About Josh Matukonis

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So far Josh Matukonis has created 19 blog entries.

Return of the Staff

By |2015-06-17T12:36:03-04:00June 17th, 2015|

What is it that makes a camp have the great influence that it does? It is not the facilities or the activities, while great those things may be at YMCA Camp Ockanickon, Inc. It is the staff that help make camp a life changing experience and every year, staff members come to our camps excited and ready for the summer! While many of the counselors are from New Jersey, we have staff from as far as Hawaii and even international staff. For some, this is their first camping experience but many staff members went to camp when they were younger. Each year there are always staff that return from [...]

Our International Staff

By |2015-06-10T12:44:45-04:00June 10th, 2015|

For quite a few years, YMCA Camp Ockanickon, Inc. has been hiring international staff to work in all three of its summer camps. For some, it is their first time in America and even their first time at a camp while others are returning for another fun filled summer. Even Matolly’s camp director, Gab Ostroski, started out as an international staff member back in 2000 when she arrived from Australia! This summer, we will have a diverse international staff from a variety of countries and cultures including but not limited to Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, and the United Kingdom!  I [...]

Camper Lessons

By |2015-06-03T12:36:45-04:00June 3rd, 2015|

Summer camp can be a place of learning and growth because there are many skills a child can learn during their time as a camper. One can learn how to swim, how to boat, and how to cook. You learn about nature, different games at land sports, and how to build a fire or a shelter. These activities can teach basic skills, but they can also teach deeper life skills that can stay with a camper the rest of their life! Here a camp, a camper can learn the deeper life skills of: […]

Why You Should Be A Camp Counselor

By |2015-05-27T12:49:10-04:00May 27th, 2015|

Many children who have spent a summer at camp must make that crucial decision in their life when they are finally able to work, “Should I become a camp counselor or should I find a ‘real’ job?” The answer is simple, you should become a camp counselor! Now being a camp counselor is not only for those who have attended camp. In fact, being a counselor is something everyone should experience because it provides you with as much a positive impact as it does being a camper. […]

Unplug & Connect

By |2015-05-20T12:45:21-04:00May 20th, 2015|

Have you ever been out with a group of friends or at a family dinner and noticed that everyone was on their cellphones at the same time? A study has revealed that children, ages 8 through 18, spend upwards of 7.5 hours staring at some form of technology. With televisions, video games, laptops, smart phones, and tablets; access to technology and information has increased greatly over the past decade. With the push of a button or the touch of a screen, one can now access a near infinite amount of information and entertainment. However, as on-screen communication increases, studies have also [...]

Our Board President

By |2015-05-13T12:45:24-04:00May 13th, 2015|

My name is Dave Herron and I have now been a board member for longer than I was a camper. But both experiences have helped to shape me personally and professionally.  […]

Our Camp Directors

By |2015-05-06T12:49:37-04:00May 6th, 2015|

My name is Brent Birchler and I am the Boys Overnight Camp Director at YMCA Camp Ockanickon.  I first came to camp in the early 1980’s as a member at the Family Swim Center.  My parents would take me swimming, boating, and fishing during the summer months.  After a few years as a member, I had my first overnight camp experience at the annual Kids Convention, a program Ockanickon used to run during Teacher Conventions in November.  From then on, I was hooked on camp!  […]

How Camp Can Change A Life

By |2015-04-29T12:48:22-04:00April 29th, 2015|

It was a hot summer in 2001, my teary-eyed mother watched as her only child started playing Uno cards with the rest of the boys in his new home for next week. It was a dusty old cabin filled with over packed suitcases and a daily schedule that my mother read 10 times over. As I watched her finally will herself away from the laminated paper, I gave her a big hug and asked her to send me lots of candy. Once my mother pulled it together and eventually left camp, I was on my own for the first time [...]

Homecomings and New Beginnings

By |2015-04-22T12:56:54-04:00April 22nd, 2015|

If you’re driving on Stokes Road in Medford, New Jersey and you turn left onto Tabernacle Road, as you bear right onto McKendimen Road, there’s an unusual sight you just might miss if you blink. Next to this road, there is a canoe wrapped around a tree. If you look at this, some thoughts like “oh wow, why is there a canoe wrapped around that tree?” or maybe you think “I can’t believe a tree grew through that a canoe.”  Whichever comes to mind, it’s definitely an interesting sight. For me, seeing that canoe gives me an undeniable sense of [...]

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