At Camp Howard, Youth Leaders Make ALL the Difference!

The youth leaders at Camp Howard for the summer session 2017 have been one of the very best teams of leaders in my 20 years with the camp.  Their development as individuals, willingness to work with one another, ability to lead and inspire have been the ingredients that have made this one of the best seasons on record.

IMG_6511ABOVE Left to Right: Ally Oser, Anna O’Boyle, Natalie Nielsen, Anthony Cioeta, Anna McLean and Lizzy Brown make up the Unit Leaders with Anna McLean being the overall youth leader for 2017 as Program Director.

IMG_6513Camp leadership meetings are held every Wednesday morning with youth leaders and the year around camp staff.  ABOVE Left to right: Natalie Nielson, Anthony Cioeta, Anna O’Boyle, Karen von Borstel (Property Director),  Leila Blakely (Health and Safety Director).


ABOVE: Ally Oser, Lizzy Brown, Anna McLean, Natalie Nielsen, Anthony Cioeta.


ABOVE: Shawna King (Asst. Camp Director), Shelby Dunn (CIT Director), Ally Oser, Lizzy Brown (Unit Directors)


ABOVE: Sr. Michael Francine (Camp Assistant), Nora Gravengaard (Camp Director), Shawna King (Asst. Camp Director)


Camp Howard Updates Paintball and Laser Tag

April 12, 2017 CYO/CH…The lasertag and paintball courses have been redone at Camp Howard this winter by Ashtien King, Assistant to the Property Director.  Ashtien is no stranger to either sport and has put his own personal touch on the stations.

The Paintball range has moved to a location below Aldergrove Unit which will be exciting for the kids.

A new laser tag shed is under construction to store the materials in during the summer.  Campers age 11 and up are eligible to participate in the laser tag program at Camp Howard.


Above: Laser tag arena at Camp Howard has new areas to hide behind this year.

CYO Track and Field 2017

It all began today with somewhere around 1800 participants signed up to compete around the Greater Portland area including Clark County, WA.  Before we know it, the four short weeks of meets will be over and we will find ourselves in the championships!  With the inclusion of Roadrunners (grades 3&4) in two regional meets with finals heading to the Meet of Champions, it proved to be very exciting for all.  This year CYO will be introducing medals for the championships across the board.  CYO is introducing the new Cadet medals for 2017.  Roadrunner and Cubs will receive the standard CYO Track and Field Medals which will be exciting for them as well.

Good luck this season to all participants.  See you at the Meet of Champions!


CYO 5th Grade Girls BXB Championships Oregon

Madeleine (White)

Coaches: Brenda Baumgart & Kelli Sullivan

Gillian, Lucy, Celine, Emma, Nancy, Eloise, Alice, Mallory, Catherine, Madison, Karson


Holy Trinity (Red)

Coaches: Chris Hicks & Anh Khoa Nguyen

Players: Lauren, Siena, Mikayla, Majorie, Kendra, Lauryn, Kyla, Adrienne, Mackenzie, Taniyah, Evelyn


The Madeleine scored four points in the first 5 minutes of the game and held Holy Trinity scoreless until the last minute and 20 seconds when Holy Trinity scored their first hoop.  At the end of the first quarter, it was Madeleine 8 Holy Trinity 2.

As the second half opened, Holy Trinity added four more points in the first two minutes to come within two.  The height on the Holy Trinity team especially Kendra #42 was a factor under the basket and she wasn’t shy going for the rebounds.

With less than 2 minutes left in the game, Holy Trinity went ahead 19-10, holding the Madeleine to 2 free throws the second quarter of the game.

The third quarter, after pep talks by both coaches, saw both teams with a renewed surge of energy.  Holy Trinity finished the quarter with 13 new points and Madeleine 2 for a quarter ending score of 32 – 14 Holy Trinity.

The Holy Trinity defense forced Madeleine to take perimeter shots while the Holy Trinity team was able to break through for inside shots and most often obtain the rebound for the second and third try.  When Madeleine did get it to the inside they were not able to convert.  This write believes that the height factor for next year’s sixth grade girls will make a big difference!

Game Final: Holy Trinity 42, Madeleine 17

Top Summer Camp Position Filled With Top Notch Leader

JANUARY 9, 2017 CYO/CAMP HOWARD–Anna McLean will step into the position of Program Director at Camp Howard for the 2017 summer camping season.  Camp administration is pleased to name this position early in the year and look forward to working with her this summer.  The Program Director is seen through the eyes of the summer campers as the “Camp Director”.  That goal of the administrative staff behind the scenes such as Nora Gravengaard (Camp Director), Shawna King (Asst. Camp Director, Leila Blakely, (Health and Safety Director), Jolie Abraham Phanton, (CYO Office Liason), Karen von Borstel, (Camp Howard Property Director), and Sister Krista (Exec. Director) is to promote the youth in the Catholic Youth Organization to leadership roles.

McLean who has been a summer camper, Counselor in Training and on the summer staff for multiple years, brings a lot of “can do” to her role.  She has been around the camp for many years and has a thorough understanding of what works.

Camp Staff positions are being filled between now and June.  Individuals 18 years and older are sought to fill the nearly 60 positions available at the camp this coming summer.  Camper materials will be available very soon.  The snow and ice took a toll on our process at the end of December and early January!

BELOW: Anna McLean, 2016 Unit Director and part of the Big Swing and Zip Line crew, prepares a camper for a ride on the “Big Swing”!


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.

Meanwhile…Back at the Convent…What’s all that Construction on Campus You Ask?

Exciting times on the campus of the Sisters of St. Mary of Oregon!  Who can get excited about a renovated parking lot?  When it adds several extra spots and addresses the underground water collection etc. it is pretty exciting huh?  The entrance to the back of the campus is also being changed as Murray Blvd. makes changes.

The old gym was taken down this spring to make way for a much needed campus maintenance facility and space for the maintenance Dept. to call home.  Personally I am very excited about this and look forward to the facility being finished!  It will greatly enhance the campus with the capabilities of really being able to take care of maintenance needs very professionally!

And the Sisters, are doing something fun for the community, putting in a bocce court and patio for outdoor activities.  We will be enjoying the bocce court this next week during community days so I will be sure to share that soon.  Meanwhile, here are some photos from this past week.

Bocce court and patio begins to take shape.

Bocce court and patio begins to take shape.

Walls begin to go up on the new maintenance facility.

Walls begin to go up on the new maintenance facility.

moving dirt around to make room for a new location for the dumpster near the new parking lot.

moving dirt around to make room for a new location for the dumpster near the new parking lot.

4th Grade Girls Fighting Dutch or All Saints?


The first points of the game were scored, with 45 seconds remaining, in first quarter, by All Saints.  All Saints had 13 kids on the team ( a lot for a bxb team) and they did a great job with getting all of the girls playing time. Both teams played with a significant range of height on the teams.

All Saints led 2-0 at the end of the first quarter and at half time it was the Fighting Dutch 5 – 4.  By the end of the third quarter All Saints had reclaimed the lead and the Final score at the end of 4 was…..All Saints 19 – 11!  (Fighting Dutch are from Visitation in Verboort and St. Francis of Assisi in Roy, CYO’s rural Catholic School teams).  Great job to All Saints and the Fighting Dutch!

The Fighting Dutch 4th Grade Girls win Second Place  CYO Basketball Championship 2015 at Valley Catholic High School

The Fighting Dutch 4th Grade Girls win Second Place CYO Basketball Championship 2015 at Valley Catholic High School

All Saints 4th Grade Girls win CYO Basketball Championship 2015 at Valley Catholic High School

All Saints 4th Grade Girls win CYO Basketball Championship 2015 at Valley Catholic High School

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


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


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


CYO All Star Swim Meet to Cap the 2015 CYO Swim Season

Mark Lee, CYO Director of Swimming, will be working with his outstanding volunteers in the swim program to present the final swim event of the 2014-15 swim season. The All Star Meet is unique in that it gives swimmers the opportunity to swim by gender and grade as opposed to cub (3rd through 5th grade) or cadet (6th through 8th).
The event will take place at the Mt. Hood College pool on Saturday January 31 from 1:00 until 5:30. This year, for the first time, All Star Swim Tee Shirts will be available for purchase by participants.