Dear Families,

Since 2014, Camp has taken place at the Hampshire College campus. There we have had access to an indoor space, lots of outdoor green space, and the pool for daily swim. However, over the past several years, our rent from Hampshire has increased significantly (and therefore so has our tuition fees) and the facilities were no longer suitable for our camp environment. As a result we have made a decision to move camp’s home base to the JCA. The things that make Camp Shemesh feel like ‘Camp Shemesh’ will remain in place as they have throughout the history of camp.

In fact, for the last 30+ years, Camp Shemesh has been run out of a variety of home bases. From home backyards to Amherst College to Hampshire College (for 2 separate stretches of time), we have maintained our fundamental framework that allows camp to feel like and be Camp Shemesh no matter where it is. This framework involves the songs, rituals, and activities of camp as well as the day to day language and values that are incorporated.

What about swimming and outdoor spaces?

Monday through Thursday campers will travel to the Mill River Recreation Area to take advantage of their green spaces, play ground, and pool. On Fridays, campers will remain at the JCA to participate in challah baking and other special Shabbat activities. We will also offer water play on Friday afternoons at the JCA, including our ever popular inflatable water slide.

Campers will also get to engage more fully with the green spaces at the JCA including working in the garden on a daily basis, exploring the wetlands surrounding the JCA property, and taking field trips to places like Amethyst Brook.

Making this change will assure that camp has a permanent home that is equipped to provide all the services we need, while freeing up funds to re-invest in high quality staff to provide exceptional camp experiences. All without sacrificing the core components of Camp Shemesh including the culture, community, and activities like swimming and gaga.

We look forward to sharing another fun summer with you!

JCA & Camp Shemesh Staff

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