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Sloane Stories: Mary (Ammann) Vargas

Here is the second post in our 'Sloane Stories' series — this week we hear from Mary, whose experiences at Sloane have influenced her entire life ever since:

"Sloane is in the blood in our family. My grandmother first came to Sloane shortly after it opened in 1929 or 1930, we think. My mother was an LIT as a teen and my brother was a camper who still describes the highlight of camp as sailing with Mr. Orova. Somehow, I thought I was destined to have the least contact with Sloane when I interviewed with Bob Ferguson by telephone from my college dorm room for a summer job. I was wrong. Sloane is everything about my life.

During my days at Sloane in '94, then Girls Camp Director, Jill Worrall, introduced me to Nelson who came to volunteer at Sloane for the last week of the summer. Nelson had his own camp history, having served as a counselor for nearly a decade before I came to camp. Let's just say we didn't hit it off. He will deny it, but he did leave me at the bottom of the hill in the dark after a date out at the Falls - I was less than impressed. But just a few months later, we got engaged at Camp Sloane (and our first act after getting engaged was definitely not engraving our initials in a heart at the camp store at oval - we would never do something like that). Yet one year later from the day we met, we were married. There were two other Sloanies in the wedding. My very best friend, Catrina Hays, was our maid of honor - I met her at camp and we've been friends ever since.

Last summer, having been married to Nelson and best friends with Catrina for two decades, we brought our oldest son for his first week at camp. We got a call the day before he was to come home that he wanted to stay. This summer we will take the second of our three boys for his first summer at camp. Our oldest said the other day when describing camp to a friend, "Camp is...well it is EVERYTHING. It is like heaven." He was right. Camp has been everything to our family. Even though I now live many states away and it has been so many years, camp touches my life every day even after all these years - my friends, my family, my view of the world - I owe all of to Sloane."

Mary (Ammann) Vargas

Years at camp: 92, 93, 94


If you would like to get in touch with Mary, please email info@campsloane.org. Or if you would like to share your own Sloane Story, you can do so here.