Not all camps are built the same. Many of the camps in NYC are amazing and my son just loves the day camp he has been going to the last few years. However, as soon as you leave the city, there are just more or should I say different, resources that the kids are exposed to and have at their fingertips.
My son loves to fish. In the past, we owned a house very close to a lake (which we recently sold this past year) and he learned to fish from the local kids at the lake. I loved watching him learn how to be a "country" boy and not just a city kid. My daughter also learned to fish and would sit and watch as the older kids would so bravely touch the bate, which were wiggly worms!
At Jeff Lake Camp, the children are surrounded by a gorgeous lake and are taking out on boats to learn to fish and even sail (when they are old enough). And the thought of that really struck me. City day camps just don't offer this. Or maybe some do, but it would be on an outing for just the day.
Jeff Lake Camp has so many great programs for the children. And I thought, maybe I'm holding my adventurous kids back by not letting them get this type of summer camp experience.
This camp has been family run for over 55 years and is located in Stanhope, NJ. They start accepting children into their Freshman Camp as young as Pre-K (3 years old) and provide these younger campers with superior care to ensure they are feeling safe and secure. Freshman Campers have a broad program that consists of arts and crafts, project adventures, saucer boating, tennis and drama classes just to name a few. Junior campers, which is for 1-3rd graders, gain more independence by being introduced to Hobby Hour, a S'mores overnight and do activities like rock climbing, kayaking, dance and theater as well as age appropriate sports. For 4th graders to 8th graders, Jeff Lake Camp has a Senior Camp where the kids participate in T.A.R.G.E.T. (Teamwork, Acceptance, Respect, Goals, Energy and Togetherness). These campers get to try Mountain Biking, High Ropes, Sailing and Off Camp Trips. There is also, C.I.T. (Counselor-in-Training) for the older campers (up to 15 years old). They learn to balance work and play while learning how to work with children, go on trips and have special events just for C.I.T. campers. This is for 9th and 10th Graders.
All campers have the opportunity to personalize their schedules. The Jeff Lake Camp cultivates self-esteem, instill a spirit of adventure, promotes teamwork, nurtures friendships and creates a sense of community.
Each camper gets to swim in one of the 5 heated pools. No matter what skill level, these pools are designed for progressive skill development, comfort and safety, Also, they provide baking classes where campers get to bake and eat pizzas. And to top it off, they have a water trampoline and zip line. There is no stone unturned here and these activities are designed to be developmentally appropriate for all ages.
The camp provides lunch and healthy snacks that are prepared on-site daily. They cater to picky eaters and all food allergies. But one of the best parts is they are now providing transportation for all lower Manhattan Families and Hoboken, NJ.
The Jeff Lake Camp Staff has extensive professional experience in education and child development. They go through an extensive selection and training process. For Freshman Camp there is a 4:1 ration of children to staff and 70% of campers return and 85% of staff return summer after summer.
I never thought I would consider sending my kids away for the day for camp but after meeting and seeing all that Jeff Lake Camp has to offer, I am singing a different tune.
For more information go to JeffLakeCamp.com or contact me by leaving a comment below and I'd be happy to help with any questions. Interested in seeing the location and meeting the staff? If so, they are having an Open House on February 12th.