“Thank You” All Saints Students!


A huge “Thank You” to some of the students at All Saints School for helping CYO/Camp Howard out with our Camp Howard recruitment film this year.  The students could not have been more charming and helpful in sharing their experiences at the camp!  Way to go Ramblers!  Gratefully, Sr. Krista

Check out the link to our new promotional video for Camp Howard:

Gaining Experience on the Job


Every few years, a seasoned group of young camp leaders graduate from college and move on to their careers leaving spaces for new individuals to fill and gain experience in leadership.  The Unit Directors, Program Director & CIT Director make up the youth leaders at Camp Howard and most are pictured below with Camp Director, Nora Gravengaard, Asst. Director, Shawna King and Health and Safety Director, Leila Blakely.

Left to right: Maggie Miller (yellow), Anthony “Fergie” Fergusson (blue), Paige Alie (Orange), Emily Cochran (Gold), Hannah Duffy (Green) and Madie Parvankin (Orange) made up the leadership team.  Not pictured, Colleen Rooney CIT Director)

They all put some new “tools” in their personal toolboxes throughout the seven week experience at Camp Howard!  From the look of the smiles, they had a good time doing it.

IMG_9007

Birdhouse Building at Camp Howard


One of the new additions to the line up of activities was bird house construction Session 6 at Camp Howard.  The bird houses were pre-cut out of 3/4″ pine in a traditional slant box pattern with bevels at the camp.  Campers assembled the houses with screws and glue then painted them in the color scheme of the original cabins at Camp Howard.  The Fircrest Unit of cabins was the original unit with 6 cabins.  The board and bat buildings are painted in a rust red paint with burnt orange trim.  All of the original buildings at the camp are painted in that color scheme.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Camp Howard Begins 63rd Camping Season July 5, 2015


We are off to the races with the first week of our 63rd camping season in the books.  One hundred eighty campers made their way to Camp Howard via bus transportation and parent cars to engage in a weeks worth of fun, outdoor adventure, and a variety of camp experiences.

It’s not too late to sigh up for summer camp at Camp Howard.  We will be running through the third week in August.  www.cyocamphoward.org

Nurse Cindy and Camp Registrar, Nora, chat at the bus stop

Nurse Cindy and Camp Registrar, Nora, chat at the bus stop

Nurse Cindy talks to parents at Bus Check in

Nurse Cindy talks to parents at Bus Check in

Checking in the meds for each of five units of cabins.

Checking in the meds for each of five units of cabins.

Counselors wait for the busses to arrive

Counselors wait for the busses to arrive

Luggage Crew unloads the luggage before the busses arrive with campers

Luggage Crew unloads the luggage before the busses arrive with campers

Unloading Luggage

Unloading Luggage

Unloading Luggage

Unloading Luggage

Waiting for luggage trailer to return for a new load to a different unit of cabins.

Waiting for luggage trailer to return for a new load to a different unit of cabins.

I Went to Camp Howard Today….Here’s the Scoop…


This was a PERFECT day to go to Camp Howard.  There was actually dust on the road!  A sure sign of spring!  Karen, Bill, Candi, Leila and I meet almost weekly to work on our camp improvements for next year.  We are reviewing all of the procedures and we have topics we surfaced during camp last year to discuss In the off season.  Some of those topics include”

  • Keeping the Summer Staff Safe
  • Improving our Emergency Procedures
  • Make sure kids things are packed up properly before they return to Portland
  • and several other topics.

We worked from 10:00 until noon then stopped for lunch.  After lunch, before we started the afternoon session, we went on a field trip to check out the progress on projects.   I can tell you the kids will be jumping for joy with some of the improvements!

241A0804

Kids Jumping for Joy!

IMG_6496

Eagle Scout Project – New Overnight Location with fire pit, logs and sleeping area!

IMG_6505

Candi Trapp, Bill Fogarty, Leila Blakely, Karen von Borstel

IMG_6524

Mt. Hood between the trees at Camp Howard!

IMG_6528Fircrest Unit overlooking the Bull Run Reservoir

Update on Cabin Hit by Tree…


Winter Camp meetings have begun.  The leadership team for the summer program reviews notes taken at the weekly meetings during camp

in effort to make improvements.  At the conclusion of the meetings which lasted about 4 hours, we toured the camp to check on the progress

of the All Saints Cabin which had been knocked off its foundation by a tree.  Then we checked out the renovations inside of Champions Hall.

Special thanks to Candi, Leila and Karen for the great job they are doing making Camp “look great!”

Bill Fogarty, Candi Trap, Leila Blake, Karen von Borstel

Bill Fogarty, Candi Trap, Leila Blake, Karen von Borstel

IMG_5908

Picking indoor colors for inside of Champions Hall. New wainscoting will be added after the painting is finished.

IMG_5910

All Saints Cabin Update – Porch back in place, cabin on a new foundation and floor repaired!

 

Camp Howard Cabin Hit by Tree During Winter Storm – Wow…See What Happened!


You may wonder…”What happens after the summer programs and Outdoor School programs at Camp Howard? You might not know that Camp Howard is open all year round and people rent the camp for family events like weddings, family reunions, retreats, church picnics etc. During January and most of February we do a lot of interior work like painting walls and renovations. Right now Aldergrove Unit is being renovated on the interior. Bunks and walls are being painted, things are being spiffed up so that campers will come to the unit and really appreciate the new clean look.

During the winter we sometimes get strong winds. Generally nothing happens except branches might fall and litter the ground. But every so many years we get especially high winds and these extra strong winds take down trees that are diseased. We lost one tree to high winds this winter and it hit All Saints Cabin in Aldergrove. It knocked the cabin off its foundation and the porch came off. It was a pretty hard hit and I am really glad we did not have any campers in the camp when it happened.

You may be interested to know that most often the trees that come down in the wind storms are the Hemlocks.  Camp Howard is made up of mostly Douglas Fir, Oregon’s most popular crop tree.

The photos below show the damage that was done. We are in the process of fixing the cabins and my next posts will show where we are in that process. Check out these photos of the cabin and let me know your thoughts or reactions.

IMG_4800

All Saints Cabin in Aldergrove unit was built in 1995. It was hit by a tree this winter and knocked off it’s foundation.

 

IMG_4803

The rootball of the Hemlock tree that fell can be seen here as well as the “shadow” of where it lay prior to being sawed into “rounds” and removed to be made into firewood. The shadow is the sawdust!

 

IMG_4784

The front of the cabin shows the porch off to the right, the stairs upside down to the right and the porch sitting at an angle to the front of the door. “Light still works!”

 

IMG_4787

The fascia board hangs from the building by a few nails and the building has a number of issues that must be addressed.

 

IMG_4796

When the building was thrust against the tree and moved off the foundation, it continued its downward movement and part of the foundation came through the floor of the cabin.

 

IMG_4794

Another area where the foundation punched through the floor

 

IMG_5762

Even the garbage can did not escape a “crunch!” Wrong place wrong time!

 

Bill Fogarty Hits the Airwaves at KBVM to Promote Camp Howard Summer Programming


Bill Fogarty on air at KBVM

Bill Fogarty on air at KBVM

Bill Fogarty, Summer Camp Director at Camp Howard, shares the good news about Camp Howard and the exciting summer programs available this summer

Bill Fogarty, Summer Camp Director at Camp Howard, shares the good news about Camp Howard and the exciting summer programs available this summer

Bill Fogarty, Summer Camp Director at Camp Howard took advantage of the opportunity to be Dina Marie’s guest on her morning show at KBVM this month during the Share a thon benefitting KBVM radio operations.

Other CYO Staff including Jenifer Kluthe, Jenna Bass and Jeff Sevilla also participated answering the phones and recording donations from generous listeners.

CYO/Camp Howard and KBVM have a long relationship of goodwill which benefits both organizations.  KBVM has been an excellent partner with CYO spreading the good news of activities and happenings through out the year.  CYO is a regular sponsor of the station.

Camp Howard is taking reservations for summer campers.  We are excited about what is happening at camp this summer and it appears that a lot of kids are looking forward to a great experience.  Campers can continue to sign up through out the summer on line at cyocamphoward.org

It is Cold at Camp Howard! Things are Happenin’


A couple of trees have blown down with the high winds.  One near the basketball courts and one at Cougar Den falling in such a way as to avoid any cabins….very kind of mother nature huh?  The temperature has been in the lower 20’s and a slight accumulation of about 3″ of snow.  The ground is clear now, cold and clear days with the mountain very beautiful.

Winter tree fall at camp

Winter tree fall at camp

Fallen tree near basketball courts at camp

Fallen tree near basketball courts at camp

Candi Trapp painted all of the bunks and walls in Fircrest this fall and winter, working around her other jobs.  She has done a beautiful job.  Additionally she caulked all the cracks in the ceilings and added slats to upgrade the look of the ceilings in these older cabins.

Candi points to the caulking she has done to improve the paint job.

Painted bunk covered while walls get fresh coat of paint in St. Cecilia cabin in Fircrest Unit.

Painted bunk covered while walls get fresh coat of paint in St. Cecilia cabin in Fircrest Unit

DSCN0234Candi points to the caulking she has done to improve the paint job.

Karen Reflects on Outdoor School as they Conclude another Session at Camp Howard


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

One of the best parts about Outdoor School is tradition.  This program has been running for almost 50 years.  It has been a ground breaking pilot program for environmental literacy in the state and nationwide.  What makes Outdoor School special at Camp Howard is that this is the original site, and has been hosting Outdoor School the entire time.

Since 1966, 6th graders have loaded up on big yellow busses and spent a few days exploring the forest and splashing in the pond.  They have had opportunities to get to know students from other schools, to learn outside of the classroom, and in many cases, have been able to simply have their basic needs met, like three balanced meals and a warm place to sleep for the first time.  Outdoor School serves most of Multnomah county, and most schools include it as not only a rite of passage for their students, but an essential part of teaching their 6th grade science curriculum.

Something I have noticed is the sense of community that is felt when Outdoor School lives at camp.  I can hear it in the endless songs that kids sing from place to place, I can see it during mealtimes, when students use table manners, help with chores and show appreciation to not only each other, but to the cooking staff as well.  As kids leave with their arms reaching out the bus windows, promising to return in four years to be a high school student leader.

There are always things I hear or see in passing when running around site.  This week for example, we have a student whose father was on staff when Coho, the Site Supervisor currently, was a high school leader.  And Coho herself was a 6th grade student here at Howard.  Last week there was an exchange student from Indonesia able to be a high school leader that “ just appreciated that everyone here is so positive”.  A student whose “favorite part of Outdoor School was being able to get away from problems at home”.  Students that are not normally successful in classrooms find that being taught in the Outdoors they can be successful.  Every week students plant a tree to commemorate their week, Camp Howard has the very first tree planted by 6th graders for Outdoor School, it lives strong and tall at the far end of the main field near the sand pit over looking the bluff.   All of this happens at beautiful Camp Howard.

Outdoor School can be a transformative process for students and their memories reside here at Howard.  Ask almost anyone that grew up in Portland and they can recall their Outdoor School experience.  They remember their high school student and the place they attended.  Howard lives on in their memories.

It is special to have Outdoor School roam our trails and sit at our campfires.  Outdoor School is a part of Oregon’s history.  Parents, and in some cases now, grandparents, have sent their children off to Outdoor School for the past 50 years, and they have been coming to Howard the entire time. The stories that these cabins could tell! It is so wonderful to have such a rich history continue on here at our site.  My hope is that Outdoor School can live on for many, many more years to come and students can enjoy the benefits of community and education, the splendor of Oregon, and Camp Howard.