Camp is where the magic happens. Camp is where I made my first life-long friend, found self-confidence, and met my wife. Camp is where I became me.
In the years since being a camper, I’ve worked in 14 different Jewish educational environments, landing me where I am today as your nursery school director. Those experiences give me personal and professional confidence when I say that if you’re looking for the magic, you’re looking for JCC Day Camps.
During my three summers as Site Director at our Day Camp at Pearl River, I was privileged to watch extraordinary moments of magic, friendship, and growth. I watched our nursery school students enter an outdoor environment that we can’t provide here on the 2nd floor. Pearl River is a place where children get sweaty and dirty, and wet when it rains. Always exciting at Pearl River is the chance to see wild turkeys waddle through the woods, follow the trail to the stream, and marvel at the amount of cardinals, blue jays, and other birds. My staff and I would chuckle each of my summers up there as we realized that after 10 long off-season months of planning fantastic programs, all the children really wanted to do was dig for worms in the garden. Pearl River is a place for outdoors yoga, a swimming pool complex, and the warm love of JCC teachers, counselors, and coaches you have come to know and love.
If you’re looking to extend the community experience and educational excellence of the nursery school, the Day Camp in our building for 3-6 year olds is your next step. And when they’re ready for our outdoor camp at Pearl River, for 5-12 year olds, you’ll watch them soar.
I watched one summer at Pearl River as a five year old boy refused to put even a toe into the pool. He had never swam before and was scared of the whole environment. His counselors and bunkmates supported him that summer as he slowly but surely got comfortable submerging in the water and learning his first stroke. That boy came by to visit the nursery school two weeks ago, and reported with a twinkle in his eye that this past summer he went up not one but two swim levels.
I watched one summer at Pearl River as a five year old girl walked on the bus each morning with trepidation, and with a teary eye said goodbye for her mother. Her friends and counselors on the bus quickly embraced her each morning, and she went off to a day full of sun, swimming, art, and more. By the end of the summer, she couldn’t wait to jump on the bus each morning. Her mother emailed me several weeks later, in the beginning of her kindergarten year. The young camper was now taking the bus each morning to her new school, and her principal reported that she was the only student in her class who walked with confidence onto the bus.
JCC summer camps are the place for your child to play, grow, and thrive to complement their nursery experience. Without reservation, I recommend registering not only your child but encouraging their friends to join as well. I can think of no better place for your child to continue their journey.
And, luckily for our nursery school families, our very own Adam Metzger (co-head teacher, classroom 7) is the Site Director at Pearl River. You can grab him to learn more about the camps here, click here for both camps, or email Genna Singer directly at firstname.lastname@example.org, our camp director extraordinaire and a good friend, colleague, and mentor. For parent video-testimonials, click here and look for Deb Alvo and Pam Hacker.