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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year from YMCA Camp Wa Wa Segowea!

The year of 2011 is ticking down quickly on this last day.  We're grateful for all the wonderful campers that attended camp in the summer of 2011 and we're really anxious to see what 2012 has in store for us!
One (and only one) resolution we are making here, is that we resolve to continue to provide a safe, fun, awesome camping experience for all who attend!

There's no snow up at camp believe it or not, but the winter is only beginning and we're sure to see some before we know it.   Harmon Pond is frozen however in some areas, from 1/2 inch to 3 inches deep.   The beavers, taking advantage of the warmer weather, continue to chew away some small trees and some not so little ones.   Here's a few pictures from the last couple of days of 2011 at camp.

                                                                Some beaver work.

Their teeth must be really sharp!

Quite the collection of shavings!

Norm admiring their work.

Not the beavers this time. On this one, it's Mother Nature.

Norm, practicing his Jedi mind tricks.

Testing the thickness of the ice.

"It's about 3 inches out here."

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Help spread the word of Camp Wa Wa Segowea!

The end of the year is approaching quickly and while we're grateful for everything that happened in 2011, we're really looking forward to the summer of 2012!   In just six months (and a few days), it will be summer once again, with campers having the ability to swim every day, choose their skill classes, (learning something new or brushing up on a favorite) and of course, enjoying the outdoors with new friends!   Camp Director Kat Fitzpatrick is busy at work making sure more and more kids know all about our favorite camp.   She's out talking to people around the Capital District as well as around the Berkshires, making sure they are aware of all the benefits of attending Camp Wa Wa Segowea.  Help her out and spread the word to friends and family!   

Since we re-opened in 2010, we've increased the number of campers enjoying camp by 76% and want to increase that even more for the summer of 2011!   If one person or family reading this blog told 5 new people about camp, it would reach over 3,000 people!   According to The Word of Mouth Marketing Association, WOMMA (yes there is such an organization!), Word of Mouth Marketing is "The only marketing based on genuinely passionate people. Word of mouth marketing is the most honest form of marketing, building upon people’s natural desire to share their experiences with family, friends, and colleagues".  So we're asking that you and/or your child share yours/their experience with others.  WOMMA also says- Only honest marketers with confidence in their products dare engage in word of mouth marketing -- because it will backfire if the promise of your marketing message isn't backed up by reality. Once you give people a voice, they will tell the true story of your company, good or bad.  We say with confidence, that summer camps (like Camp Wa Wa Segowea) have many benefits, some you experience right away and some occur years later.   For example, Psychology Today Magazine sees summer camp beneficial to kids as they get ready for college.

We've been hearing from some of you which camp traditions you remember and thanks for those few that replied!  We are looking for many more as there's a lot of them out there!  We encourage you to take a few minutes and send them in.  Please send us an email- either or  

We've heard from a few of you (in person!) at our gift wrapping sessions at Barnes & Noble in Poughkeepsie.  We chatted with a counselor from the 70's, a camper from the 60's and other staff members from other decades (80's, 90's, 00's and 2011 too).  Camp Alum Kristen Nicholson has been the leader in this fundraising event for a few years now and it gets better every year!  This year we accomplished our goal and raised enough money to send a child to camp and had a lot of fun doing it.  Take a look at the pictures below and video too of the "Wa Wa Tones".   Thanks to all that volunteered and came out to contribute their time, money and wrapping abilities!  Thanks to Barnes & Noble for letting us do this!

A couple of new things with the blog- you can subscribe via email now, so you'll always know when a new post is here.  Simply look at the top of the blog where you can submit your email address.  When there is a new post, it shows right up in your email inbox.  Another new item, some Segowea pictures are now viewable on Flickr!   You'll find the link also at the top of the blog.  Stay tuned for more additions!

There's still time to get the popular 2012 Camp Calendar!  It's very simple to get and reasonably priced too.  They're just $10 and available now at  Time is winding down, so get your order in today!  

Here's the Wa Wa Tones and some pictures from the Gift wrappings-

All money raised went towards camperships.

We gift wrapped a shopping basket, proving we could wrap anything!

The Buttons putting together and decorating the candy canes we gave away.

Minna and Katie in their "canoe"

"I said Row faster!"

Mike showing his wrapping abilities.

Shannon lending a hand.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Have a Happy Thanksgiving from Camp Wa Wa Segowea!

As this time of year reminds us, we have quite a lot to be thankful for here at Camp Wa Wa Segowea. We are thankful for the mountain laurel that blooms at the beginning of every summer.  We are thankful for the abundant wildlife that call Segowea home (even the beavers!).  We are thankful for the change of seasons, so we see the buds in spring after a long winter, the crisp colors of fall on our trees and shrubs, the freshly fallen new snow in winter and the whole season of summertime when the place just comes alive. We are thankful for the caretakers of our land who are concerned with our every day issues and see to it they are taken care of.  We are thankful for our visitors who come to observe and partake in the most beautiful place on the planet.  And of course, we're thankful for the children, both present and past, that attended our wonderful camp and carried on the wonderful traditions that have taken place here.  Thank you!

It is the holiday season and we have a few ways to assist you in your holiday shopping and gift wrapping!

The 2011 Camp Wa Wa Segowea calendars are in and ready to be shipped to you!  It's an inexpensive way to see Camp all year round and money raised will go towards the benefit of Camp.  (Just $10!) Go to the Friends of Segowea website and get yours today.

Books are always a popular item for gift ideas, and once again, Camp Alum, Kristen has organized a fundraiser for camp in the place where she works,  Barnes & Noble,  at 2518 South Road in Poughkeepsie, NY.    In previous years, this same camp fundraiser was done on one day, but this year we're excited to have two whole days to raise money for camp!  Saturday, December 3rd and Saturday, December 10th, from 9 am to 11 pm, the gift wrapping table will be ready for you.  Simply purchase your books and have them gift wrapped right there too!  All donations for gift wrapping will go directly to the benefit of camp.  Also, if you are able to help wrap, either day and for any amount of time that works for you, please contact Kristen at   Hope to see you there!

As we mentioned in the previous post, we have another fundraiser for camp that you don't have to go anywhere to do.  It's "Sell Your Stuff for Segowea" where you pledge to sell one item that is cluttering up your home and donate the money to Camp Wa Wa Segowea.

Once you've decided what you'd like to sell, simply follow the schedule-
1) By December 1st, e-mail Camp Alum Sarah Mercogliano ( your plan to participate. (I plan to sell _________ for Segowea.)
2) By January 15th, complete your sale and e-mail Sarah to let her know how much you raised.
3)  Mail your check (made out to YMCA Camp Segowea) to YMCA Camp Segowea; 1872 Pilot Knob Rd.; Kattskill Bay, NY 12844.
What you get out of it is a few things, 1- that item is no longer taking up space in your home, 2- that nice warm feeling when you help out a place you care for, and 3- a nice tax write off!

Happy Thanksgiving from Camp Wa Wa Segowea!


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Camp Fundraising, Camp Registration, Camp Leadership and some Camp fun too!

It's heading into winter up at Camp Wa Wa Segowea which is usually the quiet time of year. Buildings are already closed and boarded up and supplies are stored away.  This year is no different, with the exception of the Nor'Easter that came in October!  We made it through however with no major damage and a few inches of snow.  Although Camp is quiet, Camp Happenings are just getting started!

The Official Camp calendar says it's still Autumn, so first happening is our Fall Fundraiser!  And this year, we're trying something brand new.  It's called "Sell Your Stuff For Segowea", and it's very easy to do!  Anyone can participate.  All you need is something that is cluttering up your living space!  Just pledge to sell one item that is cluttering up your home and donate the money to Camp Wa Wa Segowea.  Maybe you have some old books?  Used Electronics?  Vintage clothes? Sports Equipment? Use your creativity and sell, sell sell!  

So how would you do this?  We have a few ideas- 
1) Hosting a garage/Yard/Stoop sale
2) Taking your item(s) to specialty resale stores
3) If you're tech savvy- sell it on EBay or Craigslist!

Once you've decided what you'd like to sell, simply follow the schedule-
1) By December 1st, e-mail Camp Alum Sarah Mercogliano ( your plan to participate. (I plan to sell _________ for Segowea.)
2) By January 15th, complete your sale and e-mail Sarah to let her know how much you raised.
3)  Mail your check (made out to YMCA Camp Segowea) to YMCA Camp Segowea; 1872 Pilot Knob Rd.; Kattskill Bay, NY 12844.

Any questions? E-mail Sarah. She already raised $100 by selling her old stuff at a stoop sale!

Second on the Camp Happenings List is the Calendar itself!  Just in time for the holidays, the 2012 Camp Wa Wa Segowea Calendar is ready for your purchase.   It features 12 all new pictures taken this year of camp and makes for a great stocking stuffer!  Each calendar is just $10 with $3 shipping.  As always, all proceeds go directly to Camp Wa Wa Segowea!    Get your calendar by going to the Friends of Segowea website- and look for the Buy Now button!  If you have questions regarding the calendars, send an email to

Third on the Camp Happenings List is registering now for camp. The dates are set. All you have to do is determine which week or weeks are good for you.    Need an incentive to register now?  Well, if you register before December 15th (one month from today), you get a special limited edition YMCA Camp Wa Wa Segowea T-Shirt!  How's that for an incentive!  Register today-  There's kids signed up already and they're getting the cool T-shirt.  How about you?

Number 4 on the list is the YMCA Camp Wa Wa Segowea Leadership Rally. It was held this past Saturday in Albany at the CDY office.  It was a chance to see some camp friends, hear about the past summer, and find out what's ahead.  It was highlighted with the recognition of a few volunteers being honored with Leadership Awards.   

First honoree was Alum Ed Harvey, who Kat Fitzpatrick described as "When the red truck is here, everything is okay" (Ed drives a red truck).  "Everything I ask of him, he was right there ready to do".  Ed continues to volunteer at camp and volunteered this past summer, first as an EMT, then heading up a very popular photography class for the kids.  Congrats to Ed!  

The second honoree was someone who George said "was involved with camp for a long time, started as a camp cook and has volunteered ever since".  I can verify this fact personally as he was referring to me!   I was (and am today) very honored to be recognized by a place that means a lot to me.  Camp became part of my life back in 1981 and will remain part of it forever.   I'm following many volunteers before me and more to come after me, by looking after the place I love and to share it with as many people as possible.      George referenced my assistance with the "social media", including this very blog as well as Facebook.  What he doesn't know is, it's just as fun to write and "take care of" as I hope people take away from it.   Thank you for the honor!

The final honoree was Alum Charlie Knauss, who unfortunately,  couldn't make it to the rally.   George described him as "A classy guy and a guy full of integrity".   Charlie attended the Leadership Rally last year, and heard what the camp needed and took it to heart.  He really heard the three things anyone can do to help camp.  The first was help get kids to camp by word of mouth, second was get scholarships for kids to go to camp and third was give money to the capital campaign.  Charlie heard these ways to help camp and then proceeded to tell the camp story to others,  including one person that opened the right door to get $50,000 towards camp!   He then took on another challenge, to raise money in his area for camp scholarships worth $5,000.   He accomplished that too!   He was a camper at Segowea back in 1941, and is still involved where the camp needs it, in 2011.  Pretty good for 70 years of involvement!   Congrats to Charlie!
Each person received a nice plaque and a custom made Segowea coat! 

Here's some Leadership Rally photos.

Some attendees first-

Lily tells us what Friends of Segowea has been doing.

John gives us the latest on Smith Park Corporation.

Kat presents the first Volunteer Leadership Award to Ed Harvey.

George presenting the next award to Mike Bruns.

The two of them together.

Award Winner Charlie Knauss (taken at last years rally)

Kat shows and models the limited edition T-Shirt given for registration prior to December 15th!

Wren is so happy with his shirt and can't wait till camp starts!

Lastly, with some camp fun, we participated in National Wear Your Camp T-Shirt Day, today November 15th!  We encourage all to model those wonderful camp t-shirts and show some Wa Wa pride!  Here's some more T-Shirt pictures taken through the years of Segowea.