Summer dreams


Fran Ostendorf, EditorA recent conversation between adult members of my family made me realize the impact of camp on multiple generations.

The conversation went something like this:

Question: Why didn’t I go to Jewish camp?

Answer: Nobody ever considered it.  You went to Girl Scout camp.

Question: Yes, but we went to Religious School. Didn’t anybody ever mention Jewish  camp?

Answer: I don’t think so.

You might wonder why you should care about the camp content in this issue if you aren’t going to camp or have children of camp age. Why would The Voice fill a large chunk of the paper with stuff about camp when much of the readership is well beyond needing to think about camp?

Well, camp seems to stick with us long after we head home at the end of summer. It comes up again and again. You remember your camp years whether you enjoyed camp or not. If you didn’t go to camp, surely you knew someone who did. Or, perhaps you sent your children to camp, or maybe your grandchildren go to camp. Or maybe they will go soon.

We focus on Jewish camp here because we are a Jewish community newspaper. We think that’s important. But the camping experience doesn’t stop there. There are hundreds of camps designed around many, many interests. As someone who went to sleepaway camp (I never remember calling it overnight camp) for eight weeks each summer, I marvel at the camp choices now available. When I went away, the only other overnight option was scout camp. That was two weeks; maybe one month if you were lucky. Now you can choose from cabins or college campuses, single sex or co-ed. And, the specialty camps make my head spin: computer, cooking, dance, gymnastics, science, math, theater, arts and so on. Sure, the old-fashioned, well-rounded all-outdoors camps still exist. But, well, I can’t imagine having to make a choice whether as a parent or as a child.

So our purpose in printing all this camp information is to inform and maybe help people when they make choices. And it’s also to bring our non-camp-oriented readers up-to-date with the latest information. Oh, and it’s a great excuse to share some adorable camp photos with you all.

If you are considering camp this summer for your kids or grandchildren, please don’t forget our advertisers. When we approach camps to advertise in The Voice, we hope everyone will take a look and maybe approach that camp to learn a little more. Need I remind our readers to mention The Voice to the camp advertiser when inquiring? That’s the only way an advertiser knows their ad is getting a response.

So sit back and enjoy our camp issue. Explore the camp options. If you never went, imagine what it might have been like if you did. Or think about those in your family who might enjoy the experience. We’re sure it’s a topic that will touch all our readers if they take a moment to remember or imagine.