Thursday, 26 February 2015

Camp Friends are the Best Kind of Friends

We know you love our staff members.


You love that they're quirky
You love that they're fun
Parents love that they protect you from the sun.
But do you know how they came to be
Spending time with you in the Zinkwazi sea?
We thought you'd be keen to learn more about 
The great Sangi & Wave, so we gave them a shout:

 

The Wise & Wonderful SANGOMA

Years at Sugar Bay: 9 sweet sweet years of wonder
Fav Camp Food: Chef's Chicken Curry
Fav Camp Tradition: Camp-Out, it's the best!
Fav Camp Activity: Movie making for Sangoma FM Productions and Sugar Bay's Youtube Channel

Sangoma is an outdoor educator and camp extraordinaire who has worked at camps in America, South Africa, Croatia and the UK, where he's originally from. You name it and this hero has done it! Sangoma has travelled to 60 countries, worked in an orphanage in Vietnam and is obsessed with spicy food. Some even say he puts chilli on his corn flakes, but you'll have to catch him at breakfast to see if the rumours are true! Sangoma studied performing arts and enjoys acting, dressing up and all things summer camp. He also likes cartoon drawing, although we won't judge his efforts by what can be seen in his Attack of the Fizzy Monster video from Sugar Bay's Fizzy week. When not throwing bones and telling the future, Sangoma also goes by the name of Banana Man, but you'll need to ask him to explain why. 


Give us a WAVE

Years at Sugar Bay: Around 6 fun-filled years of awesomeness
Fav Camp Food: Banana & Ham Pizza (he's a weird combo kinda guy, keep reading...)
Fav Camp Tradition: Final Campfire for sure!
Fav Camp Activity: Kayaking

Wave crashed onto this earth in the far away land that is the United Kingdom and moved to South Africa when he was 14. After 4 years of high school in SA, he went on to study Business Economics and has been flitting back and forth between SA and the UK ever since. Wave also spent some time as a professional poker player which may have been when he started eating his favourite (and oh-so-weird) sandwich - Peanut Butter and Marmite. On the same sandwich. Unique to say the least! Wave's favourite thing about camp is seeing the campers grow up as they return to camp year after year. Some of Wave's first campers who met him at the tender age of 8 are still coming back to our holiday camps at age 14 and might even go on to do their Counselor in Training course like he did! 

 

Some more fun facts about the dynamic duo: 

 
 
Sangoma & Wave were at the same camp at the same time over in England - Wave was a camper and Sangoma was a counselor. They met again in sunny South Africa during Wave's time as a CIT in our Simpsons Week and have been working together ever since. Sangoma even looked after Wave's brothers when they were campers at Sugar Bay!

Now that they're co-squad leaders, Wave and Sangoma work closely together to ensure that everything at camp runs smoothly, whether it's an exciting evening program, cabin time or camp fire, Sangi and Wave make sure it's non-stop fun. As the ever-wise and all-knowing Sangoma says, it's great because at camp age becomes what it should be - just a number. No matter the years between them or the vast differences in their food preferences, camp friends are the best kind of friends, and we think these two British buddies would agree.  


Come to Sugar Bay and meet friends for life through camp!

The holiday experience of a lifetime is waiting for you at Sugar Bay, so check out our rates & dates. And here's the great news - our April Holiday Camps are on special, saving you a whopping R1900 off the regular price! If you'd like to find out more, here's a sneak peek into what the camp experience at Sugar Bay is like. For more information or to secure your spot, call us on (032) 485 3778, email holidays@sugarbay.co.za or simply book online.

Friday, 20 February 2015

The Power of 3

If your child has already visited Sugar Bay, you'll know that our Crazy Counselors are often one of the main reasons that kids want to return time after time. Aside from the fact that we hire only the best young leaders from around the country (and the world!), train them intensely and constantly push them to be their best, we think there's another very important reason why our campers enjoy them so much (and no, it's not because they have silly nicknames!) It's because there are so many of them!

Sugar Bay's Counselor to Camper ratio far surpasses the strict guidelines of the American Camping Association by double or more for each age category. We can assure you that during our hugely popular Holiday Camps the supervision ratio will be no less than 1 counselor for every 3 campers. This figure includes Pro-Counselors (our specialized full-time activity leaders). For school camps, we maintain a ratio of 1:5 and for certain high-risk activities such as surfing and high ropes, we increase the supervision ratio. 

Whether your camper is on Sugar Bay property or on one of our exciting excursions, you can rest assured that our staff members will have things under control. Not only will the counselor to camper ratio be maintained, but there are always members of senior staff within close proximity. These staff members are at Sugar Bay year-round - they eat, sleep and breathe camp - and their number one priority is to ensure that Sugar Bay campers have a safe, wonderful time during their stay.

 
At Sugar Bay, we care about your child and we take supervision seriously. Our counselors need to be background checked, obtain official Police Clearance Certificates and before they become official counselors they need to complete a "shadow week" to meet our high standards of child care. If they do not perform well enough during their shadow week, they do not get to be counselors, simple as that. All staff are trained in First Aid and CPR, as well as child and staff psychology.  

As camp professionals, we urge parents to consider the importance of supervision ratios when considering sending their child to a holiday camp. Read more about our Safety and Security policies. 

Sugar Bay Resort is the only camp of it's kind in South Africa. See what our holiday camps are all about. We are the only camp to offer free choice activities, meaning campers can try any number of our activities without being 'required' to do anything they don't want to do.  We also have a unique theme each week - see the Gallery!

Thursday, 19 February 2015

We're all about the YOU(th)!


At Sugar Bay we're all about getting our youth outdoors, offering them unique opportunities to challenge themselves in order to grow and develop as individuals.

With that being said, we are pleased to announce that we are now going one step further with the latest addition to our holiday camps: The opportunity to achieve Bronze Level of the President's Award for Youth Empowerment.

The President’s Award is part of the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award. It is an exciting personal challenge for young people between the ages of 14 and 24, started in the United Kingdom in 1956 and first becoming available to South Africans in 1983. To-date there have been over 14 300 active participants in South Africa. Read more about it here.
 
To be awarded Bronze in the Adventurous Journey category, participants will be required to complete a 2 day, overnight journey consisting of 6 hours of planned activities each day. 

At Sugar Bay, we'll achieve the first day's requirements by completing a 12km beach walk and 5km hike through the sugar cane to reach our final destination of “Camp Out”. Campers will be led by an Adventurous Journey Instructor who will assist in teaching them shelter and fire building skills in order to set up camp and cook their meals before resting their weary bodies after a day full of achievements. The next day, campers will follow a similar route along the Zinkwazi Lagoon in a kayak, arriving back at Sugar Bay with time to reflect on their journey before dinner. 



This unique opportunity will be available to pre-registered President's Award participants ages 14+ during the following holiday camp weeks:
  • How to Train your Dragon Week (5-12 April)
  • Mythbusters Week (19-26 April)
  • Tour de France Week (12-19 July)
  • Hunger Games Week (16-23 August)

Benefits of the President's Award:
  • Builds self-confidence
  • A great way to give back to the community
  • Provides leadership opportunities for youth
  • Looks great on university and job applications
  • Provides a simple, meaningful framework for self-development, self-discovery and self-reflection

If your child is interested in completing their Bronze Award during their week at Sugar Bay, have a look at our rates & dates.

Here's a sneak peak into what the camp experience at Sugar Bay is like, and if you would like to see what takes place in some of our themed holiday weeks, have a look at our gallery.
 
Ready to Book?
Call (032) 485 3778
Email: holidays@sugarbay.co.za , or simply book online.

For more information on the Adventurous Journey, please contact Paris at groups@sugarbay.co.za.

To enroll in the President's Award programme, visit http://presidentsaward.co.za/participant/enrol/

Friday, 13 February 2015

Sunny and Funny - A Poem


You’ll never guess what happened,
This week at Sugar Bay!
A photo shoot with tree frogs,
And 3 pigs who lost their way.

 Let’s start with the 3 little pigs;

Snap, Crackle and Pop are their names.
They decided over the weekend,
They wanted to play some games.

They started with Stuck in the Mud,
But for some reason it just didn’t stick.
And soon the babies were bored,
And needed a new game quick.

Ah, they thought, let’s play hide and seek!
But our home has nowhere to hide.
Let us break out, and run about,
“Yes! Let’s do it!” they cried.



Out they ran, up and down,
With counselors chasing after.
I’m sure that if we listened now,
We’d still hear their laughter.

Let’s not forget our 2 tree friends,
That decided to strut their stuff.
We called down our photographer,
Whom we thought was tough.

“Oh, no!” she screamed, “Please take them away!
What if they jump on me?”
Just point the lens and take the shot,
And then feel free to flee.

So now you see, at Sugar Bay,
There’s always something to do.
Regardless of sun, it’s always fun,
Now all that’s missing is you! 


By the Office Dweller



Fancy seeing your writing efforts published on Sugar Bay's blog? For consideration, please email tours@sugarbay.co.za with "Camper Blog/Poem" as the subject line. 

At Sugar Bay, every day is a new and exciting experience with unlimited potential for fun. Give your children the chance to experience what our holiday camps are all about, by checking out our rates & dates. We're having an amazing 1/3 off special for the April Holiday Camps which equates to a saving of R1900! When you are ready to book, call (032) 485 3778, email: holidays@sugarbay.co.za, or simply book online

Here's a sneak peak into what the camp experience at Sugar Bay is like, and if you would like to see what takes place in some of our themed holiday weeks, have a look at our gallery.

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Save big this Easter - No April Fool's joke!


Hooray! It's time for Summer Fun in Autumn! At Sugar Bay, we're lucky enough to have sunshine all year round, so there's no need to wait for the summer holidays for your children to enjoy the summer camp experience. And what an experience it's going to be! Check out our exciting new themes for our Easter Holiday Camps below, they're all bound to be beyond amazing. Did we mention all these weeks are on special at 1/3 off the original price? That's a never-before-seen saving of R1900!

Rock the Boat Week (29 March - 5 April)



Ahoy there mateys and welcome to what's sure to be a rockin' good week. We're not sure why the song says "Don't Rock the Boat", because at Sugar Bay we know that when you rock the boat it's bound to result in a fun overload! 

Sailors, lift your eye patches and see just a few of the seven sea surprises this week has in store:

  • Boat building, boat racing and boat rocking
  • An excursion to Durban harbour where we will literally Rock the Boat with music, dancing and more, just like the rich and famous!

Shiver me timbers! How much?
Book a Spot on the Party Ship Online Now!

How to Train Your Dragon Week (5 - 12 April) 



Grab your Viking headgear and hold on tight, this week we're not learning to fly the usual broomsticks or aeroplanes, we're flying DRAGONS! Taking a tip or two from Hiccup, the brave young hero of the popular movie, we're off for a week full of fire-breathing adventure in the land of Berk, where Night Furies and Snaptrappers come alive to play with our young dragon trainers.

Vikings and Dragons alike can look forward to these Spectacular Special Events: 
  • Hidden dragon search (before we can learn to fly them we have to find them!)
  • Fire-breathing displays from our talented counselors
  • Camp-out, Dragon Style!

How much for my little Dragon Trainer?
Book Online Now!


Myth Busters Week (19 - 26 April)


Ever sat and wondered about the many myths of our wonderful world? Like when you drop a piece of toast, will it always land with the buttered side down? Is it really impossible to lick your elbow or fold a piece of paper more than 7 times? Will your eyes really go square from sitting too close to the TV? And if so, why? In Myth Busters week, we're setting out to do the unthinkable and ENJOY Science in an effort to confirm or bust a number of Sugar Bay myths.


Get ready for these Explosive Events:

  • S'more-athon: What's the record for the maximum number of s'mores eaten in 1 night, and can we bust it?
  • Science Experiments Galore (we promise they'll be fun!)
  • Camp-out, Science Style!

Sounds Phenomenal! How much?

Book Your Scientist's Spot Online Now!



Foam Party Week (26 April - 3 May)




Ready to lather up and have a foaming good time? We sure are! Get ready for an epic week of frothy, foamy, soapy goodness. Parents, we promise your camper will never return home cleaner than after this foamy week! We're thinking foam fights, party lights and plenty of fun!

This week's Special Events are Foam-tastic:

  • Foam Pit Party Night
  • Excursion to uShaka Main Beach to experience the foamy shore break

How much does this Fab Foam Party cost?



Give your children the holiday experience of a lifetime this Easter. Here are our rates & dates and when you are ready to book:
Call (032) 485 3778
Or simply book online

Here's a sneak peak into what the camp experience at Sugar Bay is like, and if you would like to see what takes place in some of our themed holiday weeks, have a look at our gallery.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

AISJ Pays it Forward

Imagine having to eat your one meal a day without a knife, fork or spoon, or having to drink your water straight from the tap instead of filling up your ultra-fancy water bottle with clean, filtered water. Children from Bongimfundo Primary School have none of these luxuries and very little more than the bare essentials, but the good news is that they are getting an education and Sugar Bay, together with the American International School of Johannesburg, was proud to be a part of that today.

Today's Service Learning lessons had two main goals in mind: CONNECT and HAVE FUN! The pure, innocent, barrier-breaking, giggle-inducing fun that children can have together no matter their background, skin colour or social standing.

The Grade 8s from AISJ were the reason for all the joy and laughter - they spent their morning doing a Service Learning project with students from Bongimfundo, a local school that works hard to provide an education to the children of local farm workers.

Classroom-bound learning and school uniforms were quickly discarded as learners put their boundless energy to the test with games of soccer, open gates and volleyball. They were encouraged with smiles, cheers, high fives and hugs from the AISJ learners and our Sugar Bay counselors.
It was a beautiful thing to see these underprivileged learners making beaded friendship bracelets, displaying their natural rhythm to the beat of our drums and learning new games such as Splat and Stuck in the Mud.

Service Learning is a far-reaching and life-altering experience for students, during which time they undergo incredible growth in their emotional maturity and learn a great deal about themselves as part of a greater whole. With the assistance of Sugar Bay counselors, the AISJ students did prep work yesterday to brainstorm ways to create a connection, including what practices would work and those that wouldn't. AISJ will be asked to reflect on their experiences once they return to school on Friday and will continue to apply what they have learnt in other areas of their school work.

The motto painted on the school's well-worn four-square court reads Bongimfundo... We are the World. Although the paint was chipped, faded and barely visible on the cracked cement, the message was clear: Bongimfundo will achieve results, no matter the circumstances.

With ours being a similar motto (although certainly far more privileged circumstances), Sugar Bay would like to applaud the principal, teachers and contributors to Bongimfundo Primary School, as well as the AISJ learners and teachers for a successful and enjoyable Service Learning trip. We are thankful for what we have and will continue to pay it forward.

Remember to be grateful, to spread the love and to have fun, always. It's your World.


Monday, 9 February 2015

Flashback: December Fever at the Bay!


Wow! December sure dazzled us with an overload of fun! In fact, campers were having so much fun here at Sugar Bay that we extended a few of our 7-day camps into 10-day camps so that campers were able to get an even bigger fun fix. As always, each unique theme added an extra level of excitement to an already jam-packed week. For those of you who weren't able to join us this December, here are the highlights:

New Places, Sights & Sounds: The Wonder of Travel

Our first holiday camp started off with a trip of epic proportions during our Seven Wonders of the World week. Campers had the chance to visit Italy, China, India and many more as they enjoyed the experience of what these countries had to offer.

Juniors and Intermediates were surprised by a festive Carnival Night, where the hall was transformed into a colourful carnival complete with Sumo Wrestling and a Mechanical Surfboard. For Seniors, it was time for a cook-off at El Nino's food shack where they competed Masterchef-style to create wonderful dishes. Mark our words, some of these campers are bound to be professional chefs one day and will give Gordon Ramsey a run for his money. 
 
Due to the overwhelming popularity of our planned “Camp Out”, we had to repeat this event 3 times! We can't say we're surprised at the buzz - with camp fires, s'mores and getting to spend a night under the stars with new friends, there's no wonder everyone enjoyed it so much.

Ending off the week in the best way imaginable, we visited India for a huge colourfest similar to their annual Holi Festival of Colours. To get our tummies on board with our trip we had scrumptious samoosas and butter chicken curry with rotis, it felt like we were really in India! Let's just say we were all grateful for the Sugar Bay showers after an awesome time of getting colourful! 




 
You've Got a Friend in Me

Next up was a week dedicated to a movie that has touched so many hearts: Toy Story! Que ten days of fun with cowboys and their toys, spacemen and more!

Campers were whisked away to their very own Pizza Planet complete with arcade games, ten pin bowling and of course, pizza (a treat in any galaxy). 

A major highlight of Toy Story week was our Malibu Barbie Pool Party. Campers had the chance to roll on the water in the ridiculously awesome Zorb Balls and spent time splashing about in the barrel. Campers were catered for in style when they were treated to hamburgers cooked by our very own Ken counselors.

For evening activities, the Juniors had a chance to give their best 'Yeehaw' and learn the cowboy way at Woody's Round Up, while the Intermediates mastered their skills in Buzz's Spaceman Training Camp. Seniors experienced their very own Casino Night hosted by the ever-popular Ham and everyone enjoyed earning tokens to claim their prizes in our Toy Story Toy Shop. 

Time to go Back in Time

With only a few days left in 2014, it was time for time travel in Dr Who Week! This week we explored different moments in history from the Roman Empire to World War Two and campers enjoyed every time-travelling minute.

First stop was the Ice Rink at the Galleria in Amanzimtoti, one of my favourite Sugar Bay excursions! It really was a magical site to see campers who have never ice-skated before enjoying themselves on the ice for the first time. And of course, what would an excursion be without a yummy lunch – the crew was treated to Mc Donalds and ice cream from Milky Lane.

Although no one likes goodbyes, saying goodbye to 2014 was easy enough at King Arthur's Palace, our party destination for Old Year's Eve. Kicking off with a feast made for kings and queens, we had royal roast chicken, very delicious veggies and potato bake fit for princes and princesses. Our royal guests were even entertained by our jesting counselors who performed for us on stage.

Then it was time for the party, in the party room of course! Campers showed off their best (and funniest) dance moves before the big count down, and then spent the first few minutes of a fantastic Near Year watching our very own Fireworks display put on by Matfield and Wave. We even celebrated with a fake champagne shower to ensure 2015 was going to be our best year yet!

After all that fun and excitement, campers got the chance to have a long lie-in the next day and enjoyed a delicious New Year breakfast buffet.

Other exciting events included a picnic on the time-travel field and our much anticipated Movie Premier Night. Throughout the week each cabin had to act out their own version of what/who they thought Dr Who was. These acts were recorded by our wise and trusted director and camera man, Sangoma, who put all the clips into a few entertaining videos that were broadcast throughout the universe. Some of these were Oscar-worthy performances I tell you. See for yourself right here and here

Fizztastic Fun

Finally, what better way to end off the festive season than with lots of Sugary goodness in Fizzy Week! With fizzy experiments, a fizzy jelly fight on the field and the chance to taste a whole host of fizzy things, I guess they don't call us Sugar Bay for nothing! To break up all things fizzy we also had a pizza night where campers had an ice-cream sundae bar all to themselves!

We ended off a hugely successful season in the best way we know how – a party! But not just any party mind you – an epic foam pit party with disco lights, great music from a special guest DJ and loads of foamy bubbles and fun!

For those of you that missed this December, don't let that get you down! We have all the themes for 2015 ready for you to enjoy, so make sure you check them out here.

 

Stay glued to our Sugar Bay Resort page on Facebook for teasers about what's in store for each exciting week!

Thursday, 5 February 2015

Clifton Prep Discovers Treasure in Zinkwazi!

Sugar Bay Counselor hugs with Slinky
Everyone at Sugar Bay has been buzzing with excitement because yesterday the Clifton Prep Grade 5's arrived and transformed camp into the magical place it's meant to be. After all, camp is all about the kids.  

The Clifton campers seemed to get right into the swing of things with camp songs, chants and activities. They had an awesome day at the beach and an epic Treasure Hunt last night complete with mischievous jungle creatures! See pics on our Official Facebook Page.

Sugar Bay Treasure Hunt
Clifton Prep boys surfing at Sugar BaySugar Bay counselor Sangoma and a Crate Building Champ
We've already had plenty of fun this morning with a nice morning swim. We then conquered our fears in Crate Building and spent some time practicing our Skating skills. 

Although Clifton is only staying a few days with us and will be heading back to Nottingham Road far too soon for our liking, we're sure they'll have an incredible time here and can't wait to hear all the stories they share with our crazy counselors!




 
 

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

The 3 Little Pigs of Sugar Bay

Although yesterday was actually National Hedgehog Day, Sugar Bay counselors Lucky, Pepsi, Iron Brew and Hamster spent the day trying to get hold of some different four legged friends: our friendly escape-artist pigs Snap, Crackle & Pop! And after much running around, giggles, squeals and oinks, we managed to secure a pic:

Pepsi with one member of the new Sugar Bay trio

Our curly-tailed friends arrived on Friday afternoon and have been excitedly exploring the Sugar Bay property ever since. We bet they're trying to get clued up on all of the activities available to them in their new home!

We hope to show them off to our Grade 5 visitors from Clifton Prep when they arrive for fun in the sun on Wednesday.

And hey, who knows, maybe someday the Sugar Bay beach will become the next Big Major Cay, an island in the Bahamas completely inhabited by pigs! 

Swimming pigs in the Bahamas

Until then, keep it oinky my friends and remember, It's Your World!