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Seniors saddle up to help out

posted Dec 17, 2014, 9:02 AM by Unknown user

Camp Hyde is a summer camp for kids ages 6-16 located between Viola and Clonmel. Two seniors work there over the summer: Molly Hullinger and Sammie Heimerman. Heimerman works every weekday during the summer from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and on some weekends as well. Hullinger can only work on the weekends since her father, social science teacher Gregg Hullinger, works as a supervisor there as well. Camp Hyde has a policy that a child cannot work under their parent.

According to Hullinger, their duties as wranglers are to bring in the horses and take care of them by feeding and brushing them. The workers get help from some of the campers ages 13-16 that become WITs, which is a sort of junior wrangler. They also work with the kids to give them a better riding experience.

“We somehow manage caring for 32 horses and 54 kids at the same time,” Heimerman said.

Many events go on during the summer, including rodeos, daily riding, trips through the pastures and arts and crafts.

“My favorite event at Camp Hyde is the rodeo we put on for the campers and their parents,” Hullinger said.

Heimerman’s favorite event is when the frontier campers, which are (kids at the horse camp ages 7-13) in Camp Hyde, and wranglers get to stay at camp overnight. Camp Hyde does an overnight stay once in June and once in July. She says the late night trail rides, s’mores, and movies are a lot of fun with the campers.

Summer camp is made for memories, and many children will always remember going to a camp or event during their childhood. The workers at those camps also have great memories from their times making the childrens’ summers memorable.

“I will always remember when Sam (a co-worker) and I went out to catch one of the horses at night and almost got ran over by all the horses stampeding through the pasture,” Heimerman said.

The job may not always be safe, so the girls both have to watch after themselves and the children with the horses. They continue to go back and help anyway since both Hullinger and Heimerman have such a passion for horses.

    “My favorite memory from Camp Hyde is when we were bareback riding through the pond and jumping logs. Then getting thrown off after,” Hullinger said.