We look forward to spending the summer outside interacting with the kids and staff. We work ten months to get ready for two. The best part is getting to know the campers on an individual basis.”

Mitchell & Michelle Kessler

Mitchell and Michelle Kessler are the proud owners of Spring Lake Day Camp. Spring Lake has been family owned and operated by the Kessler family since 1989, making this their 32nd anniversary summer. Having the advantage of being born into a camp family, Mitchell knew that SLDC was the place that could create a magical feeling of community, spirit and well-being. He has been able to use his experience and education to create what he believes is the best day camp in the entire world!

Mitchell holds a B.A. in Economics from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, and a Master of Architecture degree from Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture. He puts his degree to work by designing all of our beautiful structures around camp. Michelle holds a B.A. in Psychology from New York University and a M.A. in Guidance Counseling from Hunter College. Before embarking on the wonderful journey of camp, Michelle was a teacher and then a Guidance Counselor in Manhattan. Mitchell and Michelle share their passion for camp with their two wonderful boys, Max and Michael.

Meet the Administrators

Our Administrative Team

Our Administrative team at SLDC is unlike any other. From the camp’s inception in 1989, we have shared the same vision of what our camp family should be, with the understanding of how a positive camp experience can influence a child’s sense of well-being and self-esteem. We work passionately to provide a safe, stimulating and well-rounded program each and every summer, enriched with activities and Spring Lake traditions that foster a strong self-image, social relationships, and skill development, all infused with fun, laughter and spirit. With most of us having worked together for so many years, we are a strong, creative and cohesive unit that continuously strives to make Spring Lake Day Camp the best day camping experience available.

Many of our Directors and Division Leaders have watched our own children grow up and experience the wonders of SLDC, mature and continue to work at the camp each summer, giving their campers the same wonderful “TLC” they had throughout the years. The word “family” truly describes what we are at our core, with campers never wanting to be anywhere else during the summer months — from when they first come as a young camper to when they join us as staff. We even have a good amount of staff that have met their lifelong partner here and continue the Spring Lake tradition with the next generation!

Dara Garcia, Assistant Director
Dara Garcia, Assistant Director
“Once a Spring Laker always a Spring Laker!” Our saying could not be more true and so we are absolutely delighted to welcome back Dara to her summer home! Dara started at SLDC in 2005 initially working as a Program Administrator in Junior Camp, quickly becoming a Division Leader, and then becoming the Director of Junior Camp which she had happily overseen for eight years. Dara’s strong educational and professional background made her a perfect fit with our little campers. Dara earned a B.A. degree in Sociology and an M.S. degree in Social Studies Education, both from Queens College. She has worked in the education field since 1993, teaching elementary through high school at local schools. Dara’s three year hiatus at a YM-YWHA in the tri-state area supervising the Camp, Family, and Youth Department during the school year and its day camp in the summer gave her great administrative experience, reinforcing her strong leadership and communication skills. When Dara started with us in 2005, her two daughters started with her as young campers. They have continued to be with us all these years, in recent years as a counselor and lifeguard, and they, like all of us at SLDC, are happy to have Dara back with us!

Bob Rosenberg
Bob Rosenberg
Forever In
Our Hearts
(8/29/44 – 3/3/14)

Arlene Liebman
Arlene Liebman
Thank You For 27 Years Of Hard Work And Dedication
Happy Retirement!

Myron Simon, Director
Myron Simon
Thank You For 24 Years Of Hard Work And Dedication
Happy Retirement!

Meet the Administrators


Rosemarie Budde - Office Manager/Bookkeeper
Rosemarie Budde – Office Manager/Bookkeeper
Rosemarie came to us in 2001 with a wealth of administrative office skills along with her then 10 year old daughter, Amanda, who was a camper, counselor, lifeguard and corporate event planner here. Prior to SLDC Rosemarie worked for 28 years as an administrative assistant at a Fortune 500 company. Her knowledge of the business world and dealing with people has made her an invaluable asset to the SLDC team. As our Office Manager and Bookkeeper, parents and staff have spoken with Rosemarie over the years as she is involved with every aspect of the camp. She is also a vital component of our event planning for corporate picnics, and we are fortunate to have her on our year-round office staff.


Lauren Amoroso - Director
Lauren Amoroso – Director
Spring Lake Day Camp welcomed Lauren to our Junior Camp family in 2013. She brought with her the many years of fun and experience she had as a camper and counselor at camps on Long Island. Lauren graduated from Indiana University and has a dual masters degree in both special education and general education. She has been a resource and collaborative special education teacher in the Franklin Lakes School District since 2006. Her expertise and strong communication skills had been an asset to our young campers in the Pearls and Jewels groups when she was their division leader and has been shared with everyone in Junior Camp as its Director. We are thrilled to have Lauren as a part of our administration and Spring Lake family for the past seven years. Her leadership and creativity has brought great spirit and cohesiveness to Junior Camp!

Carolyn Settlow - Division Leader
Carolyn Settlow – Division Leader
Carolyn is a Licensed Certified Social Worker with an M.S.W. degree from Yeshiva University. Her professional work as a therapist has been with children, teenagers and families. She currently works as a clinical social worker at a school for youth with special needs and has a small private practice as well. Carolyn had been a camper all of her life both at day camps and sleepaway camps, and worked as both a counselor and swim instructor. Carolyn could not wait to get back to being at camp during the summer months and joined our Spring Lake family in 2012. Her expertise and love for children as well as her leadership and administrative skills have made her an excellent team member of our Junior Camp, where she continues to supervise the Bears boys divisions.

Arielle Linn - Division Leader
Arielle Linn – Division Leader
Spring Lake Day Camp and Arielle have been a twosome for 19 outstanding summers! Arielle began her summers with SLDC when she was just four years old, and was a camper with us for 8 years. After a few years at a sleepaway camp, Arielle returned to work for us as a lifeguard for several summers, and ultimately found her home in Junior Camp as a counselor for the past five years. She definitely has camp in her blood and considers herself to be an SLDC “lifer”! Arielle received her Bachelor of Science in Education from University of Delaware and is working on her Masters in Reading along with her Reading Specialist Certification. She obviously loves spending her days with young children and also loves to spin, go to the beach, and cook with great recipes! She is thrilled being a teacher in the school she went to as a child — how cool! Her work as a first grade teacher lends itself perfectly to being a division leader of the Pearls and Jewels!

Alessa Laraia - Division Leader and Transportation Coordinator
Alessa Laraia – Division Leader and Transportation Coordinator
Junior Camp is thrilled to have Alessa back for her 4th amazing summer! Like so many of our SLDC staff, Alessa had gone to camp as a child and thoroughly enjoyed working at SLDC as a Junior Camp counselor for 4 summers before she was married. With her BA in Psychology and her Elementary Education Certification from Ramapo College, Alessa began her teaching career in an elementary school in Ridgefield and ultimately taught in Haskell. Alessa loves being involved with her own children and all of their activities in and out of school. She had longed to return to her summer home for years, and we are happy that Alessa and Junior Camp have been a perfect fit! Her bright smile, energy, love for fun and gentle demeanor is just the thing for our youngest campers to feel right at home!

In our off season, Alessa provides assistance in the main office with enrollment and billing. Her excellent organizational skills also make her a great candidate to serve as our Transportation Coordinator in the Spring, in charge of routing all the SLDC buses prior to the first day of camp. Alessa understands that camp begins when the children are picked up in the morning and ends when they all return safely home at the end of the day. She is dedicated to making sure that every camper’s ride to and from camp to be as enjoyable as possible!

Monica DeVita - Division Leader
Monica DeVita – Division Leader
Welcome back Monica! Monica started with us as a counselor in Girls Camp for 5 years, and after a few years of working in her school for the summer, missed us so much that she is back as a Division Leader for our Junior Camp Owls. Monica has her BA in English and early Childhood Education with endorsement and certification as a teacher of students with disabilities. She has been working in the Clifton Public Schools as a teacher for preschool students with disabilities for the past 4 years which she finds extremely rewarding. She also does after school home instruction. Monica has come back to her SLDC family this summer and is a great addition to our Junior Camp administrative staff. She loves to work with younger children, she loves exercise and working out and being outdoors, so we know SLDC and Monica will be perfect together!


Laurie Ann Weinstein - Director
Laurie Ann Weinstein – Director
Laurie Ann will be with us for her 22nd summer, having started as an Owls counselor in 1998 in Junior Camp. She definitely has SLDC forever in her heart! She has been the driving source of the success of “strong like bull” Girls Camp since she made the move, first as its Division Leader for 8 years and ultimately as its Director for the past 12 years. Laurie Ann has a B.S. in Psychology, and a Juris Doctorate from Boston University School of Law. An attorney by profession, Laurie Ann retired from the legal field and followed her passion to work with children, becoming a Pre-K nursery school teacher for 8 years. Laurie Ann continues to bring an endless amount of energy, creativity and excitement that permeates the spirit of our entire camp each and every summer. She will forever be “young and beautiful” to her girls!

Brooke Mendel - Division Leader
Brooke Mendel – Division Leader
Brooke will be starting her 20th summer at Spring Lake Day Camp. She spent her first 6 years as a counselor in Girls Camp, and then became a Division Leader for the Emeralds and Rubies in 2005, where she has been ever since! Brooke graduated The University of Hartford in 2004 with a B.S. degree in Early Childhood Education. Her professional career began as a teaching assistant for students with special needs in the Ridgewood School District. Following her time in Ridgewood, Brooke spent 4 years as a first grade teacher in the Little Falls School district. She now spends her time outside of camp as a stay-at-home mom with her three adorable young children, who are already the next generation of Spring Lake campers. Did we happen to mention that Brooke met her husband at SLDC when they were both counselors? Girls Camp just wouldn’t be the same without Brooke!

Jaime Schechter - Division Leader
Jaime Schechter – Division Leader
Jamie joined our Spring Lake Girls Camp team in 2012, and there’s no place she rather be! Jamie loves working with the 9 and 10 year-old girls (Diamonds & Opals). Jamie has her B.S. in Social Work from the University of Maryland, her M.A. in Teaching – Elementary Education as well as her Reading Specialist Certification from William Paterson University. Jamie was a third grade teacher in the Franklin Lakes School District for 9 years. In addition to tutoring during the school year, her 2 year-old son Dylan keeps her busy. She can’t wait for Dylan to join her at SLDC (her favorite place). She and her Girls Camp leaders are already planning for the summer’s theme and costumes. Jamie continues to bring a fresh and energetic spirit to Girls Camp that the entire camp enjoys!

Bridget Sullivan - Division Leader
Bridget Sullivan – Division Leader
Bridget joined our SLDC family as a senior counselor in Girls Camp in 2011 and has been with us every summer since! She grew up going to her town recreation camp in the summer and fell in love with Spring Lake instantly! It didn’t take long for Bridget to feel the spirit of Girls Camp and share her energy and creativity and become an integral part of it! Bridget graduated from Rider University in 2015 with two Bachelor of Arts degrees in Elementary Education and Psychology as well as a certification in Early Childhood. She also studied special education in Spain and Austria! Bridget had been working in Verona in a 5th grade special education classroom last year. Although she has taught middle school social studies and science, this year she is solely teaching middle school science. Her special interests are reading and traveling – she has been to more than 22 different countries! WOW! We are delighted Bridget has been part of the Girls Camp administration since 2016 as a Division Leader for the Corals, Jades and Stars!


Mike Levy - Director
Mike Levy – Director
Spring Lake has been Mike’s summer home for 9 years, starting as a baseball specialist for the first 2 years and then joining Boys Camp as a Division Leader for our 2nd grade boys for 6 years. Last summer Mike assumed the position as Director of Boys Camp and we again look forward to his leadership as well as his energy and love of camp spirit this coming summer! Mike is always found joining his campers in games and activities on and off the fields. The boys and his staff love it! Mike graduated from University of Maryland with a B.A. degree in History, and has his Masters in Education in Social Studies from Rutgers University. He has been a teacher for 15 years and has been at Wayne Hills High School for 12 years.

Neil Shechtman - Division Leader
Neil Shechtman – Division Leader
Neil came to Spring Lake Day Camp fourteen summers ago and has been a part of Boys Camp from the onset, working initially with Boys’ Mid Camp divisions and then moving to Upper Camp to supervise the oldest boys’ divisions. Neil has his B.S. degree in Accounting from the Bach School of Business at the University of Massachusetts, his M.A. in Elementary Education from Columbia University and has been an elementary grade school teacher throughout his career. Neil has had camp in his blood since he was a young boy, and has worked at day camps most of his teen and adult life in several administrative positions. He invests his heart and soul into his campers, has no reservations about dressing up on theme days, and it is obvious to everyone that he just loves every day at SLDC!

Justin Swisher - Division Leader
Justin Swisher – Division Leader
Justin will be with us for his third summer at Spring Lake Family and we are thrilled to have him back! He spent his first summer with us as a member of the Adventure Challenge Team, which is fitting for who he is! He has gone skydiving, spends most weekends hiking, and can’t get enough of sports and the outdoors. He had been at another New Jersey camp for many summers where he began his tenure as a “Rocks and Ropes” specialist for three years. He then worked at the camp as a Division Leader for the next six years. Camp is easily Justin’s favorite part of the year and you’ll find him trying to make each day even more fun than the day before! Justin is a graduate of nearby Ramapo College, has nearly a decade of teaching experience in a local middle school, and is currently pursuing an M.A. in Educational Leadership. He could not be more excited about returning again as a Division Leader for the Broncos in Boys Camp!

Lori Kleinfeld - Leadership Training Program Supervisor
Lori Kleinfeld – Leadership Training Program Supervisor
Lori’s bright smile is what starts our day off right every morning as she welcomes our campers and staff off the busses! Lori has been with SLDC for 17 years, with this coming summer being her 11th summer supervising our successful and well run Leadership Training Program. She had also been our Van Staff Supervisor for many years and our Camp Mom for several years. Lori has her B.A. from Montclair State University in Family Child Relations and Pre-K Certification as well as her Kindergarten through 8th grade endorsement from William Paterson University. She had been a teacher in Englewood and Paterson earlier in her career, and has been a teacher in the Fair Lawn school system for the past 18 years. Our Leadership Training Program is a well-known work-camp-trip program that provides a strong foundation for learning leadership skills and the responsibilities of being a staff member. Lori’s tutelage and supervision has been the backbone of its growth and success.

Julie Calabro - Camp Mom
Julie Calabro – Camp Mom
Julie’s bright smile and warmth has been a fundamental part of our camp for 17 years. Everyone at camp knows Julie, and Julie makes it a point of knowing every one of our campers and counselors as well! Julie was at SLDC as our cooking specialist from 2000 to 2006 and what a popular specialty area it was! When she came back to us in 2009, she became our Camp Mom, and she has been the ideal person to oversee all aspects of our campers’ personal care and dietary needs during lunch as well as the rest of the day. Julie has her B.A. from University of Maryland and had worked as both a Preschool Teacher and a Religious School educator for many years. She is currently working in the Kinnelon Schools system. She has always been a strong link in our camp family, able to create a special connection with both campers and staff that is such a significant component of our camp’s success.

Connie Kilroy - Head Nurse, Health Center
Connie Kilroy – Head Nurse, Health Center
Our state of the art Health Center houses our staff of highly skilled and professional nurses who take care of our campers and staff every day. Connie will be with us at SLDC for eleven summers, supervising the Health Center for her seventh summer. She also is one of the nurses who accompany the campers on our Optional Adventure Travel Program. With a BA from Fordham University, and a BSN from College of Mt. Saint Vincent, Connie offers our camp the perfect blend of nursing and management skills as well as the necessary tender loving care to make everyone at camp feel better. Connie had worked in the NICU for St. Joseph’s Hospital in Paterson and as a substitute nurse in The Children’s Institute and the West Milford school system. Now employed full time with the Academy 360 Upper School in Livingston, Connie has surely been no stranger to pediatric care and treatment. Connie is also in the midst of receiving her School Nurse Certification. We know we are ALL in good hands with Connie and her nursing team.

Linda Petro - Transportation Consultant
Linda Petro – Transportation Consultant
Linda Petro has been with SLDC since we opened our doors in 1989. With over 40 years of experience as manager of various bus companies including D&K Transportation and Murphy/Durham Bus, Linda has been an instrumental part in making each SLDC camper’s ride to and from camp every day so enjoyable. Over the years many of our parents have spoken to Linda as she has always gone out of her way to make sure she could accommodate all campers and staff’s transportation needs. Linda was in charge of routing all the SLDC buses prior to the first day of camp and Daily Transportation and Parent Transportation Communications during the summer. Linda will continue to be with us in an advisory capacity, as we will always value her expertise!!