The City of Berkeley sadly has had to cancel our special Labor Day weekend at Camp due to the Covid-19!
We look forward to next summer already!
The Friends of Berkeley Tuolumne Camp (FOBTC) are dedicated to preserving and enhancing the camp experience for present and future generations through education, volunteer efforts and financial support.
Hi campers, staff and friends!
We had a brilliant night of learning about The Rim Fire from our friends at The United States Forest Service!
The Freight and Salvage was a packed house of enthusiastic Bay Area residents interested in learning about the scope and size of the fire, and what can be done going forward to help our forest be sustainable, and healthy. We had campers from Tuolumne Camp, Camp Tawonga, Camp Mather, San Jose Camp and Lair of the Bear, as well as other non-profits working in the forest. Thank you to The Freight for hosting us!
Amongst the biggest news we learned is that the City of Berkeley and the USFS have an agreement to go forward for the rebuilding of camp at the current Harden Flat location! Huge news! That leads us to The Master Plan development process which has started with public meetings. See the schedule at: http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Parks_Rec_Waterfront/Recreation/Tuolumne_Camp.aspx
Please come and give the Master Plan your voice and opinions in these public workshops!
We learned about the cooperation and volunteer effort needed from the Bay Area community to help the USFS plant 7 million trees over the size of an area equal to Los Angeles! Since the fire was one of the most devastating in California history, there is an unprecedented effort to reforest and they need help from every source they can.
Watch the 13 min. clip of “The Fire Next Time” which we showed that illustrates what Mega-Fires are all about and the amazing collaboration of the Yosemite Stanislaus Solutions group that FOBTC is a part of:
Most people have not been to camp to see what it currently looks like. We showed a slide show from our Executive Director Scott Gelfand made in December of what Camp looks like today after the 1400 hazardous trees were removed in the fall. View it here:
Craig Veramay and Denise Brown from the City of Berkeley spoke beautifully about the rebuilding process of Camp, and also Sierra Family Camp at Echo Lake. The business of Camp is vital to the process of rebuilding camp, and our support of camp at Echo Lake is very important to the continuing of the traditions and experience of Tuolumne Camp. There is still room for reservations, although the camp is filling up.
Please go to http://www.cityofberkeley.info/FamilyCampEchoLake/ and sign up for some time at Camp. FOBTC will be programming a Labor Day weekend there (Boat Regatta on Echo Lake!) at the end of the summer, and Blues Weekend returns as well! Check out our events page for more information.
Finally, we ended the night by showing rare footage saved in the fire of 16 mm film taken at Camp Tuolumne in 1948! FOBTC paid for digitizing the film and editing it to a cohesive short film of what it was like to be at Camp in 1948! Enjoy:
Our new partnership with the Forest Service was in full bloom at this event, and everyone in the audience could feel their incredible efforts to save Camp and rebuild it in the same location. We are amongst their top priorities in their planning, as they recognize the important history and connection to the Bay Area.
A “Call to Action” plan will be coming down the road to rebuild trails, plant trees, collect seeds, clear brush, etc.. all under the supervision and guidance of the USFS. We’ll keep you posted and hope you will join us.
Thank you!! We’ll see you at The Master Plan meetings! Very exciting!
Scotty and the Board of Friends of Berkeley Tuolumne Camp
Save the Dates! We have a few events in the calendar and we’d like for you to join us and bring your Camp Spirit to Berkeley:
Friday Night Campfire sing-a-along in Berkeley:
August 22nd, 5:30-8:00pm
Codornices Park, Berkeley
Because of limited space, you must register to attend this event. Please visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/btc-memorial-campfire-tickets-12364343083. The password is ‘Beaverhead’.
The First Fundraiser: a Golf Tournament and Dinner at Tilden Park!
Fri Sept 5th Tilden Park $150 includes golf and dinner
or just join us for dinner (only $25)
Raffle tickets are available at Camp this summer, or by emailing JimWhitty@comcast.net
Prizes include vacation get-a-ways, expensive wine, an authentic green, adirondack camp chair and more!
Email Jim at JimWhitty@comcast.net for more details or if you are interested in helping or donating.
Missing Work Weekend at Camp this year?? Well, we have your solution!
One of the most important things at Camp for campers was the circle of green chairs. At the request of the City of Berkeley, the Friends of Berkeley Tuolumne Camp (FOBTC) has volunteered to create Adirondack chairs for this summer’s camp at Sierra Family Camp, so there will be a fabulous Circle of Green Chairs!
We’d love your help! There are so many campers who want to DO something for camp, so this is a one day, local option to really help this summer’s camp. We are buying the wood to cut out over 20 Adirondack chairs which will then be transported to camp where they will be assembled and painted green.
Safety First: This is a power tool kind of job – so no children please – just adults who are comfortable with these machines and willing to be a part of a small team.
Contact: Steve Geahry (firstname.lastname@example.org) to volunteer and for directions
When: Saturday May 31st 10am – 2pm
Where: Steve’s House in Alameda CA 94501
What to Bring: Table or circular saws, power sanders, tape measures, saw horses, safety goggles, ear protection, etc.
You will enjoy sitting in the Chairs you helped build for years to come!
Tuolumne Spirit gathering at Freight and Salvage on Monday, April 28, 2014
Scott Gelfand and the Events committee of FOBTC organized an information/Table Night event at the Freight and Salvage in Berkeley. Over 350 tickets were purchased and an excited group of campers arrived to see traditional Table Night skits and to hear about the City of Berkeley’s progress on rebuilding Berkeley Tuolumne Camp.
The highlight of the evening was a short speech by Berkeley mayor Tom Bates announcing that the City was committed to rebuilding Camp, despite many known and unknown hurtles. The mayor received a standing ovation for his pledge. In addition, the mayor presented a plaque from FOBTC to Mike McEneany for his historic efforts to save Camp back in the early 1980’s when it was threatened by a dam project. Mike also was instrumental as a found member of the Tuolumne River Trust who successfully gained a “Wild and Scenic” Federal declaration for the main stem of the Tuolumne River.
Patrick Koepple, Executive Director of the Tuolumne River Trust spoke for 15 minutes on the efforts of his organization after the devastation of the Rim fire to the Tuolumne watershed. One of his most poignant comments was that only 16% of the Tuolumne River water flow was dedicated to fish and wildlife.
The final speaker of the evening was Scott Ferris, Director of Parks & Waterfront for the City of Berkeley. Scott informed the crowd of his many efforts to get Camp cleaned up and his negotiations so far with the City’s insurance carriers, FEMA and the US Forest Service, from whom the City leases the Camp. Many questions remain but Scott continues to be hopeful that BTC may one day be rebuilt. He cautioned that the process would be slow and could easily take up to four years to complete. In the meantime, he encouraged all the BTC campers to take advantage of the City’s Echo Lake Camp as they have opened three weeks of their season to Family Camp.
It was an enjoyable evening with Table night and skits interspersed between speakers and with the excellent MC talent of Scott Gelfand, the creator, along with Board President Steve Geahry, of the many Saturday night Staff shows.
Many thanks to The Tamsen Donner Blues Band who greeted the guests as they arrived with their tunes; Katie Whitty, Patricia and their staff helpers who handled sales; Lisa Bullwinkle and Beth and Rose Gelfand for managing the box office; and the amazing talent of the night, Finn the Magnificent & Miss Direction; Ava Killbourn’s amazing essay on the Rim Fire and Camp; Aaron Bendich who is competing in the World-Championships in Yo Yo Talent, Amy Schaffer with Suzanne Praetzel singing Fields of Gold, and Sophie and Felix Sparling singing and strumming “The Old Man of the Mountain”! What a talented camp we have!
Friends of Berkeley Tuolumne Camp (FOBTC) is dedicated to preserving and enhancing the Camp experience for present and future generations through education, volunteer efforts, and financial support.
Tax ID# 94-2976224
PO Box 7931 Berkeley, CA 94707