3 July 2011
Every year, during the first week of July, Penticton and area families billet youth ages 8 to 18 from all over British Columbia and the Yukon for a week-long “Youth Write Camp.” The camp is sponsored by the Penticton Writers and Publishers group. The camp is held at the Penticton campus of Okanagan College, and this year the youth really enjoyed the brand new facilities at the Center of Excellence, an innovative, sustainable facility. The camp, directed by organizer Yasmin John-Thorpe, features daily workshops by a number of well-known writers and publishers who share their craft with the students. Sunday afternoon, July 3, was registration, followed by an excellent presentation by keynote speaker, Jack Whyte, one of Canada’s best-selling authors. All of the students who attend the camp have one of their stories or poems published in an annual anthology, Gems of British Columbia. They also receive a copy of a novel written by the keynote speaker.
2011 camp workshop presenters included: Endrene Ann Shepherd (teaching on illustration), Rick Cogbill (teaching on using humour in writing), Lorna Schultz Nicholson (workshop on writing true stories), Jeremy Beaulne (workshop on the poetry toolbox), and Barbara Manning Grimm (teaching about writing as a career). Afternoon guest lecturers included: Janice Perrino (Summerland mayor, on public speaking), Alison Markin (on social networking), and Sandy Wilson (on writing and directing movie scripts).
Here are a few snapshots from the Sunday registration and keynote address: