Lake Owego is...
...a summer filled with dozens of exciting activities, outdoor adventure, sports, arts and friendships that last a lifetime...
...a place with the facilities of a large camp and the flexible family atmosphere of a small one...
...an overnight camp that will help boys grow, learn and have more fun than they can pack in during the whole school year!
We're all about support, encouragement and fun. We want our campers to do the things they love and try something new. Each camper has the option to pursue personal interests or a new sport or activity. Here, each day is different, and each camper's world expands a little bit more through what he does and who he meets.
Interested in just a sampling of the many action-packed activities at Lake Owego? How about sports galore - basketball, baseball, touch football, soccer, lacrosse, hockey and volleyball, just to name a few. There's plenty of outdoor adventure for all, with mountain climbing, hiking, zip line, four-story-high climbing wall and ropes courses. Water nuts will love our boating and swimming activities like canoeing, windsurfing, fishing, water-skiing, recreational swims, competitive meets and swimming instruction from Red Cross-certified teachers. Campers can try our classes in the creative arts, including craft making, model rocketry, photography, drama and radio broadcasting, or enjoy specialty activities like tennis, golf, riflery, archery, horseback riding and self-defense. It's all here!
We pride ourselves on hiring fantastic, talented staff. Our friendly counselors get the kind of training that helps them give their very best to your child. Many of our counselors are former campers who can't wait to share the Lake Owego experience from a first-hand perspective. We also personally recruit counselors from colleges and universities throughout the United States as well as some from Scotland, England and other countries.
The common thread is that all of our counselors are committed to our campers' well-being, welcoming new campers with warmth and supporting them throughout the summer in all that they do. Our bunks are generally made up of eight to twelve campers with a ratio of one counselor for every three campers.
Our camp environment is designed to promote success, self-confidence and self-esteem for every single camper. We limit our enrollment to ensure that every camper is known - by name, by interests and by who they are as individuals. All of our programs combine skill development, challenges and fun, stressing participation and sportsmanship over winning while encouraging campers to get into the spirit of healthy competition.
Before camp begins, all new campers and their families are invited to stay at camp overnight together so they can see first-hand what it's like to live in a Lake Owego cabin, dine on camp food and sing around the campfire. New Camper Weekend is a great way to introduce new campers to each other and to the Lake Owego experience before camp actually starts!
There is no better, safer place to mature and deal with a complex world than at overnight camp. As with campers' home and school lives, there will be those inevitable bumps in the road - but here, there will always be another camper or counselor ready to lend a helping hand and keep them going in the right direction. That's what Lake Owego is all about.
Lake Owego Camp is owned by the Black family, who has been operating youth summer camps longer than almost anyone else. In 1931, Hughie and Selma Black founded Pine Forest Camp, which grew over the years to become a nationally recognized co-ed camp. Building on that success, Lake Owego for boys was opened in 1961, and our sister camp for girls, Camp Timber Tops, was opened in 1963.
Today, the third-generation leadership of Mickey and Barbara Black carry on the family legacy, earning awards such as "Family Business of the Year" and serving as active leaders in the American Camping Association of America.
Shelly Silver, Director
Shelly has been in education for 40 years, the last 11 as an elementary school principal at East Brook School in Park Ridge, New Jersey. He began his teaching career in physical education and coach in New York City. As a high school basketball coach, he won two city championships with his team participating in state finals. He has been in camping for over 35 years and is the author of The Smart Parents' Guide to Summer Camps. Shelly also authored "Athletic Energy for Academic Power," published in The New York Times Sunday Sports Section.
Kyle Silver, Director
Kyle has been working at Lake Owego Camp for twenty years. Kyle is a 6th grade teacher and grade team leader at Fieldston Middle School in the Riverdale, New York. Kyle's background includes coaching both high school basketball and soccer. Kyle formed and leads the Pike County Athletic Association which conducts a wide variety of athletic tournaments throughout the summer for a number of camps in the area.
Johnny Waszczak, Director
Johnny and Rachel have been year-round camp directors for over twelve years, and we're so fortunate that they recently moved to Philadelphia to work for Lake Owego as full-time directors! Johnny and Rachel bring invaluable experience in the outdoors, wilderness trips, rock climbing, ropes course instruction, and lifeguarding. Johnny is an American Camp Association committee member and prepares for the summer all winter-long. Rachel is a nurse and serves as our camp healthcare coordinator during the summer. Johnny, Rachel, and their daughter Emma live in Philadelphia, but their favorite place to be is around the campfire in Greeley, PA.
Bill Southward, Head Counselor
Bill has worked at Owego since the late 1970's, took some time off to start a family, and has been back the last several summers working with our oldest campers. During the year, Bill teaches 6th grade in Lancaster, PA. Bill also coached high school basketball and led Lancaster Cathloic High School to a PA state championship and a record of 47 consecutive wins. At camp, Bill helps the older boys set the tone for younger campers, making each and every Lake Owego camper feel at home during the summer.