Wednesday, 27 May 2009

The social committee and events at Bare Oaks

The time and effort that the members of the social committee are putting in is very much appreciated! The role of the committee is an important one. They provide a key link between all the members and Bare Oaks' management. They help organize and coordinate events to prevent conflict. They also maintain the schedule and help foster a strong feeling of community at the park. (Just look at the jam-packed event schedule for this year!) The counsel that comes from their experience and knowledge helps new organizers create fun and successful events.

But there has been some misunderstanding about the role of the social committee. Some members of Bare Oaks believe that the social committee rules over all events with an iron fist and decide what is allowed and what is not. That's not quite true. For those events that are submitted, they review them to ensure that they don't conflict with other events, that they meet the basic rules of the park and that they will have the support needed. I think the terms of reference on the committee's website (www.bareoaks.ca/social/terms.shtml) make it quite clear:

Mission
To bring the Bare Oaks community together in the organization and participation of Member hosted social events.

Purpose
To schedule and promote Member hosted weekend social events at those times when there are not park hosted events and produce an annual social event calendar for Bare Oaks ensuring each weekend during the camping season offers a social event for Members and guests of Bare Oaks.

Accountability
Management and Membership of Bare Oaks Naturist Community.

So, to clarify, nobody is forced to run an event through the social committee. If a member wants to organize a card game or some other event in the clubhouse, they don't have to ask anybody's permission.

But if they do not go through the social committee:
  1. their event will not be included in the calendar
  2. in case of a space/resource conflict, the event approved by the social committee will take precedence and
  3. they will not benefit from the experience and knowledge of the social committee members.
This last item is an important one. People who have not organized events before will not know what needs to be done, where resources are found, and who to talk to. So submitting an event to the social committee is highly recommended.

Friday, 8 May 2009

New Hot Tub!


Many people have heard through the rumour mill that we are getting a new hot tub. It's true!

The picture above is of the new hot tub. The Hydropool H-1200 is a 12 person commercial hot tub. Here are some specifications:
144"x 92"x 42"deep / 366 x 234 x 107 cm
Height: 42" / 107 cm
Volume: @866 US gallons / 3275 Litres

Yes, it will fit but we need to make the hole bigger. In fact, we are going to have to take out one of the windows and part of the wall to get it in.

There will be a fair bit of work involved so there will be no hot tub for several weeks starting after the long weekend. (May 18) But the pool will be open instead. (albeit a bit colder!)

The old hot tub was installed in 1984. That means it is exactly 25 years old! Below is a picture of Eric Jarvis sitting a the brand new hot tub in 1984. (note how the walls are not even finished) Next to that is Eric Jarvic in the same hot tub in March of this year. (I would say he's aged better than the hot tub.)


Sunday, 3 May 2009

Cartoon transformation

Recognize anyone above? The latest episode of the Naturist Living Show (episode 7) is about naturist cartooning. Have a listen at: http://naturistliving.bareoaks.ca

Saturday, 2 May 2009

recent arrest

We have received a number of inquiries as a result of the arrest of Lionel Gagne on April 9th. Click here to read the press release.

Lionel Gagne very briefly attended Bare Oaks. He was the very first person kicked out of Bare Oaks in April 2007. (the park became Bare Oaks in January 2007) As soon as he showed up, several members recognized him and warned the office about his history. He was then permanently banned from the park.

As a result, we have had many questions about what we do to keep Bare Oaks safe. We do police background checks on all staff members at Bare Oaks. But to be honest, that would only catch people with a known history malevolent behaviour. We also require photo identification from all members and visitors. Some visitors refuse to provide identification and leave which is a good indicator about their true intentions. We also maintain a list of people who should not be admitted to the park. That list is a compilation of several sources.

Our greatest security comes from the fact that we are a strong community. Children do not come to Bare Oaks alone. They come with their parents. Members tend to look out of each others children .

Those who prey on children are attracted to any place where children can be found. But they prefer situations where they can be in a position of authority over kids. It is a sad reality that they have been found as priests, teachers, scout leaders, hockey coaches, etc… It is therefore unrealistic to suggest that we should avoid any place that might attract them since we would rob our children of all of those institutions which are so important to their upbringing. With regards to naturist environments, they tend to have stronger feelings of community than within general society. Individuals with bad intentions within naturist environments are generally easier to identify. In fact, anecdotal evidence suggests that naturist environments have a lower than average incidence of sexual predators.

In the vast majority of cases, children are abused by someone they know. The abuser looks for a victim that has insecurities, vulnerabilities, and a lack of self-confidence. They typically use deception and enticement, not force, over a long period of time to gain access to their victim. They then use shame and embarrassment to keep the victim from reporting them.

It is obvious that being dressed has not kept children safe. The best thing we can do is teach our children the confidence to speak up when people do things which make them uncomfortable. Most resources on protecting children advise parents to teach kids about their bodies and give them the correct language to use when describing their body parts. If they are not ashamed of their bodies, they are much more likely to tell their parents when someone does things to them that they don't like. Whether nude or clothed, children should know that being touched in certain ways is wrong. Although good parenting is by far the most important factor in raising children, naturism helps to promote their confidence and understanding about their bodies.

Children's welfare must be safeguarded, but so too must they be given the chance to learn to respect their own bodies and those of others. There is no evidence that children are harmed by non-sexualized social nudity, and there is good reason to believe they benefit from it.