The Moriah School recently hosted its inaugural Camping Fair, where parents and children came to learn about Jewish day and sleep-away camps from across the area. Erik Kessler, director of admissions, communications and HR at Moriah School hosted the fair as “a service to the parents to see all the camps at one time and not have to go to lot of parlor meetings.”
There were over 20 camps with representatives eager to speak to attendees and explain what their camp was about and what niche they had to offer. Camp 613 wanted people to know they have a full-fledged performance arts program for girls. Sara Younger from Camp Summer Playland came to the fair in an effort to “reach out to the Bergen County community.”
Leslie Rebarbar, attended the camp fair with her daughter, Emma, who is looking to go to sleep-away camp for the first time this summer. “I did a lot of research myself, but we came so Emma could see and talk to the representatives herself,” said Rebarbar. “Emma could see the difference between the camps just from having the representatives talk with her.” Other parents also agreed that you got a really good sense of the different camps by talking to each representative.
Some suggestions to attract more attendees next year, “host the camp fair in October right after the Chagim because by now most parents have signed up for camp already,” said Sandy Piontnica, a parent attendee. Stacy Budkofsky, representative from the JCC, felt that Sunday would be a better day for more people to attend. As Kessler said, “everything is a learning experience; it was a good experiment.”
No doubt the camp fair was a success. “All the camps presented so well,” said Piontnica, “Ask any parent who attended and they were thrilled with the service the fair provided them”. “It is an excellent forum to view my options in one place,” said Sandra Yahalom, a Moriah parent who was looking for a summer day camp for her daughter and possible sleep-away camp for the future. Joseph Stansky from Camp Mesorah said it best, “in the end, the kids win the most.”
By Kellita Weber