The “Prog Blog”


Everyone at Camp Towanda is integral, important and inspirational to the impact on the summer experience for all members of the Camp Towanda Family. From campers, bunk counselors, qualified instructors and specialists, leaders and senior staff to those behind the scenes who cook, clean and maintain our beautiful camp.

Everyone, one way or another, interacts with our kids; from the guy who cuts the lawn, picks up the garbage, cooks our food, mops the floors to those who work in the laundry, housekeeping or maintenance departments.

It is important, as Owners and Directors that we know everyone at camp…and they know and are comfortable with us as well.

We just returned last night from an inspiring support staff recruiting trip to Prague and Budapest.  Stephanie, Jared and I met with alumni and returnees; seeing, learning and experiencing their culture while interviewing and hiring new staff members to join the 38 returning KMP!  KMP is our term for Kitchen & Maintenance Personnel.

38 returnees; that says a lot about how we care about our KMP Support Staff! Our Operations Director, Mark “Z” Zides, is legendary in the camping industry for overwhelmingly taking care of the KMP; just like Bob & Amy, or Head Counselors, take care of the counselor staff! Z has raised the bar each of his 18 years at Towanda!

Our international staff feel safe and happy while they get into their responsibilities; enhancing, improving and positively impacting the summer’s experience for everyone at Camp Towanda, even though they are so far from home!

Respect, cultural exchange and opportunity  is what sets Camp Towanda apart! Our KMP get involved in our evening activities, special events and exchange of cultural information.  Towanda is woven through people from over 25 states and 17 countries that empowers us all to be ambassadors of our hometowns.

The Americans, former campers or not, welcome, get to know and work side by side with our international staff; adding to the already incredible dynamic experience at camp!

Our staff make life long friends around the world; which evolves into a great itinerary in their future!

Now, after this trip, we are even more excited, pumped and eager to get LUCKY 2013 going; we have a great staff; in the bunks, on the fields and behind the scenes!

Next stop; bring on orientation!

The Scoop on Group Scoop!

Welcome back to “The Blog: 2013”! We have a lot of exciting events coming up in the next few months and we will be sharing all the ‘scoop’ with you here.  This past Sunday we had our annual Group Scoop Orientation Session for new campers and their parents at the Double Tree Hotel in Fort Lee, NJ. We always say “you’re only new until the next person shows up”. And it proved to be true again; as many of this summer’s new campers showed up.

It did not take long for our new families to fell comfortable, welcomed and part of the Camp Towanda Family after being with us for just two hours! Each camper was inaugurated with an imitation unofficial Chef Jonesy chocolate chip cookie (of course, also available in Gluten-Free) and assigned a buddy from the older group campers of the Club or Dorm. The room was transformed into Camp Towanda-land. Buddies gave their campers a kind of virtual tour on our life-sized camp map and you could already feel the connections everyone was making. After meeting some new faces (and even new groupmates), we all enjoyed a fun, informative and interactive orientation by Mitch! Then Matt Miller led us in a Camp Towanda icebreaker favorite “Bear- Fish- Mosquito”. Cheering, smiles and silliness were everywhere. Before you knew it, we had declared a winner (go Maxwell) as he was carried on the shoulders of the Club boys. As always, our Dorm girls led Girls’ camp in the cheer “We had fun. We had fun!” Towanda spirit at its best.

Overall it was a very special day. We are so excited about the new members of our family (campers and parents). We also received so much positive feedback about our Dorm girls and Club boys and were so impressed by their care, concern, attention, interaction and love of Camp Towanda. They really helped welcome the new campers and reassure the parents. They are already making a big difference and impact on camp as our eldest campers!

Group Scoop was yet another big kick off to the Summer of 2013. We cannot wait to get to camp and begin to see our new campers start their journey. We also cannot wait to watch the Dorm and Club continue to lead the camp with their spirit, respect, camaraderie, maturity and love of camp and each other. A great sisterhood and brotherhood…which is what Camp Towanda is all about.

Check out the official Group Scoop photo album here! Enjoy.