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So far Brent has created 99 blog entries.

Quotes From Our Past

By |2014-09-04T00:57:49-04:00September 4th, 2014|

In 1925 and 1926, Ockanickon's leadership was looking for a permanent home for the camp. After finding the Medford site, they designed a pamphlet to share with potential donors. In addition to a description of camp's first 20 years and why a permanent site was necessary, they included some quotes from previous campers and other prominent YMCA supporters. The pamphlet was dubbed "Acres for Character." Their words still ring true today. "The organized summer camp is America's most significant contribution to the educational system of the world." Dr. Charles Eliot President Emeritus Harvard Univerity "The Young Men's Christian Association through [...]

Ocky Superheroes

By |2014-08-26T22:38:54-04:00August 26th, 2014|

I cannot say enough about the amazing staff that I had the honor of working with this summer. These guys were just so dedicated to making a tremendous experience for every single camper that came through our gates from Session 1 through Session 6. They truly embodied the phrase from the old days, "the other fellow first." They put the needs of others before their own for 9 weeks straight and did so with a smile on their face and never-ending enthusiasm. Many people talk about the "young generation" as kids who want things for themselves right now: the job, [...]

Challenge Course Philosophy

By |2014-08-11T23:08:32-04:00August 11th, 2014|

“Never believe that a few caring people can’t change the world. For, indeed, that’s all who ever have.” I have had the fortunate honor of being the Challenge Course Program Coordinator for the past three years. Over those three years I have had sixteen staff members work on my team and countless others come and lend a hand when needed. This year I have watched campers who traditionally did not do well with high elements push past their fears and boundaries and achieve something that three years ago they did not think was possible. I would love to say that [...]

Tales from the Trail

By |2014-07-31T22:44:28-04:00July 31st, 2014|

Camp is all about allowing campers the ability to push themselves outside of their comfort zone and experience new things. I am fortunate enough to facilitate our Rangers program here at camp, which involves different adventure trips for our oldest campers. Our 14-16 year olds have the chance to rock climb, canoe in white water, hike the Appalachian Trail, geocache, rappel, and much more. More importantly however, while they are out on their adventure they are learning life lessons and self accountability. Each one of our trip programs takes a waterproof group journal with them to use however they fit. [...]

Ocky/Matolly Olympics

By |2014-07-09T14:22:55-04:00July 9th, 2014|

Session 2 has always been my favorite here at camp. As a camper it was the session I normally attended. To me, session 2 always means one thing: Olympics! The Ocky Olympics forged a special day in my heart my first summer on camp in 2004 as an Algonquin camper. That summer I was one member of the two member German Bocci team. We went on to take the gold that day. My partner was none other than Donny Palmer, one of the current Ranger Directors. It's a memory that Donny and I talk about to this day. That day [...]

Without Camp…

By |2014-05-29T00:00:10-04:00May 29th, 2014|

Where would I be without camp? If I really think about that question, I'd have to say that my life would be so entirely different that I can't imagine what it would be like. I obviously would not be a camp director if I had never attended Ockanickon as a boy. I wouldn't know how to do a J-Stroke in a canoe. I would know very few of my dearest friends since I met most of them at camp. I would not have given my mom a jewelry box for Mother's Day when I was 10 or 11 that I [...]

All Good Things!

By |2013-07-05T12:17:24-04:00July 5th, 2013|

Man, do I love Summer Camp!!!  It is never easy, but it is always lots of fun!  The staff have been working incredibly hard over the past month to get Camp ready and set up, to get everyone properly trained and prepared, and in recent weeks, to deliver an exceptional Camp experience to our boys.  I have been really pleased with the first 2 weeks of our season.  We were hit by lots of thunderstorms during Session 1 and the start of Session 2, but the time spent in cabins during the storms seemed to be some of the most [...]

Thought of the Day

By |2013-06-14T20:16:02-04:00June 14th, 2013|

I'd like to think this is what happens at Camp... "Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of the rest or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance…Few are willing to brave the disapproval of their fellows, the censure of their colleagues, the wrath of their society.  Moral courage is a rarer commodity than bravery in battle or [...]

Ad Staff Training

By |2013-06-07T21:56:59-04:00June 7th, 2013|

My summer officially begins on Monday!  Our Village Chiefs, Program Directors, Ranger Instructors, Activity Directors, and CIT/LIT Directors all move onto Camp and spend the week preparing their activity areas, learning supervisory skills, and beginning the process of building our 2013 staff team!  We're happy to welcome back many returning leadership staff members and quite a few who are going to be in new positions this summer.  It is going to be a very busy week packed with a lot different training sessions and challenges.  I'm really excited to work with this outstanding group of young men and women and [...]

Fragrant Palm Leaves

By |2013-06-01T17:45:08-04:00June 1st, 2013|

Check out the link below to learn some neat history about Camp.  Famous Buddhist Monk, Thich Nhat Hanh, spent the summer of 1962 living in Pomona Lodge and living as part of the Boys Camp community.  Thich Nhat Hanh went on to author over 100 books and to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1967 by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  The first chapter of his book, "Fragrant Palm Leaves," describes his experiences at Camp Ockanickon.  Enjoy! Brent Birchler Boys Camp Director

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