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Los Altos Adventure Guides - February/March Compass Newsletter


									                           The Compass
                             LOS ALTOS YMCA ADVENTURE GUIDES

                           F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H         2 0 1 2

                       Expedition Navigator’s Message
                       Greetings Adventure Guides Friends,                   April looks to be a busy month for our program.
 Navigator     1                                                             We have our sleepover at the La Brea Tar Pits
                       It’s hard to believe that we are already half-way
                       through our program year. Time goes by fast.          which is open to families and should be a lot fun.
 Camp Oakes    1       Thanks to all the Circles that participated in        Also in April is our Huff & Puff Boat Regatta at
                       Strong Kids Campaign this year. The Adventure         the Y. Boat kits should be available soon. Sam
 Strong Kids   2
                       Guide program raised more than $3,000 this            will send out an e-mail when the kits arrive.
                       year. Overall, the Long Beach Metro YMCA              And don’t forget to sign-up for Camp Surf on
 La Brea Tar   2       Strong Kids Campaign raised more than                 April 14th at the Y.
 Pits Event            $700,000. For those that still wish to make a
                                                                                                                     Rob Berry
                       donation, contact Sam Albrecht at the Y.                                                Cuddlefish Circle
 Focus On..    3

 Ronald        4

 Circle Chat   6

 Calendar of   9

  Have questions or
 need info? Contact
Sam Albrecht at the
     (562) 596- 3394

 YMCA Strong Kids
Campaign Kicks-Off
      is underway!

                       Camp Oakes 2012
                       We are starting a new tradition (or is it an old tradition that we are bringing back) of taking a group
                       photo at each camp. Camp photos can be downloaded from our website
                       for free or a print can be ordered through our Los Altos Adventure Guides Shutterfly website
         PAGE        2

                               Los Altos Strong Kids Campaign
                               Each year in February, the Los Altos YMCA’s staff and volunteers engage in raising funds
                               that will help sustain our families throughout the year. Our programs, such as Childcare
                               and Day Camping provide relief for working-parents who need assurance that when they
                               are unable to be with their children, their children are in a safe and stimulating environ-
                               ment. For many children growing up in the city, a week long stay in the mountains, learn-
 “...our Summer                ing Archery, Canoeing, Horseback Riding, and participating in other exciting activities,
                               such as those provided at our Summer Residence Camp, is a life-changing experience.
Residence Camp                 These programs are just a couple of examples of the many ways the Los Altos YMCA
is a life changing             makes a difference in the lives of those we serve.

    experience.”               In fact, for well over half a century, the Los Altos YMCA has been providing programs
                               that build the spirit, mind and body of youth and families working and residing in our sur-
                               rounding communities. For many of our families who are struggling financially, this has
                               only been possible through the generosity of others. In other words, it gives those who
                               “have” the opportunity to provide for those who “have not”. We know you understand
                               the great impact YMCA programs have on youth and families and hope you will consider
                               whether you are able to assist the YMCA in this effort and make a difference in the life of
                                                                           Jeremy Echnoz
                                                                           Executive Director - Los Altos YMCA

                                                              Upcoming Event
                                                         Page Museum - La Brea Tar Pits
                                                                   Sleep Over
                                                                      April 6-7, 2012

                           Still time to sign-up - open to family members

             THE         COMPASS
FEBRUARY/MARCH                2012                                                                                  PAGE       3

Focus On...
We hope to be able to feature a different circle each month in this column, so that we can learn about the history of your
circle, who is in your circle, what activities you enjoy together, what you love about Adventure Guides, and what makes your
circle tick! We thank the circles that have participated to date, and encourage other circles to submit their story to

                                The next Compass will feature the Wild Wahine

Junior Editor Program
Hey Kids, we need your help!

We need you to be a part of “Team Compass”. This new program will get the kids more involved with the newsletter. The
Junior Editors (one from each circle) will make suggestions regarding newsletter content, and will bring articles, news and
pictures from their circle to be included in the Compass each month. The Junior Editors will meet for one brief meeting at
the Y each month along with the Editor, to assist in putting the Compass together and getting it all set to send
out to everyone. We’d love to have each circle represented in the Jr. Editor program- you may want to have a different Jr.
Editor represent your circle each month so that everyone gets a turn to participate. So please send me the name and email of
your circle’s Junior Editor for April, by April 5th (at and I will be in touch with more information.

Wendy Chavis

AG Kids’ Quotes
The April edition of the Compass will include a new feature called:

              "AG   Kids' Quotes- What our Adventure Guides are saying".  

Each month will feature quotes and thoughts from the kids in response to the question(s) of the month.
The questions for next month will be:

  “What was your most memorable moment or favorite thing at Camp Oakes and why?”

So have the kids think about that question and email their responses to and we will print them in the
March edition.
               PAGE           4

                                       Ocean Girls at Ronald McDonald House
                                       The Ocean Girls circle spent    door to Millers Children's      behind - the - scenes tour
                                       2 nights in January cooking     Hospital and Long Beach         and really enjoyed preparing
                                       for the families at the new     Memorial Care and can           the food in the well designed
   “...we encourage other
Adventure Guide Circles to
                                       Ronald McDonald House of        house about 12-15 families      kitchen areas. We encourage
   help out at the Ronald              Long Beach. They prepared       that are having an extended     other Adventure Guides
       McDonald House.”                enough food for about 25        stay near the hospital. This    circles to help out at the
                                       people each night and were      incredible charity houses and   Ronald McDonlad House of
               Ocean Girls
                                       able to enjoy this new,         feeds families who have chil-   Long Beach, it was a very
                                       amazing facility. The Ronald    dren that are at the hospital   rewarding experience for
                                       McDonald House opened up        overnight. The Ocean Girls      both the kids and the parents.
                                       in December 2011, just next     were able to get a great

  Ronald McDonald House
     500 E. 27th Street
   Long Beach CA 90806

Volunteering Opportunities:
Julie Bynon
Office 562-285-4308

                                                                                                        Having fun with Ronald

                                        The Ocean Girls cooking at Ronald McDonald
                                        House Long Beach

                                      Adventure Guide Online Store
                                      Buy Los Altos Adventure Guides T-Shirts and other Circle specific products at the Cafe Press
                                      website Thanks Charlie Stockwell for creating
                                      the online store.
     Event Idea for Circles

                    THE           COMPASS
FEBRUARY/MARCH   2012            PAGE   5

Adventure Guides in the 1970’s
PAGE     6

Circle Chat
Wild Wahine’s at Zedler Marsh by Gabby Sanders
WOW!!! What an awesome time the Wild Wahine’s had at the Los Cerritos Wetlands…Well, I guess you probably want to hear more
info then that, right? OK, well on March 3, 2012 my Adventure Guide group, the Wild Wahine’s, planned an outing for habitat restora-
tion at the Zedler Marsh region of the Los Cerritos Wetlands. In case you might not know where that is, it is located right on the border
of Long Beach and Seal Beach. Many of us drive by it almost every day not knowing it is more then just a big puddle, it is actually one of
the last remaining natural California Coastal Wetlands left.

Our group decided it would be an adventurous outing and also give us all a
chance to learn more about Zedler Marsh and the Wetlands. Ryan, the group
leader, taught us about the different types of endangered species that have
lived there for maybe centuries like the Savannah Sparrow, the California
Brown Pelican and the Tiger Beetle to name a few. These species are endan-
gered because the vegetation and once thriving tidal salt-water marsh that
used to exist has been slowly dying off due to neglect and misuse in the past.
We decided it would be a great opportunity to give back and help restore the
Zedler Marsh by helping plant trees, shrubs and other vegetation that have
grown there naturally forever. It was really a fun time, we all got to get filthy
dirty and dig around in the mud and it was for a good cause. Ryan and the
rest of his helpers, who were awesome and taught us so much, were blown
away at how many trees and shrubs we planted. They dug us 150 holes and we filled every one of them with plants! All of us were really
excited after we were finished and we got to see what we had done.

                                                   It will be really cool to go back there soon and see how big the trees we planted are
                                                   getting and know that it might be a new home for some baby Savannah Sparrows or
                                                   Tiger Beetles. Please, if you get the chance, have your Adventure Guide group or
                                                   even if it’s just you and your parents and friends sign up for a future planting. Trust
                                                   me, it will make you feel good inside and you won’t regret it. You can find out more
                                                   about trash cleanups, habitat restorations and more at

                  THE     COMPASS
  FEBRUARY/MARCH                   2012                                                                                    PAGE         7

  Circle Chat
  Totally Terrific Tomahawks
  Fun with Skits by Damian
We went to Camp Oakes in January, we had a good time, but it was miserably cold and
not very fun on the first day. We didn’t get to have a snowball fight, but we tried to
make a fort out of ice. When we tried shooting (rifles and archery) on the first day, it
was super hard to hit the target and it stung our hands (from the cold and wind). There
was a mouse in the lodge and we trapped
it outside, we think it got eaten because a
cat was outside when we trapped it. It
was warmer on Sunday and I was able to
hit the target in rifles. I did not want to
leave Camp Oakes; I wanted to spend
one more night.

  Brave Raptors- Eaton Canyon Hike
  On a warm day this fall the Brave raptors set out to explore the canyons above Pasadena. What they found was little tropical
  paradise after a short 1.5 mile hike. Eaton Canyon and the 50 foot water fall falls that mark the top of the trail. This is truly a
  hidden paradise and so close to bustle of the big city. While our group held a quick circle meeting and enjoyed their packed
  lunches, the boys got to explore the canyon and creek. One boy even decide to brave the frigid waters for a quick dip. Brrrr.

  We all strongly recommend this as an easy family hike with great waterfall to mark your destina-
PAGE      8

Circle Chat (cont.)
Wild Wahines at Camp Oakes by Larkin Wells
Last month our group attended Camp Oakes. This was kind of sad because it’s my last year as a Wild Wahine, so I don’t know when I’ll
get to go back to Camp Oakes again. A lot of our group went on Friday and had lunch in town, then went tubing at a place that makes
their own snow. Then we went to camp to get moved in. We got to stay in the lodge this year for the first time ever. It was awesome.
There were four rooms, and two big bathrooms, so the dads took 1 bathroom and 2 rooms, and us girls took the other bathroom and 2
rooms. It was great to not have any smelly and snoring dads in our room.

Saturday we had ropes and the rockwall in the morning. Both were
really hard in the wind. Some of the smaller girls, when they lost grip
on the rockwall, would get blown around in the air hanging by the
rope. It was cold too. The first time I tried to climb, I quit about half-
way up because I couldn’t feel my fingers. After I rested and warmed
back up, I tried again and made it to the top to ring the bell. Then we
had a long break before our next activity, so we worked on our skits
for campfire. The dads wanted to go for a hike, but none of us wanted
to go out in the cold wind anymore. After archery and rifles, it was
time for dinner. Then it was the best part of the weekend, campfire.
There were lots of great skits! Our group did 3 skits. I really liked the
“Gigalo” skit that some of the older girls from another group did. It
was clever.

Sunday we had breakfast, packed everything up, and went to the Alpine Slide. It was my first time doing it, and I thought it was super fun!
We rode down two times. The first time I went slow because I was a little scared, but the second time I raced my dad. I went as fast as I
could, but he weighs a lot more so he went faster. It was a great way to finish off the weekend, and it’s a weekend I’ll remember for a
long time.

Tomahawks’ Trip to the Los Angeles Zoo
The Tomahawks took a trip out the Los Angeles Zoo on March 10th. We were able to check out the new exhibit –LAIR- ( Living amphibians,
invertebrates & reptiles) It was pretty cool! We had fun looking at all of the animals– one of our favorites was the chimp exhibit. The
orangutans and gorillas were pretty fun to watch too!!

                   THE      COMPASS
FEBRUARY/MARCH                    2012                                                                                          PAGE    9

Circle Points (as of February)
   Circle                                   Points                         Expedition Officers 2011‐2012
   Tongva                                      357
                                                                           Navigator- Expedition Leader
   Tomahawks                                   304
   Cuddlefish                                  286                           Rob Berry- (Cuddlefish)
   Blue Halite                                 283                    
   Wild Wahines                                274                         Elder - Previous Expedition Navigator
   Pioneer Princesses                          256
                                                                             Gary Farmer (Playanos Princesses and Komodo Dragons)
   Red Strikers                                215
   Ocean Girls                                 180
                                                                           Log Keeper – Records Meeting Minutes and Tracks Points
   Pathfinders                                 179
   Snow Flakes                                 154                           Brad Denger (Pioneer Princesses & Pathfinders) -
   Wolf Rangers                                140                   
   Dukes                                        95
                                                                           Event Coordinator – Coordinates Circle Sponsors for Events
   Tiger Lilies                                 85
   Cheetah Girls                                70                           Vacant Position
   Riptides                                     70
                                                                           Compass Newsletter Editor – Compiles Newsletter Articles
   Brave Raptors                                40
   Shadow Monsters                              40                           Wendy Chavis (Totally Terrific Tomahawks)
   Anderson Circle (new)                         0                  
   Blue Dolphins                                 0                         Webmaster - Updates Program Website
   Sea Bears                                     0
   Seals                                         0                           Charlie Stockwell (Brave Velociraptors)
   Squirrelly Nature Girls                       0                    

                                                3028                       Outfitter – YMCA Staff Liaison

Calendar of Events                                                            Sam Albrecht (562) 596- 3394
March/April                  Strong Kids Campaign Wrap-up
Wed      4/18/12             Base Camp at YMCA            7-8 pm
Fr-Sat   4/6– 4/7/12         La Brea Tar Pits     7 pm Fri - 9 am Sat
                             Sleep Over
Sun      4/22/12             Huff & Puff Boat Regatta     1-4 pm        Please submit an article about your circle news or holiday
                                                                        activities (pictures optional) or just a picture by April 5th
                             YMCA Swim & BBQ
                                                                        to Wendy Chavis at to be
                             Boat Regatta: Wild Wahines
                                                                        included in the April edition of the Compass.
                             Food & Beverage:
Fri-Sun 5/11 - 5/13/12       Camp Surf (Imperial) check-in 4 pm Fri
(lottery registration on April 14th at 9 am at the Y)
Wed      5/16/12             Base Camp at YMCA            7-8 pm
Fri-Sun 6/8 - 6/10/12        Camp Fox (Catalina) boat departs at noon
(lottery registration on May 5th at 9 am at the Y)

Wed      6/20/12             Base Camp at YMCA            7-8 pm
June     TBD                 El Dorado Park Camp Out
      FOR SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY                                             Mailing label here

       Los Altos YMCA Adventure Guides
       1720 Bellflower Boulevard
       Long Beach, CA 90815
       Contact: Sam Albrecht
       Phone: (562) 596-3394


Adventure Guides Compass Points
The Adventure Guide program is based on the adventures of a parent and child and their
Circles and Expeditions. At the forefront of the program are the Compass Points, which
give members a sense of direction and an inspiration for activities. These points are
broad enough in scope to allow for variety and creativity in designing activities.

The four main points on the compass are the essential components of the program.

   The Family is True North – the focal point of the program.

   Nature and the camping experience are integral parts of the program.

   The spirit of the program is experienced through belonging to a small Community, called a Circle.

   Fun is the magic of the program.

The YMCA Core Values of Caring, Honesty, Respect, and Responsibility make up the other directional points.

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