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Tired of 'Adulting'? Head back to summer camp

Summer camp. It's not just for kids anymore. (Thinkstock)
Summer camp. It's not just for kids anymore. (Thinkstock)

Summers were so much simpler as a kid, weren’t they?

Rather than being cooped up in a stuffy office under the glare of fluorescent lights, you were probably out in the sunshine at summer camp, playing kickball, boating, maybe making a wallet in arts and crafts.

Too bad they don’t have summer camp for grownups, right?

Well, this summer they do.

From Aug. 11-14 in Lakewood – just north of the Poconos – Camp Indian Summer will come alive in what is normally an upscale camp for kids, Camp Weequahic.

But Camp Indian Summer isn’t a camp for little kids. It’s a camp for adults over 21 who want to bring out that little kid inside them.

“Camp director” Nate Turock said that while there aren’t many adult summer camps, it’s an up-and-coming trend in the recreation industry, and one he’s excited to be hosting for the first time.

Turock, who camped every summer between the ages of 4 and 20, said he was drawn to the idea because of his own longing to re-create those summer camp memories.

“The best summers of my life were spent at camp,” he said.

Camp Indian Summer will have many of the same amenities that children enjoy at summer camp. There is a lake for tubing and boating, an Olympic-size pool for swimming, climbing walls, zip lines, games such as dodgeball and arts and crafts.

Cabins are furnished with good old-fashioned bunk beds for the authentic sleepaway camp feel.

And yes, Turock said, there will be s’mores.

But, there are also accommodations for the adult who surrounds the inner child.

There will be sunrise yoga taught by a professional instructor and a chef and baker on-site to provide a more upscale dining experience than traditional camp beans and weenies.

Oh, and there’s an open bar. So there’s no need to sneak a flask into camp to spike the punch bowl during the big dance.

There will also be dancing. Camp Indian Summer will feature a couple of cover bands and some DJ music for post-twilight entertainment. There will also be traditional camp bonfires, where campers can sing their favorite old camp songs.

Everyone at camp is an adult, so there are no heavy rules, Turock said, but he does have a couple of strong recommendations.

“No business cards,” he said. He wants people talking about fun things, not asking each other what they do for a living and networking. “Don’t ask people what they do for a living or what kind of car they drive.”

Also, “keep your cellphones in your cabin.”

He said the biggest benefit of returning to summer camp is a chance to interact with real people instead of computer and phone screens, so they’d kind of ruin the mood and the entire point of camp.

That being said, there is Wi-Fi at the camp, because sometimes “adulting” has to happen.

Turock emphasized that that no one is too old for camp. While there are plenty of high-energy activities that one might think are geared for 20- and 30-somethings, he’s gotten calls from plenty of people in their 50s and 60s inquiring about the camp, and he assures they’ll have a great time, too.

So that’s the other unwritten rule, Turock said: “Don’t ask anyone how old they are.”

Because at Camp Indian Summer he wants everyone to be a kid again.


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