Author Archives: Lisa Wilson

Q&A Staff Edition: Maddy Horne

Maddy standing on canoe dock getting ready to put a canoe in the water

Q&A Staff Edition

Meet Maddy Horne

Maddy standing on canoe dock getting ready to put a canoe in the water

Maddy is one of our current staff members at Oconto. This will be her 8th summer at Oconto and her 2nd summer as a full staff member. Like many of our other staff member, Maddy was also a camper at Oconto and became a full staff through our QC and Semi programs!  

What made you start going to camp?

Maddy: I started going to camp as an Eagle in July of 2009. I’m the youngest of three siblings and I really wanted to spend some time with people my own age. My friend had been to Oconto before and had loved it so that summer I tagged along with her and I’ve been coming back ever since.

What’s your strongest memory of your first year?

M: My strongest memory from that first year is probably from the last night of my Eagle Lake canoe trip. It was a Thursday night and we were staying on Blueberry Island. That evening my counsellor suggested we take a sunset paddle and as we canoed around Blueberry we could see the entire camp on main beach and hear their voices singing along to songs from across the water.

What place at camp makes you feel most at home?

M: While I’m at camp I feel the most at home whenever near or on the water. I grew up on an island in the St. Laurence River so hearing the waves crash on the shores of Eagle Lake really reminds me of home.

What has changed in you because of your camp experiences?

M: I think the thing that has changed the most about me because of my camp experience is either my positivity or my leadership capabilities. Over my time at camp I have realized that you always have the most fun when you are staying positive. Even if things don’t go as planned a positive attitude can always help make the situation better! During my time as a camper, QC, Semi, and full staff member I have had so many opportunities to grow as a leader. These leadership skills have carried over into my city life and have helped me in many school and job related situations. I know that I will continue to use these skills in the future especially next year in my role of House President for one of the residences at my school, Saint Francis Xavier University.

What do you want to happen for the campers this summer?

M: The thing I want most for my campers this summer is for them to really witness the magic of Camp Oconto and for them to take advantage all the unique experiences camp has to offer. Above all I want them to fall in love with this special place and make friends that will last them a lifetime!

Maddy in the stern of a canoe paddling away while giving the peace sign

We are so excited for this summer to start! Work camp crew arrives in less than 3 weeks to start getting camp ready!

See you on Eagle Lake!

Stay tuned for our next blog post. If you would like to contribute anything please email ocontosm@gmail.com!

Alumnae, Celine Junke – Q & A

Alumnae, Celine Junke – Q & A

Hey Ocontonians!

We caught up with one of our alumnae, Celine Junke, to see what she is up to now and how her time at Oconto has helped her through the years. Celine went to camp as a camper from 1999-2004 and was a staff member from 2005-2009 and again in 2013. She graduated from McGill University in 2011 with a degree in Management.

Q: Hey Celine! What have you been up to since your summers at Oconto?

A: I currently live in San Francisco, California and work at Zendesk, a software company, where I am an Online Business Manager. On the side, I’ve helped launch and grow Teach For Canada, a Canadian educational non-profit focused on northern First Nations communities and have remained involved with Mcgill, my alma mater.

Q: What skills did you learn at camp that have helped you with your present job?

A: I’ve been successful in my current job because of my ability to build relationships, because I’m great at public speaking, and because I have a sense of adventure that pushes me to take risks. I can trace all three of these skills back to my time at camp and I know that my summers on Eagle Lake are what helped me to develop them.

Q: How has camp shaped who you are today?

A: Oconto gave me the best summers of my life and provided me with lifelong friendships. I gained female role models and mentors that allowed me to believe that women can and should lead in any setting – even in tech!

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Online Business Unit brushing up on some SQL skills

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In Dublin for work (at the Guinness Brewery)

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Presenting to startups in SF

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Out for a canoe at camp.

Stay tuned for our next alumnae catch up!

Do you have any camp stories you want to share? Send them to us at ocontosm@gmail.com!