The Camp has been operating for over 30 years but when I took over as Director 18 years ago there were 135 campers and 25 staff. Now we have over 500 campers and 130 staff.
Where are you located?
We are located at 610 West 112th Street, NYC, NY and now have a new Brooklyn Campus hosted by the Mary McDowell School at 23 Sydney Place in Brooklyn Heights.
What is your camp’s philosophy?
Our mission is to foster emotional, physical and ethical growth within campers and kids, by using educational professionals to help them develop their own personalities and individual voices through love of play, creativity and collaboration. Through experiential education, we seek to strengthen not only individuals, but the community as well, and the larger society, in which adults and children, in all their diversity, interact and learn. We see, in both Camp and our vacation & weekend programs, the opportunity to educate and build a better society.
What does your camp specialize in?
What activities do you offer?
Our activities are really based on what is developmentally appropriate for each age group. Our Lower Camp, which is Pre-K to 1st grade, offers a Spanish immersion program as well as our regular Day Camp option. As campers get older our programs become more focused, so our Middle Camp and Upper Camp programs, from 2nd to 8th grade, offer developmentally appropriate focuses on Musical Theater, Sports, Spanish, Travel, Science, STEAM and Film Writing and Production. All groups take swim instruction in our beautiful outdoor private pool in Riverdale, which is a 15 minute bus ride. We also provide lunch and snack to each group.
What are the typical session lengths and approximate pricing for your camp?
We have a number of sessions. Session 1 is 2 weeks and takes place at the end of June servicing Private School and international campers. Session 2 is 5 weeks of July and for the older children can be done on a week by week basis, depending upon the program. Session 3 is one week intensive swim program at the beginning of August and our new August Alliance, which we are doing in cooperation with Columbia University and the Cathedral School, takes place during the last 3 weeks of August. Pricing depends on the program and the group but it’s about $700 to $800 a week.
How much staff do you have and how do you select your staff?
We don't recruit many staff because we have a huge retention rate but we’re also associated with the Bank Street School for Children and the Bank Street Graduate School and both of those provide staff, many of which are alumni of the school for children. Of course, we’re also in NYC, so we draw interested staff from NYU TISCH School of the Arts and Columbia University Film, Technology and Science students. We employ about 130 staff which does not include maintenance, kitchen and building staff.
Why should parents send their kids to your camp?
Our staff is remarkable. Pure and simple. They are professionals at bringing the best out of children. They are passionate about their work and dedicated to the camp and the campers. And our staff body is very diverse (to be clear I use that word beyond ethnicity, I mean family structure, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation and learning styles) and this really gives campers the opportunity to see themselves in our staff members and that’s really important in any educational institution.
When does your camp enrollment start and finish?
Registration begins on Dec 1 and operates on a first come first serve basis so some programs are already filling up. Everything is done online but families can always call our office.
Is there anything else that would be helpful for parents to know about your camp?
What is the best way for parents to reach you to register for Camp?