GMS Volleyball Camp in Historic Anaconda, MT
Anaconda, Montana: American Town
500 miles north of Salt Lake, we find ourselves surrounded by foreboding mountains in the heart of a shrinking former industrial center that was once home to one of the biggest copper smelters in the West. The town comes with everything one would expect to find in a former up-and-coming city whose most promising days were in the 1950’s and 60’s; an art-deco movie theater, the likes of which you will never lay eyes on; a public square that hosts baseball games in the Summer, and is flooded and freezed-over for ice skating in the Winter; and a tree-lined main street replete with restored circa-1900 mansions. (Many of said mansions are said to be haunted – and our hosts were kind enough to let us stay in one of them)
The story of the closing of the smelter and the presumed vanishing of Anaconda, however, we found to be premature. The kind people of Anaconda, while ever-decreasing in their numbers, were energetic, optimistic and great to work with. Gold Medal Squared was in its 11th year at Anaconda H.S. in 2009, and we had a terific turnout of athletes experienced and inexperienced.
Like most smaller schools, the volleyball players of AHS formed the nucleus of most of the school’s other teams, as well; softball, basketball, track, etc. These athletes had an insatiable appetite for sport. One day, after finishing camp at about 4:30, the girls raced to a summer-league softball game which lasted until about 7, then back to the gym where they had spent the entire day for basketball open gym which ended at 9.