The Class of 2027 headed to Camp Homelani for their first grade-wide high school camp from September 20 to 22. The time spent at camp helped the students get to know each other through fun activities and family groups. Another focus of camp through the chapel sessions led by Christian Ministries Coordinator Charles Poore was to help the students understand what it means for Jesus to die for theirs sins on the cross.

(Left to right) Mischa Riester, Aubrey Hew, Larissa Pagano, Sophia Nguyen, Lila Tokioka, Katie Matsumoto. Photograph by Lydia Halcomb (’25)

“My favorite part of freshman camp was hanging out/talking with my friends, while also making new friends. I liked staying up late and talking about the most random things. Although this was a school activity, it was nice to talk to friends about stuff besides tests and assignments. 

Karaoke was also great, even though I didn’t really know any of the songs, because I was just jamming with my friends. It was so much fun that I got to play sports (which are NOT my strong suit) because even though I majorly failed most of the time, it was cool to get to know people better and do activities with them. I am very competitive and like to play games, so that combined with buddies to share the good time with created some good memories for me that will help make me appreciate the little amount of time I get to spend in Hawaii more. My dad is in the military, so we move a lot. This means that making good friends is very important to me because I want to spend time with them while I can and make the most of the time I spend at each school I go to. Camp was a blast, and I wish I could go again next year.”

– Mischa Riester

Ruka Furuta (far right) and friends trying to fit themselves into a hole they had to dig at the beach for a game. Photograph by Lydia Halcomb (’25)

“In chapel we sang for some time, then got into our family groups and learned about sin. We were handed packets to fill out during chapel. We also did some activities during chapel like gift wrapping. Outside of chapel was mostly independent play time which consisted of either playing volleyball, playing basketball, playing four-square, and also talking with our friends. We also went to the beach. Also some people went to see the farm animals. That was about it for the whole camp besides eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner.”

– Ruka Furuta

Mina Kwon (with peace signs) and friends try to fit themselves into a hole at the beach for a game. Photograph by Lydia Halcomb (‘23)

“The freshman camp was so fun! The karaoke we did on Thursday night was really amazing. Also the worship was so good, too. Seeing other students singing altogether, it made me feel so happy and peaceful. We did some activities with our family group. I did doughnut eating and it was so funny. It was also tasty!”

– Mina Kwon

Jeremy Giles (left) and his cabin mates hang out outside their cabin. Photograph by Lydia Halcomb (‘23)

“I had a great experience at freshman camp. My favorite part of camp or the most memorable part was when my friend went up on the stage and sang karaoke. Also it was really fun to worship together. On the first night we set up our cabins and bedding, ate dinner, and went to chapel. On the second day we had breakfast then went into devotional times and chapel. After chapel we ate lunch then competed in a relay race. After the race we went to the beach and had free time for a long time. We then had dinner and a chapel, followed by getting s’mores. Right after the s’mores we sang karaoke or did other fun things. After all the free time, we went to sleep. On the third day we got up and had breakfast, which was followed by a devotional.We then had some free time to pack up and get ready to go. After we cleaned our cabins and packed up, we left.”

– Jeremy Giles

Left to Right: Aubrey Hew, Hannah Garces, Mari Casamina, Nathaniel Guieb, Emily Ching, Maliah Flores, Leina Wong. Photograph by Lydia Halcomb (‘23)

“I loved the fellowship at camp. Everyone in the grade just comes together to play, worship, sing, and open coconuts. Everything you do at camp just becomes a core memory. I must say that another memorable part was karaoke night, specifically when our classmate, Austin Faildo, sang his song. “

– Leina Wong

Silas Halcomb (center) and other freshman boys take a break after playing basketball. Photograph by Lydia Halcomb (‘23)

“My favorite part of camp was just being together as a grade. I distinctly remember one of my friends and I going outside and looking at the stars. We were just talking about life and I remember thinking that the moment was so surreal. I also remember playing basketball with my friends and how it was the best time I have had with them in a long time. I really enjoyed camp because of the chapels too, since it was time just to get to know the people in your family group well. I really liked worshiping in the chapel because all of my friends were there worshiping too. I overall would rate camp a 10/10 because I had a great time.”

– Silas Halcomb

(Left to right) Alaina Young and Kate Ragain wait for their turn to get their meal in the cafeteria. Photograph by Lydia Halcomb (‘23)

“I really loved making new friends and stepping outside of my comfort zone.”

– Alaina Young

The Hamaguchi family group take a selfie at chapel. Photograph by Lydia Halcomb (‘23)

“My favorite part of camp was getting to hang out with my friends. That’s probably the answer every other student is giving, but as a new student at HBA, it was really important to me that I got to hang out with new people and build good friendships with them. I loved talking to them and laughing with them while sitting on the chairs by the beach. At my old school, the friendships I made with my classmates were something I treasured and going to camp felt like an opportunity to be able to gain new friendships that were just as strong. Along with hanging out with my friends, I also enjoyed the chapels and especially the worship that felt as if the class all had a connection with each other. Overall, freshman camp was amazing and I am very glad I got the opportunity to participate in it this year.”

– Faith Matsukado

“My favorite part of camp was singing a solo during Karaoke and eating s’mores on the second night. It was really fun, and we must’ve had at least 50 people in the pavilion who were all singing for 2 hours, and I feel like it was a really great class bonding time. I sang a solo of “Love Story” by Taylor Swift into the microphone on stage, and it was amazing to see around 30 other classmates just dancing and screaming even though I had already been jumping around for 45 minutes so I was singing out of breath. I was super shocked because I didn’t think anyone would like it. The s’mores outside the pavilion were also really fun because you could eat your s’mores and at the same time you could listen to everyone singing.”

-Verily Coryell

“At camp, we had many different activities to do. A lot of our time was spent outside where we could play games and sports with our classmates. I had a chance to speak with people I haven’t really gotten a chance to before, and I made new acquaintances. I also got to know my new advisors, as this is my first year in high school with these teachers. The most active I ever got was when we did the relay race around the camp. And I also enjoyed chapel time with my family group, getting to know the members as well as the advisor.”

-Nina Magtoto