Happy March from Camp Otterdale!
It is wonderful to see new and returning campers registering for summer sessions. There’s a rumour circulating that some campers and parents are already counting sleeps until the beginning of their sessions! If you haven't done so already, please submit your registrations in order to secure your preferred sessions. Cabin groups do fill up quickly with the start of spring.
The new web-based registration system is proving to be a great asset in the office, but it does take longer than other years to complete a registration. Your patience is appreciated. We are asking for more information that will be beneficial to counsellors and medical staff. If you find you don’t have time to complete your registration(s) in one sitting, you can submit what you have done and come back to complete any missing information at a later time!
We are starting to get on the site to begin preparations for the summer. Maple Syrup Season is just around the corner and in a few short weeks, the sweet smell of boiling maple sap will fill the sugar shack. You will be able to purchase some Camp Otterdale syrup either at camp, in the tuc shop or through the online store. If you are in the neighbourhood when the maple run is on, please drop by to see how it’s made. I would LOVE to see you!
So, here we are! Spring is on its way! Campers are registering, the maple sap is about to start running, and I’m in the process of staffing an amazing team for a fun filled summer of 2015! On top of that, I have expanded the Pathfinders Program. Planning is underway! It all looks fantastic from my Otter Lake view!
Below you will see some information about the Pathfinders Program, the Summer Session Themes, our Open House and Otterdale 60th Summer Camp Reunion.
Enjoy the spring season! I sure am! See you soon!!
Pathfinders Program 2015
(Evolution and Change!)
The Pathfinder program originated about 6 years ago as a two week leadership camp offered in the AUG B session for 16 year old campers. It has evolved into much more. It’s now a 4 week program offered in both July and August camps. It’s available to 15 and 16 year old campers who are looking for a more challenging experience and who want to develop their leadership skills.
This exciting hands-on program enhances the Otterdale camping experience. We feel that many older campers are ready and want to be challenged offered opportunities to learn more leadership skills. We do this by providing more time and instruction to practice and perfect "hard skills" in the core program areas including canoeing, kayaking, camp skills, sailing, and windsurfing.
Becoming a Pathfinder is helpful to those campers interested in being a part of a future staff team. Being at camp for four weeks and being involved with the leadership components of the program better prepare Pathfinder campers for success as junior counsellors and new instructors. The experiences and skills learned in this program are not only applicable in our camp setting. They provide leadership skills for life.
Leadership theory (lesson planning, teaching, leadership styles) and opportunities to be leaders within the camp are key components to the Pathfinder program. Specific training includes assisting with younger camper groups at meal time and bedtime, helping to organize and run an evening program, and being an assistant instructor at activities.
A highlight of being an Otterdale Pathfinder is the mid-session canoe trip. This year the trips are three night/four days in length to beautiful Frontenac Park. Led by four of our senior staff from the Otterdale Leadership Team, the Pathfinders will plan and prepare all aspects of the trip.
We are excited about this year’s program. There is a limit of 10 boys and 10 girls per session. We welcome you to consider this exciting Leadership experience and to share the information with friends who may be interested as well!
2015 Session Themes
After pondering over the many fabulous ideas contributed from staff and campers, the session themes have been finalized. Drum roll please. They are (it’s going to be such fun):
JUL A Everything Elvis
JUL B We're going to the movies.
AUG A In the Jungle (the Mighty Jungle)
AUG B The Rooten Tooten Wild West
The session themes provide fun and creative backdrops for many of the programs throughout the session. Some of our most memorable events have been created from "idea brainstorms" during staff pre-camp training or even hours before launch. If possible, have your campers bring a costume that connects (even remotely) with the theme.
Sunday, 17 May, 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Open House...Not just for new campers!!
If you are a new Otterdale family, coming to our spring Open House is a great idea. You will have the opportunity to meet many of the staff, tour the camp and dip your feet into our lovely Otter Lake. There will be a number of activity areas set-up to try and staff available to answer all your questions. Please come and join us! We look forward to meeting you!!
If you are a returning Otterdale family, the Open House can be a great outing to reconnect with friends and stretch your legs in the outdoors. We encourage you to bring friends or other family members to see what camp is all about. Please join us and make a day of it with the family.
Camper and staff alumni? You are always a part of the Otterdale family! We would love to see you too!
The 60th Camp Otterdale Reunion Weekend
Set aside 28-30 August 2015 on your calendar!
Plans are well underway for the celebration of our 60th year in camping. The aim of the reunion is to give all current and alumni campers and staff an opportunity to reconnect with camp friends on camp soil. The theme is simply "Spend Another Day at Camp". Saturday will be devoted to replicating a typical day of camp complete with activities to try, meals to eat and songs to sing. Current and alumni staff are welcome from Friday night through Sunday afternoon. Campers, old and new are welcome on Saturday from check-in until after campfire.
Registration information and details will be available soon through the camp website.