OUR STORY

A playground of endless forests and crystal-clear lakes.

In 1936 on a cool, misty morning, Lou Handler and Omer Stringer paddled a red canoe across the still waters of South Tea Lake in Algonquin Park. They had a vision for a special place. One with countless outdoor activities, a community of soon-to-be lifelong friends and a place where kids were encouraged to learn, play and grow.

They found a children’s village, they found Camp Tamakwa.

OUR VALUES

When you get the opportunity to spend your summers in the beauty of Algonquin Park you just can’t help but want to make the world around you a better place.

WE PADDLE IN UNISON

Tamakwans are proud individuals who understand the importance of community, family values and the power of working together as a team. A Tamakwan is a person who appreciates camp, strives to achieve personal growth, yet is also kind and willing to give a hand in order to see others also succeed.

LEAVE THE CAMPSITE BETTER THAN YOU FOUND IT

Tamakwans are stewards of the land and understand the value of their surroundings and rich history in Algonquin Park. They are committed to leaving not just our campground, but any campground down the road, better than they found it.

FRESH AIR OPENS MINDS

Tamakwans believe that fresh air is fuel for the soul, and we’re not the only ones. Research shows that spending time outdoors not only boosts your immune system, it naturally increases energy too.

OUR FOUNDERS

Icons of Algonquin Park and lovers of the outdoors, our founders made Tamakwa a magical place.

LOU HANDLER

A strong man with a warm heart, Lou was a naturalist from Detroit with a deep-rooted passion for nature, camping and life on the water. Amorously known around camp as Unca Lou, the community he created on the shores of South Tea Lake with his friend Omer became a place of warmth and camaraderie that still rings true today.

OMER STRINGER

As one of Canada’s foremost canoeist and outdoorsmen, Omer along with his friend Lou, put their passion for canoeing and the outdoors at the forefront of what Tamakwa would stand for, resulting in a summer- haven built on a strong sense of optimism, resourcefulness, and making every moment count.

100% social, 0% media.

We believe camp should be 100% social and 0% media. That’s why we don’t feel campers or staff need cell phones, iPads or any other electronics at Camp Tamakwa. By fostering a sense of community without the use of technology, Tamakwans form friendships that tend to last a lifetime. And up here, in the beauty of Algonquin Park, they’ll learn how to live life with an open mind, an enthusiastic spirit and a willingness to grow. All without ever looking at a screen.

OUR TEAM

Carrying on the legacy and traditions of Camp Tamakwa.

These are our leaders who take care of our camp and make sure every Tamakwan’s summer feels like it lasts a lifetime.

DIANE BALD

CAMP OWNER

Diane spent her summers at Camp Wapomeo one lake away from Tamakwa. Her love of Algonquin runs deep. “Algonquin park was a large part of our family’s life and instilled in them a love of the outdoors, living simply in nature and their love for camp.” Diane is excited to preserve Tamakwa’s beauty and heritage based on her architectural background.

MICHAEL BUDMAN

CAMP OWNER

Michael first came to Camp Tamakwa in 1956. This is where he met many people who influenced and shaped his life including co-founder Don Green in 1962. Together they created the Iconic Canadian brand Roots. After spending his summers up at his cabin in Algonquin Park with his family, Michael has come back to his roots as Co-owner with his wife Diane.

MARGOT PERLMUTTER

CAMP DIRECTOR

Margot began her Tamakwa career in 1986. Ironically it was the same summer she met her future husband Craig. As it is often said, Tamakwa is a “people” camp, and that saying couldn’t be more fitting for Margot. She has made it her mission to be a strong female role- model and dedicates her energy to ensuring every individual feels safe, happy, healthy and a part of the Tamakwa family, regardless of age or years at camp.

CRAIG PERLMUTTER

CAMP DIRECTOR

Craig has been a fixture in the Tamakwa landscape since 1981 and is a true member of the Tamakwa family. While managing the year-round operations and preparations for the summer season, Craig embodies what it means to be a hands-on Camp Director, always ensuring every aspect of camp is running smoothly. In the off season, Craig is also an avid hockey coach and was recently the Vice President of the Ontario Camps Association for 4 years.

VIC NORRIS

SENIOR DIRECTOR

Vic first arrived at Tamakwa in the summer of 1967 and under the guidance of Tamakwa’s founding owner Lou Handler, Vic rose up the ranks taking co-ownership of Tamakwa in 1980. Under his direction Tamakwa now offers more than twice as many activities, and maintains Tamakwa’s most revered traditions.

OUR TAMAKWA LORE

Our alumni live the traditions of Camp Tamakwa, helping make the world a better place.

OUR CLAIM TO FAME

Immortalized in the iconic movie, Indian Summer, Camp Tamakwa was the inspiration and filming location for the popular film.

Written and directed by camp alumni Mike Binder, the film is about a group of friends that return to their old childhood camp. It perfectly captures Tamakwa traditions, songs and pranks. The movie is certainly a nostalgic depiction of days gone by, but a true-to-life representation of the Camp Tamakwa spirit we continue to live every single day, every single summer.

OUR FAMILY VALUES & TRADITIONS

Our Jewish traditions and history have molded many of our core family values.

Camp Tamakwa was founded as a traditional Jewish summer camp. Today, the majority of our campers and staff are of Jewish descent yet we are happy and excited to continue to welcome an array of backgrounds and beliefs to our Tamakwa family.

Learn More

We are proud members of the Ontario Camps Association (OCA). This organization plays an important leadership role in promoting and encouraging children and youth camping in Ontario, as well as setting high standards for safety and care of campers.

Learn more about OCA