This has been my sixth year at camp, and I had grown to think of it as this miracle: the fact that people can come from all over the country, not knowing a single person, and be accepted into a community that seems to last forever despite the actual time spent there is brief.
We can’t thank you all enough for all that you did for our family and all you continue to do to bring kids a sense of pride in their Jewish identities, a love of Israel, and a wonderful environment in which to celebrate it all.
I show my love for my campers in little ways, such as teaching them how to make dream catchers, and they show me theirs in return by impersonating me in the talent show.
Your financial support for me to afford going to camp is heartwarming and one of the greatest mitzvoth that has ever happened to me in my first part of life.
There’s something unique and special and almost inviolate about taking city kids out and away from their usual environments, to a place where the beauty of nature is not a page in Wikipedia but part of every day. Being near a lake, hiking in the woods, getting splashed in a canoe or rowboat, dreaming alongside a mountain or stargazing from the top of a hill refreshes the soul for all of us, and especially our kids.
“My favorite part of camp has been the Shabbat service & dancing or basically the entire Shabbat experience. During these times I felt more community and love than ever.” – Chalutzim (5-6th grade) camper
“Every night before bed, the Hashkiveinu is sung at Camp Newman. Everyone stands in a circle with their arms around each other and sings, no matter what one’s voice sounds like. This close-knit circle of trust and faith and love ends each day on a positive note where a person knows that they have a community that they can always go to for help.” – Rachel, Camper
“This has been my sixth year at camp, and I had grown to think of it as this miracle: the fact that people can come from all over the country, not knowing a single person, and be accepted into a community that seems to last forever despite the actual time spent there is brief.” Luca, Camper
“I want you to know that your acts of kindness seep into the crevices of each families hearts as you do your work of generosity and kindness.” – Micah, Camper
“Camp Newman has always been there for me, the good and the bad. Can’t wait to be back” – Jordan, CIT class of 2014
“I realized why the shirts said “Camp is life, the rest is just details”, because for some people, camp IS their life. And as I watched my role models- Avodah, CIT, and counselors- express their love for the camp through their sadness of leaving, I vowed that one day, I’d be one of them.” – Camper
“I love camp because of the incredible friendships I make and the way in which they grow and blossom. The loving and caring community enables me to have a fantastic home at Camp Newman.” – Zachary, Camper
“The Rope course impacted me the most. I was excited to make it to the top. The support of my team I felt made this more doable. Not to give up –I feel empowered.” – Milton Marks Family Camp
“As always they loved camp…Ayli has filled her iPhone with camp songs including Dan Nichols and Rachel Mylan…what more could an Ema ask for?” – Tanya
“Does spontaneously breaking into song, siblings hugging each other when they recite Shabbat blessings, and being stuck to Facebook with camp friends count as success? Something magical happens at Newman. Our kids are so peaceful and self-assured when they return.” – Camper Parent
“My son came home with two-week old, bright red nail polish on each of his toes, he is exhausted from being up all night on the last night with his friends and he lost some of the things he originally went to camp with. I will be doing the laundry of, feeding and providing showers and a place to sleep for three counselors during inter session. My son cried on the last day when he left and wants to help lead Shirah next summer. For four weeks he lost himself in a world away from home where he could just be Jake. Thank you for making a place where kids can be kids. Thank you for letting me have the opportunity to give three counselors a place to rest and rejuvenate. I have never been so happy to be doing laundry. I’m so honored to be a part of Camp Newman. Thank you and may we all go from strength to strength. Kol Hakavod.” – Deb Stadtner
“As a first time camper, she quickly made good friendships, learned things about herself and others, as well as became more connected with religion.” – Camper Parent
“She is constantly in touch with her Jewish camp friends and says now that she is proud to be Jewish to the extent she wants to go to Camp Newman until she is too old to go, and wants to send her kids one day.”– Camper Parent
“My daughters had cabin mates from LA, Hawaii, and the Bay Area with whom they climbed a tower or zip-lined on Adventure Mountain, swam, tie dyed shirts, hiked trails, learned about Israel with Israelis, and schmoozed about life with wonderful role models. They learned about heroes and doing the right thing.” – Rabbi Morley, Parent and Faculty member
“At camp, like so many others, my kids have made lifelong friends here, strengthened their Jewish identify, enhanced their comprehension of the word community and learned the meaning of good clean fun. In addition, both my children have made decisions with respect to their first careers out of college based on their experiences at camp.” – Lisa, Parent
(From a parent who worked in our front office during the summer while her child was in session) “I found out something amazing while I’ve been here at camp. I actually feel Jewish. At home, I really have to live Jewish to feel Jewish. When you are born into a Jewish family, I think you take for granted your religion, religious practices and feelings of ‘belonging’ to a people. When you choose Judaism, you can’t just say you are Jewish. You have to live Jewish every day to own your religious identity. Here at camp, I wake up feeling Jewish automatically because I’m living Jewish 24/7. My beliefs and practices are not questioned here, but are continually encouraged through the day…I wish as a child I could have known camp life. I wish I could have known that every summer I could live with hundreds of other Jewish children and that I would have life-long friends just waiting for me to arrive at the camp gate. As an adult, I have enjoyed every minute of my camp experience. I am so happy to be here. I wish other parents who never went to camp and who don’t know how very special camp is could see inside Camp Newman for just a few minutes to see how magical these buildings, events and people are to our children” – Jeanette S.
“WOW..that [Shehechyanu] hasn’t changed since my day off going there…except then it was called Camp Swig! Great memories” – Deb
“Proud to have Camp Newman be part of my upbringing. Nothing will ever beat the feeling of family, community and belonging that comes with being a part of the Camp Newman family!!” – Katia
“Its been 8 years since the last time I sang siyum, and I still remember the words by heart and moreover, the warm and engulfing feeling they spread through every inch of your body when sung with a group of people you love. A truly, truly magical feeling.” – Ohad
“Not only did camp strengthen and give me a lifetime relationship with Judaism, it gave me lifelong friends and happy memories. Spending my summers at camp gave me the confidence to grow into the person I’ve become, and the confidence to be comfortable with that woman.” – Ronit
“I think next year is the 30th reunion for CIT-85. I feel a pilgrimage in the making. It will be nice to go home.” – Harvey, Swig Alum and Parent
“I am still very close with one of my summer campers that I had when I was a counselor. In fact, I was the first “adult” (I use the term loosely as I was only 20 at the time) that she ever felt safe with.” – Judith, Parent
“Camp is where I discovered my Judaism. It is where I first learned about the true importance of Israel. At camp I was challenged to find God in new and exciting ways. Melodies transformed words into true prayers.” – Rabbi Joel
“After camp ends, every time we’re with a few Mishlachat members, whether it’s in our big trip around the world, or at the beach on Independence Day in Israel, it is certain that we will all sing Siyum with arms around each other and a wide smile.” – Lev, Mishlachat Member 2013-2014
“I love being at camp and being surrounded by nature, and my friends, and just people who have similar loves. Everybody is really connected to each other and to their Judaism. It is just great.” – Ashley
“There’s a reason that camps are called the Institutes for Living Judaism. Camp is a laboratory for exploring Judaism in a safe place, and learning about all that life has to offer with caring college kids, Jewish educators and rabbis.” – Rabbi Morley, Parent and Faculty member
“These experiences will stay with these campers forever; and will help shape who they become. Kol hakavod!” – Victoria
“Through the love of your staff, they understand compassion and caring. Through your immersive activities, they understand friendship without judgment. Through your meals, they understand that a meal is more than food, it is a bond with community. Through your songs, they understand that music can bring them comfort and belonging. Through your grade level programming, they understand the true meaning of Mitzvah.” – Laura and Bob, Parents
“Camp cannot be underestimated. You do amazing work by having such a wonderful program. You should feel proud.” – Judith
“Camp is a place where we explore the depth and creative of our Judaism. Where the ancient words of our prophet, “the youth shall see visions,” is lived and breathed.” – Rabbi Joel Simonds
“Parents found their previously clingy children happy to go off with their energetic counselor and a group of kids their own age. Teenagers found other kids who knew exactly what they were experiencing.” – Milton Marks Family Camp
“At the end of the weekend, none of us –parents, kids, staff, wanted to leave. But when we did leave, we found a lingering sense of peace: we were changed by the experience. ” – Milton Marks Family Camp
About our Events
“Jayden came home and said he loved meeting new friends, playing Gaga and the Alpine Tower!” – Anonymous parent
“As soon as we saw photos posted online of our daughter at fall camp my husband and I both said, ‘she’s going back!’ She was beaming and it was written all over her face how much she loved it.” – Lisa, parent
“He loved the activities – art, bouncing/obstacle/climbing activities, and being with his friends from Hebrew school!” – Annika, parent
“My son raved about the food: ‘It was amazing! I think my stomach stretched because I ate so much.’ He especially liked the chicken and the It’s-It’s (of course).” – Karen, parent
“I loved that no matter what we were doing I got to meet someone new and no one was exclusive, everyone wanted to talk to everyone it seemed.”– Alex, First Time at a NFTY event
URJ Camp Newman & PJ Library Open House & Family Fun Day
“Hi Ruben, Erin, Christine, Tracey and All others who made today’s Open House possible, Everything about today’s Open House was spot on. As a former Swig kid and Newman staff member I wanted my boys to ‘just see’ camp so they would be able to picture the place our family talks about so often. What I hadn’t expected was the swiftness with which they would feel at home and emotionally connected. Many thanks to you all for making that happen. Please do pass along thanks to the Rashim and others who led activities … they undoubtedly helped the boys feel so at home. Thanks, too, for having thought through all the logistics. From parking to sunscreen stations and otter pops – no stone was left unturned. Enjoy this summer. We’ll look forward to sending our older one your way next year!” — Warmly, Alona Scott, Head of School, Keys School, Palo Alto, CA