Wait, is that Potato Knob?

Daniel Weatherby October 19, 2020

A blog for camping professionals involved in the North Carolina Youth Camp Association.

and now you!

On a recent walk from lower camp to the Roundhouse (our summer office), I granted myself a few beats to pause and take in the breeze and a leaf falling to the ground.

As I looked back up towards the dining hall, I was struck by the view. Through the screens I could see Potato Knob (a portion of the Black Mountains incorporated into the Blue Ridge Parkway). A new view?

When you spend 2 decades anywhere, you can lie under the assumption that you’ve seen it all, and know the space completely. When our summer directors program for their campers, they know the specific locations that work with each activity. As we’re camera blocking for off-season promotional content, we know where the Money Beet locations are.

And yet I had no clue you could see Potato Knob from the south side of the dining hall.


During the summer (both a “standard” and a covid-influenced) I probably couldn’t have noticed the knob. My focus during these seasons seems to regularly be on the next thing. Yours probably is too, and there always seem to be next things.

The next thing – the benevolent interruptions, the problem solving, the change of nature of an afternoon, the feeling that anything can happen on any given day of camp – it’s probably a good portion of the reason I got into this line of work. It might be similar for you.

As camping professionals – we are good at focusing on the next thing when it comes into view. Caring for the camper need right in front of us, handling a staff situation with care, being present with a life partner during the busyness of the summer, and seeing co-laborers along the journey. We are all naturally good at creating situations during which people feel seen.

So, of course I’ve never seen Potato Knob from the south side of the dining hall before.

For this short time, as life seems to slow down a bit on the property, I’m going to look for more Potato Knobs. I hope you do too.

Daniel Weatherby

Assistant Director

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