Sunny Days = Camp Is Coming Soon!

Hello Canadensis!

I am writing this blog on a beautiful sunny day that totally has me longing for the summer to begin.  This past weekend was so nice that I had to delve into the deepest depths of my closet to find my stack of shorts!  Ha Ha!  I got to hit the tennis courts this weekend, too, to get back “in the swing of things.”  Pun intended.  All I’ll say is this…I need to get back into camp shape!  Summer is closing in on us, that’s for sure!  I even started to do my own annual camp shopping for Summer 2012 this weekend.  For me, that means trips to the Sports Authority for new sneakers and a visit to Marshall’s (one of my favorite stores) for some shorts and socks.  I am now ready to go!

Of course, if you need to be further pumped up, Jason “J.Cal” Calabretta made another Summer 2012 Promo video to get you excited.  Here it is…

In just a few weeks, Matt Unger will be moving up for good as he is a key component in making sure that camp is ready for everyone’s arrival.  Matt also is in charge of all of our preseason camp groups that come to camp.  If you didn’t know, when our camp isn’t in session, we use our facility to host other programs from schools to youth groups to other organizations.  Most groups come for a three-day period, but some stay for up to a week.  Many of these groups have been at Canadensis for close to 20 years, so they have a close bond with Canadensis as we all do.  Every once in a while, we will have a camper come to Canadensis with their school group, which is sometimes a little strange for them.  That is, they are up at camp with their school friends.

Matt was actually up at camp yesterday and took some updated pictures of the new Blue Pool that is being built.  They look awesome!  Here they are…

The concrete work is being done around the new pool.

A shot from another angle. The water slides will eventually be put in the back left by the pump house.

The Canadensis Indian Head will be at the pool bottom in tiles. How cool is that?!

In mid-May, the remainder of our winter staff will head up to camp for good.  Having done this for so many years now, I really look forward to my move up to camp, but it is also met with some challenges.  Specifically, I try to use the next few weeks to see all of my friends and family before I go.  That is sometimes hard to organize with everyone.  But, I won’t see many of them again until September.  I guess that’s life in the camping biz.  Ha Ha!

Our Annual CIT Weekend up at camp will be on June 2-3.  This weekend has been a great opportunity for our CITs to begin their once in a lifetime experience as the camper leaders for the summer.  In addition to having the camp all to themselves, they will work with Head Counselor Cara Corradetti on their summer experience.  For more about this year’s CITs, be sure to check out Cara’s blog for a profile on each of them.  On June 3, the following day, we welcome all of our camp families for our Annual Open House.  We hope many families can make it to this fun day at camp!

Over the past few weeks, Eric, Pam and I have been meeting for hours at a time to develop the 6-Day Camp Week.  This is the rotation of activities that we use to make sure that the divisions get a wide range of activities from sports to art to water sports to outdoor adventure.  We also plan out all of the elective choices for the summer.  We start this process, which usually takes 3 to 4 full days, from scratch each year.  This allows us to take into consideration the camper surveys that are filled out at the end of each summer as well as all of the new activities we want to incorporate into the program.  On top of this, we have also been putting the finishing touches on the summer calendar, which includes all outside entertainers, trips, camping overnights, inter-camp games and evening activities.  For our Senior campers, we have also included the return of a Mystery Bus Ride for you.

In my last blog, I forgot to congratulate the winners of our 2012 NCAA Basketball Tournament Brackets.  This year, our camper winners were Morgan and Haley Brettschneider and our staff winner was Max Hecht.  All three can expect a camp prize when they get to camp!  Congratulations!  I need to know your picking secrets for next year’s bracket.

In Montvale, NJ, I got to hang out with Alyssa Snyder, who is currently in the 4th grade and will be in our Lower Inter Girls division this summer.  Alyssa told me that she is in a dance group, where she is learning hip hop and jazz dance.  In the spring, she will be performing at a dance recital.  Alyssa is also involved in her school’s chorus which will be putting on a spring concert very soon.  When not performing, Alyssa plays defense on her soccer team, the Tigers.  Some of her favorite TV shows are Victorious and Pretty Little Liars.  She also let me know that she loves having sleepovers with friends.  At camp this summer, she is ready to try cooking, gymnastics, fabric art, tennis, dance, soccer and swimming.  Here is a photo…

Me with Lower Inter Girl Alyssa Snyder.

In Armonk, NY, I saw Isabella Yallof, who will be in our Lower Inter Girls division.  Now in the 4th grade, she loves to dance…everything from hip hop and jazz to modern to ballet to acro.  Her hip hop and jazz company will also be competing in the upcoming weeks.  Isabella also loves to sing and act and has even starred in plays such as Charlie Brown, Peter Pan and The Sound of Music.  Isabella plays the alto saxophone and loves gymnastics as well.  Some of her favorite TV shows are Victorious, iCarly and Zoe 101.  She also let me know that she is a huge Justin Bieber fan and loves the game Movie Star Planet.  In Summer 2012, she is ready for tennis, archery, gymnastics, dance, theater, pool and lake parties and hoping that her bunk wins Honor Bunk.  Here is a picture…

Me with Lower Inter Girl Isabella Yallof.

Me with Lower Inter Girl Isabella Yallof, along with siblings and future Canadensis campers Abby and Alex and mom Amy.

In Wayne, NJ, I spent some time with Jake and Ella Rudd.  Jake is in the 3rd grade and will be in our Junior Boys division while Ella is currently in 1st grade and will be in our Junior Girls division.  Jake has a busy spring as he is playing both travel lacrosse and baseball.  In the fall, he plays football and soccer.  And, in the winter, he plays basketball.  This summer, he is really looking forward to all of the sports at camp, swimming, Color War, sleeping in a bunk and making new friends.  Ella takes jazz, hip hop and acro dance classes and will be performing at a recital in June.  She plays soccer and softball, too.  She likes to plant flowers in the spring and jump in the leaves in the fall.  She also loves having virtual sleepovers with friends.  At camp, she can’t wait to swim, go to the Art Shack and gymnastics, meet her new counselors and learn the Color War names.  Here is a pic…

Me with Junior Girl Ella Rudd and Junior Boy Jake Rudd.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve received a few terrific e-mails from camp families and wanted to share them with you.  First, I got an e-mail from the Pearlman Family in New York City.  As it turns out, it looks like we might have a star on our hands at Canadensis as Junior Boy Ozzie Pearlman just recently starred in a commercial for Verizon Fios.  Ozzie is the boy with the popcorn on his lap.  I was not able to embed the video, but you can check it out here:

Got a great photo from the Stern Family, who was traveling during their Spring Break to San Diego, CA.  While there, they caught a San Diego Padres game, which happens to be my favorite baseball team.  Here is a pic…

Upper Inter Boy Noah Stern wearing his Canadensis shirt while at Petco Park in San Diego, CA at a Padres game!

Finally, it looks like some of our new Junior Girls had a sleepover recently.  Great to see that some nice relationships are being made even before the summer starts!  Here is a pic…

Some of our 2012 Junior Girls! Top (from left to right): Jordyn Weinstein, Bailey Germain, Julie Pulewitz, Frankie Ader and future camper Jamie Kurtz; Bottom (from left to right): Alexis Lefkowitz, Mandi Kurtz and Ilana Lefkowitz

Well, that’s all of the blogging for now.  Back to work.  Things here are really starting to get busy!

Have a great day!