The Center for Jewish Life in Marlboro is opening a new summer camp for up to 200 children ages five-11. Scheduled to open July 1, the Marlboro Jewish Day Camp, located on Route 79 North, will be the only Jewish day camp in Monmouth County.
(Camp Gan Israel, located in Monroe in Middlesex County, is run by Chabad of Western Monmouth County.)
The CJL’s camp will feature standard activities like sports and arts and crafts for children of all backgrounds, while reflecting the values of the Orthodox-run outreach center.
“What distinguishes our camp is its positive reinforcement of Jewish values and practices,” said Rabbi Yossi Kanelsky, CJL’s religious leader and administrative director. “At this camp, youngsters will participate in challah baking, enjoy kosher lunches and snacks, and learn about the meaning of our rich heritage, as well as its practical applications.”
Day-to-day operations of the CJL camp will be supervised by Kanelsky’s brother, Rabbi Yudi Kanelsky.
The CJL director said staffers will be selected for their positive attitude, enthusiasm, and “capacity to serve as role models in behavior and ethics.” Some of the junior counselors are members of CJL’s JTeen Club.
“We believe that the summer months are an ideal time for children to enjoy a fun environment that also incorporates Jewish enrichment,” Yossi Kanelsky told NJJN.
Before establishing CJL in 2011, Kanelsky was associated with Bris Avrohom, a Chabad-Lubavitch organization that provides outreach services to immigrants from the former Soviet Union.
Campers will be able to choose from a list of electives offered under the heading of i-camp that will include fencing, baking, ballroom dancing, Sambo (a form of martial arts), jewelry beading, art, and Zumba, said Kanelsky.
The camp will be situated on the center’s 3.5-acres, and utilize its 18,000-square-foot air-conditioned building.
Kanelsky said campers will go swimming four days a week at the nearby New York Sports Club on Route 9 North in Morganville.
Campers will also take group trips to area attractions, including Great Adventure in Jackson, the Jewish Children’s Museum in Brooklyn, Blackbeard’s Cave in Bayville, Jenkinson’s Boardwalk in Point Pleasant Beach, and FunTime America in Cliffwood.
The full camp season will last eight weeks, said Kanelsky, but packages also are available for seven, six, five, and four weeks.
“Our goal is to embrace the campers with all the warmth that Judaism has to offer and engender positive feelings for their religion, which will encourage them to participate and be more involved in Jewish life,” Kanelsky said.