Update: July 19-26th

Hello again everyone,

Well last week certainly blew by. You could also say that we are really blowing through this summer. Ok, enough with the bad puns. Actually, puns, unfortunately.... (well, maybe secretly I love them).... are a huge part of our culture here. A lot of puns get made in a week. Some good. Some groaners. But there are a lot of puns.

But seriously, last week was insane in regards to the weather. A lot of wind. Thunder storms, rain, hail, and tornado watches were all the rage. Assistant Director Collin (Deuce), Seasonal Leader Sidney (Sully), and I watched a funnel cloud go right around the camp. No serious damage was done to the camp and all campers were well taken care of. After the storm we sent an email to all of the parents of day and overnight camp and of the CLTD's to assure them that everyone was safe. During the storm Camp Chestermere took immediate steps to ensure that all children were safe and cared for. The initial warning came while Overnight Campers were having lunch and Day Campers were in siesta. Seasonal and Year Round Leadership team members quickly met to develop a plan for if a tornado were to head towards Camp Chestermere. All Day Campers were brought to their activity rooms and all Overnight Campers were brought to the Chap to watch a movie. The idea being that if the storm intensified that we would have two large groups of people who could be transitioned to a safer place if needed. After everyone was in these locations, Assistant Director Collin Daws and myself personally searched every building to ensure they were empty. If a tornado was to hit, the plan was to move all children and everyone on site to the basement of the lodge known at camp as Down Under. Down Under has no windows and is the only basement space large enough to hold a large amount of people. This would have been the best space to wait out a tornado should it have hit the camp.

Thankfully however, Camp Chestermere only experienced some rain and a small amount of hail. The Day Campers played games, did face painting, baked goodies and were involved in some other activities while Overnight Campers watched a movie. All campers were safe and cared for. Again, I would like to extend a thank you to all staff who did a great job in looking after the campers. Special mention should be made of Assistant Director Collin Daws who stood in the middle of the field during the storm watching the clouds, Office Manager and Assistant Office Manager Chantel and Amanda for fielding many phone calls from parents and to the CLTD leaders for getting the basement of the lodge ready for a possible large influx of children.

It would be a huge understatement to say we are done with the severe weather patterns we have seen. Also, bad weather affects some of the programs we are able to offer. It is really difficult to be outside and doing anything on the water when the weather is bad. So many of the kids who come to camp come for power tubing and it is disappointing when they are unable to do this. As I write this we have kids out on the water but it is not super warm. I am missing the days of lack of sleep because it was so hot. Hot weather just helps for making a better camp experience. While kids still have a ton of fun, sun helps. So we are hoping for some nicer weather for the rest of the summer.

We also had another two kids here this week from the Gateway program. They volunteered in the kitchen and were a huge help. Camp Chestermere is really benefitting from the new partnerships we are forming with various other agencies around the city. Please feel free to contact camp Chestermere if you would like to work with us in any capacity or if you know of someone who may be a good fit.

In regards to working with Camp Chestermere, I received a message from Kim Fontaine this week. Kim works with Deloitte. Deloitte” is the brand under which tens of thousands of dedicated professionals in independent firms throughout the world collaborate to provide audit, consulting, financial advisory, risk management, tax, and related services to select clients. They are looking to serve some local businesses on a serve day in October. So, on October 2, 2015, we will have approximately 30 volunteers from Deloitte coming to volunteer to do some work around the camp. I just love how so many people volunteer to help us do what we do. For more information on this company please go to http://www2.deloitte.com/ca/en.html.

Last week Overnight Camp was ages 11 - 15. We had 102 campers in Day Camp, 120 in Overnight and 17 CLTD's. AWESOME. I really hope this becomes our normal for every week which will then lead us to expansion plans for the future. Already we have some kids on waiting lists and finding places for all of our staff to sleep is becoming an issue. But these are good issues to have. Expansion is a dream of Camp Chestermere that we believe will become a reality.