“It was like a dream come true to go to Moorelands Camp and escape from the traffic noise, pollution and congestion…”
At Alumni Day 2017 (July 15th) we got the chance to catch up with two campers from the 1960s, sisters Christine and Carol. Here, Christine tells their story:
“Moorelands Camp at Beaverton first came to our attention through Constance Hood who of St. Stephen’s-in-the-Fields Anglican Church, and through her, we joined this church shortly after moving to Toronto. She also happened to be one of the directors of the DCA and a well-known leader at the camp. I attended the girls’ camp for 5 years in the early ‘60s and my sister, Carol, attended for 3 years starting in the late ‘50s.
Moorelands Camp at Beaverton
“We have great memories of Moorelands Camp which was situated on a very picturesque area of land overlooking Lake Simcoe. There was a fair bit of lawn all through the camp, so it was not a rustic setting by any means. The three long dormitories for the campers were named: Sunset (the yellow one), Lakeview (green), and Woodlands (brown), and there was also this lovely quaint chapel at the far end of camp that had this lovely pine smell as you entered.
Memories to Last a Lifetime
“The swim lessons were invaluable in helping to overcome my fear of water. My first year, the biggest thrill was being awarded a copper cup for most improved swimmer. Carol’s most memorable highlight was winning the reward for having the neatest dorm. She was so motivated to win that she and her roommate ended up cleaning some of the other campers’ rooms! In the end, it was worth all their hard work.
“Meal times were fun. We sang and clapped to the “gilly gilly wash wash” song, with each table shouting out the names of various tribes assigned to us. The food was excellent and nourishing. As there was no automatic dishwasher back then, an adult volunteer washed the dishes and the campers took turns in groups, drying them – a somewhat daunting task – but there was also a sense of accomplishment and relief when we finished.
Looking Back at How Camp Was
“Nightly entertainment in the rec hall for skits, songs, and games was so enjoyable. The variety of crafts, the tuck shop, mail time, and the long walk to the town of Beaverton also stand out. Then there were the flag raising/lowering ceremonies. Each morning three campers were assigned to hoist the flag up the pole and each evening three more would lower it. We always felt a bit nervous hoping we wouldn`t mess up!
“The evening campfire was something we all looked forward to. They always started out with “Fire’s Burning” and ended with “Day is Done”. Although there was no archery, kayaking or canoeing, there was plenty to keep us busy.
“After Moorelands, I attended Camp High Adventure on Sparrow Lake for two years. We both started full-time work right after high school as money was tight back then. Apart from raising our own families, Carol has been, and is still, heavily involved with her Anglican Church for the past 40 years, lending her time and support where needed. I went back to college 15 years ago, completing a legal diploma program, while also doing volunteer work at a retirement home.
The Importance of Giving Back
“Moorelands taught us early on about giving back to the community in the same way we were helped. We are grateful to Mrs. Hood and the DCA to have given us this opportunity as we lived in one of the busiest streets in downtown Toronto, and right across from a busy car wash at that, so it was like a dream come true to escape from the traffic noise, pollution and congestion!”We love reading the stories of those who have been to Moorelands – either as participants or staff. Alumni, why not share your own Moorelands story too?
Don’t forget to sign up to join our Alumni Group to keep up to date with alumni news and events and opportunities to get involved with Moorelands.