• Canyon Camp

A Night With Lyle Novinski

On Thursday, June 27 a group of Canyon Camp Alumni gathered in Blanchardville, WI as Lyle Novinski, camp staff member and camp director; 1948-1960, returned from Texas to SW Wisconsin to visit with and honor family. As part of this trip, he connected with old friends and reminisced about general history and stories of Canyon Camp. Newspaper clippings from the early 20th century were passed across the table as stories, past and present, were shared from one to another. Five alumni spanning more than seven decades of service to Canyon Camp shared life updates and spent time with one another. Blanchardville has a population less than 1,000 people much like many towns scattered across SW Wisconsin and NW Illinois. Communities that Canyon Camp has faithfully served for more than 80 years. It was fitting that this group gather in a community that reflects many who have contributed to the Spirit of Canyon Camp.

As the night began to wind down, Lyle shared that he believes nothing about camp is accidental. From the general layout of the camp to the exact location of the property. He noted the formation from the main headquarters building (and now the office) to the dining hall and the sprawling parade field all overlooking the lake. You don't immediately see the lake as you enter camp, but it reveals itself to you as you approach the dining hall. Water is powerful in many ways, both symbolically and the life that it provides to us. In many ways, Coon Creek provides that same life to camp. While camp has changed over the years, one primary focus has not changed. Our chief purpose is still to develop and nurture that little Scout who follows me. In the words of Lyle, "Canyon Camp teaches kids about life."

Thank you Lyle for your lifelong connection with Canyon Camp and for sharing an evening with these alumni. We encourage you to reach out to other Canyon Camp friends and reconnect. Maybe even share what camp taught you as a kid about life. Learn more about Lyle and other aspects of Camp's history at

L to R: Tom Howe, Dan Dick, Lyle Novinski, Josh Ehlers, Ron Spielman

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