Camp Quality Blog – Day One: Sunday, July 15, 2018 

From our youngest campers to our oldest, there were hugs all around at the camper pick-up.
From our youngest campers to our oldest, there were hugs all around at the camper pick-up.

By: Jacklyn Spithoff

CAMP QUALITY – And so the adventure begins! Day one of Camp Quality: Science was a blast and a half and a great start to our week.

Just like every year, our volunteer Companions hopped on the bus bright and early to meet up with their campers at the Landmark Hotel. There were many happy reunions as the campers reunited with their companions.

From our youngest campers to our oldest, there were hugs all around at the camper pick-up.
From our youngest campers to our oldest, there were hugs all around at the camper pick-up.

Upon arriving at Camp Duncan, the campers were met by a line of high fives from the rest of our volunteer staff to give them a warm and exciting welcome to yet another incredible week.

Camper Ryder arriving at camp and making his way down the line of welcome high-fives from our volunteer staff.
Camper Ryder arriving at camp and making his way down the line of welcome high-fives from our volunteer staff.

The first few hours of camp consisted of the camp rules, nurse check-ins, and unpacking, followed by a tasty lunch of grilled cheese sandwiches and soup. After lunch, the campers and volunteers got the chance to escape the heat and hop into the chilly but refreshing Loon Lake where they enjoyed the water and took their swim tests. Many even stayed in the lake until the rain started coming down in buckets…then decided to get out so that they wouldn’t get too wet. Go figure!

Camper Parker ready to dive into the lake with his fabulous swimming outfit.
Camper Parker ready to dive into the lake with his fabulous swimming outfit.

Meanwhile, our Camp Director Ashleigh, Nevaya and Zeke (campers) and their companions Robby and Sara, went on an exciting field trip to represent Camp Quality at the Staal Foundation Open’s Closing Ceremonies. Talk about an exciting start to our week – alongside two other charities, the CQ crew accepted a cheque worth more than $189,000!! A giant CQ thank you goes out to the Staal Family Foundation, the Open and all of the players, sponsors, volunteers and spectators for their ongoing support and donations over the past five years. We appreciate your generosity more than we can say.

Director Ashleigh and campers Nevaya and Zeke with the Staal Brothers.
Director Ashleigh and campers Nevaya and Zeke with the Staal Brothers.

For our first camp dinner together, the McDonald’s staff cooked us an awesome meal of pizza, pasta, meatballs, garlic bread and salads. A big thank you goes out to Enzo, Olivia, Varun, Hailey, Emily, Mackenzie, Cody and Nilam!

Camp Quality campers and volunteers posing with our friends from McDonald’s who filled our tummies with a delicious dinner.
Camp Quality campers and volunteers posing with our friends from McDonald’s who filled our tummies with a delicious dinner.

With full bellies, campers set off to decorate their cabins for the “Best Decorated Cabin Contest”. The cabins really put up a fight this year, with several cabins giving the judges a tough choice to make with all the awesome decorations. But, as we know, there can be only one winner. This year, the highly sought after title was awarded to the ladies of Cabin 9, who put together a well-organized space-themed setup. Their decorations included a solar system, glow-in-the-dark stars and planets, a banner welcoming the earthlings to their galaxy, music and more to go with this year’s theme, “Science”. The girls even had costumes put together to show just how “out of this world” their cabin decorating skills were!

Companions Meaghan and Victoria and campers Ally and Sam showing off their fancy homemade jetpacks.
Companions Meaghan and Victoria and campers Ally and Sam showing off their fancy homemade jetpacks.

After the winner was announced, we had our annual Memorial Moment to honour, reflect and remember the campers and loved ones we have lost. This took place in our Place of Solitude, a beautiful area just inside the forest where anyone can go to spend some quiet time alone or with a friend.

New this year, we are sending Q-Mail to each other – Camp Quality’s version of “warm fuzzies”. Of course, we needed to make only the most stylish of envelopes to receive our messages to make us smile.

A special treat – one of our first-time summertime campers celebrated her 5thbirthday – Happy Birthday Ally!!. There was a huge, yummy cake prepared to celebrate, and I think it’s safe to say that nobody complained about it being our bedtime snack (sorry parents!).

Camper Ally blowing out the candles on the birthday cake made to celebrate her special day.
Camper Ally blowing out the candles on the birthday cake made to celebrate her special day.

As the day wound down, campers enjoyed some free time to play games, sit by the fire, or hang out with their friends. By the time bedtime rolled around, there were a lot of tired eyes to be seen. Our campers are in bed and getting their beauty sleep to rest up for another busy and exciting day tomorrow on day two of Camp Quality: Science Edition. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s adventures!


This is the seventh year that NetNewsLedger.com have hosted the Camp Quality Northwest blog. NetNewsLedger is pleased to support the work of Camp Quality, and the ongoing battle to beat cancer. On a personal note, cancer has taken both of my grandparents, it tried to take my mom. There are few people in Northwestern Ontario who are not impacted by cancer.

When cancer takes on children, it is time for us all to rally to help them.