Hot summer activities
Children enjoy a variety of activities at Tree of Peace day camp

Emma Levez
Northern News Services

NNSL (Jul 10/98) - Barbecues at the beach, survival skills and hiking. Rain or shine there is always something to do at the Tree of Peace day camp.

The camp started for the summer on June 29 and runs through Aug 21. Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Yellowknife children age nine to 14 are invited to join the supervised fun, which is provided free of charge by the Tree of Peace Friendship Centre.

"The only money we ask for," says camp manager, Danielle Antoine, "is $2 on Fridays because we go to the beach for a cookout." There are three counsellors besides Danielle, looking after about 18 children a day.

Hiking and outdoor activities like volleyball, fishing, bird-watching and tree and bug identification are enjoyed by the children.

Combined with indoor activities such as bannock-making, crafts, board games and storytelling, an environment of varied entertainment is created for the participants.

Visits to the beach are a favorite of many of the attendees. Colleen Brinston articulates a general feeling among the children: "It's fun when we swim, especially when it's hot."

Many of the children are also enthusiastic about the indoor cultural activities. Mallory Digness claims that "making bannock is my favorite thing to do (at camp)." Nikita Mackeinzo likes eating it. "I learned how to make bannock with my mom," she says.

Antoine explains that although the attending children are from many different cultures, there are quite a few aboriginal children. "We want to provide an enjoyable and educational recreation opportunity for children, and incorporate culture into it as well."

Cheryl Mandeville is enjoying her first year as counsellor at the Tree of Peace day camp.

"I like working with children. It's good to be outside all day," she says. "I like making the kids happy, doing something productive." Says Antoine, "We have a great bunch of kids this year and we all have a good time."