Red Pine Camp has been in operation for nearly a century, providing a family getaway from the city life. Located on Golden Lake, Ontario, nestled in a large grove of Red Pine trees, Red Pine Camp is Canada’s largest shareholder-owned, family camp hosting more than 2,000 campers every summer. Campers are a range of ages, some families boasting 4 generations in attendance.
Established in 1925, Red Pine was owned by the YMCA and offered camping to families in August, after its July boy’s camp “On-Da-Da-Waks”. In 1928 the campers took over the management of the family camp programming from the YMCA, and began the successful camp we enjoy today.
In 1973, the family campers organized themselves to offer shares to campers in order to purchase the camp property from the Y with the sale of 536 shares. To raise further funds, a second share offering occurred in 1981.
Two books have been written about Red Pine Camp. The first, “Keep Your Forks. Fifty Years at Red Pine Camp.” by Col. G.W.L. Nicholson a lighthearted look at camping in the early days. The title is a nod to what the waitstaff would say at the end of a meal if pie was the dessert, and it means to Red Pine campers “the best is yet to come”. The second book was written by Gordon Campbell, “Here’s to Dear Old Golden Lake. The origins of Red Pine Camp Incorporated.” This book is a detailed look at the history of the camp and the people who were a large part of its creation.