May 26, 2017

Vovcha Tropa Plast camp prepares for 2017 summer season



An aerial view of a portion of the Vovcha Tropa grounds.

EAST CHATHAM, N.Y. – While Vovcha Tropa Plast Camp took a much-deserved rest in its natural splendor during the fall, winter and spring months, members of the Regional Camp Commission (known as OTK, for its Ukrainian name, Okruzhna Taborova Komisiya) never afforded themselves a respite. After cleaning and winterizing the camp facilities and grounds in the late summer and fall, OTK quickly switched gears and initiated its planning process for this summer’s camp season.

To start, OTK held board elections on December 3, 2016. After thorough reporting, audit and a vote of confidence granted to the outgoing board, the following were elected for the next two years: Taras Popel, president; Adrianna Knihnicky, vice-president, camps; Joe Patti, vice-president, facilities; Larissa Popel, secretary; Dan Bojcun, treasurer; Mark Turczan, inventory officer; and Daria Patti, administrator.

Each elected board member forms a committee of volunteers who serve an array of functions, ranging from registration, medical affairs, counselor staffing and training to finances, communications, facility maintenance, inventory and boutique. All board members work year-round with their committees in planning for and operating multiple Plast camps and other activities at the Vovcha Tropa campsite.

Furthermore, OTK has held two workshops (on December 3, 2016 and April 1 of this year) to debrief last year’s camp leaders and prepare for this camp season. In addition to careful consideration and planning of the camp’s customary functions, of particular interest are two new initiatives that OTK is undertaking.

First is an aggressive tick/mosquito/poison ivy control program. Out of concern for the health and welfare of Vovcha Tropa campers and staff, OTK has contracted with Ivy Oaks Analytics to treat the Vovcha Tropa grounds and rid carrier hosts of ticks with EPA-approved natural compounds and insecticides. Treatments will be completed in late June to ensure the pest population is under control before the commencement of camps. (For more information on this important initiative, readers may visit and

Secondly, in an effort to promote sustainability at Vovcha Tropa, OTK is actively researching ways to become more green. The hope is that Vovcha Tropa will be able to move to more environmentally responsible table and drink ware as early as this summer. Board members pledge to continue to report on these and other efforts, as one of their main goals is to work in harmony with, and enhance, the beautiful natural habitat that campers call home.

Vovcha Tropa also announced it is pleased to host an Olympics Camp, a new specialized camp for Plast members age 15 and up, from July 20 to August 6. This camp will include competitions in various sports, survival, creativity and overall knowledge. Registration packets may be found at (For more information, e-mail

OTK is anxiously awaiting the arrival of Plast campers and the reawakening of Vovcha Tropa from its quiet slumber into a bustling home for Plast camaraderie, laughter and adventure. All camp registration deadlines are June 1, 2017.

Christina Jackiw Brozyna is press secretary of the Regional Camp Commission of Vovcha Tropa.