For 10 years families in my neighborhood have gathered to camp every fall. We live in a community that has a "it takes a village" mentality. We carry that philosophy when we recreate outdoors. Our bonds are strong but made even stronger by sharing time and space in nature. Some families have remained while others have come and gone and new families have gathered. Some are experienced campers and for others, it is their first time. The first timers borrow gear and use the presence of the experienced as comfort to venture into a new family endeavor. Whether new or old at camping, we all take comfort having each others' backs and those of our kids. Ten years ago, our children were preschoolers or younger. Camping with youngsters is more work but made easier in a community of friends who share time as the watchful eye. Now our children are older. The ever-present watchful eye is sporadic as the adults hang together around the campfire while our kids roam the woods creating adventures. Just like the adults, the kids have grown up watching out for each other and seek fun together as a pack. As parents, we take our unconscious turns at reminding our children to make good choices when it seems they need a reminder. On Sunday we pack up our sites and drive away each year with huge smiles and exclamations of "I can't wait to do it again next year."