Congratulations to our two 2018 essay contest winners!

Each year, Camp Pocono Trails invites those “up to the challenge” to submit a 500 word “Imagine Me” essay for a 9-week Campership at our spectacular camp. This year Kameron and Leah are our winners and we couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome them to camp this summer! We were moved by their essays and look forward to helping them achieve their healthy goals. Here are their essays:


Hello, my name is Kameron. I am 11 years old and I live in Texas. My brother is 13 very tall & slim. I really would like to be able to attend Camp Pocono Trails so that I can lose weight, get fit, and feel better about myself. One of the things I would like to be when I get older is a NFL football player and a lawyer. My dream is to be a quarterback but everyone tells me that I will only be a lineman or a guard because I am so big. I enjoy playing sports but I think that my weight slows me down. It sometimes makes me sad when other kids talk about me because of the way that I look. My mom, brother, & pops are fit and slim, but I am not. I would like to be normal like them one day. I think that when I get upset or angry I like to eat things that are not so healthy for me, but they make me feel better when I do. I do not want to continue to be known as the big kid, or fat. When my mom showed me the DVD, it hurt my feelings at first because I thought that my mom just wanted to send me to a fat camp and that she thought I was fat like everybody else. I went to my room and started to think about what I saw on the video and thought that if I could lose 50 pounds that kids would not make fun of me anymore. My mom then told me that she was only trying to help me get fit and healthy and she knows how much I want to be a quarterback. I was not mad at her anymore. I really want to be able to show everyone that I can be not fat anymore. It looks like this camp could really help me get to where I would like to be. I really would like to be healthy and build muscle. Most of all I just want to be able to come back to school and be smaller and for no one to make fun of me anymore. If I am able to go here for the summer I think that it can change my life. I want to be able to do sports without being out of breath or being made fun of because I cannot run as fast as the other kids because I weigh more than they do. It does not feel good to be known as the biggest kid in the class. I just want to be normal and not fat. I hope that you choose me for this camp, it will be really good if I can come to to this camp and help me lose weight. I know God will answer my prayer if this is what he wants me to do. I will just pray about it.


It’s truly the scariest feeling – seeing the number that has always defined me steadily increasing year after year, and I don’t know how to stop it. I’m terrified of that number, because I know it will eventually break both my body and my self esteem. This is my third attempt at applying for Camp Pocono Trails, and I hope it finally works. I am now fourteen years old, and I have begun my freshman year of high school. Over this past summer, I had the amazing accomplishment of making my varsity team. However, the achievement didn’t last long. Within the first month of practice, I could already feel the strain it was taking on my body. The two hour practices twice a day were extremely difficult for me to handle. Eventually, the pain I was experiencing in my knees became too bad to ignore. At first, I didn’t do anything; I just kept playing. For a while, the pain in my knees went away, but it wasn’t long before it came back. My mom took me to the orthopedist and they told me to get an MRI. When the results came back, it wasn’t good. The scan showed that I had tears in both of my meniscuses and, ultimately, my first high school season was ended then and there. If I didn’t weigh as much as I did, the strain on my knees would have been much less, and the injury would have been less likely to happen. However, I have no idea where to start. Not knowing where to start is a common problem everyone faces. It shouldn’t matter if l’m “only” 190 pounds. I need just as much help with learning how to be healthy as a kid who weighs 250 pounds. It’s so frustrating to be told you aren’t fat enough or thin enough to do something It seems as if everything I want to do with my life just isn’t possible because I’m considered to be stuck in the middle, but I AM OBESE. My friend George made it into this camp one summer, and I saw how much it helped him, so I know being able to attend Camp Pocono Trails would change my life immensely, and I am ready for that challenge!


Two lucky children (one male and one female) will win a nine-week sleep-away camp experience this summer (called a “Campership”) at New Image Camp’s Pocono Trails location in Reeders, PA. New Image Camp helps overweight children lose weight and build self-esteem in a fun, nurturing and healthy environment. The retail value of a nine-week Campership for two campers is $26,760.

The New Image Camp Contest is open to children ages 7-18, who are legal residents of the 48 contiguous United States or the District of Columbia.


The Official Contest dates will be from now thru May 25, 2019. Transportation will be provided for each Winner to and from the camp at select drop-off and pick-up locations. All other transportation is the responsibility of the winners.


Entrants will submit an official entry form and a written essay of no more than 500 words, typed and double-spaced, titled “Imagine Me! I’m Up for the Challenge at Camp Pocono Trails.” The Contest will be judged by a panel of experts based on elements including compelling nature of the story, clarity and creativity. Essay entries must be accompanied by a photograph.

Entry form must be signed by entrant and his or her parent or legal guardian. No part of the entries will be returned to the sender, and the entries will become the property of New Image Camp.