YMCA of the Pines

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So far YMCA of the Pines has created 173 blog entries.

Why a Wilderness Trip this Summer?

By |2021-02-24T09:37:46-05:00February 24th, 2021|

By Carol Yard, Wilderness Programs Director at YMCA of the Pines You may already be thinking about warmer days ahead- we certainly are!  I wanted to share some thoughts about our wilderness trips and why we believe they are a great option in the midst of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Wilderness trips are a relatively safe way for kids to get outside this summer! The expeditions take place outside in the fresh air with few to no other people around We are in a small group of 8-12 people total, including instructors We don’t interact with people outside of this [...]

Why I Choose to be a BOLD & GOLD Director

By |2021-02-02T13:06:13-05:00January 20th, 2021|

Why I Choose to be a BOLD & GOLD Director By Carol Yard, Wilderness Programs Director at YMCA of the Pines My Top 3: • I believe in the transformative power of the wilderness to heal, empower, and connect. • I believe in the people in charge of BOLD & GOLD, making decisions at a national level. I know each one personally and know them all to be people of integrity and passion. • I believe in young people—to stand up for what's right, and for the ability to adapt as they encounter new information and have new experiences. Other [...]

Camp Matocky: Re-Imagining the Summer Camp Experience in 2020

By |2020-11-09T14:03:38-05:00November 9th, 2020|

The global pandemic that rocked the world in 2020 turned the camp experience upside down. In June, when we learned with less than a month to prepare that we would be unable to operate summer sleepaway camps in New Jersey, our overnight camp directors, Charlotte Brown (Camp Matollionequay) and Matt Foran (Camp Ockanickon) pivoted and created Camp Matocky -- an extended day camp aimed at recreating the overnight camp experience. Camp Matocky ultimately earned the Harold Breene Youth Education Award from the American Camp Association New York and New Jersey in recognition of actively promoting youth development in a unique [...]

YMCA of the Pines 2020 Summer Recap and Moving Forward

By |2020-09-24T11:28:51-04:00September 24th, 2020|

September 24, 2020 Greetings from YMCA of the Pines! Now that our summer camp season has ended, I wanted to provide an update recapping the 2020 summer, and looking ahead to the 2020 – 2021 school year. 2020 SUMMER CAMP RECAP This was a unique summer, but our staff did a fantastic job collaborating and delivering impactful summer camp experiences at a time when our campers and their families needed us most. Our staff went above and beyond by developing creative ways to approach camp differently while still giving campers a sense of normalcy. We’re proud to announce that we [...]

Some Thoughts on Climbing, COVID, and Camp

By |2020-07-09T16:17:57-04:00July 9th, 2020|

By: Greg Keresztury, Chief Operating Officer At the time that I am writing this piece, we are three days into 2020 summer camp. We at YMCA of the Pines are grateful to Governor Murphy for the opportunity to provide a summer camp experience for youth this summer. Given how uncertain things looked in the spring amid the COVID-19 outbreak, we are all taking every opportunity to seize joy and enjoy each moment this summer, no matter how small. We are also thankful for the New Jersey Department of Health for the guidance provided to allow us to operate this summer [...]

Bread and Butter Quick Pickles Recipe

By |2020-05-02T22:14:03-04:00May 2nd, 2020|

From our Camp Kitchen: Bread and Butter Quick Pickles By Chef Jason Hello everyone! The following recipe is for the Bread and Butter Quick Pickles that were demonstrated in a video on our Facebook page featuring yours truly! My recipe makes quite a bit of pickles so you can feel free to halve the recipe if needed… but if you’re a fan of Bread and Butter Pickles and have the storage space, go for the whole thing! And remember, these are not intended to be jarred in the traditional sense, in a mason jar, and stored on a shelf. These [...]

An open letter to our Camp Family about why I am grateful

By |2020-04-13T17:34:39-04:00April 13th, 2020|

By Mark Dibble, CEO   An open letter to our Camp Family about why I am grateful   I’m worried about a lot of things. I’m worried about my children. I’m worried about my wife. I’m worried about my parents. I’m worried about the health and well-being of everyone I work with, everyone I love, and everyone for whom I care. I’m not worried about our future as an organization. I’m not worried because the YMCA of the Pines has had excellent leadership in the twenty-first century and we are in excellent health. Instead of being worried, I am grateful. [...]

Welcome our New Camp Matollionequay Director

By |2020-03-26T17:15:42-04:00March 26th, 2020|

To our YMCA of the Pines Community: At YMCA of the Pines, we are committed to hiring exceptional people, as we are dedicated to being an “Employer of Choice” in both the camping industry, and the YMCA movement. Our efforts to raise our organization’s profile within the camping industry and the YMCA movement were evident based upon the candidate pool for the Camp Matollionequay Director position, as we had a bevy of qualified and exciting candidates apply for the position. We conducted an extensive interview process, as candidates interviewed with our leadership team, program directors, and our board chair. Candidates [...]

Color Wars 2020

By |2020-01-22T16:21:30-05:00January 22nd, 2020|

When your name is called…please come up and join your nation. …This will now be your nation for life; wear your color with pride and honor, for you have joined a great nation. Who is IN for 2020 Color War?      

Renovation for the Ocky Dining Hall

By |2020-01-22T13:05:29-05:00January 22nd, 2020|

Renovations for the Ocky Dining Hall! The Ockanick-Inn, also known as the Ocky Dining Hall, is being restored and getting some new tables, and it’s all designed to improve the camper/participant experience! As you may recall from early 2019, the Ocky Bowl and Dining Hall have been areas of focus for updates and restoration work. The goal is to provide a more welcoming, enjoyable camp experience for our summer camp campers, and our group participants. Read this article from April 2019 to learn more about the Ocky Bowl upgrades. Now that the Ocky Bowl upgrades are complete, we are excited [...]

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