Introducing the 2019 Camp Director for Camp Timbercrest

[This post originally appeared on Camp Timbercrest News]

This year, Paula Austin will serve as the Camp Director at Camp Timbercrest! She’s crazy excited about her new position, and we’re pretty excited too! Check out the interview below to learn more about your new director. 

What is your camp name?
Zoe

Why did you choose this name?                                                                              I have no idea how I ended up with it.  It was 1997 and I was a CIT, it was too long ago and there was no big memorable reason behind it. Now however, my name is most often associated with “Zoe Cakes,” a dessert I created during a cookout gone wrong in 1999.  I was thrilled when my daughter started coming to camp to find out that they still make them!

Zoe making her infamous zoecakes! 

How many years have you worked at camp? What were your previous positions?                                                                                                                       Over the last 20 years, I have worked at Seven Hills off and on for 11 summers. This will be my first summer at Timbercrest, and I can’t wait to experience all it has to offer.  Previous positions include junior counselor, assistant unit leader, unit leader, CIT director, head counselor, administrative assistant,and assistant camp director.                     

Did you ever camp as a Girl Scout? If so, where and when?                          Camping was one of my favorite things to do with my Girl Scout troop as a kid!  We had a pretty tight group that was together from Daisy up until high school. Our favorite winter camping destination was Sky High which had a great sledding hill behind the cabin.  We cabin camped at Green Lake, Margaret Castle,and Seven Hills, and got to try out the platform tents at Seven Hills when we participated in the encampments for our service unit.  

What’s one of your favorite camp memories?                                                     It’s hard to pick a favorite camp memory!  However, some of my favorite summers were the three that I spent working with the CIT’s.  I loved watching the growth that happened throughout their program and the transition from camper to staff.  The following year, when they would return as staff, I loved being the one to give them their staff shirts during staff week.  Many of them had come to camp since they were little.  The symbolism of that shirt and their long journey to finally be a counselor was always a huge moment for them, and a favorite of mine!

Why do you think girls should come to camp this summer?                          Girls should come to camp because they will find the best version of themselves there!  It sounds so cheesy, but its so true.  When a girl comes to camp, she is met with daily opportunities to step outside of her comfort zone, out of her everyday life, and experience new things.  The growth that can happen in a single week at camp is unbelievable.  Sometimes it is little things, a seven year old left to get the shampoo out of her hair without her parents help for the first time.  A nine year old that has spent a few summers at camp and “finally” makes it to yellow cap at her swim test.  A girl that thought she was afraid of bugs and now she can remove a daddy long legs from her tent to help out a friend.  First time on a horse, in a canoe,shooting an arrow, or trying the ropes course… camp has so many unbelievable opportunities!!

Paula in other role as mom of four!

What’s your favorite part about camp?                                                                 My favorite part of camp is campfires, specifically closing campfires.  While everything at camp is special, it is the traditions that keep girls coming back year after year.  At closing campfire, girls are presented with their 5, 10, 15+ year pins or patches.  It is such a big moment for so many.  The first time I attended a closing campfire as a CIT, I watched the girls telling their favorite memory during their five years at camp before getting presented with their pins.  It was at that moment that I was hooked on camp! I knew I wanted to meet that milestone and more!  Last summer, I was able to present my own daughter with her five year pin at Seven Hills and it was such an amazing thing for us both.  I was so proud of her for her five summer sat camp, but more than that, it was such a great moment to share with her as we share our love for camp!

Camp Guides are out now!

We’re still months away from summer and our camp season, but that doesn’t mean we can’t start dreaming about all the fun we’re going to have. Both our Resident and Camp Guides are out to tell you all about the amazing programs we have planned this summer!

View the Resident Camp Guide | Day Camp Guide

To learn more about all our camp options, visit our Summer Camp page!

Registration opens soon!

Happy First Day of Camp!

After months of planning and preparation, camp has finally arrived! Girl Scouts of Western New York camp kicked off its official summer at Camp Piperwood, our day camp located in Fairport, New York.

This week, girls entering grades kindergarten through 8th will learn all the basics of camping with The Great Outdoors. More than simply pitching tents and s’mores, the campers will learn about hiking, healthy snacks, cooking over an open fire, and how to navigate the woods without leaving a trail.

Starting next week, July 8, both our resident camps will begin their summer programming. Camp Seven Hills will see girls in grades ranging from kindergarten through 12th pass along the grounds in the following programs: Pony Pals; Silly Scientists; Be Happy, Relax, Namaste; Camp Adventure G.I.R.L.; Climbing Masters; Long Rein, Free Walk; A Little at a Time Mini Session; G.I.R.L. Tough; Riders Up; and Seven Hills Amazing Race.

At Camp Timbercrest, the youngest girls still have a week to wait, but all the other grades will be there. Its programming includes the extremely popular Dumbledore’s Army; I’m a Go-Getter; Ready to Ride; The Great Cupcake Challenge; and Quest Seekers!

This all sounds like so much fun and we haven’t even shared the best news! This is just the beginning and it’s not too late to register your girl!

Last Chance for Camp – don’t miss out!

We’re one week away from the official start of summer and just weeks away from the start of camp! It’s going to be such a great time this summer and we can hardly wait. If you haven’t registered your girl for camp yet, now is the time!

While some of our sessions and programs have filled, we still have openings just waiting to be filled by your girl. As of June 13, we have the following sessions available:

Camp Piperwood

  • Session 1
  • Session 6

Camp Seven Hills

  • Openings in select programs in all sessions

Camp Timbercrest

Registration for our last session doesn’t close until July 23, but you don’t want to wait and miss the chance to give your girl the best summer ever!

Our STEM focus extends to our camps

Hosting STEM programs at camp this summer is like the marrying of two of the initiatives we’re most excited about. Girl Scouting has always been about enabling girls to do more and push themselves and their knowledge further. Because of this, our programs always take a progressive approach to dealing with problems faced by women every day.

This is one reason camp has been a part of Girl Scouts since the beginning. We believe in helping girls become leaders in the great outdoors by showing them important skills. Plus most of us can agree that some of the best memories are created at camp!

Our STEM focus is to battle the overwhelming majority of men who work in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields. A major goal of Girl Scouts is to funnel more women in the STEM pipeline and close the gender gap currently found there. By exposing girls to STEM activities at younger age, they feel more comfortable with their place in that world.

With STEM-specific camps, we combine the outdoor fun with the educational aspects associated with these programs. With five programs targeted at younger girls, we want them to get excited about STEM and their potential future in the field!

Camp Piperwood

  • Citizen Scientist to the Rescue (Grades K-8)
  • Science Wonders (Grades K-8)

Camp Seven Hills

  • Silly Scientists (Grades 1-3)
  • Zoologist (Grades 1-3)
  • GIRLbots (Grades 4-6)

 

If you haven’t registered for camp yet, now is the time!