YMCA Camp Ockanickon
Camp Matollionequay
& Lake Stockwell

Posts made in January, 2012

Posted by on Jan 30, 2012

Heellllooooooo Camp! It’s that time of year (I can’t believe it!) when we start our hiring process for the summer! Many of our staff already sent in applications! If you’re interested in working (or at least you think you might be) please complete an application and fax, email, mail or drop off it off by February 3rd. And if you don’t think you’re returning this summer, take a look at some of the awesome things we have going on for Summer 2012….maybe we can change your mind! • 3 new Villages are added • The Landsports field is having a sprinkler system installed! • Stockwell will be using both Bette’s Beach and Family Swim Center all day! • Pomona Lodge will be the Explorers “Hub” – can be used for program space and cooking programs. • There will be a brand new playground at Cherokee Beach! Thank you so much for all that you do, Staff – can’t wait for Summer...

Read More »

What Inspires You?

Posted by on Jan 29, 2012

Why do you get out of bed and go to school or work 5 days a week?  Why do you volunteer for a local charity?  Why do you go for a 3 mile run every day, even when it is raining outside?  Why do you pull your car over when you see a turtle crossing the road and help him to the other side?  Why do you pick up someone else’s litter when you go for a walk in the woods?  Why do we do all of the things we do every day? Sometimes we just do things without thinking about why we do them.  During the winter months, I spend a lot of time in Headquarters putting together schedules, figuring out camper retention rates, going to camp fairs, processing applications and setting up interviews, and generally focusing on what is right in front of me.  I can sometimes lose sight of the fact that if I do all of these things really well, I will be able to enjoy seeing thousands of smiles looking back at me on the faces of campers, staff , and parents during our summer months.  Even though that is what inspires me, I I don’t always think about it when I am involved in a tedious task that is nowhere near as fun as playing Carpetball with Kevin Sherman, or watching Griffith DiSabato play the air drums at Winter Camp, or being amazed by the sportsmanship that the Red Team and the Black team showed one another at Color War. I was reminded of all the things that make Camp great over this past Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.  I attended the Northeast Y Camp Conference at the Frost Valley YMCA with Rich Rupert, Lynn Passarella, Joe Elliott, Rich Rinaldi, Dave Kaubin, and over 200 other Y Camp Staffers from all over the Northeast.  We spent 3 days talking about nothing but CAMP!  It was awesome!  Besides sending 1 email, I didn’t look at a computer the whole time I was away.  We shared new program ideas, talked about different staff training sessions, and attended workshops led by some of the smartest Camp folks in the business.  It reminded me why our work is so important and inspired me to get through all of Winter paperwork so we can be ready to have a terrific Camp season this summer.  I have a lot of work to do before Session 1 starts, but it will be well worth it once the campers arrive!!! Brent Birchler Boys Camp...

Read More »

A thought of the day…

Posted by on Jan 26, 2012

The carrot, the egg, and the coffee bean A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed that, as one problem was solved, a new one arose. Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to a boil. In the first, she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and in the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil, without saying a word. In about twenty minutes, she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl. Turning to her daughter, she asked, “Tell me, what do you see?” “Carrots, eggs, and coffee,” the young woman replied. The mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. She then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. Finally, she asked her to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma. The daughter then asked, “What does it mean, mother?” Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity – boiling water – but each reacted differently. The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior. But, after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened! The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water. “Which are you?” the mother asked her daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?” Think of this: Which am I? Am I the carrot that seems strong but, with pain and adversity, do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength? Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit but, after a death, a breakup, or a financial hardship, does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart? Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and...

Read More »

Winter Blues…

Posted by on Jan 23, 2012

It’s cold, rainy and there’s even a little bit of snow on the ground right now at Camp Ockanickon…but we are already thinking about SUMMER! Lake Stockwell Day Camp has some pretty awesome things going on right now – even in the middle of January….. We’re working on a new schedule for the summer, getting ready for our first Open House of the season (which is March 18th…come visit!), deciding where to put our BRAND NEW water park inflatable, picking out an awesome new playground and watching a sprinkler system go in at the Stockwell Landsports Field! Please stop by to see some of the amazing things we have going on at Camp 🙂 Be sure to bring your family and tell your friends about our Open Houses that are coming up on the following Sunday afternoons from 1 – 4 pm – We can wait to see you at Camp! Open Houses – March 18th, April 15th, May 20th and June...

Read More »

10k Mudrun

Posted by on Jan 21, 2012

Time to start getting pumped up for the 2nd edition of the ABF 10K Mudrun! Last night I had the chance to meet up with Chad Mason, the creator of the 10K Mudrun at a volunteer meeting at the Above and Beyond studio. When I walked into the meeting, there was over 30 volunteers waiting to sign-up to help with this event. After the meeting, I spoke with Chad about all the new obstacles he was planning on putting together. Chad promises to have an even more extreme race course for all those mudders in 2012! Interested? Then head to  http://abfmudrun.com/ to register or for more info! See you in...

Read More »
Contact Us