Sends us your email and ideas

We have more than 300 emails for camp alumni, but over the last couple of years some of you have moved or changed your email accounts.

Please send your new email and emails of other alumni to so that we can update our list of camp alumni.

If you have an idea for a blog entry or wish to contribute other material like letters, recipes, diary entries, trip maps. . .send them my way.

If any links are broken, please tell me.

And don't be bashful. It's OK to comment. Really. It's OK.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

You Can't Always Get What You Want

You Can't Always Get What You Want

Monday, November 21, 2011

Lount Lodge - new roof

Work this fall on replacing Lount Lodge roof.

A while ago I did a piece on Lount Lodge needing some work. The photos were sent to me by the Y's new general manager of fund development and communications Dave Vankoughnett, ex-Blue Bomber offensive lineman.
In this pic old cedar shakes are coming off and a green metal roof, like on the dining hall, is to be installed. Many of the shakes were rotten.
Below are two of the new cabins. You can read more about them here and here and here.

One of the new cabins added to the line this fall.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Camp Stephens 50th Trail Anniversary in 2013

There was an attempt to have a 40th anniversary in 2003, but it fell apart because organizers couldn't connect with all you faded paddlers. 
If you want to be involved or kept up to date, please join Camp Stephens 50th Trail Anniversary on Facebook or follow developments on this blog.

Here's a sample of the Facebook conversation:

  • Over lunches, coffee shop and of course pub chatter lots of enthusiasm for doing something in 2013 to celebrate 50 years of wilderness programs at Stephens. Some thoughts have included actual trips, folk festivals & celebrating the arrival of the 2013 Six Weeker trips. Grant Platts has even gone as far as mapping out potential lake trips.

    Clearly 50 years of wilderness programming has impacted a great many people and for some it changed their lives. As we begin the process of planning for 2013 we may want to look at it from "Five Decades" so no era is left out.

    Volunteers so far are from the first two decade; Punch, Perry McGregor, Jim King, Jamie Grant, Neil Robinson and Grant Platts. Tara Law and current Wilderness Director Kelley Berringer are expressing support.

    Logistics for planning in this technology rich time should be ablle to include a great many people. If you are interested let us know (Punch - Edmonton, Perry - Winnipeg) and we will get the ball rolling.
     ·  ·  · Yesterday at 9:18am

    • Colleen Rogers likes this.

      • Punch Jackson Trip ideas included 5-7 day trips plus someone suggested a less strenuous version for the "older crowd".
        Yesterday at 9:20am ·  ·  1

      • Punch Jackson Kelly with one "e"
        Yesterday at 9:38am · 

      • Tara Debra Common kids! Even Stubby is getting on board (I'll make him even if he is grumpy and almost retired).
        Yesterday at 10:11am · 

      • Jen Wetherow Count us in for folk fest (definately) and a trip (probably). We should consider something less strenuous for the "younger crowd" too since we'll be packing 3 kids under the age of 5.
        Yesterday at 10:21am · 

      • ZoĆ« Herbert Routh I'll be packing an Aussie husband with a need for beer, so long canoe trips without showers and refrigeration may be an obstacle. Though I am definitely keen to make the long haul across the pond!
        Yesterday at 7:12pm · 

      • Perry McGregor During the planning for the 40th. reunion the committee at that time looked at a number of ideas... these covered activities like a pre reunion dinner, teaching trail skills to the newbies young and old, movies, slide shows/ powerpoints, music, and developing for sale items like trail maps, maps with all the trip routes on them, trail cook books, t shirts, commemorative paddles...stations might include examples of how equipment has evolved over the years, taste testing T.V.P. perhaps?( it pseudo chicken or pseudo beef or what?) obviously not all ideas are keepers...
        Yesterday at 7:45pm · 

      • Garth Nemy you remember your very first cabin and councilor ?
        11 hours ago · 

      • Kalyn Murdock I'd be interested in helping out however I can
        4 hours ago · 

      • Jess Irvine I'd be interested in planning some trips/helpin' out.
        2 hours ago · 

      • Kate Margaret Count me in. I'd love to help out with anything.
        about an hour ago via mobile · 

      • Colleen Rogers I'd help out too!
        32 minutes ago · 

Friday, November 11, 2011

Alfred David

Alfred David's grave at Brookside Cemetery (section 26-0117) in Winnipeg. Photo taken by Punch Jackson. David's WW I service records are here.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Why the 'Y' is important

She sees the error in her ways

Thanks, in part, to United Way

Caitlynn Stranger pals around with Ken Mason at the North Y Youth Centre Friday (John Woods / Winnipeg Free Press)
Busted for shoplifting a pair of expensive headphones at a department store last year, Caitlynn Stranger convinced herself community service was an unfair punishment that didn't fit the crime.
In hindsight, the 16-year-old says she had it completely wrong.

"It made me really mad at the time because I thought I didn't deserve it," Caitlynn said. "It turns out I really did."
Caitlynn began serving her punishment volunteering at the North Y Youth Centre in the North End.
Caitlynn's involvement eventually grew from menial tasks like cleaning to helping coach youth basketball. As a reward, she was sent to the Y's Camp Stephens -- a first for Caitlynn, who had never stepped foot outside of Winnipeg.
"It was just a whole new experience to me. I didn't know people did that stuff before," she said, reflecting on a 10-day canoe trip she believes made her a more positive person.
Caitlynn continues to volunteer as a supervisor for the centre every day after school and works for pay once a week.
"I'd really like to help other youth get out of the same place I've been," she said. "I'm way more of a confident person, I'm open to new experiences. I'm a lot happier."
Caitlynn is one of more than 1,200 youths who come through the centre every year, each of whom has a story about how the centre has been influential in their lives, says centre manager Ken Mason.
Since the centre opened in October 2009, neighbouring businesses like Safeway have told Mason loitering and shoplifting have declined by more than half. Even a fire inspector dropped by the office to thank Mason because autobin fires and vandalism have also declined significantly since the centre opened, Mason said.
"It's an outcome we can't really measure and wouldn't hear about unless somebody went out of their way to tell us," he said, noting Safeway donated 60 Blue Bombers tickets as a gift of thanks.
"It was a reward for something (the kids) probably didn't realize they were doing. It was a great surprise."
This year, United Way contributed more than $475,000 to the YMCA-YWCA, money Mason uses to subsidize youth memberships at his location to $5 a year.
"If it was the $20 a month, there's no way kids would be able to get in here. It just would not be feasible in this neighbourhood," Mason said. "We wouldn't be able to do this without it."
For more information on the YMCA-YWCA, visit For information on the United Way's 2011 campaign and how you can donate, visit or call 477-5360.
Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition November 5, 2011 B2