About Parkside Ranch

Our Mission

Parkside exists to help bring healing and purpose through the practical expression of God’s love.

Who We Are…

Parkside Ranch is a Christian faith-based, not-for-profit organization, founded in 1969, located next to the Mont Orford Provincial Park in the heart of Québec’s Eastern Townships. Situated on 400 beautiful wooded acres, Parkside offers a unique blend of Overnight and Day Camp resources, woodlot, waterfront, nature horse-riding trails and therapeutic riding facilities, all contributing to the physical, emotional, social, mental and spiritual health development of our neighbours and surrounding communities.

Our Story

Origins of Parkside

With a vision of sharing God’s love with people, Fred and Jean Warnholtz signed the original property deed for Parkside Ranch in 1964. Parkside Ranch was incorporated in 1969 as a non-profit corporation. Early on, campers slept in tents and there were two cabins that housed the kitchen and washrooms. Over the last 50+ years, Parkside’s facilities have expanded and changed, however the mission of sharing God’s love with people has remained.

What We Believe

Statement of Faith

We believe that:

  • The Bible is the complete and inspired Word of God, and is presented as truth.
  • There is but one true God in all existence who is the Creator of all things.
  • God is infinitely perfect and eternally existing in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
  • God’s Eternal Plan is available to all persons regardless of gender or race.

Parkside Ranch’s Key Areas of Focus

Parkside’s range of facilities and resources is the foundation for a multi-faceted operation that serves over 3,000 guests annually and employs 12 permanent staff and over 50 summer staff and volunteers. Major areas of focus include:

  1. Camps for children and youth from ages 5 to 17 are the historical core of Parkside Ranch’s community-oriented activities, including summer day and overnight camps and winter snow-camps that offer a full range of healthy physical outdoor dry land games & activities, water and snow sports, as well as horseback riding, indoor gymnasium and handcraft activities.

    A constant emphasis on social interaction, teamwork, respect and care for others in all of our activities is supported by relevant daily stories from the Bible as the basis for our holistic focus on the complete well-being of our campers.  With more than 50 years of providing this well-rounded approach with children and youth about their own worth as individuals and the values of integrity, respect and care for others has shown us the importance of our continuing commitment to parents, families and our community to provide a camping experience that will last a lifetime.

    Parkside’s camp programs also provide an excellent opportunity for youth as members of our staff to learn and practice leadership, responsibility and decision-making skills as they lead activities and provide care for groups of children, under the mentorship of highly experienced and qualified camp directors. Skills learned at Parkside help create a solid foundation for successful life decisions and career capabilities. Parkside’s camp programs also provide an excellent opportunity for youth as members of our staff to learn and practice leadership, responsibility and decision-making skills as they lead activities and provide care for groups of children, under the mentorship of highly experienced and qualified camp directors. Skills learned at Parkside help create a solid foundation for successful life decisions and career capabilities.
  2. After-school Clubs, including our very popular Horse Club equestrian program and Pedagogical day camps, provide safe and rewarding, year-round, week-day activities and experiences for children and youth from ages 5 to 12, including a focus on social skills and relevant Bible stories.
  3. Full-service Conference and Retreat facilities serve the needs of a variety of school, church, community and corporate groups. A peaceful and welcoming country environment for meetings is complemented by a unique opportunity for stimulating social and team-building activities organized by Parkside, including sports, archery, horseback riding and snowmobile tours.
  4. Therapeutic Riding Programs have been developed over the past decade, with our three certified Therapeutic Riding Instructors working in close collaboration with the local social services (CLSC) organization who regularly refer children that are experiencing emotional, social, learning or physical difficulties to Parkside. The demand for these services is on the increase and represents a significant opportunity for Parkside to continue to expand the scope of our commitment and engagement with our community.

    To further enhance our ability to support our Therapeutic Riding clients, Parkside is in the process of having our “Turning Point” Equestrian Centre certified by the Canadian Therapeutic Riding Association (CanTRA). We have also launched a capital campaign to raise the funds required to expand our recently completed 15,000 sq. ft. indoor riding arena to include a state-of-the-art horse stable and a multi-functional equestrian training center and overnight guest accommodations facility. This expansion will enable the Turning Point to position itself as an equestrian community hub in contributing to the physical, emotional and general mental health of our clients, including meeting the needs of people struggling with:
    1. Learning difficulties
    2. Relationship challenges (i.e. parent-child)
    3. Autism spectrum and other communication challenges
    4. Depression and anxiety, including PTSD
    5. Critical illness or cancer recovery
    6. Physical rehabilitation (hippotherapy)
  5. Community Open-House Events such as Thanksgiving dinners and spring maple sugaring celebrations, and even various fund-raising events, such as art workshops, provide opportunities for our camper families, neighbours and community to experience a bit of life at Parkside and to get to know us better.  We love to share the incredible facilities with which we have been entrusted.
  6. Agricultural Operations that support Parkside’s various services and activities are an often overlooked but critical focus for the organization and offer additional opportunities for community involvement. The fully functioning farm with more than 20 horses to feed and maintain, farm buildings and equipment such as tractors and haying implements, is a source of employment and an opportunity for volunteer engagement. With a maple syrup operation and an onsite sawmill to sustainably process logs from our own woodlot to support building projects, Parkside has a truly unique “camp” profile.

The Parkside Ranch Leadership Team

The Parkside Ranch Leadership team is a highly focused and committed group with more than 180 years of combined camp, not-for-profit, ministry and business experience – more than one third of that actually managing Parkside Ranch.  This ensures our campers, camper families, clients and partners of mission integrity, operational stability and sustainability, and an unwavering commitment to the physical, emotional, social and spiritual well-being of our campers and community.

Our Team:

  • Michael Drew ( Executive Director )
    • 9 years of service with Parkside Ranch
    • Prior to Parkside: CPA, 25 years corporate executive management experience
    • Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor
    • Married for 35 years, 3 adult children
  • Brigitte Auger Drew ( Therapeutic and Western Riding Instructor )
    • 9 years of service with Parkside Ranch
    • University degree elementary education
    • 31 years experience as elementary school teacher
    • Certified Therapeutic Riding and Western Riding Instructor
    • Married for 35 years, 3 adult children
  • Greg MacWilliam ( Associate Executive Director )
    • 24 years as General Manager of Parkside Ranch
    • BSc Engineering, 1 year Bible College certificate
    • Prior to Parkside: 6 years experience as Engineer, 11 years self-employed small business co-owner
    • Married for 41 years, 2 adult children
  • Patricia MacWilliam ( Alumni communications, hospitality, equine services )
    • 24 years of Parkside camp co-management service
    • BSc Physical Therapy
    • Prior to Parkside: 8 years experience as Physiotherapist, 11 years as small business co-owner
    • Married for 41 years, 2 adult children
  • Jennifer MacWilliam ( Day Camp Director, Therapeutic Riding Instructor )
    • 11 years on staff at Parkside Ranch; total 20 years Parkside camp involvement
    • BSc in Animal Biology; Teacher Certificate, 5 years teaching experience; 1 year Bible College Certificate
    • Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor
  • Étienne Brochu ( Director of Camp Ministries )
    • Recently joined the Parkside Ranch team
    • Prior to Parkside: Served as a Pastor for 16 years
    • BA Theology ( underway ); Graduate of New Brunswick Bible Institute; Certificate in Assisting Individuals in Crisis and Group Crisis Intervention
    • Married for 17 years, 4 children
  • Doug Bowker ( Director of Communications )
    • Focus: Communications, donor development, fund-raising
    • Prior to Parkside: 35 years experience in business management, including corporate VP of two national Canadian organizations, 10 years as a self-employed consultant and 3 years as Executive Director of a not-for-profit
    • Married for 36 years, 3 adult children
  • Tom Kuehlewind (Ranch Foreman)
  • Ana Kuehlewind (Admin assistant)