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The four Woodcraft Laws–Beauty, Truth, Fortitude, and Love–act as the guiding principles and moral code for our time at GRP. A few days ago, I wrote about Fortitude, which encourages campers to be brave and practice respect and deference. The four laws intertwine and create a foundation for the community that is built during each summer and session at camp. The first law, Beauty, calls us to “Be clean,” both ourselves and the places we live, and says, “Understand and respect your body, for it is the temple of the spirit.” Beauty also guides our relationship with nature, reminding us to be a friend to wildlife and “conserve land, forest, and flowers.”

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Beauty appears in surprising places every day, just like Fortitude does. It does wonders in reminding some of our campers to shower daily and keep their teeth clean, and motivates cabins to tidy for our daily cleanest cabin competition (which, by the way, my All Tucked Inn 1 cabin has now won four times) in the hopes of winning one of the coveted plastic flamingos. Beauty also reminds us to care for and respect our bodies, appreciating our strength as we conquer steep hikes and keeping ourselves well fed, hydrated, and rested. Our daily interactions with the world around us are guided by Beauty, too, as we venture out onto the Preserve to learn about conservation and controlled burns, seek out Grand Slaminals, and try edible plants. Just like the other Woodcraft Laws, Beauty ultimately boils down to respect–respecting ourselves, our homes, and our world.

Story by Lille Wright with photos by Brandon S. Marshall & Samantha Keebler