On Friday night, we set up our tents and explored the camp as 4 of the girls had only been there in the winter. I also had the fun of introducing the girls to SWAPS and trading - something I love! Our first camp activity was to make Dreamcatchers, followed by a big campfire and snack. The campfire songs were suggested by the different units attending the camp and included Tall Trees, One Bottle of Pop, If I Were Not a Girl Guide, Get Loose, Mamma Don't Allow, Purple Stew and Black Socks. It was a bit of a late night as everyone was excited, but we were all eventually asleep.
Saturday started very early as the girls were up with the birds at 5.30AM - and were told by their very tired Guider to BE QUIET! The day officially started with Opening and Flag Raising, where the Patrols and Groups for the weekend were explained. All of the Guides and Guiders were divided up into 12 colour Patrols (my Patrol was light blue), and then the Patrols were grouped into 4 larger groups for the morning and afternoon activities. Patrols took part in activities together, ate together, and did camp duties together. We then all headed over to the Guide Kitchen and pavilions for breakfast (waffles with strawberries and whipped cream - yum!). After breakfast, each Patrol saw to their assigned camp duty - my Patrol were the "Lumberjacks" and had to gather wood for the campfire and lay the fire ready for Saturday night.
The four stations for the day were:
1. Central Canada
2. Atlantic Canada
3. Western Canada
4. Northern Canada
Groups did two activities, followed by lunch in the middle (tacos-in-a-bag!), and then the remaining two activities in the afternoon. It was a very hot weekend, and we all sought out spots in the shade as much as possible.
My group started our travels in Western Canada, where we took part in Roping, Racing, Milking, and Singing! For the first part of the session, the Guides were divided into 4 groups:
- Roping - Girls were given a lasso made from a loop of glowsticks attached to a rope and had to toss it over the head of a wooden horse
- Racing (1) - Girls rode pool noodle horses around a track of milk canisters
- Milking - Plastic gloves filled with water were attached to a pole laid across chairs, and the girls had to 'milk' them into a jar to see who could get the most liquid in 2 minutes
- Racing (2) - Girls split into two teams and used water pistols to move a plastic cup along a string - racing to see who could get their cup to the end first
Heading North, our next stop was the Territories. Here, the girls gathered, washed and polished stones to make an Inukshuk. Once these were finished, we played a relay game on Canadian Symbols where a question was read out and girls had to run up, find the correct picture on a poster and then race back to their team.
After lunch, we headed south to explore Central Canada. here, the girls took part in a CN Tower trivia game (played like Four Corners) and completed to see which team could build the highest free-standing tower using only spaghetti, toothpicks and marshmallows.
Our final stop was Atlantic Canada, where we explored Newfie lingo, raced boats and learned new knots! For the first activity, the girls split up into smaller groups and each group had a sheet of Newfie phrases to try to match up with their meanings. Afterwards, we made boats and raced them in an inflatable pool, then moved onto tying knots to make Knot Boards to take home.
The afternoon ended with some free time, where everyone received a Canadian Atlas for Kids with activities, but were also free to nap, chat, swap, etc. Dinner was BBQ chicken with baked potatoes and Caesar salad, followed by cupcakes and ice cream to celebrate Canada's birthday.
Our evening activity was a Wide Game with nine stations where the girls learned something about a Province or Territory and did an activity. While moving between activities, we had to be careful not to get caught by a Sasquatch and sent to the penalty box! My group made it to Saskatchewan, where we played horseshoes; BC, where we learned about the Capilano Suspension Bridge and walked over a raised rope bridge; the Yukon, where we dug for gold; PEI, where we learned about Anne of Green Gables and talked in pairs about Canada and Girl Guides; and Ontario, where we peeled apples - seeing who could make the longest continuous peel!
We ended with Campfire, planned by one of the Patrols, and including Fire's Burning, One Bottle of Pop, Three Sharp-toothed Buzzards, There Was a Great Big Moose, Land of the Silver Birch, Say Why and Taps. Everyone settled down to sleep much more quickly tonight!
Sunday started at a much more reasonable hour than Saturday, but we still managed to get everyone packed and our tents down before opening and breakfast. Opening included flag raising and a short ceremony planned by one of the Patrols. Breakfast was leftovers, fruit, English muffins, cereal and oatmeal. After breakfast, each Patrol had a new duty to perform - my Patrol cleaned one side of the Lat Building, and then we all headed off to finish packing or for free time. Camp closed with a short Guides' Own Ceremony planned by two of the Patrols in the Reflection area at camp.