There’s nothing wrong with boats built out of lumber or steel. But boats built out of junk materials are better. Boats built out of garbage are unique, and in their uniqueness, delightful. Boats built out of garbage embrace innovation, and in that innovation is inspiration. Boats built out of garbage are unpredictable, and in their unpredictability are engaging. We embrace the culture that blossoms from this.

That is the spirit in which the residents of Camp Tipsy gather each year: to create an environment in which community engages in creative expression through amateur boat building using repurposed materials, however terrible those boats may be.

“Constramping” – a combination of “construction” and “camping” – requires innovation and individual vision on the one hand, and communal provisions and society on the other. There is a purity of vision and purpose that comes when each of us is confronted with a lake and a giant pile of tools and buoyant materials.  We come together to make these conditions possible and celebrate both that process and its results. When this happens, we become Constrampions: Champion Constrampers.


Article I: Marketing & Sponsors

Constramping is a lived experience – we celebrate living through the built rather than the bought – and so Camp Tipsy eschews marketing “from anywhere.” It is a requirement that Camp Tipsy only accept sponsorships from organizations that are actively supporting the larger creative community, or who are providing useful materials that directly support Constramping activities. 


Article II: Performers & Entertainers

Just as Constramping requires the availability of communal materials and tools, so creative talents require meaningful support – and so Camp Tipsy books talent sparsely, and commits to paying its performers and entertainers a fair and decent wage and expects participants to support them with their attention and applause.


Article III: Environment

Constramping requires a natural environment with which to engage – and so Camp Tipsy exists in partnership with nature, and commits to preserving it. We are stewards of our campsites and the campsites near us. We are stewards of the lake. We are the protectors of our fawna, avian and fishy friends. Although recycling isn’t available in Colusa County, we separate and pack out recyclables to Sacramento.


Article IV: Diversity

Anyone can constramp, and so Camp Tipsy welcomes people of all orientations and creeds, and looks out for their welfare even as it asks them to look out for one another.  Camp Tipsy is a safe space for people who create safe spaces. It’s an intentional community and a Pirate Utopia.


Article V: Sexual Harassment

Camp Tipsy has a zero-tolerance policy for sexual harassment.  It protects people who are being harassed before it debates what “harassment” means with people of bad conscience. People who honestly don’t know what “harassing” someone else looks like are not socially competent enough to participate in our community.


Article VI: Failure

Camp Tipsy celebrates well-meaning failures:  our willingness to fail in new and fun ways is at the heart of constramping.


Article VII: Community

Constrampions are a community, and should treat each other as neighbors and family rather than strangers thrown together at an entertainment venue.  There is no “customer service” at Camp Tipsy because there are no customers, and paid/volunteer staff are as much members of the community as they are workers.  Because it is a community, Constrampions are asked to share common materials, look after one another, and speak up when they have concerns.  They are encouraged to seek opportunities to engage in the administration and governance of Camp Tipsy.


Article VIII: Conflict & Justice

Where possible, Camp Tipsy believes in restorative justice within the community.  Where it is not, Camp Tipsy respects the prerogatives of law enforcement.

2013 | Kelly C. Gallamore
2013 | Kelly C. Gallamore
2013 | Kelly C. Gallamore
2013 | Kelly C. Gallamore
2013 | Kelly C. Gallamore
2013 | Kelly C. Gallamore


1. Not to be sold or marketed to by entities outside of our funding circle.

2. A safe environment, whatever their orientation or preference may be. That means verbal consent in any sexual situation.

3. Air grievances with the whole community and a right to communicate openly and honestly, without fear of retribution.

4. Be heard when they are sharing thoughts or ideas regarding the betterment of the community.

5. Dwell in a space free of harassment, body shaming, and hate speech of any kind.

6. Participate in the administration and management of Camp Tipsy if they are willing to attend the pre-event meetings and be active contributors to the planning process.

7. Access to any building materials not currently in use by another participant.

8. Bring their children, and those children have a right to a safe environment in which they can be appropriately engaged.

9. Access to Lake Ladoga. The whole of the lake is considered public space.

10. Express themselves creatively through the act of shitty boat building, and to celebrate their failures.


1. Support the volunteer and paid staff at Camp Tipsy when asked.

2. Use alcohol/substances maturely and without infringing on the comfort of others and NEVER give alcohol away.

3. Preserve the ecology of Lake Lodoga.

4. Share the building materials Camp Tipsy provides with all residents. Junk is common property.

5. Bring everything they need for their own comfort in a primitive camping environment.

6. Look after the safety and well-being of their fellow constrampions, and behave conscientiously towards them and their property.

7. Call out behavior which might endanger others, or become a detriment to the ecology in general or community as a whole.

8. Participate in the governance and administration of Camp Tipsy have a responsibility to attend pre-event meetings and be active in the planning process.

9. Address the consequences of their failures and mitigate any damage caused within reason.