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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Camp Wa Wa Segowea 2011 Summer season is underway!

Children are enjoying Camp Wa Wa Segowea once again as the summer season has begun!

The Summer Program staff underwent serious training for the week prior, with many hours spent on First Aid, CPR, Life Guarding and program training. It was a cold, rainy week as well, so the camp fireplaces were being used quite a bit! The staff and some volunteers all were pitching in and working together all week long, right up to the last minute, making sure the camp was ready for the kids arrival. And sure enough, the weather eased up from the rain and welcomed the kids arrival with a beautiful sun shiny day!

The kids did arrive and with the sound of the footlockers hitting the cabin floors to the first basketball bouncing in the lodge, Camp had begun! The new staff, that had closely bonded during the staff week, were really excited to see the first kids arrive and show them around camp. Campers chose the skill classes they were interested in and all their medical forms were handed in to Camp Director Kat. Some kids even picked up a new water bottle or camp sweat shirt at the Camp Wa Wa Store. After the parents left and the tours were completed, it was time for the swim tests for all campers and then a bit of free time! Some ping pong matches were underway and some basketball drills were being executed. The frisbees also made their way out of the box and were getting thrown around.
Camp was officially open!

For more 2011 Summer Camp pictures, be sure to look at the Facebook Page and Friend us while you're there! But in the meantime, here's some pictures from Staff Week and the first days of camp. Thanks to Ed, Annie and Kat for the pictures too!

Lifeguard training.

Team building at its best!

Playing the "Ha-Ha" game.

Kids arrive!

Smitty showing the principles of Ping Pong.

The games and reading area of the lodge.

Card playing on the side porch.

Camp Director Kat collecting all the forms.

Playing an introduction game.

Another greeting game!

It's Open Boating!

A beautiful day for a sail.

Row boats, canoes and kayaks too!

In the Arts & Crafts area.

The fishing expedition has begun!

A little afternoon soccer...

Swimming in the C-Dock

Program Director Frank writing the welcome sign.

and Lauren enhancing it!

Thanks to all for assisting in getting camp underway for the Summer season of 2011!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

It's coming together at Camp Wa Wa Segowea!

With 5 days left before the first session starts, it is truly all coming together now. The camp staff has arrived and is getting the place ready for kids. The Camp Director, Kat Fitzpatrick, is busy as the beavers on our pond, constantly in motion, moving from one task to another with a close eye on everything, making sure all is just right when the first session begins! But Kat is not alone. Frank Carivan, the Program Director (and camp alumni) is getting the camp prepared for all the activities to take place during the summer. With guitar in hand, he can't wait till the first Campfire of the season to play and sing all the great camp songs. Annie and Derek, the girls and boys unit directors, are coming to Camp Segowea for their first summer, and are bringing their great summer camp experiences with them to pass on to the new and returning campers of Wa Wa. They're already right in the mix of things pitching in with all those fun "beginning of camp" tasks. The summer staff is there as well, spending this week getting to know their co-workers, undergoing training and tidying the place up. They even manage to have a little fun too! One thing in common that they all have is they're anxiously waiting for the arrival of kids on Sunday! But until then, they'll be busy, just like this past weekend.

It was the last work weekend before the kids do arrive and we had a wonderful showing and participation of Camp alumni, current summer staff and Friends of Segowea alike. And we got quite a bit accomplished! The swim docks were put together and are in position. A new screen system was installed in the dining hall. Camper cabin roofs were worked on. The Nature Lodge/Arts & Crafts building was stained as well as having the windows repaired in it. The Camp kitchen was also worked on, making sure everything was clean and in proper order. And a fence was installed around the foundation structure at the top of the hill that will eventually be the new McComb Lodge/Dining Hall/Welcome Center (which we're still raising money for). The Saturday workday was a huge success and continued on to the Open House on Sunday. More families came on the Open House then were expected, and all were delighted in what they saw even though we were still cleaning up the place! From one parent, "This is just like the camp I went to when I was a kid and I'm really happy this type of camp is still around!"

A special thanks to all the alumni, staff and Friends of Segowea that participated on this past weekend. From helping to clean, to assisting with meals and bringing clothes for the underprivileged, books for the reading program, and seeds to plant, it is a total group effort to keeping that Segowea magic alive for future generations of Wa Wa's to come. We couldn't do it without you! From one of the current staff- "From my camp experience, I've never seen alumni come out and participate in the work and really dig in and get the job done, especially all the dirty work!"

Here's some pictures from the past weekend. Thanks to all that took them!

Norm taking a ride.

Improved drainage ditch.

Chris and Frank on screen duty.

John measuring carefully.

Jeff and Darlene making sure they're put together correctly.

Richard doing the Two-Step?

Cabin sitting!

On top of Mohican, all covered with nails, we find Derek & Sarah...

...and Lisa on her knees (removing the roofing nails).

Laura on staining duty.

Liz pausing to chat with Louise & Wren.

Guard dock in the water.

with Max doing the guard duty.

Tom on Dock Duty (again).

Future camper Wren supervising from the porch.

Moving the docks in.

and moving the mud pile.

It's a team effort!

And naturally Norm is on top of things...

Taking a break for lunch...

With some lakeside dining.

Amy helping out with breakfast on Sunday morning.

After the work is done, a little refreshment!
A couple of swimmers on the return trip from across the lake.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

It's happening in the Kitchen at Camp Wa Wa Segowea!

At this time last year, there were many construction projects happening at the same time all over camp. It seemed like there were things to do everywhere and little time to get it all done before camp started. There were private contractors here and there with Norm running from one project to another and at the top of the list were two extremely important ones. The first was the camp bathrooms and shower house known as Mount Beacon. It really needed an extreme makeover and it got just that! There was the revamping of the shower area as well as the brand new deck and staircase. A lot of money was spent on it (raised through the Capital Campaign) and it was well worth it. Now it's been called one of the nicest places on the camp grounds. There's even a nice view of the lake!

Mount Beacon!

The other location getting a makeover was the camp kitchen. Until the new Welcome Center/Dining Hall/New Kitchen is built at the top of the hill, (Still raising money for that!) the original kitchen would have to be used. So the decision was made to revitalize it! The entire floor was redone to include a better drainage system, some of the old equipment was fixed up, some new equipment was purchased, all to get ready for the summer. There was a new exhaust system for the stove that had to be installed on top of everything. One other remaining factor was getting the new walk-in cooler and freezer to camp and installed and turned on! All of this while all the other construction projects were happening. Needless to say, miracles truly occurred at camp to get it all done! It was into the first week of camp before everything was completed and usable. So how did meals get prepared in the meantime? There was staff there at that time as well as volunteers to get all the work done and they needed to get fed. Along with the help of Adele and Jui Ling, it was all in the capable hands of one Chris Griffith, head chef! Using several refrigerators (located throughout camp) and the kitchen at Hart Lodge, Chris and Adele and Jui Ling were able to prepare more than enough great food until the newly revamped kitchen was operational. It was yet another time in the history of Wa Wa where things get done regardless of all the obstacles.

Hart Lodge Kitchen

The Camp Kitchen in May 2010

Under construction in June 2010.

Getting better!

Moving equipment in.

Starting to take shape.

The Walk-in Cooler arrived and was installed.

And the kitchen is completed!

One of the vital places at camp is the kitchen so we are very pleased that Chris has agreed to return as head chef once again! The news gets even better as Adele is also returning! Three meals get made there every day, plus snack time, so rest assured, excellent food will be made at camp once again.

I had the chance to have a quick conversation with Chris and he's very excited to return. Here's that conversation-

What makes you come to camp?

(Chris) I Enjoy the outdoor/camping environment, providing kids with healthy food I find rewarding, works well with my school schedule.

What do you do during the school year?

(Chris) I'm a Chef / food service manager at a boarding school grades 9-12.

Why are you a chef?

(Chris) I’ve always enjoyed cooking; I’ve combined my passion with my career

Least favorite part of being a chef?

(Chris) All the schelping & long hours

Most favorite part of being a chef?

(Chris) Creativity, each day is different.

So how did it go last summer?

(Chris) Great/Fantastic; especially considering what stage the kitchen was in on June 15th 2010

Any issues come up?

(Chris) The one that I most remember; no walk-in cooler or gas stove for the first week of camp.

Who's returning from last year in the kitchen?

(Chris) So far its Adele & me.

What did you do when not cooking last year?

(Chris) Fish, Fish, & more Fishing!

Best memory of last summer?

(Chris) Being apart of the WA WA Team. Opening a camp kitchen from scratch.

What are some things on the menu for this summer?

(Chris) Chilled strawberry soup, pizza, homemade cookies & rolls, BBQ, Garden Veggies.

Any new items?

(Chris) Yes, it’s a surprise.

Will there be vegetarian options at the meals?

(Chris) Always at every meal

Favorite thing to make at camp?

(Chris) A smile on a kids face.

Rumor is that you'll be having a Cooking class. What will you be doing in it? What will you be making?

(Chris) I’m not sure, will have to see what the campers want to cook.

What are you looking forward to at camp?

(Chris) Another great summer with good “Eats” and happy campers!

Chris and Adele

Welcome back!