News & Events

Calendar of Events

posted on Wed, Aug 16 2017 1:30 pm by YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

2017 Upcoming Events

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The 2017 Risk Management Symposium is just around the corner!

posted on Wed, Aug 16 2017 10:45 am by YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

YMCA Camps Manito-wish, Menogyn, and Widjiwagan are excited to host the 5th Annual Midwest Risk Management Symposium at YMCA Camp Ihduhapi from November 15-17! The mission of the Symposium is ‘to provide an opportunity for outdoor educators of the Upper Midwest to collaborate and contribute to the advancement of risk management practices. If you’re interested in learning more about the risk management of experiential education and wilderness tripping programs, please consider joining us this fall! The theme of the 2017 Midwest Risk Management Symposium is Risk and Resilience. Through presentations, discussions, and workshops, we’ll explore the interdependence of risk and resilience in our programs. We will unpack the concept that risk helps promote resiliency but we need to also be resilient in the face of risk. It’s going to be a great event! Please contact Kathleen Floberg ( if you want more information about this event or are interested in presenting!”


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Fall Sampler

posted on Wed, Aug 16 2017 10:31 am by YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

Widji is the perfect place to spend your fall school break!

Our Fall Sampler weekend offers you the opportunity to canoe, hike, play games, meet new friends, reconnect with old ones, enjoy great food and have some terrific fall fun. 

Registration Form

October 19-22, 2017
Youth ages 12-18
$150/person ($50 non-refundable) includes transportation
Registration Deadline: October 9

Provided from the White Bear Area YMCA
Departs: 8:00am October 19
Returns: 2:00pm October 22

Confirmations and further information will be sent via email.

Financial Assistance is available, contact 651-645-6605 for information.


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Matt Poppleton: An Introduction

posted on Thu, May 4 2017 2:34 pm by YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

Greetings! To say that I am excited for this new opportunity to be the Director for Camp Widjiwagan would be an understatement. In many ways this feels like a dream job that I’ve been thinking about for years. I’m a little under a month into the job and I’ve been so impressed with the warm welcome I’ve received from staff, board, campers, and the greater Widji community. I feel very fortunate to be a part of this great team and look forward to reacquainting myself with everyone involved.

Widji’s Outdoor Learning Program will be wrapping up their Spring season as I head up to Camp around Memorial Day Weekend. I’ll be joined a few weeks later by my family; wife Kristen, kids Rachel (12), Will (10) and our dog Kikkan. The impact that Widji experiences have on individuals throughout the year is tremendous. I am excited to join this team and help further Widji’s mission of instilling respect in youth though wilderness adventure and environmental education.

Read more about my background.

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Widji Spring Banquet Recap

posted on Thu, May 4 2017 2:33 pm by YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

The Widji Spring Banquet was held April 21st at the Town & Country Club. We had a great turn out with over 125 people in attendance! Members of the Widji community got to connect with one another, meet the new director Matt Poppleton, recognize some of Widji’s generous volunteers and close the night out celebrating and thanking Liz Flinn for all she did during her 11 years as director! 

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Summer Camp Update

posted on Thu, May 4 2017 2:30 pm by YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

The first summer campers will arrive at camp sooner than we know it. We have a jam-packed summer lined up with over 700 campers already registered – over 200 of them coming to camp for the first time! This group will include campers from at least 5 different countries and over 30 states in the US. We can’t wait to welcome so many excited young people to camp!! “Like” our Facebook page to stay updated on our activities throughout the summer!

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Signs of Spring: Marsh Marigolds

posted on Thu, May 4 2017 2:26 pm by YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

Marsh Marigolds

Marsh Marigolds are one of the earliest spring flowers and their bright yellow blossom and dark green leaves are a refreshing splash of color in the midst of the brown and grey of early spring. These flowers are actually not marigolds at all but rather related to the buttercup and commonly found in ponds, marshes, swamps and lakes. 

Use caution when touching the leaves and stems as they have a caustic substance inside.  Warts may shrink up and disappear if you squeeze a bit of the stem juice on them. 

Sources: Canoe Country Flora by Mark Stensaas and Wildflowers of Minnesota by Stan Tekiela

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Canoe Fleet and “The Widji Way”

posted on Thu, May 4 2017 2:25 pm by YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

The “Widji Way” has kept Camp familiar through the generations. The wood canvas canoe is integral to preserving the essence of a Widji experience. Our wood canvas canoes each come with a journal where groups can record their unique experience with a particular canoe and share that story with future campers who pick up the canoe’s journal.

Recently, the Widji Board created a Canoe Fleet Committee who is tasked with goal to strengthen the management culture of our canoe fleet. This group of volunteers has done tremendous work to keep the “Widji Way” alive and ensure our canoes continue to contribute to the Widji experience for campers and staff.

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The TC is Getting Ready for Summer

posted on Thu, May 4 2017 2:11 pm by YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

Whether our campers are most excited for a savory mac and cheese meal or a sweet batch of blueberry chocolate chip pancakes - the importance of preparing the tripping center for Summer is not taken lightly. Beginning in April the tripping center team begins the process of stocking our shelves with every ingredient our campers crave. We have already ordered all of our sauce mixes for the summer, cardboard boxes for our food packs, and gear for the upcoming adventures.

Next weekend's volunteer work weekend will be a valuable time for us to pull all of these new purchases together. Volunteers from the Widji Leaders program will be helping to bag the new sauces, organize a new backpack storage strategy, and help take a new inventory to help Kathleen and I plan for the next round of purchases. Before you know it, campers will be taking hundreds of pounds of dried foods into the backcountry! We can't wait!

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Welcome to New Staff

posted on Thu, May 4 2017 2:08 pm by YMCA Camp Widjiwagan

Summer 2017 is almost here, and that means a group of new staff will soon be arriving on the North Arm. This summer we are excited to welcome thirty new staff to Camp Widjiwagan. The majority of these new folks will be leading trips as a part of our trail and BOLD/GOLD programs, while others will be working to keep camp running smoothly in the office and tripping center. Please join us in welcoming the following people to Camp Widjiwagan’s Summer 2017 Staff:

New In-Camp Staff:

Fiona Forbes (Health Service Asst), Ellie Johnson (Tripping Center), and Maggie Murray (Program Coordinator).

New Trail Staff                                                                 

Henry Alexander, Graham Bendickson, Ben Berthiaume, Carolyn Brand, Gillian Catano, Teaierra Curry, Lia Chin-Purcell, Macy Cunningham, Jessie Dobler, Will Donaldson, Matt Erickson, Megan Glavin, Sam Glenn, Ora Hammel, Michael Hartnett, Lily Jones, Sophie Klein, Andrew Larson, Devin Liljedahl, Clara McCurdy, Nora Mertz, Laurel Neufeld, Bryce Potts, Kayla Sawyer, Lucy Soderstrom, Jack St. Peter, Katie Tennis, Ingrid Thyr, Spencer WareJoncas, and Emerson Ziehr.

Good Luck in Summer 2017!

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