Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Protecting a Gem

#leschosesaraconter
#lemonde

Protecting a Gem~ written by Max Thomas, Science and Outdoor Education Director at Canoe Island French Camp


Anyone who has been to the Salish Sea knows how special this place is. The Salish Sea is the body of water that encompasses Puget Sound, the Strait of Juan De Fuca, and the Strait of Georgia in British Columbia. It's hard to come here without falling in love with the abundance of wildlife, sheer beauty of the mountains and ocean, or the sense of pristine wilderness. This place also has strong cultural roots and incredible scientific importance. The rich diversity of species is unique to North America, and it's no surprise why people have settled here for over 10,000 years!

Within the past year there has been a grassroots effort to designate this amazing place as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This designation would be a recognition of outstanding universal value to not only people who live here, but to the world as well. Sites that are considered for this honor must reach one of ten criteria, and many leading this effort believe the Salish Sea meets six. Some of the most spectacular areas in the world are World Heritage Sites including the Great Barrier Reef, Yellowstone National Park, and the Amazon to name a few. Protecting the Salish Sea is protecting our legacy. We are intertwined with these waters and land, and future generations will thank us for many years to come.

The partnered groups heading this effort are SeaLegacy and the Salish Sea Trust. To learn more about their mission and vision for protecting the Salish Sea, visit We Are the Salish Sea or Salish Sea Trust.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Le Carnaval

#lemonde
#frenchfantastique

Happy Mardi Gras everyone!

Charlotte Megret, our lead counselor, recently shared some fun customs surrounding the celebration of Le Carnaval from around the world.

Elaborate costumes for le Carnaval!

You may have heard of le Carnaval in Rio, Brazil or Mardi Gras in New Orleans but did you know that this évenément takes place in many Pays Francophones as well? On the French island of Guadeloupe for instance, le carnaval is a really popular event where everyone has to wear un déguisement. A huge parade is organized, and people march and dance to the sound of tambours. Another important tradition is the défilé des chars where the best floats are showcased. Many people start decorating their char a year before the next Carnaval!

In France, some cities like Nice also host great carnavals, but most people prefer to eat plein de bonnes choses! Mardi Gras literally means Fat Tuesday and was traditionally a religious celebration that took place the day before the start of Le Carême. The goal was to rid the pantry of all the fatty food and the best way to do this was by making des crèpes and des beignets. Today is Mardi Gras so get your masque à plumes out or your deep fryer, if you prefer!

Le Carnaval - the Carnival

Un événement - an event

Pays Francophones - Francophone countries

Un déguisement - a costume

Les Tambours - drums

Le défilé des chars - the float parade

Plein de bonnes choses - literally "a lot of good things" (used when talking about food or to wish someone a happy new year)

Le Carême - Lent

Des crèpes - crepes

Des beignets - donuts

Masque à plumes - mask with feathers

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Nous HEART Camp aussi!

#cifcalumni
#campcares

Bonjour and merci to everyone who submitted photos for I HEART Camp Day 2017!

Here is our valentine to all of you. Bisous!







































Thursday, February 2, 2017

Babysitting and chutney selling: one camper's entrepreneurial efforts to raise funds for camp!

#inspirationpoint
#campcares

Max making new friends while babysitting to raise money for camp
From chicken sitting, dog sitting, babysitting to selling coffee and chutney, Max F. has done them all to raise $2000 towards his Canoe Island French Camp tuition this summer. We award between $30,000- $40,000 in scholarships every summer to make camp affordable for anyone seeking the opportunity. Max, 12, camper and scholarship recipient for many years, decided he'd help his family afford the tuition this year by seeking support from his Shaw Island community. He's half way there! Max and his mom, Stephanie, shared with us why he's decided to raise money this year and what sorts of things he's done to rake in the dollars.

"Our family loves the experience that camp provides," says Stephanie.

"Work teaches Max the value of money, communication with his clients, scheduling, accounting, and allows him to take pride in his own abilities. From selling coffee and chutney, to stacking firewood, changing diapers, babysitting, chicken sitting, dog sitting, and helping me with extra projects around the house and my work, Max is learning to help himself achieve his goals."

Max raised $400 last year in addition to the scholarship he was awarded through camp. This year is tackling his goal of $2000 to attend a longer session. "On a typical day I raise $100 by donation only. I also work year round and save almost every penny," says Max.

Max has other motivations as well, "I have been going to Canoe Island French Camp for many years now, and I have found the true meaning of camp. I love French Camp because you learn French, cool facts about the islands' geology, wildlife and nature; how to use different weapons such as the bow and arrow, the trebuchet, and the tomahawk; and of course French cuisine. Making new friends and seeing old ones is a highlight of camp. If you attend camp I guarantee you will make new friends. My goal is $2000 and I'm halfway there. I have a bunch of new friends to meet this summer!"

We are so proud of Max and all his efforts and hope everyone has the chance to meet new friends this summer!


Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Noticeable impact of camp on kids

#campcares

Camp influences us in many ways. In a recent article, Deirdre Pettinga, of the American Camp Association, reflects on what an impact sending her kids to camp had not only on them and herself, but on others in her community.

She shares an interaction she had with another mother after her son returned to school from camp,

"[She] asked me what was different about my son. What had I done? Or what had he done over the summer? When I asked her what she meant, she explained that even though she only knew him by watching him on the playground after school for a half-hour or so each day -- standing around with other moms doing the same thing before heading home -- she could see tremendous maturity, leadership, and sense of fairness in the way he was interacting with other kids."

How has camp influenced the life of your children? How has it influenced you?



Wednesday, January 4, 2017

New Year's Resolutions

#inspirationpoint
#frenchfantastique
#lemonde

Sailing around the world in 49 days and cycling over 22 kilometers in an hour at age 105? The French have set two new world records in the past couple weeks and it is great motivation to set a New Year's resolutions to get active in 2017.

Thomas Coville, of Rennes, set the world record for a solo sail around the world December 25, 2016. In just over 49 days he sailed 28,400 miles at an average speed of 24 knots. His vessel was a 31 meter long and 21 meter wide trimaran. His determination and resilience would make Jules Verne proud.

Thomas Coville setting a new world record for solo sailing

In another inspiring story from France, Robert Marchand, of Paris, set a world record for cycling at the age of 105. A life long athlete, Marchand said in an interview, "I've done sport all my life, eaten loads of fruit and vegetables, not too much coffee". Today he track cycled over 22km in an hour, a new record for the over-105 year age group.

Robert Marchard on pace to make history

Here at Canoe Island French Camp we have many unique activities for campers to engage in: archery, fencing, sailing, kayaking, canoeing, sports of all kinds. What drives you to stick with the sports you love? I hope these stories help reinvigorate you as you begin 2017.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Ibis Element

#cifcalumni

Our next artist within the Canoe Island French Camp community is Margaret Schafer. She has been a counselor, marketing coordinator, assistant director and is now the administrative director at Canoe Island French Camp.

Q. What are the mediums you work with?
A. I make jewelry as a hobby using the lost wax casting method, also known by its French name, "cire perdue". This method involves carving an object out of wax and then replacing the wax with metal. All my designs are currently cast in yellow bronze.


Q. How would you describe the art you create?
A. Unique handmade jewelry that recalls styles of antiquity but remains modern. I hope to create pieces that can be worn everyday but still feel special.


Q. How can interested buyers get in touch with you?
A. Feel free to have a look at my Etsy shop at ibiselement.com or email me at ibis.element@gmail.com with any questions.

Q. Where do you draw your inspiration from?
A. Many of my pieces evoke the form of insects, which have always fascinated me. And I'm constantly inspired by living on Canoe. One of my recent pieces resembles the plate of a chiton, which I sometimes see on the paths when I walk around the island.

Q. What were some of your favorite things to create in the Atelier at Canoe Island French Camp?
A. When the campers are on the island, I love working in clay with them in the Atelier. I really appreciate seeing the inventive, whimsical pieces the campers make and I love the thrill of putting a ceramic creation in the kiln and seeing the transformation.

Q. What advice do you have for young artists?
A. Take pleasure in the process of creation and don't be discouraged if your first try doesn't match the vision in your head. Each day that I spend time on jewelry I can feel myself improving little by little, but I had to make a lot of bad work before I could make pieces that live up to my vision.