Friday, 14 December 2018

Raising kids with 21st Century skills

Going to camp is more than just an adventure away from home. Camp is an investment in your child's character, personal growth, skill sets and future. In our time of rapid development of artificial intelligence and a booming digital world, it has become of utmost importance to teach and implement 21st-century skills in our children.

The outcome of putting 21st-century skills into practice results in key competencies that are preparation for workforce training programs, careers and socializing, just to name a few. With the development of critical thinking, problem-solving and analytical skills, our next generation is will be well equipped for the new age of flying cars.

When children come to Sugar Bay, we want them to leave with a greater sense of personal efficiency, a broader outlook on life and skills to succeed in the world.

Here are some of the 21st-century skills we practice at Sugar Bay.
  • Critical thinking 
  • Creativity 
  • Communication 
  • Social skills 
  • Flexibility 
  • Productivity 
  • Accountability 
With these skills, kids should be conditioned to constant learning and approach life as self-sufficient human being.

Let's take a look at the benefits of practising some of our 21st-century skills.

Relating to others 

Children need to grow into social beings. When they relate to others, they have the capacity to form and maintain relationships resulting in them building a foundation of how they function in society. It is a key component in being mentally healthy and having a positive sense of wellbeing. As the old adage goes: the quality of your relationships determines the quality of your life.


The world is capable of changing at a moment's notice, moreso in different careers and industries. Proving that flexibility is important as nothing is guaranteed. Children need to gradually learn how to manoeuvre through the change that will be constant throughout their lives. Or know how to react to it at the very least. With this skill, your child will have adaptive qualities they need to keep up in the ever-changing world.

Critical thinking

This skill empowers children to see different concepts in different light, leading to innovation and growth. From their academia to baking a birthaday cake, critical thinking is essential to improvement. It's the mechanism that weeds out problems and finds solutions, assisting kids to 'figure things out for themselves' without a teacher or parent.

What 21st-century skill is your child developing? Tell us by leaving a comment below! Visit our website to view our upcoming themed holiday camps. 

Wondering what our holiday camps are all about? Visit our YouTube channel to view our playlists that feature all our highlights.  


Thursday, 13 December 2018

Feel The Beat: Drumming at Sugar Bay

Do you want an African drum beat master at your next party? Well our campers should be on your speed dial! Drumming has become a phenomenon at the Bay where we see our campers create extraordinary rhythm and beats with the djembe drum.

The djembe drum is said to have been invented in the 12th century by the Mandinke tribe in what is now Mali, West Africa. The djembe has a great cultural heritage in Africa and still has a weighty presence in African rituals.

The body of the drum is made from a single piece of tree trunk and topped with goatskin, providing the djembe with a piercing high-pitched tone. The Mandinke people believed that the Lenge trees held great spiritual importance while also lending its trunk to make the drum. It is said that the drum consists of three spirits: the spirit of the tree from which it was made, the spirit of the animal which covers the head and the spirit of the drum-maker.

The term djembe originates from the Bambara saying "Anke dje, anke be" which translates to "everyone gather in peace", creating a sacredness around the drum. Traditionally, the djembe was only played by men during ritual ceremonies like weddings, courtship, hunting, circumcision and passing into adulthood.

The drum has a very unique and distinctive design, which is fundamental to its versatile sound. There are 3 main sounds that can be played by the djembe, here are a few steps to get you started on playing.


Hit the center of the drum with your open hand. You want to bounce your whole hand against the skin to get that deep, low pitch. By bouncing your hand off the drum, the tones are left to resonate. The bass is the core of playing the drum. 


For a tone, you'll be using your fingers and the edge of the palm. Move your hand towards you until your knuckles are just off the edge of the drum. Your fingers should be over the drumhead. Strike the drumhead, slide your fingers off the head and follow with the edge of your palm striking the drum. Repeat. 


Slap sounds are played similarly to the tone. You put your hand on the edge of the drum, but instead of playing with a flat hand, you'll slightly curve your fingers. Contact between the drum and your hand should be the fingertips and the edge of the palm. The slap produces crack and a bright sound. The pocket of space under the palm gives it a hollow sound.

And there you have it, you're on your way to becoming an African beat master.

Tell us how you play your drum by leaving a comment below! We're always creating innovating and exciting specialized classes at the Bay. Follow our Pinterest channel for more art and camp crafts inspiration. 

Monday, 19 November 2018

The Power Of Selfless Acts

Throughout our lives, from childhood to adulthood, community is an essential part of everyday existence. The beauty behind selfless acts lies not only in the party receiving the act of service, but the shared experience between the giver and the receiver.

Community Service Learning is one way that Sugar Bay gives back to the local community and Bongimfundo Primary School is one of the schools that benefit from our Service Learning initiative. We are always happy to host the school at Sugar Bay and we delight in seeing bright smiles from the learners.  

Service Learning is a far-reaching and life-altering experience for students, where they undergo incredible growth in their emotional maturity and learn a great deal about themselves and as a part of a greater society.

On their visit to the Bay, the American International School of Johannesburg shared a day of their school camp with the learners, where they relished in foursquare, space jump, chalking, body art and sumo wrestling. AISJ also provided lunch and sponsored stationary towards the school. We would like to thank AISJ for showing us the real meaning of Ubuntu.

We would also like to thank Powafix for donating paint and building supplies towards the school.

When students come to Sugar Bay, we want them to leave with a greater sense of personal efficiency, a broader outlook on life with reduced stereotyping and greater inter-cultural understanding.

"If we are to teach real peace in the world, we shall have to begin with the children"

-Mahatma Gandhi 

Tell us ways in which we can help each other as a community or share a community service story close to your heart by leaving a comment below!

Learn more about the Service Learning program at Sugar Bay, or in what other ways we give back

Sunday, 18 November 2018

Life After Camp: 3 tips for a smoother re-entry home.

There are a gazillion articles with tricks and tips on sending your child to camp; how to pack for your child like a pro, how to choose the correct camp for your child, the benefits of camp and so forth. But what about when they come home from camp? What can you expect?  All children are different and the re-entry home from camp can range from never wanting to go back  to instant talks about plans for the next trip. Here are 3 tips for a smoother re-entry back home from camp.


You may need to prepare yourself for an eventful ride home. They'll sing every camp song, tell you all about the new friends they made and mimic their favourite counselors. This is their way of processing and reliving their camp experience and they essentially want to share their adventures with you.On the other hand, you may get one-word answers and periods of silence. Don't push for more information, sometimes kids just need to settle down in order to get comfortable to tell you about their adventures. Whatever the circumstance, the key is to listen. 

Let them sleep 

You may be graciously well-rested from flying solo or with less kids while your children were at camp, but your campers may be a  different story. With physical exhaustion from all the activities coupled with the emotional exhaustion of dealing with less personal space, excitement and constant human interaction; expect them to be walking zombies. Whether they have been away for one week or four, your little camper will need all the rest they can get. 

Don't be too grossed out

Oh they will be dirty, things will be missing and clothes will be muddy. Believe it or not, these are signs of a good holiday camp. Don't give them a hard time for coming home with brown socks that were formerly white, or 2 sweaters when you packed 3. Don't expect that your perfectly packed bag will return home as you had packed it or they used soap every time when they took a shower while at camp. Let it go. Recover what you can and move on.

What was your experience of your child coming home from camp? If you have a story or any tips you'd like like to share on how to handle your child coming home from camp; leave a comment below. 

If you would like to receive similar parenting and camp articles, follow our Parenting Board on Pinterest, or subscribe to our blog.

Tuesday, 6 November 2018

Upcoming December Camps

Are you ready for magical adventures and a swashbuckling good time? This festive season we'll be delighting in a world where imagination and animation take over Sugar Bay these upcoming holidays! Devouring in a land of mystical creatures on our DreamWorks week and Jack Sparrow visiting us on Pirates of the Caribbean week, don't get caught missing out on the magic!

DreamWorks week: 7 - 14 December 2018 

DreamWorks week promises to be magical with creativity and mythical creatures coming to life! Join us as we explore alien life and monsters under our beds. 


  • Movie-making / drama classes. 
  • DreamWorks bingo.
  • V.I.P tuckshop session. 
  • Monster treasure hunt. 
  • DreamWorks show night. 
  • Monsters vs. Aliens auction. 

How much does it cost for a trip into outer space? 

Book now for a trip to Mars. 

Pirates of the Caribbean week: 14 - 21 December 2018 

Sugar Bay will be turning into a dead sea as Jack Sparrow takes a trip down to the Bay. Who's ready for a week filled with mystery and a treasure hunt to the Black Pearl?


  • Noodle sword fights.
  • Boat cruise excursion.
  • Each section will have a weekly game based on the different movies.
  • Zinkwazi quest for the fountain of chocolate.
  • All camp treasure hunt. 

How much does it cost for a Caribbean adventure? 

Book your spot in the voyage. 

Subscribe to our YouTube channel to view our holiday camp highlights, alternatively check out our  Facebook Events to stay updated on what we have planned for all our upcoming holiday camps. 

If you have any questions about our sleepover camps, please contact us via our website, call (032) 485 3778 or email

Thursday, 18 October 2018

The Importance of Camper-Counselor Relationships

Camp is a great place for children to get some much-needed time out from mom and dad and form relationships with other authoritative, yet not as threatening, figures: camp counselors.

The role of a counselor is not only being of a guardian and caretaker, but a friend as well. Camper- counselor relationships provide long-lasting values for both parties; camp allows children the freedom to grow into independent individuals and teaches counselors teamwork, communication and responsibility.

Let's take a look at the benefits of camper-counselor relationships.

Counselors show campers that being an adult can be fun. 

Children have many adults in their life: mom and dad, the family doctor, their teachers; they're constantly surrounded by someone who either always has something to do, stressed out from work or giving them instructions. A counselor is an adult that is also a peer to the camper. When they see an authoritative figure playing in the mud, it changes their perspective on what being an adult is like and allows them to be open-minded about growing up.

Campers open up more to counselors.

Since counselors are looked at as peers, campers will often open up to counselors in ways that they might not do with their parents. This allows them to speak about issues they're not completely comfortable with speaking to their friends nor their parents. From careers goals, to trauma they went through and how they believed in the toothfairy till the age of 12; a counselor lends an ear from a friends perspective and gives advice like a parent.

Campers see counselors as role models.

The relationship between a camper and a counselor is so important because it is a chance for children to be inspired by someone who is an authoritative figure and also a friend. When a camper sees their counselor making their bed every morning, they will make their bed without being asked.

"The coolest person the world is making their bed, let me make mine," will probably be their first thought.

If your child is inspired to make their bed by a counselor, the list is endless on how a counselor can positively influence your child. 

If your child dreams of being a counselor one day, you should consider enrolling them for our Counselor-in-Training course. For more information on our upcoming holiday camps, view our events section on our Facebook page. To book a holiday camp, visit our website

Make Poi in 5 Easy Steps

Fire-spinning has become a sensation at the Bay with our campers delighting in performances put on by our counselors every final camp night.

The tradition has become so popular, our campers have joined in the shows and have brought new tricks to the game.

Before you start spinning with fire, you use poi to practice your routine. Poi originates from the Maori people of New Zealand and has spread across the globe. Poi is the Maori word for 'ball' on a cord. Maori women used Poi to keep their hands flexible for weaving and men for strength and coordination during battle. The practice was also seen in beautiful dance ceremonies where the poi was put on fire and phenomenal images emerged as they swung rhythmically.

Here are 5 easy steps to make poi

What you will need: 

  • String or shoelaces
  • Black plastic bags 
  • Scissors 
  • Ruler
  • A4 paper or rice 
  • Rubber bands 
  • Sellotape


Step 1: Pour the rice into the plastic bag until it is the size of your fist and tie the ball with a 
            rubber band at the top. 

Step 2: Cut the plastic bag into an A6 size, cover the ball and tie at the top with sellotape. 

Step 3: Take the braided string or shoelace and sellotape it on top of your poi. 

Step 4: Swing the poi around to make sure the string is tied tightly to the ball. 

Step 5: With your wildest imagination, decorate your poi! 

And there you have it; with these easy steps, you're on your way to becoming the best fire-spinner you could possibly be.

We're always creating amazing crafts at Sugar Bay, follow our Pinterest channel for more art and camp crafts inspiration

Wednesday, 17 October 2018

Bringing Art To Life: 3 Traits Every Art Teacher Should Have.

It's not easy being a kid today; facing chunks of homework and a seemingly never-ending quest for achievement, it appears to be harder being a kid than a CEO of a large corporate company.

It's even harder for creative children; to discover and nurture their talent with different social pressures and numerous inconsistent daily requirements. How do we create the next generation of innovative artists? Through all our art teachers across the globe!

Listed below are 3 key qualities every art teacher should have. Cultivating these principles assists our aspiring Picassos, aka your students, in finding their role in the creative world and how to play it.


Curiosity builds a desire for a greater understanding and learning more. Besides innovating your student's creative talent by gaining more intel, curiosity develops awareness and attention to detail for their craft. It is of utmost importance to motivate them to consistently ask questions and to dig deeper. This fosters growth and matures their expertise.


Tony Wagner, a Senior Research Fellow at the Learning Policy Institute, states that one of the key principles to strengthen a student's innovative framework, is the passion passed from the teacher to student. Wagner further explains how the best teachers always support what the student's natural passion is, and make an effort to connect what needs to be learnt to satisfy the passion. This creates a sense of purpose with their craft and longing to better themselves. 


Having a purpose is imperative for any human being. Great art teachers know the importance of creating art that will add value to the world, rather than creating for the sake of creating. When students pick up this sentiment, it develops their creative problem-solving skills. Finding solutions is more urgent and pushes the student to take greater risks and look for new ways of solving challenging issues to fulfil their purpose. 

With these 3 principles implemented into your art classes, who knows, you could be grooming the next Da Vinci. 

Tell us how you run your art classes by leaving a comment below! Follow our Pinterest channel for more arts and crafts fun.

Out of his League

Being our in-house emergency response CPR trainer for our camp staff and counselors, a self-defence class instructor and a superhero to our planet; we caught up with League on being a mountain guide and how the rhino is his spirit animal. 

From rock-climbing in Maine, leading a hike in Vietnam to being a mountain guide in upstate New York, League is definitely living up to his name by being in a league of his own. 

We first set our eyes on the great adventurer in 2017 when he was a C.I.T (counselor in training). This is where we watched him transform into the great counselor he is today. 

"I was extremely shy, I couldn't look people in the eye when I was speaking to them, it was really bad! Let's not even talk about public speaking!"  He exclaimed.

League runs a specialized self-defence class at the Bay where he teaches campers basic moves to protect themselves.

"I have been doing karate since I was 3 years old, I then developed my skills into self-defence as the years went by. It first started out as a hobby but knowing I could be helping a little girl protect themselves from immediate danger, that was a beautiful thing for me." 

Just when you thought he couldn't get any cooler, he recently added being a warrior for rhinos to his long list of accomplishments when he joined the anti-rhino-poaching unit; protecting rhinos from extinction, one poacher at a time.

With the rhino being his spirit animal, he explains how he relates to the majestic creature. 

"The rhino is peaceful and protective: that's exactly how I would describe myself, except that I am more family-oriented than the rhino I suppose. It just felt like a natural step in joining the unit."

What Batman is to Gotham city, that is what League is to our precious earth; a wildlife conservationist and making society a better place. 

If you also dream of being a counselor one day, you should consider enrolling for our Counselor-in-Training course. You can visit our website for more information on what it takes to be a Sugar Bay counselor. 

Monday, 17 September 2018

Tea-making with Teaspoon

"Tea- making is a form of meditation for me, nothing is on my mind except the smell of the herbs, the different textures and the outcome of the different herb combinations."

His love for tea began with a birthday tradition his mom started, where he found himself receiving a cup of tea on the night before and the morning of his birthday.

"My mom always wanted to make me the last cup of tea of the age I was, and the first cup of the age I was turning. I can safely say my mom is my inspiration when it comes to tea-making." He shared.

When introducing his tea-making at Sugar Bay as a specialized class, he was inflicted with doubts of whether campers would want to take part. 

"When I first advertised my class, no-one came and I was so bummed about it. About twenty minutes later, three kids came up to me and asked if we could make some tea. That's when I knew my tea-making class was not just about teaching kids how to make tea; but it was also about teaching myself life- skills, such as patience in this instance." 

The future tea sommelier gave us a glimpse of his magic by revealing one of his recipe's.

Champion chai:

What you will need : 

  • Cinnamon quills
  • Peppercorns
  • Pinch of nutmeg 
  • Honey 
  • 1 part water 
  • 2 parts milk 
  • Pot 
  • Tea sieve 
  • Love 
  • Peace in your heart 
  • Tea bags 

Method : 

Step 1: Add all the ingredients, except the tea bags and honey, into a pot. Place on a stove and set it                     on medium heat.

Step 2: Stir all the ingredients for 2 minutes. Tear open the tea bags and empty the loose tea into 
            the mix.
Step 3: Bring the ingredients to a slow boil while stirring (do not let it boil over).

Step 4: After 10 minutes of stirring, pour the tea into mugs through the tea sieve. 

Step 5: Add honey (or sugar) to each cup for taste. 

Step 5: Sip with calm indulgence and be prepared to have your mind blown and your heart warmed.  

We're always creating innovating and exciting specialized classes at the Bay. Follow our Pinterest channel for more art and camp crafts inspiration. 


Upcoming October Camp

Spring is here and we're on the brink of another school holiday. We have one holiday camp for the upcoming October holidays and we're feeling the need for speed! With a discount of R1900, don't get left behind as we race our way into a week of drifting and car mania.

Need For Speed week: 30 September - 7 October 2018 

With camp turning into Ventura Bay, we're unlocking all the summertime fun with horsepower and Formula1 knowledge! Don't get caught missing out on being number 1.

Highlights : 

  • Soapbox derby (campers build and race their own go-carts).
  • Senior boat cruise.
  • Wacky races evening program.
  • Formula 1 quiz night.
  • Trump card classes and Pitt crew games throughout the week.

How much does it cost to become Sean “Mac” McAlister? 

Book now to unlock your potential.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel to view our holiday camp highlights, alternatively check out our  Facebook Events to stay updated on what we have planned for all our upcoming holiday camps. 

If you have any questions about our sleepover camps, please contact us via our website, call (032) 485 3778 or email

Friday, 14 September 2018

Get to know TGIF (Fresh)

"I came to Sugar Bay as a fresh young kid at 19, I had to grow up very quickly and camp was the right place to be because it taught me responsibility. I also gained skill sets that would help me in my future endeavours."

Working as a radio host on 5fm on the afternoon drive (weekdays 3-6pm) and presenting a T.V game show, Msizi James explains how his time at Sugar Bay has helped in growing his character and preparing him for his career.

We caught up with Msizi, popularly known as TGIF, on his humble beginnings at the Bay and how he had a hand in the building of the climbing wall at Sugar Bay.

1. What's the craziest, messiest, most mind-boggling thing have you have ever done or been done to you at the Bay?

"The messiest thing that ever happened at the bay always involved special loans and a legendary counselor named Chana. If it was your birthday, he would make you a toxic cocktail of whatever was around and you had to drink it to get the (staff) party started."

2. What's the one thing people don't know about you?

"Well besides the fact that I had a hand in the building of the climbing wall haha, people don't know that Tape (the old head counselor) is the one who FORCED me to audition for my first ever radio job, so I owe a lot to him."

3. What is your most memorable Sugar Bay camp and why?

"I met my little brother for the time at Sugar Bay. He was here for a school camp, a complete chance meeting that changed my life forever."

4. What's your spirit animal?

 "Seth Rogan......"

5. How has being at Sugar Bay influenced your life?

"Oh my goodness, I always tell people how Sugar Bay was the most life-changing time of my life. One of the most valuable lessons I learnt was MCing and being able to talk to people, which is a big part of my job now."

If you would like to become a counselor at the Bay, book a C.I.T course or visit our website for more information on our C.I.T course.  

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

What is your camp name?

Ever wondered why our counselors have super cool nicknames? Well besides it being exciting having a name that suits your personality, campers also love it; even parents think it's quite neat! After all, it's easier to distinguish between Moonwalk and Spook than Josh and Josh.

We have 5 popular types of counselor personalities we get to see around camp, what category do you fall under?


If the name isn't already a hint that this type of counselor is the life of the party, you will definitely feel it on your first encounter with them. Besides illuminating a room with just their presence, they're also Mr. Funny Guy, throwing in banter and playing on words. Campers love these counselors; from the random fun facts on Marvel movies to the grand speeches on ocean life.


This counselor is the designated fairy godmother at camp. Usually creative, they inspire and cultivate talents around camp with their nurturing personality. Bringing out the best in people is their most natural flair. It's inevitable that the kids leave camp with their confidence boosted and doubts about whether fairytales are indeed fiction.

Ben 10: 

You'll most-likely find Ben 10 either covered in mud or sumo wrestling with a camper half their size. Juniors love Ben 10, they're basically playing with their age mate who just happens to be in an adult body (which campers love!) This type of counselor is warm-hearted and can put a smile on your face on the most dreadful day. We love our Ben 10's, everything from being a best friend to junior campers with their child-like personality, to making the senior campers feel like they're care-free 10 year-olds again.


Quirky, fun and alternative. Campers are anything their imagination tells them to be with this counselor around. From being rock stars to making plans to spend time with aliens, they're up for anything. This counselor is anything but ordinary; the sky is purple and the floor is oozing lava. Don't box a Gumball, they'll surprise you with blue hair and pink eyebrows.


Man of Steel is this counselor's middle name. Campers are convinced that this counselor can paddle up Victoria falls; they're the ultimate hero. Rangers are great at putting on a show-and-tell of all the cool activities campers will achieve by enticing them with their superman voice and elaborate moves. All they need now is a  red cape and an "S" on their chest.

Tell us what your camp name is by leaving a comment below! If you would like to become a counselor at the Bay, book a C.I.T course or visit our website for more information on our C.I.T course.

Saturday, 18 August 2018

Tips before you start your henna tattoo

Our body art class, one of our arts and crafts activities at Sugar Bay, has become a hit with our campers creating some original and innovative designs. From different textures, styles and colours; the art of henna has definitely become a sensation amongst our campers.

Henna is a fun and exciting way for bonding and relaxing with your kids. Here are some tips on how to get started :

1. Wash the area you plan to tattoo.

    Removing oils and grime from the concentrated area will ensure the henna stains correctly.

2. Practice on paper first. 

    Because henna will last between one and two weeks, it's best to develop a technique before                      applying the paste on someone's skin.

3. Don't get lost in the grand scale of things. 

   Start small, too big a project might uninspire you.

Fun facts about Henna : 
  • Henna (called mehndi in Hindi and Uduru) has been practiced for over 5000 years in Pakistan, India, Africa and the Middle East. The art of henna has since been carried down through generations and has spread all over the world.
  • In ancient Egyptian times, henna was used as body art for decorational purposes for occasions such as weddings and family ceremonies. Mummified bodies have been found with what appears to be henna-dyed hair and hennaed fingers to indicate royalty.
  • Because henna has natural cooling and healing properties for the skin, women in West Africa have been using it to cool down their bodies and in treating their hair, scalp and skin issues that range from psoriasis and skin damage caused by the African sun.

To view more creative arts and crafts our campers come up with at the Bay, visit our Arts and Crafts board on our Pinterest channel

Thursday, 16 August 2018

Meet Lilo: 20 camps later

Laila Mackay, popularly known as Lilo, is celebrating her 20th-holiday camp at the Bay. From Jurassic World week to Japan week, Lilo has vast experience on our themed holiday camps. On her 20th visit, she explains how camp has made her bolder and much more comfortable with herself.

"Camp boosts your confidence, you're accepted for who you are. I remember during Peanuts week, I was doing sumo wrestling, and Jack (a fellow camper) tackled me so hard that I started rolling back and forth! It was the funniest thing ever and it was all caught on camera! I was comfortable with being silly and everyone around me was amazing." 

Describing herself as fun, caring and arty, Lilo explains how she would love to become a counselor at Sugar Bay. Spending most of her time at the arts and crafts section during her stay on her holiday camps, she tells us how being an Arts and Crafts PC (Pro Counselor) would be a box ticked on her life to-do list.

"I love the feeling of independence from making a piece of art all on my own, all from scratch! I would love to teach and help other campers evolve in their creativity and love for all things beautiful."

With biology being her favourite subject at school, Lilo would like to pursue a career in forensic anthropology. She expressed how Sugar Bay has inspired her to be passionate in all her interests.

"Sugar Bay is so diverse; from sports, educational activities to all the different cultures I come across, I'm constantly being immersed in something interesting."

If you could be an animal, what animal would you be?

"Sid from Ice Age, he's down to earth, caring and he gets stuff done his own way"

What's the one thing people don't know about you?

"I used to be a picky baby! From what type of milk formula I wanted to how I  would be dressed, or so my mom says."

What's your favourite part of camp?

"The counselors! Without them, camp would just be a building. It's great to see them grow, their imperfections make them perfect, each and every one of them have their own vibe."

If your teen also dreams of being a counselor one day, you should consider enrolling them for our Counselor-in-Training course. For more information on our upcoming holiday camps, view our events section on our Facebook page. To book a holiday camp, visit our website

Breaking it down with Cashmere

We sat down with our former dancing instructor, Cashmere, on why Tina Turner is her spirit animal and how Sugar Bay has given her a global perspective.

With 18 years worth of dancing under her belt, she's performed all over the country and admits to how much she loves the limelight from her craft.

"Oh! the standing ovations and flowers after the show! I love it. It just reassures me that I was born to dance."

The 21-year-old, who's originally from East Rand Johannesburg, explained to us how she's on a dancing hiatus, and how the sky is the limit.

" I'm currently studying French and working for my dad; just learning new things. I want to grow in other parts of my being." 

1. Describe yourself in 3 words:

"Passionate, compassionate, gwitty (gangster/ghetto/witty). 

2. Hahaha, which counselor , past or present, inspires you and why?

"Afro, he used to tell me that everything you do, should be done with a purpose." 

3. How would you describe yourself as a counselor at Sugar Bay?

"Childhood influencer, one week at a time." 

4. Between Tina Turner and Madonna, who do you think would win in a performance showdown?

"Tina hands down! She's a natural performer, and besides that I love her come up. She's been through so much but managed to use that as a springboard to shoot herself higher."

5. What would you say to anyone who wants to get into professional dancing?

"Don't have an idealistic view of what your journey as a dancer should be. You won't stand on your tippy toes at your first ballet rehearsal. You should honour the process. Drake said it: started from the bottom."  

If you would like to become a counselor at Sugar Bay, visit our website for more information. 

Wednesday, 8 August 2018

When your teen wants out of summer camp

"I don't want to go, it's just not fun anymore, I'm not a kid anymore." This statement is usually followed by a well-prepped speech on why your teen doesn't want to go camping anymore, accompanied by a list of alternative activities that can preoccupy them during the school holidays.

Teenagers have different reasons for not wanting to go to camp anymore, from feeling like they have grown out of the annual excursion to wanting to invest time in things that interest them outside of camp.

When teenagers grow out of their adolescence, they want to create an identity for this new stage of their life. This is when you cue in the "I don't want to go anymore" talk.

In a 2014 survey done by Sarah- Jayne Blackmore, Royal Society University Research Fellow and Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, found that teens between the ages of 14-17, were more likely to shift away from the things they loved as children. Creating new habits, hobbies and social presence.

The dilemma: wanting the best for your child, but not forcing them into anything they don't want to do. Though you may be concerned and wish to intervene, the best thing to do is explain the ways camp would be beneficial not only in their future, but also towards their character and personal growth.

Here are some benefits of camp and things you can suggest to your teen to reintroduce the excitement of camp:

1. "If you want to take a gap year or travel, you can learn from the counselors about their jobs, so you can see what different options you have."

Your teen actively participates in the decision of going to camp, giving them a sense of empowerment and self-reliance, simultaneously assisting in their vision for their career.

2. "You can enjoy a change of scenery without being told what to do and when to do it. You won't be forced to do anything you don't want to do, Nothing is compulsory at Sugar Bay."

With this approach, you are fulfiling their need to recreate themselves, giving them the freedom to discover new interests and new things about themselves at their own pace.

3. "You will make friends from all over the world." 

The exposure to different personalities from around the world will help improve your teen's social skills, enabling them to adapt in different environments.

4. "You can tick something off your bucket list. Go to the beach, learn how to skate, surf or attend a specialised art class etc."

With the 'free choice' in our vast activities, it appeals to your teens want to reinvent themselves and evolve in their new interests.

5. "I know that Sugar Bay treats older campers differently, you aren't treated like a kid. You have your own senior cabins, chill area, privileges and you can wake up late. 

This will give your teen the 'non-kid' treatment they're looking for in this new stage of their life, giving them the opportunity to be more responsible and become more independent.

6. "You can gain skills and experience for your CV by completing the Counselor in Training programme."

With our C.I.T programme, they'll obtain skills such as camp counseling, first aid (emergency first response) and CPR, junior life-guarding and water safety, crisis management and staff psychology. This will give them a sense of achievement and inspire them to accomplish so much more.

As parents, you want the best for your children, especially when they're on the road towards adulthood. Your support will give your teen room to own their decision and assist them in the transition to adulthood. With varsity, moving out of home, meeting new people and exposure to new environments all on your teen's doorstep, camp is probably the best place for them; because it teaches them to adapt to new environments, develops their social skills and allows them to be a kid again.

Do you have any advice for fellow parents of teens who have grown out camp? Has your teen enjoyed a valuable experience that you think other teens would benefit from hearing? Share your story by leaving a comment below. Alternatively, you can share your teen's experience of Sugar Bay by writing a review , or posting on our Facebook page and we'll share your story.  

Tuesday, 17 July 2018

Upcoming August Camps

These August holidays, we're exploring Greek mythology on Mount Olympus, breaking it down for our Step Up tournament and James Bond will show us his poker face during Casino Royale week. The holiday season will end on a sweet note, as we celebrate our 17th birthday with S'mores galore! With a discount of R1900 on our first three camps and a whopping R2200 saving on our birthday celebration, you have every reason to join us for our August holiday camps!

Mount Olympus week: 5-12 August 2018

Who's ready to become a Greek God? As we hang out with Zeus and Poseidon, come enjoy a week of bravery and legacies.


  • Mount Olympus quiz night.
  • Camp half blood (campers will learn how to be warriors). 
  • Shaka land excursion or camp in.
  • Camp will be hosting it's very own Olympics. 
  • Explore classes in honour of Odysseus. 

How much will it cost to become a Greek God?

Book now to conquer Mount Olympus with us!

Step Up Week: 12 - 19 August 2018 

We're hosting our very own dance tournament as we break it down with a week filled with breakdancing, stepping, and pop-locks. We're bringing the step to the Bay!


  • Flash mobs every day of the week. 
  • "So You Think You Can Dance" competition. The winner wins a free week at camp.
  • Step Up dance classes.
  • Graffiti art classes. 
  • Different dance moves themed for each day.

How much will it cost to break it down at the Bay?

Book now to become our next dance superstar!

Casino Royale week: 19 - 26 August 2018

With cool gadgets, spy missions and casino nights, come join James Bond on his mission during our Casino Royale week at the Bay, Sugar Bay!


  • Casino night.
  • Senior VIP areas. 
  • Exciting spy missions.
  • Arcade and bowling excursion. 
  • James Bond party night. 

How much will it cost to be a spy?

Book now to be a part of the secret mission!

S'mores Birthday Week 21 August - 1 September 2018 

We end off our holiday camp season with a sweet sizzle for our 17th birthday celebration! Come join us for a week of fire-roasted marshmallows and chocolate sandwiches for our S'mores themed week.


  • Camp out excursion.
  • Camp fire every night.
  • S'mores birthday cake.
  • Pool party.
  • Camp in movie night. 

How much will it cost to join us for our celebration?

Book now and celebrate our birthday with us!

Check out our Facebook Events to stay updated on what we have planned for all our upcoming holiday camps.

If you have any questions about our sleepover camps, please contact us via our website, call (032) 485 3778 or email

Friday, 13 July 2018

How to make Wonka bars with Fondant

Moulding fondant has become a sensation in our arts and crafts section at Sugar Bay. We have our campers thinking out of the box and inventing original pieces of art. During our Charlie and the Chocolate Factory themed week, we made Wonka bars in tribute to our chocolate master, Mr Willy Wonka.

If you have a sweet tooth and you love the 1964 classic, here's how to make a Wonka bar.

What you will need: 

  • Fondant 
  • Icing sugar
  • Chopsticks (long and short)
  • Medium sized jar
  • Food colouring (colours of your choice) 
  • Flat board
  • Scissors
  • Toothpicks 


Step 1: Separate fondant into 3 pieces. 1 fistful piece (for the wrapper) and 2 smaller pieces (for the
            chocolate bar and Wonka wording).

Step 2: Mix the icing sugar into the pieces until smooth.

Step 3: Squirt the red food colouring (or any colour of your choice for the wrapper) into the bigger
         piece. Then add the brown for the chocolate bar and the third piece to be left white.

Step 4: Work the colour in with your hands until fondant is completely that colour.

Step 5: Place the pieces on the flat board and flatten with the jar.

Step 6: Shape the pieces into the shape of the chocolate bar using the chopsticks.

Step 7: Place the toothpicks on the brown piece to shape the chocolate bars.

Step 8: Shape 'Wonka' letters with the white fondant using the toothpicks.

Step 9: Put the chocolate and wrapper piece together

Step 10: Place the 'Wonka' letters on the wrapper part of your chocolate bar.

There you have it! A Wonka bar in 10 easy steps.

We're always creating amazing crafts at Sugar Bay, follow our Pinterest channel for more art and camp crafts inspiration. 

Surfing with Smiles

We sat down with the Sugar Bay surfing PC (Pro Counselor), Smiles, on his surfing journey and who he thinks would win in a fight between Steven Seagal and Jean Claude van Damme.

Real name Grant Anderson, was born in Johannesburg, Gauteng and went to North Cliff primary school before the Anderson tribe moved to sunny Durban in 2009. The surfing bug bit him at just 10 years old and he has never looked back.

As a past camper at the Bay, he loved the positive influence the counselors had on him.

"I felt like I could be myself, I was exposed to the one thing I love most in the world and I was surrounded by the most amazing people."

Wanting to shine that light on someone else, in 2016, he joined our C.I.T (Counselors in Training) course where he had goals to become the surfing PC and the counselor he had always wanted to be.

 What's your favourite part about teaching children how to surf? 

"Just being able to share my passion with someone, who either have been surfing or wants to learn how to surf. It allows me to be a part of their journey and to see them grow is such a privilege." 

What childhood memory do you have of surfing? 

"Standing on a board I still have today and catching a wave on my own for the very first time." 

What type of kid do you think your teachers would say you were at school? 

"Definitely a leader, I was also a good example and a role model to the younger pupils."

What's the one thing people don't know about you? 

(Shrugs) " hahahahaha. I honestly don't know."

Between Steven Seagal and Jean-Claude van Damme, who do you think would win the fight?

"Steven Seagal any day!" 

If you would like to become a counselor at the Bay, book a C.I.T course or visit our website for more information on our C.I.T course.