Pelham Tot Camp is No Little Feat

August 22, 2014

by Marc Ayotte

The Pelham Parks & Recreation conducts dozens of camps and events throughout the year, and one of the more popular ones is the Tot Camp that just ended on August 14.  Held at the Raymond Scout Lodge located on Keyes Hill Road, the camp is conducted two days per week with some 28 children attending this year.

According to PP&R Director Brian Johnson, the campers range in ages 3 to 7 so naturally a lot of preparation goes into making the program very enjoyable for the youngsters.  “For a lot of the campers, it’s their first social interaction.  It’s a great program and it gives moms a break,” added Johnson who raved about the camp’s director:  “We truly have the greatest director in the world with Pattie Parece.”

In her sixth year as camp supervisor, Parece, with the help of 10 staff members, provides a myriad of activities for the children to enjoy during the six-week-long program.  Included in her supporting cast are four Junior Leaders who are performing community service on their way to what Parece hopes will be future camp counselors.  “It’s a great ratio,” observed Parece of the number of staff to campers, enhancing the ability to give the campers plenty of attention.  “It’s definitely not a drop-off and play,” she added.

In a sort of mission statement, Parece offered:  “Basically the main focus of our program and the goal for myself and my staff is to provide a safe, welcoming and exciting summer camp experience for the children while creating positive childhood memories and meaningful friendships for our campers and their families.”

Parece explained that each week reflects a different theme, including field trips like the one recently taken to Benson Park in Hudson.  Additionally, the children have already enjoyed a trip to Chunky’s and have scheduled a field day at Muldoon Park where they will have a safety officer from the Pelham Police Department speak to the kids, followed by a bike parade around the pond.

At the lodge, children are able to enjoy various games such as air hockey in addition to jumping around in the Rec-owned bouncy houses.  Other activities that the campers took part in were nature walks, soccer games, wiffle ball, clown shows, a trip to the town library for ‘story time’, and a talent show, where the campers performed for their parents and grandparents – followed by an ice cream social.  “From the time they get there until the time they leave, they’re doing activities,” cited Parece.