As a kid, summer is the best time of the year! A long break from school, beautiful weather, and an opportunity for a world of fun and excitement. As a kid I remember riding my bike around with friends for hours on end, showing up at friend’s houses and pulling them outside to join in the fun. I remember spending hours outside each day playing games with friends, finding new adventures, and spending a few weeks at a camp where I had the opportunity to meet new people, explore my interests, and learn valuable life skills to take with me as I continued to mature. For many of you, the memories of summer as a kid may be very similar! Current and future generations of kids have a much different outlook on summer however.
Technology has advanced dramatically since our days of riding bikes, playing games, and participating in activity based summer adventures. Summers now promise hours of movies, scrolling through social media, and playing fortnite (or other video games… but lets get real, it’s fortnite). Left to their own devices, kids now days will magnetize to their technology for the entirety of the summer! I can’t blame them, technology is pretty incredible, but it’s stealing summer away from these kids and robbing them of those opportunities for growth that many of us remember so fondly from our childhood!
A little technology is a great thing. Our kids today are more knowledgable and better connected than we ever were as kids. The downside is that in turn, they are missing out on opportunities to build essential life skills that are fundamental in our development into adulthood. The good news is, just as technology has been advancing and drawing our kids attention, summer camps have also been advancing and are better than ever before. Introducing Camp Adventure and Camp Extreme at Historic Banning Mills!
At Camp Adventure and Camp Extreme your child has the opportunity to connect to the outdoors, learn about nature, make new friends, explore their interests, and discover new and exciting adventures at the largest aerial adventure park in the world! Here’s just a few reasons your camper will benefit from a summer of adventure:
At our summer camps, kids spend their days in the outdoors participating in a wide array of activities including: zip lining, rock climbing, kayaking, paddle boarding, hiking, free falling, swimming, archery, and much much more.
The days spent at camp adventure introduce your child to the outdoors in unique and engaging ways. They’ll get up close and personal with nature as they explore Banning Mills and be introduced to the outdoors like never before. This gives kids a better connection to the impact we have on our planet and allows them to have fun and grow in a natural setting.
Our guides and camp staff at Historic Banning Mills are group facilitators and team building professionals. They are fantastic at mentoring and coaching campers to step outside their comfort zone and push their boundaries. We recognize that everyone has different strengths, abilities, agilities, and fears and work with each camper through each activity to push that envelop and try new things. The result is limitless opportunities for growth and a significant boost to your child’s self confidence.
One of the biggest opportunities for this is our Power Free Fall. It’s a 100 foot free fall jump that takes participants from 100 feet up our adventure tower directly to the ground, and its a camp favorite! Some of the activities we do at camp, like the free fall, are inherently scary to some campers, but pushing through that fear and trying a new activity boosts self confidence and shows our campers the benefits of pushing their boundaries in a safe and controlled environment.
It’s easy for all of us to spend way more time on our cell phone or using technology than we even realize we are. For kids this is even more prevalent. Outdoor camps like Camp Adventure and Camp Extreme provide an opportunity to unplugged from technology and connect with people in the real world. This is extremely important at a young age and allows campers to make connection, build conversation skills, and have fun!
Up until about five and a half years ago, I had no idea a career in the outdoor adventure and tourism industry was even something to consider. Exposure is they key ingredient in opening new doors. For kids, exposure to new opportunities is what primes their brains for determining their interests and driving the path to their future. Our camps provide a long list of activities and opportunities designed to teach, excite, entertain, and inspire our campers. School field trips are designed in a similar way. Exposure to unique career paths and interests spark curiosity and excitement for a child’s future learning opportunities.
Many of the activities at camp are designed to encourage campers to work together to succeed in each activity. As campers make their way through our aerial challenge course or encourage each other on our climbing walls, they learn fundamentals of working together to accomplish a goal and pushing each other to succeed. These life skills can be carried with them back to school in the fall and far into their futures.
We all know that feeling. You just spent months working hard to save up money and vacation days to spend on the family vacation of your dreams. Nothing’s going to get you down as you build up anticipation for your trip and enjoy a beautiful vacation full of relaxation and stress free time away from the office. There’s just one problem. Upon returning to work you find after a week or two, you’re ready for another vacation and are quickly burnt our once more! Weekend trips are great but they can’t possibly deliver the same level of rest and escape as a long vacation.
Studies show that may not be correct! In fact, Psychologist Daniel Kahneman, PhD, says that “people’s psychology can be divided into an experiencing self and a remembering self”. Your experiencing self enjoys the vacation and becomes relaxed and rejuvenated during your time away from work, while the remembering self carries that feeling of rejuvenation back home with you after your trip. Unfortunately, this positive effect can only last so long, and eventually you’ll find yourself burnt out once more and craving that next escape from the repetition of daily life. Does this sound familiar?
According to Psychology Today, “Vacations no matter the length only keep us invigorated for a few days to a few weeks after the trip. By taking shorter and more frequent vacations we can maximize the time spent feeling rejuvenated by travel and getaways”. This means you can live happier, feel more rejuvenated more often, and spend less money than you would on a long vacation.
Applying this method of taking short term getaways from work can be just as beneficial as long vacations but are able to occur much more frequently! As your post vacation excitement begins to waver you’ll find new excitement for the upcoming trip!
If you’re ready to begin planning your next short term vacation, check out our Adventure Lodging Packages and visit us at Historic Banning Mills for a fun filled weekend that’s sure to leave you reenergized, rejuvenated, and ready for your next adventure!
Why We Use A Continuous Belay System!
A brief look at the benefits of using a continuous belay system and visiting a zip line course dedicated to the safety of its guests!
Check out our incredible Zip Line Canopy Tours at the largest zip line course in the entire world! With 11 miles of zip lines and canopy adventures to explore, Historic Banning Mills is the ultimate outdoor adventure resort! Banning Mills was the first zip line canopy tour in North American and are the industry leading specialists in zip line and aerial adventure parks! Take a zip line tour with us and experience unmatched safety and family friendly fun!
Before getting into what a continuous belay system is, it’s important to explain what a belay system is. A belay system is the safety system that keeps you connected while at height. There’s a number of different types of belay systems used in the zip line industry. While all belay systems can be incredibly safe to use, most have the potential to be either intentionally or unintentionally disconnected from the course. This could be a potentially dangerous situation.
Continuous Belay means from the moment you hook on to the course at the very beginning until you are back on the ground, disconnecting on purpose or accidentally is impossible without a special tool, carried by our guides. This ensures our participants are as safe as possible while off the ground and also ties our course together seamlessly, which improves the natural tour experience by cutting down on bottle necks and prevents people from getting tangled up with each others safety hooks.
Historic Banning Mills has been around for twenty one years. Before our current safety hook system we used a two hook system that we like to call “crab claws”. The system is fairly simple to use. A guide or participant remains safely attached while at height by always having at least one “crab claw” connected at all times and uses the other to connect to the next safety point. The potential risk with a system like this is much higher due to the possibility of user error. If someone unknowingly disconnects both hooks, they are no longer safe, and could sustain serious injury. Thankfully, our guides have always been held to an incredibly high safety standard and were trained to always monitor guests and minimize the risks of potential dangers. Mike Holder, Owner of Historic Banning Mills, couldn’t help but worry about the possibility of an accident occurring and sought out a way to minimize that risk.
Vertical Trek Innovations Continuous Belay System was the solution to that problem and is a system we are incredibly proud of today. The peace of mind that comes along with increased participant safety is something any continuous belay system owner wouldn’t trade for anything in the world.
Using the VTI Safety Hook is incredibly easy for any age! The safety hook is shaped to look like a “C” with a small opening in one side. To move from one cable to the next the system uses connectors with flat metal plates that fit through the gap in the hook. During the entire tour the cable you are attached to remains in the center of the safety hook and is too thick to slide through the opening on the hook!
What this means for you is a worry free tour, so you can enjoy what’s important, HAVING FUN!! Plan your trip to Historic Banning Mills today and have the family adventure of a lifetime!