During the summer months, two teams of twenty staff travel to thirteen locations across the Greater Toronto Area. Accompanied by a twenty-six foot truck packed with equipment, the teams provide week-long camps to about 60 guests. Director of City Camps, Jeremy Laverty, created and now manages the mobile camp program for Muskoka Woods. Future plans include expansion across Canada.
With seven years of experience as a summer day camp director and year- round program manager, Jeremy approached Muskoka Woods with a proposal to expand their resident camp program to include a day camp on a Toronto site. Muskoka Woods, founded in 1979 by John and Marie Boddy, is a year-round Christian Youth Resort on Lake Rosseau, Ontario, which annually receives 28,000 guests. As a former, summer camp, staff member at Muskoka Woods, Jeremy had identified the camp as having the resources and brand recognition to make his proposal successful. Several meetings and business plans later, the concept for a mobile day camp emerged.
In January 2014, Jeremy looked at a number of American camps that had been extremely successful in pioneering the mobile day camp business model. In May, they started marketing the Toronto area mobile camp and in summer 2014 put one team on the road to four sites and provided six weeks of camp for a total of 200 guests. In September 2014, two more full time staff were hired and planning began for 2015. In summer 2015, two staff teams went on the road to thirteen sites at churches and private schools and provided fifteen weeks of camp for almost 600 guests.
With an emphasis on cabin grouping and a wide range of activities, their goal is to provide “an overnight camp-style experience closer to home.” Another aim is to introduce camping to populations that are not familiar with camping as part of their culture. The intent is to expand the program provincially and eventually nationally.
For more information on MuskokaWoods CityCamp please see MuskokaWoods.com.