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NGI Recipient: Sylvie Lam

Session Attended: CDS Boston Centre - July 4th Weekend (2012)

Dear CDS-Boston,

For the past eight years Pinewoods has played an important role in my life. It has provided me with a community of mentors and friends that have nurtured my love of dance and song, and it has taught me the value of hard work as I have spent countless hours in the kitchen on crew. As I exit college this year and enter a new phase in my life, many things seem uncertain and unknown. So, in the midst of that, I thank you greatly for giving me the opportunity to return to a place that grounds and sustains me. For what better way to spend a weekend than waking up early to swim in round pond before heading out into a day of song, dance, and connection.

I am often amazed that Fourth of July weekend is, in fact, only three days, less than one hundred hours over all. But by the time I hit long pond road time becomes irrelevant anyways, measured in bars of music and the amount of time until the next delicious meal. I enter a place where singing lasts five hours into the wee hours of the morning, and anything feels possible- even a visit from the Bolero brothers. This year, thanks to the CDS scholarship, I was able to fully enjoy all that camp has to offer from a camper’s perspective. I was able to lose track of time, to dance kerry sets, take a swing class, remember clog, sing on the porch, and fit in many bouts of socializing. As a young dancer, I also greatly enjoyed being able to invest time in learning from and connecting with many members of my community with whom I have less frequent contact, whether it was in a class or around the dinner table. While I found it hard to reenter the real world after such a blissful hiatus, I did so with a restored sense of peace, having rediscovered the rhythm in my feet and the songs in my head.

Thank you again for this incredible opportunity