March Madness Mega Blog

Hello Canadensis!

I hope everyone out there in Canadensis Cyberspace is doing well.  It’s been a few weeks since my last blog, so I figured I’d put together one of my Mega-Blogs as there is a lot to fill you in on.  And, I’m sure you’ve been chomping at the bit for your daily scoop on all things Canadensis.  Well, here is a double scoop.  Scratch that.  A triple scoop!

Last week, we had a great time at the Camp Canadensis – Philadelphia 76ers Night at the Wells Fargo Center in Philly.  The 76ers organization rolled out its welcome mat in full force and gave our campers and camp families an amazing event!  First of all, our campers were able to get courtside for the team’s shoot around before the game.  After that, the got onto the court for the game’s fan tunnel where they gave high fives to all of the 76ers players as they came onto the court.  During the game, which was a close battle all night long, Upper Inter Boy Adam Aronson even got onto the court to compete in a basketball game during one of the game’s time outs.  In the end, the 76ers came up a bit short to the Dallas Mavericks, but all in attendance had a great time!  Here are some pictures from the evening…

Mindy Rosenthal, Mel Sukonik and Alix Steerman courtside before the game.

Lower Inter Boys (from left to right) Noah Stern, Matthew Center, David Brucker, Michael Poulshock and Jacob Batt were courtside at the 76ers shoot around.

Canadensis on the Court at the Wells Fargo Arena.

Canadensis Campers form the Fan Tunnel.

Ready to give High Fives! Or, in this case, Low Fives!

Pam with Junior Girl Paige Miller (center) with Future Canadensis Campers Marissa Brucker (left) and Ilana Miller (top).

Upper Inter Boy Adam Aronson with his dad Eric.

Junior Boy Jason Green and his dad Stu.

Freshman Boy Josh Brownstein (right) and Junior Boy Josh Brownstein (left) with mom Iris.

Group Leader Pete Tarnoff with Upper Inter Boys Sammy Miller (left), Eric Miller (center) and Adam Aronson (right).

Some real big news hit the airwaves last week when it was announced on a Winter Special Edition of the Canadensis Today Show that our new Lower Boys Head Counselor will be Roy Kaplan.  After a few months of a nationwide search, we are so thrilled to have Roy as part of our leadership team.  Currently, Roy is an elementary school teacher in Utah teaching first grade.  He is originally from Ohio and received his degree in Early Childhood Education from Ohio Northern University where he also played college baseball.  He then went onto receive his Master’s Degree in the same area at UNC-Charlotte.  Roy brings with him some wonderful camp experience as well as he has worked at several private residential camps in both Pennsylvania and Maine.  In his free time, Roy is an avid skier and runner and is even currently training for a marathon before camp.  Roy is excited to get to camp and work alongside Mike Lindquist, Robin Forti, Karen Sharir and Alyssa Thibodeau as part of our Head Counselor Team!  Roy will be at our Annual Open House on June 5 to meet campers and parents.  Here is a photo…

New Lower Boys Head Counselor Roy Kaplan (center) met up at camp with me, Eric, Pam and Robin.

Last Thursday after work, me, Pam and Matt had the privilege to witness the theater directorial debut of our very own Cara Corradetti.  Back in the fall, Cara got a call from her former middle school and they asked her if she would be interested in directing their annual school musical; an opportunity she immediately jumped at.  So, for the past several months, Cara has been in the camp office for half the day and directing for the other half.  Well, last Thursday was Opening Night!  And, I must say that we had a really fun time watching her show “Disco Inferno.”  The basic story is of a struggling singer that wants to become famous.  He eventually makes a deal with the devil to do so.  In the  end, the moral of the story is “be careful what you wish for.”  Seated right in front of us were some of Cara’s sorority sisters, who even had custom-made T-shirts for the event.  Here are some pics…

The Disco Inferno Program.

Flipping through the program, we were so proud to see the words "Direction by Cara Corradetti."

Here was the front of the T-Shirt made by some of Cara's biggest fans...her sorority sisters. Love it!

The backs of the T-Shirts, when put together, spelled out CORRADETTI.

Now, what would a blog be without updating you on some of our campers?  Of course, I am still getting a chance to see our campers in their homes and they have been telling me about all of the good stuff they have been up to.  In Wayne, NJ, I got to hang out with the Schwed Boys, Freshman Boys Matthew and Alex, who are back for their fourth summer, and younger brother and Junior Boy Ben, who is coming to camp for his first summer.  After some X-Box football (I got my butt kicked), the boys told me all they have been up to this year.  Alex, in the 6th grade, has been playing soccer all year long.  He plays left midfield on his travel team, the Wayne Timberwolves.  In one season, they even went undefeated with a record of 8-0-2.  Matthew, also in 6th grade, played tackle football in fall where he played on both the offensive and defensive lines.  His team posted a record of 6-2.  Currently, he is playing flag football.  When asked about the upcoming summer and what they were looking forward to, both said, “Being away from my parents!”  Ha Ha!  They also can’t wait for Color War and more electives now that they are in the Freshman division.  Ben, who is currently in the 3rd grade, is playing in a basketball league and taking karate lessons.  This summer, he is excited for basketball, photography and all of the activities at the lake.  Here is a pic…

Me with the Schwed Boys. From left to right, Freshman Boys Matthew and Alex and Junior Boy Ben.

In Syosset, NY, I caught up with Upper Inter Boy Ryan Lefkowitz who will be joined by his brother this year at camp as a Junior Boy Devin Lefkowitz.  In the 5th grade and joining us for his second summer, Ryan continues to be busy playing guitar in his band that goes by the name of c4.  His next gig is scheduled for the spring.  He is also been playing tennis and basketball (his team even made the playoffs) as well as getting together with camp friends.  He wanted to say hello to all of his bunkmates from last summer’s Boys Bunk 6 and wants to let them know that “we are going to have an excellent summer in 2011!”  He is also looking forward to Color War and Rock Band.  Ryan has also started his own blog, too.  You can check it out at: .  As for Devin, currently in 2nd grade, he has been playing a number of different sports including flag football, basketball, lacrosse, baseball and soccer.  He also started playing the drums and is involved in a chess club.  He has also started his own blog which can be found here: .  This summer, Devin will be active in many different areas of camp and is looking forward to waterskiing, hockey, soccer, cooking, gaga, all the activities at the lake, Color War and hondas / go-karts.  Here is a photo…

Me with Junior Boy Devin Lefkowitz (left) and Upper Inter Boy Ryan Lefkowitz.

I recently got an e-mail from Upper Inter Boy Andy Grossman, who reminded me that no matter where you go, there is always a good chance you might run into camp friends.  While on a family vacation at the Deer Valley Ski Resort in Park City, Utah, Andy was in ski school with a few other kids his age.  When the instructor took attendance, a boy in the group said he was Daniel Goldstein from Westchester, NY.  This immediately got Andy’s attention as it was a fellow Canadensis camper from his division!  In Andy’s words…”What a small world.  Canadensis was well represented.”  Thanks Andy for sharing the story.

As I always like to say to former campers and staff that come back to visit camp in the summer, you can always come home again.  Well, last weekend, I got a chance to go back to an old home of mine.  Me, Jaime and a few of my roommates from back in my college days made a trek back up to our ‘ol stomping grounds of Syracuse University.  We realized that it has been close to 20 years since we first started SU.  The whole weekend long, we reminisced about all of the great times we had, including all of the bad weather (a common joke for those that have been there).  We checked out the new Carmelo Anthony Basketball Center on campus, took in a Syracuse-DePaul basketball game (we won big) and had a dinner at the famous Dinousaur BBQ.  On Saturday and Sunday, I got a chance to meet up with a number of former campers and staff who were on campus.  That list included Rachel Dender, Brittany Kahane, Rebecca Waxman, Jaime Jacobson, Brooke Appelbaum and Josh Gilbert.  Here are some pictures from the weekend…

Me and two of my college roommates, Kevin and Jon, stand next to the 2003 Men's College Basketsball Trophy Syracuse won in 2003. All of Syracuse's trophies are now on display at the new Carmelo Anthony Basketball Center on campus.

Me with some of our wonderful camp staff (all who were former campers at Canadensis). From left to right: Rebecca Waxman, Jamie Jacobson, Brittany Kahane, Brooke Appelbaum (who drove up from Ithaca College) and Josh Gilbert. I had also gotten together with Rachel Dender the day before.

As you know, now that we are in March, we are closing in on the 100 days to camp mark!  As a sports fan, it also means that we are in March Madness time, one of my favorite sporting events of the year.  Next week, our camp families will be receiving an e-mail for our campers and staff to complete an online bracket, with prizes going to the best camper and best staff brackets.  Hopefully, many of you will play!

Next week, our winter team will be heading down to Atlantic City for the Annual Tri-State Camping Conference, which allows us to attend many camp-related sessions and discussions as well as purchasing a number of different items for the summer.  You can learn more about it here: .  This is always a great time and a wonderful learning experience for us each year.  Maybe we’ll even put together a video to see what we do down there.

That’s all of the blogging for now.  More to come soon.

Have a great day!  Brian