Questions with a Staff Member

20 Questions with Music Activity Leader, Drama Jon

November 30, 2022

Q1: How many summers have you spent at The Nature Place?

I have spent 10 summers at Nature Place since 2005!

Q2: Have you always been an activity leader?

Yes! When I first began working at the Nature Place, I was only a drama counselor, which is why my nickname is Drama Jon. After a couple years I began to do more and more music and less and less drama, besides SHARE of course!

Q3: What is your favorite Nature Place activity?

My favorite activity has to be SHARE. I just love having the chance to come together to sing, laugh, and celebrate the amazingness of camp as one!

Q4: What was your favorite part of this past summer?

I just adored singing and being silly with all the campers. It brings me such joy!

Q5: What originally brought you to The Nature Place?

Back in 2005 I had wanted to work at a theatre camp that put on productions. When I had trouble finding a job I expanded my search a little bit, and Nature Place happened to find me! It truly felt like fate, as working at camp was a life changing experience.

Q6: What has been bringing you back year after year?

What keeps me coming back is the wonderful people and the chance to be totally zany and bring joy to campers.

Q7: Who is your favorite morning SHARE character?

This may sound silly but I think my favorite morning SHARE characters this summer were the Harolds! All the people walking around saying “Hi I’m Harold” was so fun and I loved hearing the campers keep it going all summer.

Q8: What was your first memory of The Nature Place?

My first Nature Place memory is playing hours of name games and team building activities with Scott and Ed at staff orientation 2005. That made me realize pretty quickly what a special place the Nature Place is.

Q9: What is your favorite memory of camp?

It’s so hard to pick just one! But I think my favorite memory is the silly Tuba Week SHAREs with Snoopy in 2017. 

Q10: What advice would you share with a new camper starting at The Nature Place this summer?

I would say to let your inhibitions go and don’t be afraid to be yourself!

Q11: Who are you looking forward to seeing next summer?

I’m always stoked to see my Nature Place family. But I always hold a special place in my heart for my annual reunion with the very first person I met at NPDC 18 years ago… Scott Dunn!

Q12: What is your favorite camp song?

Oooh that’s a tough one! I think it must be Rattlin’ Bog.

Q13: What is your favorite spot at The Nature Place?

I really love the woods on the way towards Mary Dailey Field. I find that to be such a beautiful, quiet oasis.

Q14: Where do you think the trolls go during the winter?

Well, legend has it that once the last leaf has fallen, the Flower Fairy gathers all of the trolls and they hibernate together in a burrow under the cookie tree. But others will tell you they spend the winter starting arguments with people on the internet!

Q15: What is your favorite camp tradition?

My favorite camp tradition is singing the “Hey N! N-A-T!” song at the end of Friday SHARE 🙂

Q16: What was the most unusual thing you saw in or that has come out of the Fairy Stream?

Well, way back in the year 20 Aught 7 I was crossing the Fairy Stream bright and early one fine July morn. As I was traversing the bridge, all of the sudden I heard a quick whoosh. I traipsed over to the railing and wouldn’t ya know it, seven time gold medalist Mark Spitz was practicing his sidestroke in our very own Fairy Stream! At least that’s how I remember it.

Q17: What is your favorite way to stay connected to The Nature Place during the winter?

The Dirt! And following NPDC on social media. It’s a great way for me to feel like I’m still at camp.

Q18: How do you get in touch with the Flower Fairy to tell them about a birthday?

Oh this is completely done telepathically. The Flower Fairy has a rolodex in their brain with the birthdays of every camper and counselor. They’re the one that tells ME about birthdays!

Q19: How did you get your camp name?

Ed gave me my nickname! I got hired as a drama counselor in 2005 by Scott and when I met Ed a few weeks later and I introduced myself as “Jon, the Drama Counselor” he immediately said “Hi Drama Jon!” I was set for life. 

Q20: If you had to sum up your experience at The Nature Place, what would it be?

To sum up the past eighteen years, I owe everything to the Nature Place. I met my future spouse and I realized that I want to make music with kids my whole life. I have camp to thank for everything that has happened in the last eighteen years of my life!