favorite activity was horsebackriding. I’d always get a headache when it was my turn. I was scared of them and STILL AM!! Most of all I remember the comradery. There was very little competition among individuals, just among cabin groups, etc. Everyone pulled for each other to be successful, whether it was learning the J stroke or putting your counselor’s underwear up the flagpole. Camp Keystone was a fabulous place to spend my teenage summers. I’m happy to see you are carrying on the family traditions.”

Virginia (Tipton) Walkup – 60s

My funniest memory of Keystone was when Julie Miles and I were in charge of rounding up all the horses each morning. I am not a horse person, so I still don’t know how I got talked in to the job! Anyway . . . Julie and I forgot to close the gate and ALL of the horses got out and went to town. Page was HAPPY with us – in fact, I think we were promptly released from our horse duty!

Melissa (Mercer) Seabaugh – 1980’s

“I dont even know where to begin….some of my best memories and closest friendships were formed at Keystone….so i will just randomly go thru somemy first thoughts go to campfires singing James Taylor You’ve got a friend…and leaving on a jett plane and taking everything so very seriously as we all cried…and laughed to an exteme…we always laughed so hard we ended up getting in trouble…raids..shaving cream..short sheeting..tying horses to flag poles…spray painting dogs..flipping peoples canoes…we were alittle mean at times but all in good fun i promise..failing inspection and being called for re re inspection..jam sessions..paige forbidding us to eat dinner and taking away tree tops food privilages so we ended up breaking in and stealing silverware and food from the caf and ofcourse getting caught…sneaking in ordered pizza…getting caught…which was all the fun…getting in trouble for doing a maxipad skit for skit night…dressing as guns and roses….the gogwood breakin and cover up…the biltmore ice cream we never got…the best sunday fried chicken and coffee cake for bfst….bannana boats for desert at camp fire..abel mabel strong and stable keep your elbows off the table….“there is snow on the table” to remove your napkin….using and breaking the camp laundry to make stone washed jeans…spaz day…gold rush…julie playing rambo amd her visits to the ER..crokett…nancy and helen…and tree legs….fanny day…swearing on nancy drew at ghost court…being called to ghost court…getting in trouble with paige everyday….singing i love camp ketstone..care packages sneaking food in flashlights..teddybears…etc and cheer wine and bugles….we had sooo many laughs and it was always so hard to leave…there were so many different friendships formed but above all i remember the memories and friendships with…Mellissa, Stacey, KT ,Carson , Creigh, Julie, Marcy, Kate, Allison, Mimi, Betsy, Robin, Katherine sooo many more…….:)))”

Tina (DeWitt) Krablin – 80’s

So many fond ones! Husband Lowell and I came by camp about 12 years ago and lots of changes but a lot still the same. We are cleaning out as we plan to move next month and came across pictures of camp that I will mail to you. Thought you might like to have. Tell Bill it will test his memory. It's hard to believe that the camp is still running. Good things just keep on and on. I'll be in touch. My sister Gene has died back in 92. Her daughter Gene,former camper, has 4 children almost grown living in Statesboro, Ga. Sherry McGowan Means, my neice, lives in Atlanta and has a daughter getting married in a couple of weeks. Anne McRae from Gainesville who was a camper is married living in Nashville has 3 girls under 2 years (twins) and are possible future campers. Keep me posted.

Peggy (McGowan) Peacock – 1940s

“I have so many memories of camp that I wouldn’t know where to begin…one funny memory comes to mind…Tina DeWitt tried on a pair of Mimi’s (I forgot her last name) riding boots when we were living in Treetop and got it stuck on her leg…Well, poor Teresa had to pull it off while Tina was on all fours and wearing only a t-hirt and her underware…I still laugh to this day over that day. We had so much fun and I have to thank Kathleen Emmitt, Mary Grace Stubbs, Creigh Wheeler, Stepahanie Bingham, Amy Latiff, Melissa Mercer Caroline Futch, Kiki Pratt and so many more for all the fun times, but most of all I have to thank Page and all the counselors for putting up with us and our antics. I will cheirish all my memories of Keystone and hope that one day my daughter will attend.”

Julie (Miles) Read – 1980’s-1990

Shannon Kelley and I refusing to stick a single toe in the arctic waters of brevard until covered in full body, rubber wetsuits. Breaking watermelons and eating them off the ground. delish welsh rarebit and the controversy surrounding the ingredients. Stories on sundays, hikes up to the golf course, mudslides, and so much more. the songs are running through my head as i become more and more nostalgic… Rachel Quigley – 96-97-98

“My favorite memories are of campfires. I never liked to sleep in the shed for fear of getting chiggers, so I’d always sleep out on the ground, and it made me feel so free. Campfires always made our cabins feel closer, even those when it rained and we camped out in the gym! As I’ve never gone to one session solely, I have had the experience of meeting new friends in every session. I have memories of the nicest girls accepting me right away, though I wasn’t in their “camp group” since they started going to camp. I love being at camp also because there isn’t any technology around – no computers to distract me, no cell phones to be annoyed by, no loud radios, and especially no cars. The mountains are what I miss a lot of the time when away from camp, though. I miss the cool morning fogs, the “nature” smell, and the warm afternoons. These are only some of my camp memories. I have so many that it would porbably take me forever to write them all down!’

Jessica Baverman – 1996-present

The COLD water in the lake, canoe trips down the French Broad River with cows looking on, talent contests, camp songs (Way up in N Carolina where the balmy breezes blow), milk and cookies, trips to the Biltmore Dairy, dances with the guys from the boys’ camp, sliding rock, learning to ski slalom, candle-lit bark boats on the lake… Kay (Hodges) Peabody – 1962-1970

My favorite memories are all of the fun times I had meeting new friends, learning new activities, cabin skits, Ghost Court, cabin pranks(which landed us in Ghost Court), and team games. Getting my Silver KC was very special. I am so glad my daughter Carolyn now goes to Keystone so she can have the same wonderful summers I had.

Betsy (Houseman) Fester – 74-78

“My daughter, Elizabeth, and I attended Mother-Daughter weekends. It was great fun and also provided insight into Elizabeth’s developing personality. We will both remember forever the time we were in a canoe race rowing together. We were a sure shot to win and I, a non-competitive, tree-hugging type, “gave” the race to the next in line. How? I paddled over to show Elizabeth a turtle. Here’s the part about developing personality. Elizabeth is very, very competitive. She wanted the win and she does not particularly like nature. She liked nature even less after I showed her the turtle. In hindsight, she was right. It was a race and she was a winner. Competition has its place. Perhaps I learned something about my own developing personality during Mother-Daughter weekends.”

Betsy Friedman – 90-93 Mother

Camp was one of the best experiences of my life. I remember my first letter home, I asked to come back the next year. Four of us from the same area went to camp together. I am still friends with one of them, and we just attended our 45th high school reunion this year. What do I remember??? everything….all the songs, horseback riding, swimming in real cold water, trips, counselors, friendships, and the beautiful North Carolina area…I would love to attend the 90th anniversary of Keystone, and will bring some of my camp brochures that I still possess..thank you for this opportunity...

Beverly (Carnot) Rexford – 1951 & 1952

“Novice, Bet, Hy Webb, Margaret McQueen, Palmer Mathis, coke money in brown envelopes, mail, ping pong, fingernail polish on screens, Overlook, Catherine, Naudine, Bill, square dances, leave, flag raising, folding of flag, uniforms, the lake front, the dam, candle light service, making a wish, vespers, camping out, gravel on the circular drive, meals, singing, cabins, lights out, letters home, rest hour, I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream, short sheeting, the long steps up to the cabins, inspections, harmonizing, packages, the bench we sat on in the pavilion. Rain, rain and more rain, watermelon on the 4th of July, beautiful ribbons for swimming meets with pleats all the way around. Lunches and deserts, milk and crackers, taps, the bell, Toby and her quarters, being able to recite in order all cabins beginning with goldfish bowl, the yellow clay tennis court, the stream beside archery, Brevard town on leave, hamburgers brought to us in the late hours, our schedules, horseback shows, the stables, art and crafts large porch, art shows, items atop the flag pole, laundry pick up, in brown paper, Keystone Camp stationary, Sis Fisher and long distant calls. Two months of the very best each year.”

Flo (Adams) Rubel

“Gosh! I have so many I don’t know which to choose. I remember always wanting to ride “Shine” when we went out on trail rides. Because Shine liked to kick other horses, he always had to be last in line. That enabled me to lag behind then trot or canter to catch up! Believe it or not I have fond memories of swimming in the freezing cold lake!! My syncronized swimming class was nick-named the “syncronized clams”. I even have the cross stitched picture from Mrs. Coffman, the camp nurse, to prove it. I remember our cabin Faraway won the contest for making up the best song. It was to the tune of “God Watch Over Keystone” except our song was “God watch over Kitty” Here, I’ll let you sing a few lines! (Picture a little girl with pony tails, dressed in footed pajamas holding her favorite stuffed, fuzzy kitty) God watch over kitty and keep her free from fleas. Make sure she eats her liver, and keep her out of trees. Make sure she’s safe and warm while I am out of sight, and don’t let her get stolen after we say good night. I can’t believe I remember that song after 20 some odd years. Okay, one last memory….The Keystone bite. We loved for Frannie Moss to sit at our table on beet day. She loved them so we got her to eat them all before the counselor got to the table so we didn’t have to eat any. Then she became a CIT and wouldn’t do it anymore! DARN!! That’s all for now! If you run low on memories just let me know.”

Trish (Tapper) Warriner – 75-79