Camp Woodstock YMCA
"The Friendship Camp"

Exciting Changes for Summer 2018

Posted on Oct 25, 2017 in Camp Updates

Yurt Village Expands!

Grants totaling $90,000 have been awarded to Camp Woodstock to expand the very popular Yurt Village. Executive Director Anthony Gronski and longtime Woodstock volunteer Carey Greene teamed up to write several grant applications that have been instrumental in creating a series of strategic changes for 2018 and beyond. A $45,000 grant from YUSA was matched by a grant from the Rorabach Fund which together has provided the funds necessary to construct an additional Yurt as well as expand the Yurt Bath House to accommodate the increase in Yurt campers.

The Yurts are designed for our oldest session campers who enjoy a unique experience separate from other age groups where they develop a close-knit friendship with peers and counselors. “This is one of our most popular programs” Anthony Gronski continued, “To see such a diverse group of teenagers singing, cheering, communicating, and learning new skills while having pure fun in a positive atmosphere is truly magical.

They talk, laugh, share stories all looking each other in the eye. I can’t think of any other place that brings such a young diverse group of coed teenage campers together quicker and stronger than the Yurt program.” The Yurt expansion doubles the number of spaces for eligible campers. Foundations have been installed and construction will continue throughout the winter and spring months. 


Youngest Girls move to Cabin 17

With the movement of additional older girls from main camp to the Yurt Village enables a shift of the youngest female campers from a somewhat isolated Cabin # 1 to Cabin # 17. Cabin # 1 located between Pop’s Lodge and the Boathouse has been in the middle of many camp activities to include the main path to the waterfront. This move gives our youngest girls added privacy and will lead to greater companionship and friendship with all other girls located in girls camp. This also clearly establishes three distinct areas in camp. All girls will be housed together on the south side of Pop’s Lodge while all boys will be housed to the north of Pop’s Lodge. The common program area from the basketball courts to include the cabin field, Pop’s, the council ring and the waterfront area will separate the two residence areas of main camp which has long been a strategic goal of the Camp Woodstock Master Plan.

Cabin # 1 Re-purposed as Camp Trading Post

The camp store (Trading Post) currently located inside a corner of Pop’s Lodge will move to a larger and more practical location as a standalone Trading Post in re -purposed Cabin # 1. The store will have a much larger area and will be organized in a way that invites campers, camper families and staff inside for the purchase of items such as tee shirts and camp essentials, while food items will be offered via window service. Additionally, the new location adjacent to the patio and cookout area will simplify opening day check-ins, checkouts, cookouts and other program activities.

Pop’s Lodge Gains Program Space

Moving the Trading Post from inside of Pop’s Lodge helps with much-needed space available for the proper organization and storage of program equipment. It also allows for more room during rainy days for larger program possibilities.


Health Lodge Renovations

The one place no one wants to think about at camp but is one of the most important places at camp; is our Health Lodge. No one likes to be sick away from home but when you are sick – you want a place that feels like home. You want it to be clean, well-kept and offer some privacy. The Health Lodge is located in the area we call Upper Camp. Upper Camp includes Alumni Hall, Arts & Crafts Barn and the climbing tower.

Camp Woodstock recently completed its renovations of the Health Lodge at the beginning of March. The work started with a private gift and a grant helped finish the process. Through donations and grants, we were able to renovate the basement which during heavy rain would flood. Using a Connecticut based company for waterproofing and renovations, we were able to fix the flooding problems, prevent it from happening in the future with two sump pumps and an interior gutter system. All this allows the space to be used for storage and laundry service.


The main floor of the Health Lodge got new sheetrock walls, new Pergo flooring, new ceiling, added insulation, updated kitchen countertops and bathroom vanities plus an additional recovery room. Recognizing the complexities of the needs of campers and nurses who share the building throughout the summer, camp pursued different options and levels of care by reorganization of the space. Through many planning discussions with Board Members and our maintenance staff, the design was laid out. Over the past four months, this work was able to be executed and completed despite snow storms and very cold temperatures.


Executive Director Tony Gronski, recently stated that “The significance of this key building is to get the community in a more comfortable setting so campers and staff can transition back into the summer program as quickly as possible. The renovations required thoughtful solutions to complex problems regarding the healing spaces and the nurses living area. We believe the plan that has been developed over the past year addresses those issues with a special concern for long-term solutions.”

This series of strategic changes are all expected to be completed in time for the 2018 camping season. If you have any questions regarding our Master Site Plan contact Anthony Gronski, Executive Director at 1-800-782-2344.

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