LONG BEACH — “We don’t do too many of the “r” words,” Aaron Tremblay said, who, along with his wife Mallory Kolinski, owns The Lamp Camp. “Rules. There are rules,” he continued, “but it’s kinda common sense stuff. If you want to park your trailer crooked, I don’t care. If your friend wants to come over and hang out, I don’t care. Be respectful. That’s all I ask.”
“I wanted to create a place I would want to go stay. That I would actually want to pay for,” Tremblay said.
Repurposing is important to Tremblay and Kolinski.
“We don’t buy anything new for the most part,” Kolinski said. “Most everything we have here is something we’ve repurposed.
“Friends have given us furniture saying, ‘This would be perfect for the clubhouse.’”
“So that adds to the whole community vibe that we tried to go for here,” Kolinski said.
Kolinski talked about a description a friend of theirs provided for The Lamp Camp.
“A few weeks ago a friend gave us the best description I’ve heard so far. He said ‘You know this is kind of like a campground meets a hostel.’”
Tremblay added his thoughts to the description. “It’s because of the amenities,” he said. “The kitchen, the bathroom. You don’t go to many campgrounds that have a tile floor in the shower. I go above and beyond because I want it to be nice. I like to keep things a certain way and I think people understand that and they respect that.”
The Lamp Camp is a vacation place. There are no permanent resident spots.
Long Beach education
Kolinski said some people in Portland don’t know Long Beach exists. People hear the name and they think Long Beach, California.
“Part of what we’re still working on is basically how do we find people who don’t have any idea that Long Beach exists,” Tremblay said. “And then they come here because they find us and they think it’s a cool spot. At this point we say here are our favorite restaurants, check out these two lighthouses. Here, there’s a bike path. Discovery Trail. Go to Oysterville, grab some oysters. Everybody benefits from it.”
Tremblay and Kolinski realize the importance of networking.
“We have a strong feeling that if one person, one business on the Peninsula, rises, we all rise,” Kolinski said. “So we love to send people from here to our favorite restaurants and to see downtown. We’re not trying to take customers away from other people in Long Beach,” she said. “We’re trying to bring more people and have more people discover what a gem this little Peninsula is.”
“It’s not what you know,” Tremblay said. “It’s who you know. And if you start making friends with local people they will introduce you to others.”
Visit the ‘yogala’
‘Visitors to The Lamp Camp should be sure to check a structure built along the path to the beach. Tremblay refers to it as a yogala. “It’s kind of like a pergola,” he said, “only it’s a yogala.” Indeed, one can envision someone doing yoga here or sitting on the blue bench and letting the ocean calm the spirit. Tremblay and some campers built the structure of driftwood and fastened it together with lengths of rope. There are no mechanical fasteners.
The Lamp Camp has a bonfire every night at the campsite, and a beach bonfire once a week.
The hosts at The Lamp Camp are all musicians so they like to play around the campfire. Experience hearing the ocean and the live music.
Are you wondering how The Lamp Camp got its name? Never fear; there is an answer.
“We’ve always been into Coleman products,” Kolinski said. “The Coleman lantern is such an iconic part of camping.” So it’s fitting that lamp is a part of the name. But wait. There’s more to the story of the name.
“There are four partners,” Tremblay said. “Three are silent and I’m the manager. The partners are all family. The names are: Larry, Aaron, Marty and Pooh.”
Nostalgic but nice
“It gave me a theme to base this camp on,” Tremblay said. “I wanted it to be rustic, like a nostalgic kids’ campground, but nice.”
Everything that’s driftwood Tremblay brought from the beach.
The clubhouse sports a wood stove, book nook and games. Some friends made a Lamp Camp coloring book made up of little vignettes around the campsite.
There is an outdoor herb garden that is for all to use. There is hot water for doing dishes. There are outdoor cooking facilities.
“We try to promote the live music on the Peninsula as much as we can,” Kolinski said. “We put it on our website, we send people to The Cove, Crown Alley, to North Beach.”
Aaron Tremblay and Mallory Kolinski are excited about their RV park, and they share this excitement with their campers.