Category Archives: Schodack Spirit

Summer Newsletter: Week 3

Hello again! It’s Sam Holland, bringing you another update as we wrap up Week 3 at camp.

After a successful 2-Day Tribals Break, campers and staff woke up Saturday morning ready for a fun-filled weekend. Halle Gold (Middle Girls Group Leader) and Baz Barrett (Tennis) led Mohican Midnight, while Carley Friedstein (Middle Girls Group Leader) and Kit Fowler (Archery) took the reins of Seneca Sunrise.

Our first all-camp activity of the day was Hatchet Hunt. The Generals, Captains (2nd-year LTs), Head Lieutenants (1st-year LTs), and Lieutenants (Super Seniors) took their turns digging around the pit, but it was Carley who found the prized possession and earned the first points of 2-Day Tribals for Seneca Sunrise.



That evening, in incredible Schodack spirit, campers shed their green and white tees and Tribals paint for Services. This week’s Services theme was “Determination,” and everyone particularly enjoyed Paul’s weekly story — this one was about his grandmother, Lena, and all of her hard work and contributions to the family and to Krouner’s Hotel.


(The Walk to Services – a wonderful Schodack Tradition.)

2-Day Tribals is also the time for both the Dashes across the soccer field and the Individual Medleys in the pool. Both events are organized by division, and the winners are entered into the Book of Records! Rope Burning, the final event of the weekend, was an incredible success. A select group of campers were chosen to help run supplies up to the leadership of each team, who were eagerly racing each other to set up a fire that would burn through a rope suspended from two poles. In the end, it may have been Seneca Sunrise who won on the scoreboard, but 2-Day Tribals was a success for everyone at Schodack.



Here are some other notable events:

– We had our first Mountain Biking trip of the summer. Campers pedaled their way around the beautiful Albany Pine Bush Reserve.

– We took a large group of campers and staff to spend an afternoon at Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA), the largest modern art museum in the United States!

– On Tuesday, the camp went bowling and to the movies for Trip Day! Great scores were achieved at the lanes, while a wide range of movies were enjoyed by the different age groups.

– Wednesday was a big day for Drama — a matinee and an evening performance of this year’s show, High School Musical. The campers were magnificent and the Playhouse was rocking!

– It’s been a big week for intercamps! Groups of rising 5th grade boys played basketball at Pontiac and rising 6th grade girls played soccer at Scatico.

– At a special line-up this week before dinner, Matt called up campers and staff entering their 3rd and 5th years at camp to receive their special Schodack shirts and blankets.

– We had the second Super Senior Survivor Series event on Wednesday. Kids competed in an obstacle course, a ball toss challenge, a scavenger hunt, and of course, a puzzle. The red team won again — though since teams are re-drawn each week, it was mostly different campers than last week.

– Tonight is the second leg of the Triple Crown — Lip Sync, originally known as “Putting on the Hits.” Bunks have been eagerly rehearsing all week, and it’s on track to be a stellar night!

– We have had two ongoing tournaments this past week: the Bonus Ball Tennis Tournament and the Bruins 88 Hockey Tournament.

As always, below is a copy of today’s Schodack Scoop. We’re all incredibly excited to see you tomorrow for Visiting Day!


Summer Newsletter: Week 2

Hi Everyone! Sam Holland here again. It has been an awesome week at camp!

We have been quite busy over the past week. Saturday marked the first Rookie Day and LT Carnival of the summer. The day was full of fun and games in the Playhouse and Garden. This year, the LTs chose to put on a Halloween-themed afternoon, giving prizes away to the best costumes (Best Princess, Best Celebrity, and Best Fruit to name a few). Notable booths included mock-tails, a bouncy pumpkin, and a massive slip-and-slide tower. Shoutout to the LTs for an amazing day.

The following day was the first leg of the Schodack Triple Crown, Talent Show, which has been part of Schodack tradition since 1989. After days of rehearsals, bunk after bunk took the stage of the Playhouse (with some gorgeous fans keeping everyone cool) and performed their hearts out.


It’s going to be a big weekend on the 2-Day Tribals front. This year’s theme — for the break of 2-Day Tribals and the fakes leading up to it — is Tarzan. Head Staff, clad in animal costumes, will stage an entire battle at the foot of the Corral Hill, complete with water balloons and slingshots! Bunks will be split into the Seneca Green and Mohican White teams, and we’re looking forward to an incredible weekend. Common favorite events in 2-Day, in addition to activity periods, are Hatchet Hunt, where the chosen leadership of the two teams dig through a pit full of woodchips and other odd items, and Rope Burning, where the leadership work together to build a fire strong enough to sever a rope suspended from two poles.


And now, some notable recent events:

– We invited two professional drummers up to camp for our very own first Drum Circle! Up to 35 campers at a time participated in sessions of rhythm and call-and-response while learning all about the different types of drums. [see above for a photo]

– Basketball free-throw contests are now underway. Organized by division, the winners of each tournament will get to be added to the Schodack Book of Records.

– The Greg Maddux Pitching Contest is taking place over the next week at Baseball. Campers can head down during any Camper Choice to test their skills—points are awarded for throwing the ball anywhere within the boundaries, but campers can earn extra points by predicting where the ball will go. Winners of this contest will also go into the Book of Records.

-Our theme meal this week was based around Mediterranean cuisine. It was a blast and the whole camp broke into a wild line dance by the end of the meal.

– A select group of adventurous campers got to experience whitewater rafting and kayaking along the Deerfield River in Western Massachusetts.

– At Archery, the Olympic Competition uncovered a fighting spirit in many campers, with several prevailing over almost impossible odds to hit all 5 colored rings. Congratulations to all those who have taken part, and we look forward to next week’s ‘Quasimodo’ Challenge!

– Today is the Mixed Doubles Tennis Tournament—one of the newer tennis competitions at Schodack. Congrats to Connor of the Super Senior 2 Boys and Allie of the Super Senior 2 Girls! Honorable mention to our runners-up, Alec of the Super Senior 2 Boys and Kira of the Super Senior 1 Girls, as well.


– Schodack experienced a new first—participating in a Ping-Pong Intercamp, and we won — congrats to Lindsey of the Teton Girls and Samantha of the Kashaya Girls for bringing the trophy home!

– While Junior and Middle Camp spent their trip days at Cooperstown or Bear Mountain State Park, the Super Seniors got to experience two days up at Lake Placid. Some of the notable events included a hike up the infamous Mount Jo, a pizza dinner at Mister Mikes, and a gondola ride up Little Whiteface Mountain, the very same mountain that hosted the 1980 Winter Olympics!

– This afternoon, we are taking a group of campers to see Beauty and the Beast at the Saratoga Opera.


Here’s an update from Matt about our LTs giving back to the local community:

As I write this, our Leadership Trainees are hosting children from Hope 7, a local day camp run through a Community Center in Troy, New York. Beginning last summer, we partnered with Hope 7 because their camp mostly consists of children who require significant financial support to attend even the most bare-bones summer program.

As part of the community service aspect of their training program, our LT’s will host these children two times this summer – welcoming them to Schodack and organizing wonderful activities and events for each visit. Our LT’s take this opportunity seriously, and make our whole Schodack community very proud with their warmth and creative energy.

After their visits last summer, we received a glowing letter from Hope 7’s Executive Director letting us know that the experience of being hosted at Schodack was not just a highlight of their campers’ summers, but of their entire lives. She reported that her campers talked about the welcoming spirit of our LT’s and the fun of their visits for weeks afterward.

I am sure that this summer’s experience will be equally positive and we can all feel proud of our LT’s and their staff for this example of giving back to our local community.

I hope you have a great week and enjoy their phone calls this weekend.


That’s it for now. Have a fantastic week, and see below for a copy of today’s Schodack Scoop!



Summer Newsletter: Week 1

Hello all!

The first full week of Summer 2017 is complete, and things are off to a great start at the 12123! We had a nearly an inch of rain over the course of the first weekend, but nothing could dampen the Schodack Spirit and thankfully the clouds have cleared since then and the weather has been absolutely stellar!

Here’s a reflection from Matt on the Opening Day events:

One of my favorite traditions each summer is when my dad and I sit with each bunk individually on the Opening Day of camp. It’s a wonderful way to connect with each group and to welcome everyone in a really personal way. During these chats, we reinforce the values that are important to us at Schodack, hear from campers about what they are most looking forward to this summer and answer any questions they may have. These chats always reinforce what an incredible group of kids we have here at Schodack and make me so energized for the summer ahead!

This summer, I was particularly blown away by a certain aspect of these bunk meetings. I asked each group how they felt about our policy of not allowing technology at camp, and what it was like to leave cell phones, video games and computers at home. I was truly curious: Is it hard? Do you miss that stuff while you’re at camp? If you created the camp rules would you let campers bring those devices to camp? I expected to get mixed responses – some would agree with our approach and some would probably wish we allowed more devices at camp.

To my surprise, not one camper said they wished we allowed more technology at camp. The responses were amazing! Common comments included things like: “What? A cell phone at camp would be terrible. We wouldn’t talk to each other as much!” and “It is SO nice to get a break from all that for the summer” and “Video games at camp…that would just be weird.” A few campers did say they thought it would be tough adjusting to not having screen time and yes, one camper said she had a “farewell ceremony” for her cell phone the night before coming to camp, but everyone seemed to agree that a break from technology was a positive thing and more importantly, that it’s part of what makes camp so special.

I loved hearing these honest responses from the campers and it was gratifying to know that they appreciate the break from technology in the summer. With all the talk out there about how this current generation of children is more and more tethered to screens, it’s nice to know that a desire to connect in a more old-fashioned way, at least here at Schodack, is still alive and well.

All the best from camp,


This week marked the first all-camp special event of the summer — All for One. Bunks split into small groups with their staff, CAILs, and Second Year LTs to compete in three different areas on camp, cleverly named Warmth, Tradition, and Spirit. The activities themselves were all put on by the First Year LTs — who did a tremendous job running the camp for the afternoon – and were as diverse as corn hole, poetry, dancing, frisbee, 9-square, and more. Campers also got the opportunity to break some items in the Book of Records, such as the fastest climb up the cargo net at Gymnastics. All for One also featured the Corral Chip, which consisted of a makeshift driving range setup at the top of the horse corral hill for campers to test their skill and accuracy by driving golf balls into buckets and hula hoops at the bottom.

At the end of the day, the LTs at each activity tallied up points based on participation. Last year’s Senior 2 Boys, three-time champions of All for One, were actually running the events this time around. The Omaha Girls proved to be victorious this summer, also finishing a close second last year, and they loved their celebration party at the end.

Last Monday, campers and staff joined forces to compete in the Camper Counselor Tennis Tournament on Monday. Each doubles pair consisted of one camper and one staff member or LT—it was a great bonding experience for all! Congrats to Sean Pass (SS1 Boys BC) and Cooper of the Toltec Boys.

Tuesday was also the first Trip Day of the season! Junior and Middle campers took a trip to the water park at Zoom Flume, where they got to enjoy a lazy river and multiple different water rides—the most daring campers went down the Black Vortex! Super Seniors and First Year LTs got to experience the city of Saratoga Springs. Home of delicious sandwiches, funky T-shirts, and some incredible ice cream, Saratoga is one of my personal all-time favorite trips of the summer.

Here are a few more notable events that have occurred this week:

– Camp Schodack was well-represented at several intercamp tournaments in the area: for rising 6th and 8th grade boys in soccer, rising 8th grade boys in basketball, and rising 7th grade boys and girls in tennis. At the tennis tournament, Ben of the Toltec Boys won the boys singles bracket 2-1 in a super tiebreak. In the doubles tournament, we an all-Schodack final with Scott and Justin vs. Joe and Mikey (all Toltec Boys), with Scott and Justin ultimately taking it home in the end.

– The LTs held their first Challenge Day, with a packed day of events including playing in the mud, scarecrow making, and a cook-off.

– All bunks have been intensely rehearsing during rest hour and their spare time for Talent Show, which is this Sunday! It will be the first Triple Crown event in Schodack history to occur under ideal temperatures. Special thanks to the new fans!

– Paul and Linda took a group to see the New York City Ballet perform an evening of George Balanchine at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center.

– The Bella Coola Girls and the Biloxi Girls tied for first place in the Cleanliness Cup for this week—they had better scores on clean-up than the rest of the camp. Way to go girls!

– The Adventure staff have been running camping overnights for Junior Camp at our campout area, and the Horseback Riding staff have resumed their ever-popular lunch rides.

– Rehearsals for High School Musical, this summer’s special feature presentation by the Drama staff, are in full swing in the Playhouse.

– The Golden Bow tournament at Archery is well underway. Open to all campers, the highest score in each division will be entered into the Book of Records.

– New to Schodack this summer is Crossfit, which has proved to be very popular for every age division of camp.

– Tomorrow is our first of two Rookie Days and LT Carnivals, where potential new campers and their parents will visit for a special afternoon of tours and games. The parents will walk around for a tour of camp and meet with Paul and Matt, while the kids will get to join the rest of camp and enjoy the carnival in small groups led by Second Year LTs.

That’s all for now. Have a wonderful week, and be sure to check back next Friday for another update from the 12123!

Summer Newsletter 2017: Welcome to Camp!

Hi there!

My name is Sam Holland, and with some help from the Leadership Trainees and Errol Photo, I will be bringing you the news from the summer. I’m originally from Manhattan and I’ve grown up at camp, starting as a Shawnee Boy in 2010. I graduated the LT Program in 2014 and spent the past two summers working as a Bunk Counselor, and I am excited to spend my eighth summer as your eyes for this season!

The LTs write The Schodack Scoop – our daily newspaper at camp – but the budding journalists and writers among them will also be helping out by gathering news and comments from the campers after the big events of the summer! I’ll also add a copy of the Scoop from each week here for you to take a look at.

This blog will normally be published on Fridays, but we’ll send you a reminder email each week once it has been posted.


Here’s what will be coming in the newsletters!

– Details about the exciting happenings at camp – activities, out-of-camp trips, tournaments, and zany goings on that would never happen at home!

– A look ahead about upcoming attractions – events to discuss with your child during phone time, perhaps.

– Thoughts from Matt and the Leadership Team on a range of topics as they occur to them throughout the summer.

– Quotes from campers and photos of the events!


So what’s happened since you were last here?

Many first-year campers and their families attended New Camper Day earlier this month, but many of you have not been on camp since last year! Here’s what’s been going on:

Camp has finished its renovation of the remaining camper bunks, so every bunk on camp has now been refitted and remodeled in the last four years. All bunks now have spacious porches as well, and they look tremendous!

The hockey rink underwent the second part of its transformation, with brand new custom-built boards around the outside to complement the new floor mats from last summer.

The Playhouse has taken on a whole new look. Gone are the small fans which may have affected the temperature by a degree or possibly two – in are two enormous fans which have made sitting and watching The Counselor Show positively idyllic.

We have also planted over 30 new trees all over camp – the Lorax will be pleased!


We have had an amazing first few days.

Planes, buses and cars came from all directions on June 28th as Camp Schodack began its 61st season in the beautiful foothills of the foothills of the Berkshires. The screams of delight as old friends reunited after months apart melded with high fives and excited hellos as new campers, bunkmates and counselors all met for the first time.

Walking round the dining hall 87 minutes later, it was clear that campers had little difficulty feeling right at home!! But here’s the thing – I gotta admit to being a little jealous here – the LTs served the whole of camp the traditional Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup fewer than 90 minutes after getting off the buses themselves – and I always thought my years as an LT were so good, but our efforts couldn’t be repeated! Food was devoured, decorum was (sort of!) kept and decibel levels were off the charts!

The afternoon was as smooth as ever – swim tests were swum, lice checks given, bunk photos taken (they’ll accompany your child home!) and campers got to sit down, by group, with Matt and Paul for a welcome meeting. In between, introductory name games were played, camp was toured, bunk expectations gone over and bunk nicknames and cheers were discussed and created!


The Counselor Show has opened proceedings here for as long as I’ve been here – I fondly remember Adam Berg, our Junior Boys DH and my counselor of two summers, throwing on a dress and choreographing a silly dance to “Fergalicious” (or “Bergalicious”, as he would call it).

I am sure many campers here for the first time will have vivid memories of seeing their counselors perform, something they themselves will be doing in The Triple Crown in the weeks to come…but more of that later.

We thought we’d ask some campers what their impressions were of
The Counselor Show:

– “I thought it was fun!! I liked Malcolm’s dancing!!” – Ellie, Biloxi Girls

– “The dancing was cool. Seth and Lewis were funny! I liked when Ben Lake sang!!” – Allie and Abby, Huron Girls

– “It was awesome!” — Rachel, Kashaya Girls

– “My favorite was the special kinds of dabs!” – Jake, Huron Boys [see above photo!]


Finally, yesterday morning, not even 24 hours after arriving on camp, the campers were away playing activities! Each group has a pre-set schedule so that they get to visit every activity on camp over the course of each week – I’m sure you’ll want to ask what their favorites are. And those are the places they will probably have returned to during Camper Choice!

That’s all for now. I’ll be back next week with all the goings on from Week One!

Here’s a copy of today’s Schodack Scoop, along with an incredible
Schodack Sunset:





























Alumni Blog Post: Sam Kravitz!

It is no secret that camp teaches you important skills that will prepare you to face life’s many obstacles: independence, teamwork, creativity, leadership, and being true to yourself – to name a few.  We all know that attending sleep away camp will make the transition to college easier. We have all read the articles outlining how a summer as a camp counselor is more valuable than a summer as a coffee-running intern. However, what not everyone readily realizes is that camp also prepares you for challenges you may never expect to face. My eleven summers at Schodack prepared me for an important experience I never saw coming my way.

In August of 2013, my sorority little sister was struck while crossing the street in Manhattan. Sadly, she succumbed to her injuries two days later. Almost immediately after her passing, the Lauren Nicole Marcus Foundation was born, to honor Lauren’s life and carry out her legacy. The main goal of the foundation is to keep Lauren’s memory alive by recognizing, and changing the lives of, outstanding young women who share the same positivity, hard-working nature, and passionate zest for life that Lauren embodied. In addition to the three annual scholarships at the schools she attended, we created L.A.U.R.E.N.’s Campa three-day summer camp program that teaches less-fortunate middle and high school girls the importance of many core values: Learning to Accept, Understand, and Respect Each other No matter what.

When the time came to plan L.A.U.R.E.N.’s Camp, we knew that in addition to showing these girls all of the joys of summer camp, we needed them to leave as better people. It was essential that we show them how to resolve personal conflicts and get along with one another despite their differences, at such a critical time in their lives when drama and pettiness is high. This seemed like a tricky task, considering the many reasons why the Windsor school district selected specific girls to join: Some came because they were bullied, while others came because they were the bullies. Some came because of a tough family life, and many came from families who struggle financially. How could we take this melting pot of girls and leave an impact on their lives in just three days?

I looked to my own experiences at Schodack for guidance. I spoke to members of the SCI board, former SPEC’s and members of ropes staff and head staff. I dug deep into my memories of what made the biggest impact on me as a camper and as a counselor. As is turns out, the lessons I learned at Schodack and the lessons we wanted to teach this group of young girls were not very different after all.

Lesson 1: Unity. Upon arriving to camp, we split up the girls into bunks by age. We encouraged them to come up with a bunk name, design a sign, and create a cheer. We took bunk photos. All things we did on our first day at Schodack. Drawing inspiration from my CIT years, we sat in a circle and introduced ourselves, tossing around a ball of yarn. By the end of the activity, we were all connected. We were unified as a group and had a string bracelet to prove it!


Lesson 2: Team Building. How do you show a group made up of a mix of long time friends, acquaintances, and strangers how to work together? Well, it’s the same way we learned as counselors during staff orientation, or senior campers about to head to the high ropes course. In our team-building workshop, the girls untangled themselves from the human knot, organized themselves in order of their birthdays without saying a word, and raced a hula hoop over and under without breaking the chain. With verbal instruction, they led blindfolded teammates across a field to collect puzzle pieces, and then worked together to complete the puzzle. They constructed pasta towers using only marshmallows and scotch tape. Turns out, teaching a group of counselors and a group of young girls is pretty similar! Through some important anti-bullying lessons, we were able to help the girls understand that it’s ok to be different from one another and, by the end of the weekend, guided them on how to work through these differences to accomplish a goal together.

Lesson 3: Confidence Building. Although we plan some specific confidence-building workshops, it turns out, the regular camp activities really helped our campers build the most confidence. Think about the fear you might have felt standing at the top of the trapeze before jumping, and the feeling of accomplishment you felt after catching the bar. Even if you never actually caught the bar (like me), we’ve seen that the feeling of taking that leap and conquering that fear has brought a great feeling of accomplishment and built confidence for the girls to take on to their next challenge.  My all time favorite memory from L.A.U.R.E.N.’S Camp 2016 was when one girl conquered her fear of heights at the trapeze. After only a few seconds, her hands slipped off the bar and she was slowly lowered to the net. She was overwhelmed with emotions about the fear she had just conquered. In 2017, she stood tall in line about to give it another go, and even encouraged the younger girls to give it a try. This time, she caught the bar and swung back and forth until it was time to let go on her own. It was absolutely incredible to see her growth, physically and emotionally. She came back the next year more confident than ever! And my favorite memory from 2015 was listening to one girl sing for the first time in front of others at the talent show. WOW did she have a beautiful voice, yet had never been placed in the spotlight to know it! It is the every-day camp activities, like scoring a goal at soccer or catching the fly-ball at baseball, that truly develop confidence and self-esteem.

Lesson 4: Have fun!! Last and most importantly, the joys of summer camp can be enjoyed by anyone, regardless of age, background, and life experiences. Playing BBG, decorating cookies, roasting s’mores around a campfire, and singing camp songs are memories I’ll never forget, and I am so glad to be sharing these joys with this wonderful group of young girls who would have never otherwise had the opportunity to attend sleepaway camp.


I don’t think I could contribute to the success of L.A.U.R.E.N.’s Camp without all that Camp Schodack has instilled in me. There are so many lessons we teach, activities we enjoy, and memories we make with these girls that, ultimately, I’ve learned from Schodack. And for that, I will forever be grateful!

Head Staff Announcement – Mike Palese!

We can’t wait to have “Hipster” Mike Palese back for his fourth summer at camp, third on head staff and first as an ACS! During the year, Mike conducts research for the Sonoma County Government to lower carbon emissions of county buildings and looks for the most effective alternative energy source for their government facilities. He has also been working on a research project to bring off-grid energy sources to small villages in Indonesia.

Mike can’t wait to be out in the sun all day this summer and to be returning to see all of his friends and to make new friends. This year Mike’s campers from his first summer will now be on staff with him so it will be a full-circle experience! 

Fun fact: Mike is red-green color blind!

Karen’s Korner – Clothing Exchange!

As you’re gearing up for summer camp packing, please remember our CLOTHING EXCHANGE. As in the past, the warmth and generosity of Schodack families has fueled the CLOTHING EXCHANGE – returning families offering out-grown Schodack clothing for other families to use. If you have gently-used clothing that your child has outgrown and that you’d like to donate to someone else, send me an email with the style/color/size and I’ll match it up with families looking for camp gear.

Then, simply pack the clothes in a plastic bag marked “clothing exchange” and pack it in your child’s duffel. When we unpack your camper’s duffels, we’ll take the donated clothing and distribute it as needed.

For those of you who are looking for camp clothing, send me an email with what you’re looking for (i.e. green zip-up sweatshirt, size youth small) and I’ll try to find a match. If I find a match I’ll let you know, and we’ll then make sure the clothes, cleaned and with your child’s name written inside, get to your child’s cubbies.

We’ll keep the extras washed and folded and ready for emergencies!

As many of you may remember, we offered a drop off/pick up of gently used Schodack gear at this year’s New York/New Jersey reunion, and it was a big hit! Thanks to all of you who participated!

Happy Packing!!


Guest Blog Post: Marcy Lief!

I can not put this off any longer, June is quickly approaching and I need to face my fears! Ok, here I go…I am going to take out the camp trunks, rummage through them and figure out needs to be replaced, what I need to buy, label, rewash, fumigate and try to get another summer out of. This year I am going to start early to ward off that, “How am I going to get this done” anxiety!

Year after year packing for camp became a project that I couldn’t help but get attached to. The allotted number of each clothing item is permanently stuck in my head as the items are being compiled. I sit with piles of socks and my sharpie for what seemed like hours. I take out my sewing box and name labels for the rest of the clothes. Blue for Brittney, black for Andrew and I sew away as I sing camp songs from my time at camp… Oh yes, I sew, old school! And once that is finished, I count each item over and over to ensure it’s within the limit.


Once everything is counted, I begin to place the items into the trunks and leave them unzipped once finished for any potential last-minute additions. On the day they are delivered a feeling of relief overwhelms me as if I took the final exam of the semester.




So as June approaches this year these feelings are resurfacing, however after 15 years I surrender my reign over the camp trunks as my children are now adults and onto other endeavors. I must admit I am going to miss this process! As every part of their childhood this seems to have flown by this had too. So when you and your child are discussing which type of sunscreen he or she wants to bring to camp, just pause and take in the moment because these years will fly by!


Head Staff Spotlight: Izzy McAree

The thing about being an international at camp, a British International at camp, is how unaware I was of what I was about to experience, the journey I had started, the obsession that had begun. Back in 2013, as an undergrad physical education student, spending my summer in America just seemed like a great way to fill in the gaps between each semester. Sure, I had heard about Camp America, s’mores, camp fires and star gazing, but nothing could’ve prepared me for the life-changing experience that Schodack has been. And yes, Camp Schodack changed my life, it’s dramatic I know, but if you know, you really do know and that’s what makes it so special. I can’t begin to summarize how I feel about 40 Krouner Road, and if you’re reading this having experienced a summer at camp, I know you’ll understand why. Amongst the green grass, perfect sunsets, gorgeous weather and plethora of sports, it is the wonderful Schodackians, both campers and staff, whose paths I have had the pleasure of crossing that have made camp the neverland I so adore. And I know you would all agree, that in one way or another, Schodack has changed your life too.

I’ve always found it amusing how camp makes the world feel so small yet so big all at once. No matter how many times I unexpectedly run into someone from camp, those huge oceans laying inconveniently between us (you and I) never feel bigger than in the cold winter months. It quickly become normal to have several different time zones on your radar, to say goodnight in the morning and to wake up inundated with messages from all corners of the world. Despite this, my ‘camp friends’ have taught me more about kindness and friendship than I could ever imagine. Friendships that survive not only the test of time but the thousands of miles often between us. It’s these friendships, built on green and white foundations of all things Camp Schodack, that allowed me to so easily fall in love with everything camp had to offer, and why, at 23 years old, I still can’t think of a better way to spend my summer than with firecrackers, roof tops and apache relays at the 12123.

As I reach my ‘blanket summer’, I feel a great sense of gratitude for having accidentally stumbled across the most fantastic place on earth. I am humbled everyday by the beautiful people I am proud to call my friends, who go about their day taking care of the Earth and treating people kindly. There isn’t a single day that I don’t think about camp and how so much of who I am today I attribute to the time I have spent at Schodack… because that’s the thing about camp, it gets ahold of your heart and never let’s go.