Hello Friends and Family!

I have some news that I feel I need to share with everyone. This will be the last week we are running Reptile Camp in Hamilton. Its been an amazing 12 years and I can’t thank everyone enough. I have counted down till the start of the summer every single year and have loved working with the staff, LIT’s, campers and families!

I have built relationships through this program that I feel will last a lifetime. I am honored to call so many of you family, and friends. Some of my favorite moments have been from this program, and its participants. It means the world to me that campers show up every morning happy and excited….and run quickly into the facility leaving their parents behind…. and that many of them are just a little disappointed when they get picked up and have to go home. I can’t even guess how many time parents have thanked me and told me that their kids have learned so much at camp and have even went home to teach their family some of the interesting things the have learned!

We have had over 700 kids come through our programs since its early beginning at The Reptile Store. Our program has gone through many changes over the years, most recently 3 years ago with the partnership with Little Rays Reptile Zoo and Nature Centre- Hamilton. This program would never have been possible without some help along the way! We would like to thank Paul Kennedy who believed in the program so long ago and gave us a green light to try it, and backed it for the first few years! Thanks to Paul ‘Little Ray’ Goulet who opened the zoo in Hamilton with the location and partnership in mind for our camp program. Without like minded individuals like these mentors this program would never have had a chance.

Thank you to all of our amazing field trip locations and partners over the years. Safari Niagara, Brantford Twin Valley Zoo, Reptilia, Mountsberg Raptor Centre, Bird Kingdom, The Toronto Zoo, Royal Botanical Gardens, Little Ray’s Reptile Zoo, African Lion Safari and more! Thanks for making our summers awesome! Thanks to all your amazing staff over the years for always making us feel welcome.

Thank you to all my amazing staff over the years. Your dedication and efforts are truly amazing and inspiring. Jordan Hazell, Nicole Hazell, Kendra Lupton, Michelle Bailss Aikey, Alysha Fekete, Andrew Holden, Matt Wheeler, Dunc HD M, Rachel Young, Shelby Krochuk, Krista Mista, Natalie Williams, Kate Howie, Courtney Levesque, Colin Newbigging, Tayler Bergeron, Taylor Myers, Torie Evans, Kaelyn Jean Rose, Patrick Mallett, Riley Elizabeth-Ann Lupton and Alexandra Lupton. I don’t believe I missed anyone…. please call me out if I did and I will add you in! Our staff teams have always been at a whole other level. I have always had get pride in our staff, and have always felt an amazing sense of accomplishment to see these individuals go off to do great things.

To the last staff team in our programs history. Thanks for making it stress free. Thanks for making it fun. Thanks for running the camp well in my absence. My expectations are set very high, and are often unattainable….. you guys never disappoint. Thanks again for being a part of this ride! Alexandra Binns, Sam Macpherson, Brayden Brookhouse and Victoria Roque.

Its been a difficult summer for me and my family. We have been backing Reptile Camp as a non profit program for years because I believe in the program, have a tonne of fun with it and love the results the kids get from attending. I have worked extra jobs just to try to balance the accounts a bit and keep the program going. This has unfortunately come at a great cost to my family, and my friends. I have always been a workaholic and have always spread myself a little thin by taking on too much. This ultimately lead to our families decision.

My family and I have decided to move north (where our hearts are) and work 1 job so we have more time to share our life together. I am very excited about the future possibilities for us. Hiking and Kayaking in our own back yard., and spending a lot more quality time together.

I will post updates and such on our FB page for everyone. I will stay in touch with everyone. I will make arrangement’s to come back to Hamilton on a semi regular basis and invite everyone out to say hello. Once we are settled in our new place I will open our doors for you to drop by on your holidays and get caught up. Please keep in touch as I feel each and everyone one of you are a part of my family.

I will still be running a COSTA RICA field trip just not this year. I need time to get settled and move, but I will run it again in January of 2018! Save up, and be apart of it! Look for updates on our FB page.

I leave you with a photo from the funnest day I have ever had at camp…. it did not involve holding an amazing or rare animal… it all developed from the smallest puddle in Ontario….. it was often imitated but never duplicated….it will be forever known as the Mud War of 04. Life and happiness is all around. Have fun, get dirty, fall and be a little dangerous, take the time to hug the ones you love, and do what makes you happy!

Thanks for being a friend, thanks for making life fun,
Yours in adventure,
Steve Featherstone

Our Mission Statement:
It is our goal and mission at The Reptile Camp to provide children with the most interactive wildlife experience possible. We believe that through these up close and hands on experiences we can create a lifelong love and respect for all living things. Through our program we thrive to inspire a strong conservation movement through our future leaders!

The Reptile Camp is one of the most interactive experiences you could possibly provide for your nature loving children. This is a very unique opportunity to learn and work from zoological professionals all that the natural world has to offer.   If your children have the power of “why” this is the camp for them!

This program has been designed for children from 5-16 years of age, through a variety of camp programs. Children will have opportunities to interact with many species of animals from the tiniest insects to the largest carnivores, and of course everything in between.

Children will gain lots of knowledge of ecosystems, the environment, the global extinction crisis, zoology, taxonomy, and more! The week-long camp programs have been designed with both base days at our camp, and at the zoo, as well as with field trips to zoological facilities. Everything we do for the week-long camp is completed with an educational goal in mind.

This is the camp your children will spring out of bed in the morning to go to… and be disappointed they have to leave in the evening when you pick them up.  My staff and I will work diligently to provide your children with the summer adventure they deserve! Save the planet with us, one step at a time! It starts with knowledge, and knowledge starts at Reptile Camp!

Yours in Adventure,

Steve Featherstone
Director/Owner, The Reptile Camp