Frequently Asked Questions
Who are the Owners / Directors of Spring Lake Day Camp?
Mitchell & Michelle Kessler are the Owners/Directors of Spring Lake Day Camp. Mitchell Kessler founded Spring Lake Day Camp in 1989 at the age of 23. He is a second generation camp owner. Michelle joined the SLDC staff 12 years ago. Prior to entering the wonderful world of Spring Lake, Michelle was a Teacher and a Guidance Counselor in Manhattan.
What is your camp’s philosophy?
Since 1989, SLDC has been providing children with active, safe, and memorable summers. With a mature, dedicated staff, state of the art facilities, and a unique program, our goal is to provide a well rounded experience. Swim, Sports, Arts, Performing Arts, Adventure Programs, Travel and Special Events are all equally important. Spring Lake fosters self-confidence, develops leadership skills, and instills positive socialization within a safe and friendly environment.
What are the Camper / Counselor Ratios and how are the groups broken down?
Spring Lake runs 3 camps in one; Junior Camp (ages 3 to 6), Boys Camp (ages 7 to 15) & Girls Camp (ages 7 to 15). The average group size is 12-14 campers per group.
Our staff members are mature, professional and dedicated individuals who lead the campers in expanding their abilities and increasing their confidence and self-esteem. We are proud to have a high rate of returning staff each year. Our 3:1 camper to staff ratio, provides each camper with personalized attention. All of our specialists are professionals in their fields allowing for the highest level of instruction possible.
Do you conduct criminal background checks on your counselors?
In addition to reference checks, SLDC performs a national criminal background & sex offender check on all staff. We are a member of the American Camp Association which adheres to the highest standards. We feel that the safety of your child is our primary concern. Any staff member who is unwilling to sign the release for the check is not eligible for employment.
What happens on a rainy day or excessively hot days?
At SLDC we’ve got it COVERED! Spring Lake Day Camp has many state of the art indoor and covered pavilions that allow us to provide coverage on rainy days. On very hot days we have over 40,000 square feet of pool space which allows us to swim our campers as many times as needed. SLDC implements a modified schedule on both rainy and hot days.
What is a typical day like at SLDC?
Each group has a program specifically designed to meet their needs. We offer a 7 period day consisting of 2 swims (one instructional, one general), lunch, 2 athletic activities and 2 arts. This gives your child the flexibility to pursue activities he or she enjoys. Along with regularly scheduled daily activities, there are option programs for campers entering 3rd grade and up. All campers partake in our weekly special events including carnival day, land & sea, theme days, color war & more.
Will my child learn to swim at SLDC?
Swim instruction is a daily activity. Campers receive individual Red Cross instruction from our highly trained and licensed waterfront staff. All campers are grouped according to their ability and our numerous, qualified instructors help us maintain a ration of 2-4 swimmers per group. Our age appropriate heated pools make it fun to learn.
How do campers get to and from camp?
Air conditioned, door to door transportation is provided using only Dept. of Transportation approved mini-buses. All of our min-buses are driven by professional drivers, assisted by our trained bus counselors and are equipped with seat belts, a two way radio and car seats, if necessary. We have been using Murphy/Durham Bus since 1989 as well as Mar-Can transportation to handle our Manhattan bus routes.
My child is a picky eater. What do you serve for lunch and snack?
A professionally catered lunch program is served to every camper and staff member in our 10,000 sq. foot open air covered pavilion. In addition, we serve a mid-morning and afternoon snack. We do not use trans fats. Substitutes to the daily menu are always available including bagels, yogurt, buttered noodles, soup, grilled cheese, fresh fruit and a complete organic salad bar. We have a camp mom on staff in the dining room to make sure all dietary needs are met. Spring Lake is nut-aware.
Tell me about health and safety at Spring Lake Day Camp?
Our on-site health facility is supervised by three full time registered nurses. Our head nurse, Nurse Connie has been with us for over 5 years. Campers are supervised by their counselors, administrators and specialists all day and water stations are set up throughout camp to ensure the hydration of each camper. For the safety of our campers we also have a gate guard at the entrance of our camp. No one is permitted entrance to our camp without being announced by the gate guard and then checking into our main office for a visitors pass. We do have an open door visitation policy. However we do ask that you call prior to visiting your child unless you are attending a visiting day for your child’s age group. There are two formal visiting days for our Jr. Camp Division.
Do you have a travel program at SLDC?
Our optional adventure travel program is available to campers entering grades 3-10. Our trip program includes such adventures as amusement and water parks, Broadway shows, and much more. For campers entering grades 5-10, there are also overnight trips offered. All trips utilize chartered, deluxe air conditioned, video coach buses. A registered nurse, along with our mature key staff accompanies campers on each trip.