My camp job led to my Rotary gig!

By | 2018-02-06T15:06:43+00:00 February 6th, 2018|

by Susan Miller, Director of Marketing & Communications I recently wrote an article about how my job here at camp led to my becoming a Rotarian - and why that matters to me.  Here's a copy of the article, which ran in the Burlington County Times on Feb. 5. I truly hope people will find it enlightening! ---------------------------------------------------------------- How I learned to love Rotary I had no intention of ever joining a Rotary Club. Certainly, I had heard of “Rotary” in my years living and working as a newspaper editor in Medford Township, but – truth be told – I [...]

Why I love our camp alumni!

By | 2018-01-22T11:28:51+00:00 January 22nd, 2018|

by Mark Dibble, CEO Camp’s alumni had a happy hour in December. I really wish I could’ve attended, but I was visiting my parents in Rochester, NY for the holidays. From all accounts, it was a great success because it was alumni led and staff supported, as any good staff-alumni partnership would be! In a time when cynics believe schools and non-profits just see their alumni as checkbooks, and when institutions think the alumni are stuck in the past, something different is happening here and it’s been awesome to watch. In the last few months, our alumni committee has really [...]

Thanks to you, we exceeded our goal!

By | 2018-01-12T11:58:47+00:00 January 12th, 2018|

At YMCA Camp Ockanickon, we believe in our mission, we love what we do, and we're committed to keeping up the good work. But we couldn't do it without the generosity of our supporters, donors and staff members. Here's an example of some great news coverage about the recent success of our 2017 annual campaign. We're humbly proud - and excited to continue on! Ockanickon exceeds its campaign goal! MEDFORD-YMCA Camp Ockanickon reached new heights during its 2017 annual campaign, exceeding its goal of $325,000 by more than $15,000.   “We are so humbled by the generosity and support of [...]

Try our chef’s famous “Blondies!”

By | 2018-01-05T14:20:19+00:00 January 5th, 2018|

by Chef Jason Ostroski, Food Service Director   Every year during the holidays, the staff here at camp hold a Cookie Exchange and I’ve become known for my White Chocolate Raspberry Blondies. There’s no secret to it. No tricks or special ingredients. Blondies are simply awesome… and a white chocolate raspberry combination just seals the deal on a great pan cookie!   So here’s my tried and true recipe for you all to try for yourselves!   Ingredients:   11 tablespoons butter, softened 2 cups light brown sugar, packed 1 tablespoon butterscotch pudding mix powder (“cook and serve,” not “instant”) [...]

Ockanickon – it’s truly a place for all!

By | 2017-11-20T12:14:21+00:00 November 13th, 2017|

by Matt Foran, Director of Ockanickon for boys I’m an Ocky Fellow and you are too! I’m still new here but rest assured, I’m an Ocky guy, true and blue, blue and true. Coming from a few states over, there’s no doubt about where I belong. It’s Ockanickon. No, I do not have one of those spiffy 10-year sweatshirts or sharp 15-year jackets. I don’t even have a five-year paddle. Oh, but I’m surely an Ocky guy even with my long list of Ocky no’s and never’s … I’ve never paddled and portaged to Matolly. I’ve never kayaked to crystal [...]

How we combat summer learning loss at camp

By | 2017-11-13T11:09:15+00:00 November 13th, 2017|

By Steph Ward, Challenge Course Program Coordinator During the summer months, it is said that children have a learning loss that is equivalent to losing three months of math and English. Most of this loss is due to the children not using those skills during the months that they are away from school. Here at camp, we like to challenge kids to use their brains in a way that might not be the traditional manner found in a classroom. We do a lot of this on the challenge course, which we consider our own outdoor classroom! Every camper who comes [...]

Camp partners with Bob Meyer Communities!

By | 2017-11-10T13:10:27+00:00 November 10th, 2017|

In Medford, there are a handful of recognizable names and places that conjure an image of this bucolic community in the Pines: Think the red barn at Kirby’s Mill, the sledding hill across from Pinelands library or the many charming lake communities. Recently, two very longstanding and iconic Medford organizations – our own YMCA Camp Ockanickon and Bob Meyer Communities – decided to partner up to help children from under-served areas. Ockanickon, of course, has a rich history in Medford. Established in 1906 and named in honor of a chief of the Mantas Lenape tribe, Ockanickon has been operating a [...]

Universal lessons learned this summer – about peace, understanding and the power of Y

By | 2017-10-24T11:05:39+00:00 October 24th, 2017|

by Dave Kaubin, Outdoor Center Director “Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding.” – Albert Einstein How does one achieve peace? Where do you start and what does success look like when you’re finished? Those are some pretty difficult questions. Questions I never really intended to contemplate. However, this past summer, I found myself in the company of a group of people doing just that. I had the honor of spending time with an amazing group of young Y leaders this summer. Together, about 40 of us traveled from all over the world to [...]

An Emerging Leader at camp!

By | 2017-10-24T10:35:38+00:00 October 24th, 2017|

by Susan Miller, Director of Marketing/Communications Greg Keresztury, our Director of Operations, seems to have the ability to be in several places at once here at camp. Since joining the staff at YMCA Camp Ockanickon, Inc. early in 2016, he is pretty much involved in every aspect of the running of our busy camp programs. On most days, he can be seen in a golf cart, darting from place to place within our 800-acre property. Greg's an unassuming guy, but it's easy to tell that he's clearly in his element here. Greg has an interesting background; he has a law [...]

Registration now for Summer Camp 2018 … Here’s why!

By | 2017-10-16T10:08:55+00:00 October 16th, 2017|

Why Register Early? By Greg Keresztury, Director of Operations Once the sugar sand has settled on the camping season, we almost immediately turn the page to the next summer.  In the world of camping, there really isn’t an “off-season” or “quiet-time,” as we transition from the busy camp season to a different kind of busy.  Yes, believe it or not, we are still working hard when camp isn’t in session, as we almost immediately begin debriefing the summer – asking ourselves what went well and what could be improved for next year?  We begin focusing on themes and special events, [...]

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