Come as you are

The Nashua Telegraph today has a nice feature on Camp Come As You Are, a weekend program for people with dwarfism and their families held every year since 2006 at Camp Allen in Bedford, N.H. The story was written by Jake Berry and photographed by Bob Hammerstrom.

The camp — known as Camp CAYA — got started because our friend Ruth Ricker and my wife, Barbara Kennedy, got sick of driving to western Pennsylvania every summer in order to take part in a camp program there. Barbara, our daughter, Becky, and Ruth and her son, Janis, both dwarfs, had a lot of time in the car to think about how to set up something closer to home.

For several days, everyone gets together for swimming, boating, crafts and other activities. It’s a great opportunity for kids with dwarfism to get to know other kids with their condition.

Barbara took the banner photo that appears at the top of this website at Camp CAYA in 2008. I was able to track down most of the people in the photo, and they all gave me their enthusiastic permission to use it.

This year we had the best weather in the five years of the program. I didn’t stay over, but I headed up on Saturday for a cookout, a talent show and a camp fire. It was great fun.

About Dan Kennedy

I am a professor of journalism at Northeastern University specializing in the future of local journalism at My blog, Media Nation, is online at
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