About Youth Camp 

Jijak Youth Camp has been held annually since 2012. Camp brings together Tribal youth to share hands-on life experiences that combine environmental, cultural and leadership skills. Jijak Youth Camp is an annual event held each February and June. Each year, Tribal youth ages 5-17 can enjoy a camp experience at the Gun Lake Tribe’s Jijak Property.

Mission Statement:

Jijak Youth Camp serves our Tribal Community by strengthening our young people’s bond to cultural traditions, engaging youth in nature and forging lifelong friendships, based on the rich history and living traditions of the Gun Lake Tribe.

To accomplish this, camp focuses on cultural lifeways skills and knowledge, environmental discovery, outdoor skills, youth empowerment and recreational activities. Many of the camp activities are built around cultural and environmental lessons, but also includes favorite conventional camp activities.

Jijak Youth Camp 2019


Summer Camp: June 24-28, 2019

Layton's RVF Agreement & Liability Release (please note, this form is due at the start of camp) 


Jijak Youth Camp is scheduled for June 24-28 at the Jijak Property. Once again, we will be offering an overnight for youth entering 6th grade and above on Wednesday, June 26 and an overnight for youth entering 3rd grade and above on Thursday, June 27.

  1.  Activities Include:
  • Teachings by Biindigay Deleary
  • Birch Bark Medallions by Kelly Church
  • Horseback Riding
  • Foraging
  • Elder/ Youth Frybread Making
  • Fishing
  • Archery
  • Jijak Survivor


We are excited to announce that the 2019 Jijak Youth Camp Registration is now open to all Gun Lake Tribal citizens, GLT household youth and GLT government staff youth ages 5-17. You can register your kids today! Camp Registration is now online, the link can be found on the GLTApp or by contacting Nikki Yargeau or Shawn McKenney at youthcamp@glt-nsn.gov or by phone at 269.397.1780. Please see above for additional required forms and documents.

Registrations are due by May 31, 2019 by 5:00 p.m., late registrations will NOT be accepted. Please see the new Jijak Youth Camp Parent Handbook for more information on the 2019 Jijak Youth Camp.

Questions or concerns? Please call Nikki, Shawn or Desirae at 269.397.1780.

We look forward to seeing your youth at the 2019 Jijak Youth Camp!

Camp Counselors Wanted!

Tribal Citizens and community members 18 years of age or older are encouraged to apply for positions as Camp Counselors for the 2019 Jijak Youth Camp in June. Please contact Shawn McKenney or Desirae Pyle at 269.397.1780 or youthcamp@glt-nsn.gov to apply for the Jijak Camp Counselor Position. Counselors are expected to be available June 19-20 and 24-28.

Meet Your Camp Staff...

Camp Administrators

"I LOVE Jijak Camp!" 

Shawn McKenney, Camp Director

Department: Environmental
Title: Environmental Specialist
Years at Jijak Camp: 6
Favorite Color: Green 
Favorite Joke: Ask me what's in the box...
Interests: Family, hunting and fishing. 
“I have been involved with our youth camp from the beginning. I love watching our tribal youth grow and learn and spend time together as a community. I enjoy facilitating connections between staff and youth, giving everyone a chance to get to know each other in new ways and help the community grow stronger.”

Desirae Pyle, Assistant Director

Department: Human Resources
Title: Human Resources Representative
Years at Jijak Camp: 6
Favorite Color: Pink
Favorite Joke: What is a Pirate's favorite Letter?
If you say "arrrr", you would be close. But it's the "C" they love the most! 
Interests: Entertainment (TV, movies, books), anything crafty (tie-dye), crochet, scrapbooking, sewing, painting
“I love Youth Camp! It’s my favorite time of the year! I have been volunteering with kids activities since I was 11 and leading nature center programs and working at nature-based youth camps since I was 14. I have two fur babies, a toy Australian Shepard and a Teddy Bear.”

Nikki Yargeau, Activities Director 

Department: Environmental 
Title: Natural Resource Outreach Coordinator
Years at Jijak Camp: 5
Favorite Color: Purple & Green 
Favorite Joke: Our 4-year old granddaughter, Ivy, has been taking riding lessons for over a year. One day during breakfast, she was talking with her mom about horseshoes. Ivy’s mom said the person trained to show a horse is called a farrier. “Are they little people with wings?” Ivy asked.
Interests: Spending time with family, reading, quilting, embroidery, hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, cross-country skiing
“Summer and Winter Jijak Youth Camp are two of my very favorite times of year. I especially love exploring water bugs with all the campers!”

Liz Binoniemi-Smith, Instructor

Department: Environmental
Title: Environmental Director
Years at Jijak Camp: 6
Favorite Color: Blue
Favorite Joke: Why did the sun go to school?
To get brighter
Interests: Playing outside with my family & friends!