Follow the yellow brick road to JCC summer camp

Follow the yellow brick road to JCC summer camp

Follow the yellow brick road to JCC summer campWhen I was a kid, The Wizard of Oz was my favorite movie. Long before the days of VHS and DVD, the Wizard of Oz movie was televised each year only on Thanksgiving. It was a tradition to watch it and I still can’t get through the end without crying.

The theme of this year’s Alper JCC summer camp is a play on the Wizard of Oz. “There is no place like camp.” I guarantee campers will catch a glimpse of Dorothy, the Tin Man, Scarecrow, the Cowardly Lion, and Toto, too.

But the award-winning JCC summer camp doesn’t need a catchy theme to give your child a completely magical summer. There is something for every age and interest.

The camp is open to boys and girls 13 months to 14 years for two-week intervals June 17 through Aug. 9. The day is 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., but early and late care is available for all campers from 7:30 to 9 a.m. and 4 to 6 p.m. at an additional fee. Plus there are many evening, late night and sleep over activities scheduled throughout the summer.

You do not need to be a member of the J, although JCC Family members receive registration priority and discounted rates.

The camp is a one-stop-shop offering activities that are usually only available at sleep away camps such as fishing, canoeing, ceramics, martial arts, chess and computers. Specialty camps include sports camp, performing arts camp (dance, drama, art and music), special needs camp, teen travel and leadership training. If your kids can’t decide (imagine that) what they want to do, let them try several.

Preschoolers are nestled in a separate building with low camper-to-counselor ratio and certified specialist trained in sports, music, gymnastics, art, creative movement, cooking, swimming and nature. There is swimming instruction in a junior Olympic pool for campers three years and up.

General campers are greeted each morning at flag pole and then head out to their age-appropriate bunks. Each bunk moves around to sports (basketball, kickball ball, football and relay races), team building, swim, art, drama, fishing and canoeing, music, nature, cooking and much more.

Follow the yellow brick road to JCC summer campIn addition, campers can specialize in activities that they love with more than 40 hobby hour choices including yearbook, jewelry making, newspaper, kayaking, tennis, rocketry, canoeing, martial arts, dance, baseball, painting, ceramics, science, digital photography, amazing field trips, fishing, cooking, hip-hop, computers and more.

The Safari Adventure Camps — Tsofim (campers entering fourth through sixth grades) and Rishonim (campers entering seventh through ninth grades) — travel twice a week to exciting destinations throughout South Florida.

Teens may be surprised to learn that they can earn a lot of community service hours at the JCC summer camp. The Leaders in Training (entering ninth grade) work with campers three days per week, travel on field trips and develop skills in leadership and team building. Eighty community service hours are awarded for each four-week session. Counselors in Training (entering tenth grade) assist with campers and learn skills hands-on as well as through training sessions. A $100 stipend is given, and 160 community service hours are awarded for each four-week session. An interview is required for admission into the LIT and CIT programs.

Follow the yellow brick road to JCC summer campAll campers will receive a healthy dose of Jewish heritage. And, the best part of the JCC summer camp is the abundant, qualified staff including certified pre-school teachers for the younger set.

Do you want to be juggling your kids this summer? Registration is now open for members and non members.

For information, call the camp office at 305-271-9000, ext. 271, email or log on to

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