Dear Families and Staff of Camp Widjiitiwin
The weather is warming up and summer is nearly upon us. While we have planned and waited for months in hopes of the pandemic conditions to improve, and for the province to communicate guidelines and approval for summer camps, our hearts and minds have been for our families. Circumstances for many are bleak and difficult and we continue to uplift our campers in prayer, acutely aware that lives in our community have been transformed, and for many it has been for the worse.
We have news for you about the status of camp for 2021, with announcements below about:
- Summer Youth Camp
- A new opportunity
Summer Kids & Youth Camp
It was with heavy hearts and after prayerful consideration and consultation with our board, we have concluded that we are unable to deliver an excellent experience of overnight summer camp to our campers for this summer. Without current approval from provincial authorities we just don’t have the time necessary to prepare adequately for a safe and positive summer camp experience. The province has not provided guidance at this time, a document that would guide our duty to compliance, and has not included overnight camps in the “Reopening Ontario Act”.
However, Camp Widjiitiwin has an amazing community of passionate alumni, great staff and inspiring campers, and we want to continue building that community with new opportunities.
A New Opportunity – Book a 2-3 night adventure at camp
Widjiitiwin has had to be flexible over its 90 years of operation and that is what is being required of us today. If we cannot operate camp for kids, then why not offer our facilities for a camp experience to adults and families. The expected COVID situation and restrictions are more likely to allow for family experiences and so we want to press into this opportunity. In addition to offering our cabins, with some modifications to make them more comfortable, we will also be offering activities and excursions and some classic programming to our guests and the guests of our parent ministry, Muskoka Bible Centre. Imagine the opportunity to book Widji Island, go on a guided canoe trip or rock climbing out-trip or relax with a game of gagaball before going to chapel and then finishing the day off with a traditional Widji campfire.
There are a number of benefits to camping at Widjiitiwin.
- An economical option for families with campers – the cabin will cost less than your camper’s fees and be more comfortable than a tent.
- Activities and amenities available for families of MBC and Widjiitiwin that have not been available before.
- Supporting the sustainable ministry of Camp Widjiitiwin.
- Access to MBC amenities, food and Chapel.
- An experience in God’s creation that brings the family together.
The next few weeks will be important as we prepare to execute on this plan and provide details to our community. We know that there will be many questions and invite you to email us for clarification.
While we are unable to offer overnight summer camp for TNT, Blast and Sizzle, there is a slight possibility of being able to run a SALT session this summer. Again, much of this will depend on provincial directives going into summer but given the smaller program and staff requirements we will stay open to exploring the viability of running SALT should the door open to do so. We will be engaging with our SALT applicants and their families to outline a plan that could allow us to open if the province makes a decision in the month of June. There is no guarantee that this can happen, but we will keep this on the table as a possibility for the time being.
As always, our hearts are for our campers and their families, and while this is a blow to our hopes for this summer, our true hope lies in our great and mighty King, and his sovereign plan. We know this may create a fresh longing for camp in your campers so we have prepared a classic camp experience just for your family – Battle of the Ends. Check it out at www.mycamp.ca/battleoftheends.
Again, please send us an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your questions and we’d be happy to connect with you. Watch for our video next week about how you can participate this summer.
Heyoo & Moose