Camp Counselor Spotlight: Marc from Camp Kinder Ring
Based in New York state Camp Kinder Ring is a co-ed traditional Jewish summer camp that Wild Packs has been working with for years! If you’re keen to find out more, keep on reading!
Tell us a little bit about your camp?
Camp Kinder Ring has been welcoming children for 93 years. Nestled in the Hudson Valley on more than 100 acres of pristine property and overlooking beautiful Sylvan Lake, Camp Kinder Ring boasts tremendous facilities, programming and staff. A variety of programming is offered – including Athletics, Waterfront, Arts and Crafts, Drama, Adventure Center, Jewish Culture Program and a travel program, amongst much more.
How long have you worked in camping?
I began at Kinder Ring in 1981 as a camper and remained at camp through 1995 – moving up the ranks as a counsellor and then Group Leader. After an 18 year break from camp as I began my family and pursued my career as a Child Psychologist, I returned to camp in 2013 as Director.
What’s your favourite thing about camp?
The environment at camp is complete with Friendship, Love and Spirit – and the family we have created and are a part of is the most valuable component. The relationships formed are stronger than any other relationships in the world and the rewarding feeling of seeing the positive impact we can have on our campers (and staff for that matter) is indescribable.
When was your camp established?
What’s your favourite special event or evening activity at camp?
My personal favorite special event at camp is our Olympic Games – complete with an Opening Ceremony, Closing Ceremonies and several days of competition campwide. Of course camp fires by the lake and BBQ’s are staples at camp as well.
What’s the most popular meal at camp?
The food at Kinder Ring is absolutely amazing. The most popular meals include our Mac and Cheese and Chicken Tenders, as well as our complete breakfast buffet we have a few times a summer. The favorite dessert is by far OREO PIE!!!
Why do you hire international staff?
International Staff play a vital role at Kinder Ring – ultimately furthering our mission of creating a positive cultural understanding for our campers – complete with a focus on treating all people in a kind, equal and respectful manner. Our staff comes from around the world, and our campers and staff develop relationships that last a lifetime and are worldwide – what can be better than that!
What qualities do you find the best camp counsellors have?
The best counsellors are those that come to camp with a focus on working with children and having an experience that will never be topped in life. They are individuals who clearly put the needs of campers before their own – and have a strong desire to learn about different cultures and share their culture!
The J1 visa is a cultural exchange visa- what would you recommend your camp counsellors visit in the surrounding area to your camp when they are on their days off?
Staff from Kinder Ring have access to a wide array of cultural activities both at camp, in the local community and beyond. Beyond our activities at camp – staff enjoy visits to a large mall which is nearby, a minor league baseball stadium, hiking trails, camp grounds, historical sites and so much more. Staff also have easy access to a local train station with direct service to NYC – which takes an hour and twenty minutes. We at Kinder Ring also provide a few opportunities for staff to travel to Boston and nearby amusement parks.
What would be your words of wisdom to new camp counsellors?
There is no better and more rewarding place than the camp setting. Once you depart for camp – ensure your mindset is to come to camp to have an impact on campers that will last a lifetime and create friendships that will last forever.