Day Camp back with a bang

27 Apr 2021

The Mercury Bay Day Camp was back with a bang last week with 300 excited children, aged 6 to 13, enjoying three days of adventure, challenge and fun.

It was a slightly belated 20th birthday for the camp after COVID-19 saw the milestone event cancelled last year. Once again, a huge team of adult organisers and supervisors and an even bigger crew of teen leaders came together to run an action-packed programme that included rock climbing, kayaking, a confidence course, woodwork, sack sliding and a massive water slide among the activities on offer.

The Mercury Bay Community Support Trust organises the camp each hear at Graham and Selma Morcom’s property on Purangi Road, Cooks Beach. All 300 spots were snapped up within days of the online booking system opening. Most of the adult helpers are drawn from various Mercury Bay church communities and the camp has a Christian ethos with the children also learning faith-based songs and stories.

Speaking at the finale and farewell on Thursday, camp director, Tina Bartlett, acknowledged all those who had been a part of the success of the 2021 camp, including the sponsors and the Whitianga Lions for taking on barbecue duty for the final day’s sausage sizzle. 

“I also want to thank all the parents, grandparents and caregivers for bringing their children to camp, they have all done so well,” Tina said. “Wherever you went as you walked around camp over the past three days, they have been amazing to deal with, so polite and so well behaved.”

As well as presenting two individual $1,000 leadership scholarships sponsored by Whitianga residents, Richard and Diane Vetter, to the outstanding male and female teen leaders, Tina praised the efforts of all the 14 to 18 year olds who volunteered their time helping the children have a great time. “You have inspired all of us on this camp,” she said.

Tina’s leadership was acknowledged with the presentation of a handwoven traditional Tongan ta?ovala worn by leaders on ceremonial or special community occasions.

Pictured: The massive water slide at the camp.