May 26th Camp Status Update
Dear Center Day Camp Families,
With great disappointment, we write to share that Center Day Camp will not open for the summer of 2020.
Sometimes being part of a community means giving up experiences and traditions we love for the greater good and the future of one another and our program. It is because camp is such a positive, affirming experience for our campers that we have made the decision not to open this year. The limits and restrictions that would be placed on our campers and counselors would so significantly change our program that it would bear little resemblance to the hive of activity, joyful energy, exuberance and learning that characterizes Center Day Camp. In making this decision, we join many programs throughout Maine and around the country that have come to the same conclusion.
It is understandable for campers, staff, and families to be upset – we share the grief and loss that you may be feeling. We will miss spirited Gaga games and three-legged races on the upper ball fields, putting on amazing theater performances, staying up way too late on overnights, and swimming lessons in our beautiful lake. Camp is a place of growth, discovery, and acceptance, and we are so sorry we’ll be missing out on those experiences this summer. Sharing this news will pose different challenges for every family, and we’re here to support you. We’ve included the following article from Dr. Daniel Klein, child psychologist who sits on the board of Tamarack Camps, to help with what your campers might be going through.
Although our traditional experience won’t be taking place, we remain committed to making use of CDC’s beautiful property and offering new creative ways to safely invite campers and their families to CDC this summer. These may include “Family Camp” opportunities for families to spend the day enjoying camp activities and maybe camping out for overnights; “Center Day Camp in a Box” with activities delivered right to your door, and “Virtual Camp” classes and experiences. If you are interested in one or more of these options, please fill out this form, as we look forward to building these offerings to begin as soon as possible in June.
Over the next two weeks, we will process refunds for families who had signed up for this summer. Please let us know here know how you’d like to handle the refund. If you are able, please consider a donation to support Center Day Camp’s continued strength and capacity to remain a treasured resource into the future.
We are so grateful to be a part of a community that has such a passion and dedication for summer camp. We are confident that when Center Day Camp does return, we will do so together with you, continuing the proud legacy of quality, meaningful programming that has been a hallmark of Center Day Camp over the last 70 years.
Center Day Camp Director
Molly Curren Rowles
JCA Executive Director
WHERE EVERYONE IS WELCOME
For over 70 years, Center Day Camp (CDC) has offered a quintessential Maine summer camp experience to campers of all backgrounds ages 5-15. A program of the Jewish Community Alliance of Southern Maine, CDC offers swimming, theater, arts and crafts, hiking, nature and many more activities on 25 acres in lower Sebago basin. Transportation is included, with many convenient routes. Contact us today for more information!
We're currently working on ways
for camp families to enjoy the property this summer. More info to come soon.
1342 Congress St.
Portland, ME 04102
74 Hackett Road
Windham, ME 04062
Please join us in welcoming our new CDC Director, Chris Thurston!
We are also so pleased to be welcoming a new Director to Center Day Camp! Chris Thurston is excited to bring the Maine camp experience to Maine kids! Graduating from the University of Maine in 2011, and eager to make a difference, he moved to Massachusetts and joined AmeriCorps City Year working with young people at the Dearborn Middle School in Roxbury, which lead to a teaching position at The Community Academy of Science & Health in Dorchester. Most recently, Chris has served as Director of the Boys & Girls Club of Wakefield MA for several years.
For eight summers Chris attended and worked at Camp Manitou, a residential camp in Oakland, Maine. He served as part of the leadership team and worked directly with campers and counselors from around the world. As the Camp Director at The Boys and Girls Club of Wakefield, he increased enrollment each summer, improved programming, developed community partnerships, and supported families through the campership initiative.
Chris is impressed by the history and community commitment of Center Day Camp, and is thrilled to be returning to Maine. He is excited about being actively involved with JCC Camping, the Summer Camp Society, The American Camp Association (ACA), Maine Summer Camps, EPIC New England, and other camping organizations, as well as increasing programming opportunities and camp engagement activities in the offseason. Chris will begin his tenure at Center Day Camp in late November, just in time to open registration for summer 2020, and he looks forward to meeting alumni and new and returning campers and staff!