VAN WERT — The Jennings Creek Council and the Van Wert YMCA are again
partnering to bring the Van Wert community a fun, interactive
reenactment of how life would have been in the 1800’s. The YMCA’s Camp
Clay will be the site for the Fall Rendezvous Sept. 5-7. All are welcome
to attend this free community event throughout the weekend.
Pre-registered organized school groups can come and take part in the
events that will be held on Friday, Sept. 5, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Jennings Creek Council reenacts what life was like in the early 1800’s
when brave men would travel deep into the American wilderness in search
of beaver pelts and other fine furs. If a man was skilled enough to
survive the winter trapping season, he would gather his furs and travel
many miles to prearranged places called Rendezvous, French for
“gathering place”. Here they would gather and reunite with their
families and exchange their furs for money and supplies. Relaxing in
relative safety, they would renew friendships with those not seen over
the year. There would be great story telling, singing and dancing and
tests of their woodsman skills such as flintlock shooting and tomahawk
According to history, these rendezvous’ were the most
important part of the year for these men and their families. Whether
they were called Mountain Men, Buck Skinners, Trappers, or Voyageurs;
they were the forerunners of American history. They opened the doors to
the unknown, which led to the eventual taming of the land by the flood
of pioneers and settlers that would soon follow.
“The Jennings Creek Council re-enactors come from all over Ohio,
Michigan and Indiana and are looking forward to being able to again use
the YMCA Camp Clay campus for their rendezvous”, said Larry Morrison,
President of the JCC.
Most everything in the members camp areas
are period accurate. The camps are allowed to have some modern
conveniences; however they have to remain hidden during visiting hours.
This allows for the most authentic hands on teaching and learning
history experience for visitors.
“The YMCA is very excited to
offer this special event to the Van Wert community,” said Hugh Kocab,
executive director of the YMCA. “The pioneer camps will provide some
great family fun and a local opportunity to experience life in the
1800’s,” Kocab added.
The Jennings Creek Council and YMCA Camp
Clay welcome you to step back into this colorful period of American
history and witness an authentic reenactment of the Rendezvous. There
will be black powder muzzleloader competitions, tomahawk and knife
throwing, open fire cooking, period games and other demonstration of
skills and camp life. This is also a great opportunity to check out the
oldest standing wood structure in Van Wert County — the 1827 log cabin
that was recently brought in to Camp Clay and is being semi-restored.
about this and other programs available at Van Wert YMCA Camp Clay can
be found by calling the Y at (419) 238-0443, visiting www.vwymca.org, or