We will try to answer your camp related questions here, but if you still need assistance, please contact us.

 

Life at Camp

 
Campers rotate throughout the day to the different activities relative to their camp session. See a list of activities here. All overnight campers participate in a large camp game after dinner and finish the day with a fun and meaningful campfire.
Classic camps are packed full of adventure, but the canoe trip is always central to the camp experience. With their cabin mates and leaders, each camper will explore beautiful Shoal Lake and its many wilderness campsites. Campers will be cooking over a fire, sleeping in a tent and learning how to enjoy, respect, and travel in Creation. Campers will have the opportunity to serve each other and help out with chores en route. They will learn how to work together in the ‘fun in the sun’ times but also in the difficult situations when the weather changes or the bugs start biting.
We encourage you to talk with your child about camp life. For example:

  • the camp is on an island
  • the cabins are shared with other campers
  • there is a canoe trip
  • etc.
 
You should have the following expectations:

  • your child will have a good time
  • make new friends
  • learn to do many new things
  • become a member of a new cabin group.
 
If you have any doubts or concerns, call us to discuss them. We want to alleviate your concerns so you can assure your child of his or her camp experience. Be sure to ask your child about any concerns that he/she may personally have.
Yes. To help reduce lost and found items we ask that all possessions brought to camp be labelled. We attempt to help care for the camper’s clothing but often considerable amounts get left behind. Please contact the office if there is a specific item you are looking for. On occasion, items can be returned with scheduled bus runs at the end of camp sessions or picked up in the Winnipeg office at the end of September or early October.
Pioneer Camp is a nondenominational, Christian camp that promotes the teachings of Jesus Christ. We welcome children and youth of any faith and race, encouraging young lives to grow spiritually, mentally, socially and physically.

 
Your child will be welcomed into our Christian community and will experience God’s love through community living, relationships and creation. Each day they will take part in a devotional time where they will be introduced to Christian values and beliefs presented through small and large group discussions, skits, songs and Bible study.
Pioneer Camp is owned and operated by InterVarsity who has been operating summer camps and year-round outdoor educational programs since 1929. We operate nine summer camps across Canada under the names of Pioneer Camp and Circle Square Ranch.
 
 

What to Bring

 

Beside all the normal, camp clothes, there are extra items to bring depending on your child’s camp session. Appropriate information is provided below. We will also send you a confirmation package once registration is complete. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Campers should bring enough clothing for the week. Please label all clothing and luggage! (Labels or indelible markers). Please attempt to bring modest clothing appropriate for physical camp activities. Click here for a full list of what to pack.

*Pioneer Camp is not responsible for lost, damaged or stolen items.

The following items are not permitted at Pioneer Camp and, if brought, will be held in the office for the duration of the camper’s session:

  • electronic games, players, entertainment and communication devices (cell phones)
  • jack knives, hunting knives, matches or lighters
  • nuts and/or peanut products
  • chewing gum
  • inappropriate reading materials
  • alcoholic beverages, narcotics or tobacco products

Do not bring anything valuable to camp as occasionally things do get lost or broken. Pioneer Camp is not responsible for lost, damaged or stolen items.

Yes, Pioneer Camp operates a Tuck Shop at camp which sells books, clothing, flashlights, batteries, and souvenirs. Since campers may not keep cash in their possession while at camp, we ask that money going towards their Tuck Account is included in your payment for the camp session. Unspent portions of the tuck account will be refunded at the end of the camp session, or can be donated toward our scholarship fund. 

 
We suggest a weekly amount of $20 – $50. 

 
*Please note: Regular camp fees do not include tuck shop purchases, camp photos, clothing and souvenirs. 

 
 

Arrival and Departure Days

 

The Pioneer Camp III boat will pick campers up at the dock on Shoal Lake at 4 pm on the start day of most camps. Please see the transportation schedule for specific departure times for your camp. Please make sure you arrive approximately 15–30 minutes early to drop off your child to ensure smooth operations. 

 
Please note that we are unable to take early registration. If you have any questions regarding registration day, please contact us. 

By Bus:

Bus departures and arrivals meet at the east parking lot (off of Burmac) of the Winnipeg Evangelical Free Church, 500 Lagimodiere Blvd. Campers should be there by 1:30pm on the start date of camp, so that they can be signed in and buses can depart at 2pm. On the end date of camp, buses arrive at the same location at about 5pm. Exceptions to these times are the Voyageur canoe trips and LIT which needs campers to arrive at 11:30 for a 12 o’clock departure.

By Boat:

The boat is waiting at the dock to pick up campers at 4pm on the start day of most camps and it drops off campers at 3pm on the end date of most camps. However, check the transportation schedule below for any changes to departure and arrival times for your camp. Please make sure you arrive approximately 15 – 30 minutes early to drop off/pick up your child at camp to insure smooth operations.

 

Go to Transportation Schedule

 
 

Communication during Camp

 

Telephone:  Campers do not have access to the telephone except under the supervision of a camp director. Please do not send cell phones as there is limited cell phone signal at camp. In case of emergency calls, to or from parents, the camp director or office staff will relay messages as quickly as possible. If a child is severely homesick we will work with them to overcome it; however, if they need to talk to their parent we will certainly have them call.

Email Your Camper: You can send one-way emails to your camper!  We know that parents get a bit nervous over the fact that while their kids are at camp they will not be able to communicate with them as quickly as when their kids are at home or at school.

Internet:  While we understand the importance of staying in touch, Pioneer Camp does not offer internet access for campers. All electronics are requested to be left with parents or left with the office for the duration of the camper’s stay. This is to prevent loss and to give the camper the opportunity to appreciate the beautiful surroundings God has given us.

Mail: We recommended that parents/guardians give any letters/packages to the bus supervisor on the departure day, indicating on the package when they would like the camper to receive it.

*Any mail received after the camper has left will be returned to sender.

Our friendly atmosphere and understanding staff help campers overcome the natural fears and concerns of being away from home. Getting kids involved in the program and making new friends helps to overcome the fears associated with leaving home and their family. It is our goal to make their stay at Pioneer Camp as enjoyable as possible. The camp director will spend time with any homesick child and, if necessary call the parent.

With that in mind, we encourage parents and family not to visit during the week. If a child is homesick, a visit by family is usually not helpful. As well, other campers who are feeling homesick and are aware of the visit may request similar privileges and in most cases, this is not possible.

We do have an open house day in June and parents are encouraged to come out and see the site at that time.

 

Our Caring Staff

 
As part of InterVarsity, we believe that summer camp offers a tremendous opportunity for children and teens to grow and mature emotionally, socially and spiritually. At Pioneer Camp, campers are respected as individuals, challenged and encouraged in all aspects of life, and given the opportunity to experience and develop authentic relationships with peers and leaders. Skill development, social development, personal and spiritual growth are all intentionally fostered by staff and have been hallmarks of the InterVarsity Camp experience since 1929. Finally, and equally importantly, we want every child’s experience to be tremendously fun.
The overall camper to staff ratio is 3:1. All of our Mackinnon Camps have 2 leaders per cabin, with the Cash camps having one leader per cabin.
The camp director has more than 23 years experience working with Pioneer Camp.

Our summer leadership team consists of individuals with previous camping experience as well as specific skills and training in their area of responsibility.

 
 

Health and Safety

 
Health and safety are a primary concern at Pioneer Camp. We strive to provide safe and enjoyable activities.
 
  • There is a qualified medical person on staff, available 24 hours a day.
  • Pioneer Camp leadership staff are trained in First Aid and CPR.
  • Quality, nutritional meals are provided with a variety of healthy snack options at Tuck times.
  • Drinking water is lab analyzed regularly for quality.
  • All campers must provide a valid health number and completed medical information on application. Out-of-province campers must have medical insurance.

Yes. Because a high level of care for campers is so important to us, the operation of all activities and facilities where campers could potentially experience injury is governed by our risk management manual. This manual clearly details required supervision levels, equipment checks, and operating guidelines to ensure the safe participation of all campers. As well, campers and staff alike are trained to recognize and respond to signals in case of an emergency. This emergency procedure is practised in a drill early in every session.

Due to the structure of our program, Pioneer Camp requests that medications required throughout the year be sent with your child to camp. All medication brought to camp MUST be kept by camp staff, including vitamins, puffers and Tylenol. They must be labelled properly with medication name and directions for use. Prescription medication MUST be in the original container with user’s name printed on label. If you want your child to carry their puffer or Epipen with them please bring a fanny pack for that purpose. We also request that a second puffer or Epipen be checked in with the camp nurse. Please do not use the week of camp as a break from medication. All medications left behind after camp will be disposed of after 2 weeks’ time.

Please advise us at registration if there are any changes to your child’s medical information. The camp reserves the right to refuse admission to any camper with a suspected contagious condition (i.e. chickenpox, lice). To ensure your child has an enjoyable week and to protect other campers, please have any condition treated completely before coming to camp. If this is not possible, please call and reschedule to another week, depending on availability.

All campers must provide a valid health number and completed medical information on application. Out-of-province campers must have medical insurance.

Details regarding medical/behavioral concerns are to be communicated in writing. Please call to discuss any concerns/special needs by phone.

Should your child have severe food allergies, please contact us at least one week ahead of arrival on the island to help us with menu planning. This will allow us to prepare appropriately to ensure your child has an enjoyable stay at camp. If a special diet is required for reasons other than medical needs (i.e. vegetarian), you will be required to provide specialties. Pioneer Camp will make every effort to accommodate allergies; however, we cannot guarantee that there will be no trace of an allergen in food served. We strive to be a nut free facility and do not knowingly serve foods containing nuts. We sell only nut free products in our store.
Pioneer Camp cannot guarantee to be a nut/peanut free environment. We do seek to reduce the risk of exposure and therefore do not use or serve peanuts, peanut products or tree nuts on camp property. Nuts or products containing nuts will not be available in our store. However, the food we purchase and serve may contain traces of nut products.
All campers must be lice and nit free to attend camp. It is imperative parents check their children for evidence of lice prior to coming to camp. If a camper arrives with lice they will be asked to return home until they are lice/nit free. We will make every effort to accommodate the camper in a later session during the summer.
No. Pioneer Camp is a smoke-free facility. Smoking by campers is prohibited. The use of tobacco, alcoholic beverages, or narcotics is prohibited and will be treated as a serious offence. Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken.
 
 

Registration & Camper Fees

 
Fee includes all meals for camps, housing, use of all recreational equipment and facilities, instruction in activities, and awards.
The fee does not include transportation to and from the dock where the Pioneer Camp III picks up campers to transport them to camp or tuck shop purchases.

If you cancel more than two weeks prior to the start of camp, you will get a full refund less $75/week administration fee. If you cancel less than two weeks prior to the start of camp, you will get NO REFUND (includes camp fees, out-trip fees, and transportation fees if applicable) except for medical reasons with a note from a doctor. In that case, you will get a full refund less $75/week administration fee. No refund will be made for dismissals due to disciplinary action, late arrivals or early departures. Withdrawal during camp on physician’s orders will result in the value of fees for the unexpired term being refunded.

Financial assistance is available for those who qualify. Assistance is at the discretion of the Director. For campers from Manitoba, funding may also be available through the Sunshine Fund at (204) 784-1130. We encourage parents to pay for as much of the camp fees as they feel is possible. We are open to discussing a payment plan whereby the camp fees could be paid in installments over the course of the year, starting as soon as possible. If you would like financial assistance, fill out and submit the Scholarship Form and submit it with your camper application form.

No. You have two options when registering online: Visa or MasterCard or you can mail in a cheque. Paying by cheque will delay the processing of your camp application since registration is not “secured” until full payment is received.
An alternate payment option is only applicable if you are applying for scholarship.