What Do The Staff Say?…

Camp Staff Love

At Camp, we regularly hear comments from our camp staff about how much they love being at Long Bay Camp. We asked them why they enjoy working at Long Bay so much and why have they come back. Here’s what some of them had to say…..

Long Bay Camp Staff“Camp is a magical place! For me, LBC has brought me so many wonderful experiences with art and people, that I applied as soon as I was able so that I could help make it even better for everyone!”

“Our camp is like a wonderful little world away from the ‘real world’, where for a few weeks of the year the most important thing is to make sure you and everyone around you has as much fun as possible. It’s a place to leave the bustle of normal life behind, and focus on the amazing people around you (both camp staff and campers alike). I reapplied because of how rewarding it was last year to connect and make a difference with the campers, and I want to continue to be a positive role model to them.”

Long Bay Camp Staff“Long Bay Camp is such a great camp due to its friendly, welcoming environment, talented teachers, fabulous campers as well as other staff members, and of course, the amazing food carefully planned prepared every day by kitchen staff! I re-applied because with just one year at camp, it has already become an important part of my life that has helped me out in more ways than one and I absolutely couldn’t miss out this year!”

“What makes Long Bay Camp so amazing is its variety and its people. I believe Long Bay offers such amazing experiences for kids, many things that most have never tried! I discovered new hobbies, and what interests me through Long Bay. Also, the counsellor’s and staff in general make Long Bay complete. It just feels like a great big family where everyone is welcome and bubbly. The reason why I came back to work at LBC is because it has brought me so many memories. The best memories! I definitely couldn’t let that go, since camp is such a relaxed, fun, active environment. I will also NEVER forget how tasty LBC food is. Yum!!”

Long Bay Camp Staff“What I find one of the best things about Long Bay is the people. I am always eager to come back because this camp builds an amazing, close community each summer, where everyone can express themselves and foster their creativity and passions.”

“What I love about Long Bay Camp: The People. These people all have amazing resumes and are real “doing it” artists. As such they tend to take it … Personally; The campers have to have an amazing time. They have to go away with actual experiences. Have. To.
The flip side is, and I can say this, it is a privilege to work with all of them. Can’t wait to see what happens this summer.”

Long Bay Camp Staff“I love teaching at Long Bay because of the people.  The kids, the staff and the teachers are so supportive of one another.  As teachers, we’re all there because we love the arts, and it’s an incredible opportunity for us to teach what we’re most passionate about.  I learn so much from my students every summer and leave camp refreshed and inspired every year.  It’s a working holiday for me, a chance to slow down and be inspired by the beautiful surroundings, the healthy and delicious food, and the campers’ enthusiasm.  It’s one of my favourite parts of the summer!”

Long Bay Camp Staff“Long Bay is like a 2nd home for me in which I can share and create something artistic with the Campers! I Love it!”

“Long Bay is a special place where like-minded, artistic campers gather to nurture, share and expand their various talents. With the beautiful lake as a backdrop, Long Bay is truly a place of acceptance and joy.” 

These heart-warming comments are only a few of a long list of why our staff love working at camp so much. Now, can you imagine how much fun it would be to learn from this group of wonderfully enthusiastic humans? Luckiest campers ever, I’d say!

We love our camp staff !

A Plug For The Arts….And The Art Of Unplugging

Arts By The Lake Summer Camp

I shudder to think how many hours my teenagers spend googling, on Instagram, Vine, Tumblr, Snapchat…the list goes on. It’s scary really, and kind of depressing. More often than not, I find myself pontificating on my soapbox: “When I was your age, I was up in the morning, off on my bike and gone for the day. The wind at my back, the sun on my face, every day produced a brand new adventure, and what adventures we had! We didn’t even have computers, let alone I-phones or Samsung Galaxy tablets, we relied on Long Bay Summer Campour imagination!”

I would then quote the great Albert Einstein: “Imagination is more important than knowledge”; and might add Twitter and Flickr.

Sadly, these words would fall on deaf ears; mainly because the kids had their Beats by Dr.Dre headphones on. My children find it impossible to believe that a previous world actually existed without social media. But I remember, and I so long for that world again.

I have been searching for summer camps and activities this summer; a place where my children can tear themselves away from what I believe is certain slavery to social media; despite the obvious and undeniable benefits. I want them to know the world from whence I came. I want them to trade in Googling for Gauguin; Volleyball instead of Vine, Tap dance instead of Twitter, Song instead of Snapchat.

Long Bay Summer CampI think I have found the place where my children will be able to enjoy those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer, without the bombardment and nonsense that accompanies social media. I’m told that they may not be happy at first with the rule that all electronic gadgets must be handed in before camp, (although I will be elated). However, I’m also told that they will quickly forget about their Apple I Phone SE 64 GB (in Rose-gold colour no less) or their Samsung Galaxy Tablet 32 GB Android (with Helsinki Prime) after 15 minutes on the grounds of this Utopian 350 acres of campgrounds and awe inspiring wilderness.

Arts by the Lake it is called. The name itself evokes an immediate sense of calm and tranquility for me. But this is the interpretation of a middle aged Long Bay Summer Campadult. To children (aged 9 to 16 years old), this summer camp, (which is in its ninth year of operation), means so much more, even without their beloved gadgets. A typical day at Long Bay Camp, nestled on the shores of Bob’s Lake in Westport Ontario, encapsulates not only arts, dance, music and musical theatre, but also volleyball, soccer, ultimate Frisbee, paddling, guided canoe excursions and so much more. Flickr is what you see in the campfire at the end of the day, when tired, (but happy) campers assemble, laugh, talk (yes talk!) and sing together, and not online for a change.

Long Bay Summer CampI’m told by a return camper and her mother that a typical day is spent swimming prior to a home-cooked and nutritious meal. In fact, the campers can smell the mouth-watering aroma of flapjacks and banana muffins during their morning “polar bear swim”. Campers are then off to a fun-filled day to include story-telling, guest musicians, artists, drumming, music jam, jewelry making, and so much more. There are classes for the budding film maker, who is mesmerized by special effects. There is an Amazing art race, urban dancing classes and inspired choreography, to include dance styles from classic tap to Fosse to other rock musicals of today. Creative writing is also part of the arts curriculum.

Long Bay Summer Camp“Arts by the Lake” also offers courses on how to record music in a professionally equipped band-ready barn. Arranging songs, past and present is an added option. As I cruise through the website, (yes, there are benefits to googling as I noted above), the options and choices are numerous and might I add, wondrous!

While my children may find that being without their much cherished electronic devices may be some form of ruinous punishment, I choose to think that I will be providing them with rewarding and memorable experiences which they will never forget. I’m also hoping my kids can manage for a week or two without knowing how Kim and Kanye are doing, or where Justin Bieber might be dropping his drawers.

Long Bay Summer CampPablo Picasso has been quoted as saying the following: “Art is the elimination of the unnecessary”. No truer words have ever been spoken, and he wasn’t around to witness the scourge of today’s social networking society. It has also been said that creativity is the power to connect the seemingly unconnected. In all of today’s connectivity, we have never been so disconnected.

However, I think Dr. Seuss says it best: “We are a little weird. Life’s a little weird and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall into mutual weirdness and call it “love”.

I know my children will love the gift of this camp, despite some trepidation with regard to the removal of their electronics. I also know that the weirdness and complexity of the life in which we live will be somewhat assuaged by the tranquility of summer camp life and the exhilaration of the arts!

 Kelly G. (camp parent)


Long Bay Summer Camp

Waking Up At Camp

Long Bay Camp MorningLong Bay Camp Morning

Imagine. You see the sun shining through the curtain in your cabin that has the most colourful daisy painted on it. You hear your counsellors quietly rustling in their bedroom trying to pick the perfect song to wake everyone up. You can’t help but smile so wide because you know they’re about to barge in with the friendliest good mornings and start another Long Bay Camp morning.

“GET YOUR SWIMSUITS ON LADIES IT’S POLAR DIP TIME!” your counsellors tell you over that one Spice Girls song they always pick.

Long Bay Camp MorningYou are determined to get that polar bear bead this year so you march out to the deck and grab your swimsuit as fast as you can and give your counsellor a high five on the way by! You can already smell the pancakes cooking from the kitchen and you day dream a little about the real maple syrup……. FOCUS! Get your towel and join your cabin mates on the deck where they’re doing the camp dance just for fun! And we’re off! Deep in the heart of the Long Bay jungle, you can hear the girls rumble, “OU! AH! OU! AH!” You chant all the way down to the dock, especially loud as you go by the boys cabins.

Long Bay Camp MorningImagine! All this before our day at camp even starts. I know there’s so much more fun to come today. My major! My friends helping me jump extra high during Kitos! I wonder what the afternoon electives will be! And what awesome evening program the counsellors will have planned for tonight! And I heard its twin-din tonight! Oh, and maybe I’ll singLong Bay Camp Morning my song I wrote during camp fire tonight! I can’t wait! And I’d better start thinking about what my rose will be tonight during rose, bud and thorn because I know I will have a lot to choose from! And then I get to do it all again tomorrow!

Imagine! These are the thoughts that go through my head all day at Long Bay Camp. Except, I’m an adult, and I work at camp. And the counsellors I talk about are my coworkers.

Just imagine! I have the best job in the world!

– Soaps

Long Bay Camp morning

What’s Today’s Dessert Surprise?

Delicious Camp Food

Delicious Camp FoodEvery day before free swim, as the campers rush eagerly to the lake, there is a tradition, of sorts, when walking by the kitchen. No matter how eager everyone is for a swim, there is always a pause outside the kitchen to take in the wafts of that day’s dessert escaping the kitchen doors.

Could it be carrot cake? Brownies? Strawberry shortcake?

It’s a mystery that remains until all the dinner dishes are cleared and the heroic kitchen staff emerge carrying trays of delicious treats.

Delicious Camp FoodWhat is today’s treat?………….. Grandma’s Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies! These cookies are not only extremely popular among our campers, but are a featured treat at the Frontenac Frolic!

Today, we are going to share the delicious camp food experience with a recipe so you can enjoy a taste of camp any time! However, be warned, the recipe is meant for hungry campers and so the recipe is camp sized! Be ready for lots of yummy cookies!


Grandma’s Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Prep Time: 30 Minutes Cook Time: 45 Minutes
Ready In: 1 Hour 15 Minutes Servings: 96


2 cups butter
2 cups brown sugarDelicious Camp Food
1/2 cup white sugar
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground cloves
6 cups rolled oats
1 cup milk
2 cups milk chocolate chips


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease cookie

2. In a large bowl, cream together the shortening, brown sugar and white sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, allspice and cloves; stir into the sugar mixture until well blended.

Mix in the rolled oats alternately with the milk. Finally, stir in the chocolate chips. Drop by heaping spoonfuls 3 inches apart onto the prepared cookie sheets.

3. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 to 11 minutes, or until edges are golden and tops are dry. Cool on cookie sheets for 1o minutes before removing to cool on wire racks.


– Kaitlin S.

On delicious camp food

Changing The World

Make A Difference

Make A Difference at Long Bay CampHere at Long Bay Camp, we believe that children can change the world and make a difference ; we just have to give them the opportunity. During Session B this summer, we did just that. At our ‘intellectual supper’ each cabin group was given a world issue and asked how they would solve it. We were stunned by the creativity, honesty, and hilarity that we received in their answers and thought that we would share some of them with you.

Make A Difference at Long Bay CampWe asked our youngest girls cabin, the Butterflies (aged 8-11), to tell us how they would stop bullying. Their answer was very enlightening:

Well, first we would send everyone to Long Bay Camp so they would have a good childhood. If they had a good childhood people wouldn’t take it out on other people. During their visit to Long Bay Make A Difference at Long Bay CampCamp they could run an elective on standing up for themselves. At Long Bay, everyone makes friends and no one is left out. Awareness, acceptance, and teamwork are the core values that Long Bay will instil in future generations.”ad a good childhood people wouldn’t take it out on ot


When we asked the Meerkat cabin (boys aged 14- 15) to describe how they would make a difference by making sure that everyone in the world has clean water, this was their proposal:

Make A Difference at Long Bay CampSome cats like to eat gross things. We clone these cats then launch them into the ocean via catapult. These cats will then eat all the nasty stuff in the water and thus we will have super clean water and then everyone can drink it.”

 Not only did we give the campers a chance to chime in on these world issues, but the teachers got involved with a heavier question. How would they solve all the problems in the world? This is what they told us:

 Make A Difference at Long Bay Camp“ Everyone should have healthy meals, play lots of music, meditate and spend at least a week at Long Bay”

 We can’t say we were at all surprised by these answers! Over the course of just a week, we witness these amazing kids work together to ensure everyone has the best possible experience at camp. If only everyone thought like them! When all these world issues do get solved, we certainly won’t be surprised if it’s a Long Bay camper that’s behind the solution.


Make a difference

Unique Investment

Invest In Camp

Invest In Camp - Long Bay CampOur daughter had the time of her life last year at Long Bay Camp.  She has had a picture in her bedroom of her and her counsellor that hangs above her bed.  I know that she developed a real bond with her and that she really looked up to her as a role model.  I know other girls look up to celebrities like Taylor Swift, but not my daughter,…… she had Justine as her counsellor and she just loved her!  She now aspires to be a lifeguard so she can eventually work as a camp counsellor.  My daughter really enjoyed the drama at camp with Katie. She returned from camp last year, and she couldn’t stop singing!  ThInvest In Camp - Long Bay Campe staff at Long Bay were so competent.  As a family, we put our trust in this very unique camp and we thing to invest in camp is a very smart thing to do for your children.

We loved the performance our daughter was a part of.  She developed a new confidence about herself.  Her self esteem improved dramatically and her self image has soared as a direct result of going to camp.  This year, we have put Loonies and Twoonies aside in order that she will be able to attend camp for a longer Invest In Camp - Long Bay Campperiod.  We regard it as an investment.  We are investing in the kind of person she is becoming, a more positive, fun loving, free spirited individual who knows she is able to stretch her imagination and dreams as far as she wants. Thank You Long Bay Camp.  My daughter has benefited in so many ways.   Thank You!!!!!!!!!!!!

Suzanne, camp parent

Invest in Camp

Great Experience

Great Camp Experience

Great Camp Experience Long Bay CampWhen most people think of camp, they think of tents and stinky outhouses, small meals, and scorching hot hiking trips. But when they experience Long Bay, their thoughts change immediately. It goes from tents to large cabins, outhouse to indoor plumbing, small meals to three nutritious meals a day, and from scorching hot hiking trips to short warm hiking trips. New friendships are made every day! You’ll never be left out or discluded from any activity. Counsellors and art teachers from all over come here to play games and teach Great Camp Experience Long Bay Camplessons that never end. We have so much fun together that when you leave your whole great camp experience goes with you. Of course once you’re there you’ll never want to leave. Some friendships come and go but here, they never stop growing and in the end, they still never break. Once you’re experienced Long Bay Camp, you’ll never unexperience it.


Emily,  camper (aged 10)

Great Camp Experience

Pumpkin Alley

On Halloween Night There’s Magic in the Air (Especially in Pumpkin Alley !)

It’s October 31st 2012 – Halloween night and my youngest daughter and I are getting ready to ‘Trick or Treat’. At this point in the evening I was actually feeling a little jaded and not too enthused about Halloween, which is crazy considering I usually love this time of year (being one of the Little Witches an’ all). Anyway getting back to the jaded part, it had all started a few days before the 31st with a succession of tidbits that had caught my ears. A lot of fuss was being made this year about the costumes and celebrities that many of our youngsters were choosing to emulate, definitely a hot topic when you see more 6 year-old ‘pop stars’ than you do 6 year old princesses or fairies.Long Bay Camp Pumpkin Alley

On the heels of this debate I was introduced to the ‘switch witch’ whom I had never heard of before, but who can apparently switch your candy (by the bucketfuls) for a toy or present of some kind. I am still a little unclear as to whether this is just a case of being greedy and wanting more or if it’s a question of trading in unhealthy candy for something healthier, which begs the question “then why are we giving out so much candy?” – Either way!

And then to top it all off there was a story from Toronto that the houses were getting too scary with all their gory dressings and that to minimize the scare factor for children there should be some sort of Long Bay Camp Pumpkin Alleybylaw presented that would screen or censor Halloween stylings through a committee of sorts – I mean, really! I’m sure you get the picture of how I was feeling this said Halloween! I really was asking myself “what’s it all about”.

Okay maybe I’m setting the stage a little harshly and in fact as my daughter and I started out on our journey down the street I began to tingle a bit, caught in the joy of lots of gleeful children and, not to mention, the delightfully mild weather which made loitering fun! As we reached the end of our street we could feel a strange excitement mounting and could see an unusually large number of people walking down our back lane (usually referred to as the alley). Even from where we were standing we could feel a buzz of energy and even from where we were standing we could see why. Hanging across the alley from one side to the other was a large white banner welcoming everyone to ‘Pumpkin Alley’. To be precise the banner read ‘Long Bay Camp & O.O.S. Community Presents Pumpkin Alley’.

As we entered the magical world of Pumpkin Alley it was clear that this was what it was all about. Neighbours, friends, Ottawa South residents streamed down the small section of alley oohing and ahhing at the beautifully carved pumpkins some of which wereLong Bay Camp Pumpkin Alley so elaborate they looked like part of an art installation rather than your everyday jack-o-lantern sitting on a porch.

It was all quite incredible really. 100 pumpkins lighting a dark, dark alley and I’m not talking just a carved face with triangles for eyes, I’m talking carvings that ranged from a stenciled maple leaf to Linos and the Great pumpkin to an arched black cat to Elvis and Beethoven to the image that I think most people dropped their jaws to – The Mona Lisa. All through the Alley the air buzzed in sing-song, “Isn’t it beautiful?” “How do you carve a pumpkin like that?” “I wish I could do that,” “How inspiring” “Is that the Mona Lisa?”Long Bay Camp Pumpkin Alley

All of a sudden as I wandered down Pumpkin Alley the idea of what Halloween meant to me was restored. There it all was a sense of possibility in darkened shadows, a sense of mystery and magic and a sense of not your every day. Listening to the whispers of “wow, wow, WOW!” as people passed by the pumpkins confirmed I wasn’t the only one who had been touched by the magic.

Of course behind all great magic there is a great magician and the great magician behind Pumpkin Alley was Ott Reynolds. Ott inspired neighbors and friends to help carve the 100 pumpkins. At one point there was an assembly line of – off loading pumpkins, de-gutting (using a high-powered tool) and then setting them up ready for the artists to create their masterpieces. That was just stages onLong Bay Camp Pumpkin Alleye and two and certainly a special mention has to go out to Paul and Gabe Reynolds and the Temple-Murray family, who were completely under Ott’s spell and vision and did most of the dirty work of assembling and cleaning the pumpkins! The final mastery came with the placing and the lighting of the pumpkins on Halloween night. The spectacle certainly pleased all who were lucky enough to venture down a dark, dark alley.

As the founder and Director of Long Bay Camp, Arts By the Lake, Ott is no stranger to conjuring up magic to delight young artists. The camp is entering its 6th year and over the time of its existence, it has inspired young people, from the age of 9-16, to immerse themselves in the art discipline of their choice while being given a rich and memorable camp experience. This unique overnight camp attracts professional artists to share their passion and expertise through daily workshops. Ott not only prides herself on offering top notch workshops, amazing camp games and activities but she also ensures that every meal is healthy, delicious and free of processed food (parents – just a quick aside – if you think your child is a picky eater send them to Long Bay – they’ll return with a whole new palate and a love for fresh and local food!). In the meantime watch out Pumpkin Alley, I heard a rumour there would be 200 pumpkins next year!


Sips from the Poetry Café By: Susan Atkinson (teacher)

Photos By: Patrick Nantel

Second Family

Long Bay A Very Friendly CampA Very Friendly Camp

Long Bay Camp is a terrific, arts-based overnight camp. One of the best things about this camp is the great “vibe” *. The feeling you get when you are at camp is a good one. The counselors are always there for you, and your cabin mates are very friendly. Long Bay is very friendly camp and everyone is kind and always have a positive attitude. All the people that come here love the arts. The teachers are very supportive, inspiring and talented. You will look forward to everyday because everyday is new and exciting. Everyone and everything at Long Bay is upbeat and awesome. You will love Long Bay if you decide to come and be a part of it.

* It is the feeling that you belong and are with a second family.

Kate, camper (13 years old)

A Very Friendly Camp


Long Bay Camp Friendships Camp Friendships

The first day I arrived at Long Bay Camp I didn’t know anyone. I felt a little bit shy and nervous, but the minute I met my counsellors, Geo and Taylor, I felt like I’d made friends right away. What I like about my camp friendships is that you get to find out exactly what they like and you find out lots of stuff about them quickly.

Long Bay Camp Friendships We’re all here for the same reason – we love “THE ARTS”. I play the violin but I’m here to learn the ukulele. We all play different instruments so at night around the campfires we play music together.

We’re friends now and trust each other so that we decide on the spot what we want to play. In those moments when we’re playing and singing I feel like I belong.

Here at Long Bay I’ve learned to be friends with lots of different people, campers, counsellors and teachers. My new friends make me laugh a lot!

Roman, camper (11 years old)

On Camp Friendships