Summer Fishtrap 2014 Participant Packet

2014 SUMMER FISHTRAP Participant Packet

[Download a .PDF file of  this document here ]


Hello Everyone

The 27th Summer Fishtrap Gathering of Writers: “What the River Says: The Art of Listening in a Turbulent World” is just four weeks away. We’ve built a great schedule of events for you filled with activities, panel discussions, break-out sessions, and of course, Fishtrap’s legendary writers’ workshops. This letter of information will orient you to the schedule, offer suggestions on what to bring, travel directions, and what to expect when you get here. Please take a moment to give it all a good look so when you arrive at Wallowa Lake, you’ll be able to explore, write, and relax without worrying about logistics. We also encourage you to review your registration confirmation email just to make sure you signed up for the right workshop plus the meals and lodging options you want.

Wallowa Lake is a long drive from most anywhere. That’s part of what makes Summer Fishtrap so great. Get an early start with your travel. Plan to arrive with plenty of time to settle in and relax. Check-in is Monday, July 7 from 1:00 to 3:00pm at Bailey Lodge. At 4:00pm we’ll all gather and get started on the first workshop session.

Please give us a call or send an email if you have questions or concerns. Everyone on the Fishtrap staff is ready and happy to help.


Mike Midlo
Fishtrap Program Manager





1. A Few Important Notes
2. Summer Fishtrap Schedule
3. What to Pack
4. Camp Facilities & Guidelines
5. Directions/Maps
6. Silent Auction

A Few Important Notes

June 22 is the last day you can register for meals at camp. If you haven’t signed up for meals or want to change your meal choices, go to our Registration Page and have a look at the options.

Ride Share and Room Share
Need a ride to Wallowa Lake? Got an extra room your cabin? Join Summer Fishtrap’s Ride and Room Share group on Facebook. There you can connect with other folks attending Summer Fishtrap and make arrangements to carpool or bunk-up. Don’t use Facebook? Just send Fishtrap intern Lauren Sewell ( a note with your request and/or availability plus your contact info. She’ll post your message on the group page and help monitor responses.

You can still reserve a tent or RV space at the camp. Go to the Fishtrap Registration Page to make a reservation. All other accommodations at camp are full. There are however, many options available just a short walk from camp. Flying Arrow ResortWallowa Lake Vacation RentalsCabin Rentals at Wallowa Lake are just a few choices. Contact the Wallowa County Chamber of Commerce for more information.

Your first session is Monday afternoon, July 7 at 4:00pm. This is different from years past. Please arrive at Bailey Lodge at 4:00pm to meet your instructor and walk together to the workshop location. For folks with mobility issues, we’ll happily give you a lift. This first workshop will run an hour and a half and is an opportunity to meet, introduce yourselves and get your first writing assignment. Workshops will continue Tuesday-Friday from 9am to Noon.

Open Mic Café
This year, we’ve moved the open mic to a time when everyone has a chance to gather and share their work in a comfortable and supportive atmosphere. Join MC Jon Ross Tuesday through Thursday in Bailey Lodge from 4:30 to 6:00pm. All are encouraged to participate and attend.


2014 Summer Fishtrap Schedule

The following is a condensed schedule. At check-in you’ll receive a handy Summer Fishtrap Pocket Guide with more detailed maps and information on activities.


Sunday, July 6

1:00                             Outpost Check-In at Fishtrap in Enterprise

2:00                            Outpost Depart for Zumwalt Prairie


Monday, July 7

1:00-3:00                     Summer Fishtrap Check-In at Wallowa Lake Methodist Camp

4:00                               All Meet at Bailey Lodge

4:30-6:00                     Workshops

6:00                               Dinner

7:30-9:00                     Welcome and Opening Address by Kim Stafford


Tuesday, July 8

7:30-8:30                     Breakfast at Bailey Lodge

9:00-Noon                   Workshops

Noon-1:00                   Lunch

1:00-3:00                     Writers’ Hike

3:00-4:00                    Afternoon Presentations & Activites

4:30-6:00                    Open Mic Café

6:00                              Dinner at Bailey Lodge

7:30-9:30                     Faculty Readings and Book Signing


Wednesday, July 9

7:30-8:30                     Breakfast at Bailey Lodge

9:00-Noon                   Workshops

Noon-1:00                   Lunch

1:00-4:00                     Afternoon Presentations & Activites

4:30-6:00                     Open Mic Café

6:00                               Dinner at Bailey Lodge

7:30-9:30                     Faculty Readings and Book Signing


Thursday, July 10

7:30-8:30                     Breakfast at Bailey Lodge

9:00-Noon                   Workshops

Noon-1:00                   Lunch

1:00-2:30                     Panel Discussion: “Rivers” Moderator: Al Josephy

3:00-4:00                     Afternoon Presentations & Activites

4:30-6:00                     Open Mic Café

6:00                                Dinner at Bailey Lodge

7:30-9:30                     Faculty Readings and Book Signing

Friday, July 11

7:30-8:30                     Breakfast at Bailey Lodge

9:00-Noon                   Workshops

Noon-1:00                   Lunch – Silent Auction Opens

1:00-2:30                     Panel Discussion: “We the People” Moderator: Diane Daggett

2:00-4:00                     Check-In: Summer Fishtrap Weekend-Only Participants

2:30-3:30                     Afternoon Presentations & Activites

3:30-4:30                     Digital Storytelling Showcase

4:30-5:30                     Youth Showcase

6:00                               Dinner at Bailey Lodge

7:30-9:30                     Keynote Presentation with Naomi Shihab Nye


Saturday, July 12

7:30-8:30                     Breakfast at Bailey Lodge

9:00-10:30                   Panel Discussion: “William Stafford” Moderator: Kim Stafford

11:00-Noon                 Faculty Reading

Noon-1:00                  Lunch

1:00-2:30                    Panel Discussion: “Conscientious Objector” Moderator: John Daniel

2:30-5:00                    Afternoon Presentations & Activities

5:00                             Happy Hour

6:00                             Dinner at Bailey Lodge

7:00                             Silent Auction Closes

7:30-9:30                  Fishtrap Live

Sunday, July 13

7:30                            Breakfast Snack

8:00-9:30                 Panel Discussion: “Multi Ethnic America” Moderator: Pramila Jayapal

9:30-10:30               Closing Address by Gary Ferguson

10:30-11:30              Brunch

Noon                          Announcement of Summer Fishtrap 2015 Theme – Summer Fishtrap Concludes

What to Pack

Weather in Wallowa County is unpredictable. July will likely be very pleasant but you should pack with an expectation of freezing nights to hot sunny days. Be prepared for any type of weather. walking shoes or hiking boots and a good warm cap are strongly encouraged. Pack raingear too.

Bring earplugs if you’re sharing sleeping space with others. They can come in handy. Flashlights are a must for finding restrooms and your cabin after dark. If you’re camping or staying in a bunkhouse, bring a sleeping bag, a pillow, and towels. Bedding and towels are provided in the yurts but if you want to be toasty, a sleeping bag works as a warm extra layer.

Altitude and Sun
Wallowa Lake is at 4,441 feet, so those of you coming from sea level will likely feel some effects of the altitude change for the first 24-48 hours. Most likely, it will just be that you get out of breath when climbing some of our steep trails. The best antidote is to hydrate. Drink water and lots of it. Sunscreen is key if you plan to hike, sun bathe or go boating on the lake.

A computer can come in handy during Summer Fishtrap but many of our participants and faculty choose to close their laptop for the week and handwrite in a notebook. It’s a wonderful opportunity to be low-tech for a few days. Bring your favorite pens, pencil, paper, etc. If you work best on a keyboard, pack a flash drive or external hard drive to save, share, and print files. Have a plan for safely storing your computer when not in use. The camp does not have storage lockers and power outlets are limited.

Copy Machine/Printer
Many people have expressed a desire to print copies of their work while at Summer Fishtrap. We will provide a basic copy machine/printer (from our office). This will be a self-service station with limited hours of operation and minimal tech support. Professional copy/printing printing services are available in Enterprise at Central Copy 541-426-2679.
Camp Facilities & Guidelines

There is limited to no cell-phone service at the Wallowa Lake Camp depending on your carrier. Internet access is limited to a few locations at the lake. You can find good connectivity for both phone and wireless in nearby Joseph or Enterprise. Wallowa Lake Camp has very limited internet connectivity and camp managers reserve it for camp business and/or emergency use only.

Getting Around
It’s a short walk to Wallowa Lake from camp and there are many activities nearby. You can find lots of shopping, restaurants, museums, and art galleries six miles into the town of Joseph or twelve miles into Enterprise.

Wallowa Lake Camp allows discreet consumption of beer and wine. Please remember that this is an all age gathering with lots of minors on site. If you choose to bring beverages, take a “leave no trace” approach and pack out all empty cans and bottles. We’ll happily provide directions to the recycling centers in Joseph and Enterprise. On Saturday night, beer and wine will be available for purchase during the auction and Fishtrap Live. For you night owls, late night drinks and desserts are available at Russell’s, just a short walk from camp.

Smoking is not allowed at Wallowa Lake Camp. You can light up in public places off camp property but please keep Wallowa Lake beautiful and discard cigarette butts properly.

Have you published a book you’d like to make available at Summer Fishtrap? Out local bookstore, The Bookloft will have a table at Bailey Lodge featuring titles by faculty, guests, and participants. Please contact Mary Swanson at The Bookloft for details. She’ll be happy to hear from you.

What would Fishtrap be without some music? This year we’ve brought back the songwriting workshop with Marv Ross and hope that the open mic sessions are filled with melodious voices. If you like to play or sing along, bring instruments.

Wallowa Lake Methodist Camp

Summer Fishtrap has taken place at the Wallowa Lake Methodist Camp since the very first gathering in 1988. We ask everyone to be respectful of the camp’s faith based mission. The kitchen is staffed by volunteers and managed by dedicated camp directors, Peggy and David Lovegren. Please show them your appreciation.


Map and Directions
(download pdf for map)

Fishtrap Silent Auction
Saturday Night, July 12

Fishtrap is once again hosting a one-of-a-kind silent auction. This is your chance to bid on great items such as a weekend retreat on an Imnaha River cattle ranch, a fly fishing adventure, even homemade jam from local Wallowa County fruit trees. As auction items come in, we’ll send out sneak previews of some of the great things you will be able to bid on all while supporting Fishtrap’s mission to promote clear thinking and good writing in and about the West. The auction opens Friday July 11 and folks can keep bidding until Saturday evening’s program, Fishtrap

Have an item you feel inspired to donate for the auction? Call, Jon at 541-426-3623 or email him at

* Registration fees cover only 86% percent of our costs to put on Summer Fishtrap. Auction proceeds are vital to making Summer Fishtrap viable. Your generous bids are much appreciated.


[Download a .PDF file of  this document here ]