On Bookshelves: The Path of Names

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By Ari Goelman 339 pages; Arthur A. Levine Books (Appropriate for mature middle schoolers) Dahlia Sherman, 13, wants to spend her summer going to magic camp. Her parents agree, but first she must attend Camp Arava, a Jewish overnight camp, where her brother, Tom, is a counselor. On her first day, Dahlia sees two girls… Read More

No Nuts About It

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The Centers for Disease Control indicate food allergies are now affecting an estimated 6 percent of children. Camp Shoresh, a kosher Jewish day camp in Frederick, provides a safe and fun learning environment to almost 400 campers and their parents each summer. With safety as a primary concern, Finkelstein and staff are nurturing and sensitive… Read More

Leading by Experience

Studies show that Jewish summer camp is a valuable and enriching experience, not only for young campers, but also for their leaders. This summer, Bradley Kerxton will begin his third season as director of the Rosenbloom Owings Mills JCC’s Top Notch Teen (TNT) program for rising seventh and eighth-graders. As a TNT veteran, Kerxton is… Read More

Kinderkool

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Packing for camp is no fun. It’s time consuming (and expensive), especially for those of us who aren’t especially organized … Where did we put that flashlight from last year? And although trunks are still permitted at some camps, many overnight camps advise parents to use duffel bags instead. Any heavy duty duffel should do… Read More

Bunk Life Revisited

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Whoever said being a kid was easy must have a poor long-term memory. Trying to navigate the big world without much experience is a lot harder than it looks. Camp offers a unique opportunity to practice many of the skills of self-preservation that will come in handy later on. I’ll never forget one of the… Read More

Yoga For Youngsters

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Ellie Schwartz of Roland Park is only 12 years old, but she’s already an experienced yoga student. Schwartz had a yoga birthday party when she was 8 and has been taking classes on and off since she was 9. Last year, she took part in a week-long yoga camp at Baltimore Yoga Village in Mount… Read More

A Culinary Revolution

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Tug-of-war competitions, ghost stories, bad-movie nights and new friendships are just some of the memories that youths will take from their time at camp. Years ago, when grilled cheese sandwiches, tomato soup, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and celery were the norm in camp dining halls, food probably wasn’t part of the “remember that time… Read More

Building Bully-Proof Bunks

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I’m a big believer in the transformational power of summer camp. No doubt it’s a belief that stems from my long-ago Santa Cruz Mountain summers spent under the canopy of redwood trees at Camp Swig. In so many ways, camp has had a lasting influence on me; I can even credit my career as an… Read More

Home Away From Home

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Growing up in Minsk, Belarus in the 1990s, Olga Cherches knew better than to call attention to the fact that she was Jewish. The post-World War II Jewish community in Minsk was already small but it became even tinier as most Jewish families began to emigrate to the U.S., Israel and elsewhere. In the early… Read More

Immersion Technique

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It used to be that parents who wanted to expose their children to conversational Hebrew over the summer had to travel to Israel. Now a growing number of American Jewish day camps are offering Hebrew-immersion programs, where kids do the standard day camp activities — swimming, arts and crafts, music, zip-lining and field trips —… Read More