> Board Nominations | Now Open
> Circle Pinning: July 22
> Reunion: September 21-23, 2018 | Register Now
Letter From the President
I met a camp staff member recently who is making Circle this year. We were chatting about camp, life, and her tattoos. She started explaining what each one meant and then she got to this one.
“And this is the place that changed my life!”
I nodded, understanding what she meant. No further explanation needed.
We’ve had an exciting 2018. We’re adding 34 new Circle members in just a few days. On Circle Day, we raised over $2,000 with 63 donors... holy moly! All of the donations go towards the new theater at Camp Louise, Jill’s Place. By the way, have you seen it yet?
Your next chance to visit the mountain is Reunion on September 21-23! This year’s theme is “Circle like a Rockstar”, so bring your VIP pass. We’ve changed the registration structure this year. You now have the option to sign up for a single day (less than 24 hours) or a full weekend (more than 24 hours).
Also, you’ll use a promo code if you are a Circle member, 2018 Circle Staff member, or 2018 Inductee:
Circle member (15% off): CIRCLE18
2018 Circle Staff member (65% off): STAFF18
2018 Circle Inductee (100% off): INDUCTEE18
Just like last year, registration will increase by $25 on August 19. We’ll be closing registration one week before Reunion, September 15. If you’re interested in a scholarship, email Rabbi Elissa at firstname.lastname@example.org by August 19.
We need your help to continue offering scholarships. Help us raise more by donating to Circle during registration.
Also, ‘tis the season for new board nominations! What does it mean if you were nominated? It means someone in Circle thinks you are a leader and wants your voice at the table. Help shape decisions that the organization makes including reunion planning, fundraising efforts, and membership activities like the Lighthouse and social events. You’re asked to attend at least two out of three meetings a year and to serve on at least one committee.
The board is always open to ideas and ways to make Circle better so please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. If you have any topics to bring up at Reunion’s Town Hall, contact Reesa Pearlman at email@example.com.
The next time you meet a Circle member, they may not have a tattoo showing their pride for this community, but we all know the impact that this place on the mountain has left on us permanently.
Iris Maslow (Circle 2009)
President, Camp Louise Circle
Letter From the Director
Every Shabbat, there is one line of our service that sums up what camp is all about:
As we hold this cup of wine, let us praise God with this symbol of joy,
and thank God for life and strength, for home and love, and friendship.
And for Sabbath peace
When the entire camp joins in on the two words and friendship – it gets me every time. Hearing over 600 voices sing those words…it means so, so much.
We do a lot of good things every year at camp. We help teach campers how to grow and learn, how to find their voice, how to advocate for themselves, how to embrace their quirky sides. We encourage them to take positive risks and improve their self-esteem and independence. We become a community and it is all based on connections and friendships.
I think about my own life – the friendships I have made through the almost 40 years that I have spent at Camp Louise. I think about the friends who are there for me to share the joys of milestones, weddings, births, and a soonish-to-be B’not Mitzvah - yes, it’s true it is coming up in 2020! I think about the friends who are there for me in not-so-great times – there to support, lend an ear or a shoulder, and of course to bring food! I think of the friends I want to laugh and reminisce with and the list goes on….It always comes back to camp friends. They are simply the best, and I am beyond grateful for the ones who have been in my life since our camper years in the 1980s, the ones I met on staff in the crazy counselor days, the ones I have helped to mentor and have seen grow up here and the ones I have yet to meet.
Take some time to think about your own camp friendships and on the next Shabbat, sing those words proudly because those two simple words mean so, so much:
Alicia Block Berlin (Circle 1990)
Director, Camp Louise
Circle Day 2018: GOAL CRUSHED!
On May 24, 2018, Circle members around the world took time to honor Camp, Circle, and the gifts that both have brought to our lives.
Members took to social media to share pictures, memories, and stories, and local get-togethers were held in Washington DC, Baltimore, MD, Columbia, MD, Gaithersburg, MD, New York, NY, Philadelphia, PA, and more! These events brought together Circle Members of all generations.
This year’s Circle Day Donation Challenge had two goals: reach $2000 raised, and have that money be donated by at least 50 donors. With $2200 raised by 63 donors, we exceeded both!
Donations this year bought two new microphones for Camp Louise’s beautiful new theater, Jill’s Place. Read more about the theater’s July 14th dedication ceremony.
Thank you to everyone who participated in #CircleDay18!
Thank You to Our #CircleDay18 Donors!
Camp Louise Circle is a non-profit organization and we rely on donations from our loyal members to support us in achieving our mission each year. At Circle Day this year, we had a record-breaking 63 donors! Thank you for spreading the word and giving back to Circle.
Debi Sherson Goltz
Lisa Stein Aron
Molly Van Grack
Robert & Joan Block
Bobbye Feldman Gilden
Cheryl Levin Freund
Nominations are open until August 25 for any members who wish to run. Keep an eye out for an email in early September to vote on all nominees. Online voting will close on September 15, but a printed ballot will be available at Circle Reunion for those who are unable to vote online.
Take a moment now to think about someone you’d recommend to join the board, and email your nomination to Randi Moody at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to nominate yourself, go directly to the nomination form.
Interested in learning more about what it means to be on the board? You are committing to a 3 year term (you may be re-elected for a second term) in which you attend at least 2 of the 3 meetings per year. You will be expected to be on at least one committee and more importantly, you get to work with people who are just as passionate about Circle (and camp) as you are! If you have any questions about being on the board, contact Circle President, Iris Maslow at email@example.com.
Summer 2016 was our first summer being formally inclusive, and I took on the role of
Inclusion Coordinator in addition to being our Senior Camp Division Head. Our journey to
becoming formally inclusive came about very naturally. We have always had girls with specialneeds at our camp, and we have made it a point to serve these campers and help them be successful. Recently, though, we as a camp community decided to formalize our practice and become an inclusive camp. Prior to our inclusion journey formally starting, we spent time laying the groundwork. Training and learning opportunities were provided to our staff and older campers, including partnering with local camps, as we worked to learn and grow together as a community. As Summer 2016 started, I knew that we were ready to formally begin this journey. Camp has become a second home for thousands of girls. As a community, we knew we were ready to help support even more girls on their quest towards making Camp Louise their second home!
To celebrate our new journey, Circle gifted us money to use for our Inclusion program.
Camp Louise had generously given us the funding for our inclusion staff, two out-of-bunk staff members with special needs experience who would really help make every camper successful. So the money from Circle could be used for whatever we needed to support the program and the campers we were serving. As I reflected on what we might need, I knew that we had campers with sensory needs. I approached Alicia about the possibility of building a sensory area, and she quickly agreed.
Before even creating the space, we needed to decide what we wanted the space to be and
how we wanted it to be used. Alicia and I both felt strongly that we wanted the space to be a calm space that was accessible to anyone who needed it, not only to our campers with special needs. We wanted this to include staff as well, as we felt that having a space available to everyone reduced the possible stigma that could become attached to only having certain people access the space. Residential camp is an amazing experience, but it offers unique challenges. There is never a break, never a true escape from your bunk or a group of people. My goal was to create a space where campers and staff could come to take a break if they needed, where campers could learn to self-regulate and have a safe place to decompress.
I relied on my background as a Special Educator, and my work with students with
extensive sensory needs, to create a wish list of items for the space. I was able to compile an extensive array of items that I hoped would meet any of the different sensory needs that our campers and staff were experiencing when they came to this space. I included items to help calm campers who were in an escalated sensory stage, such as a weighted blanket, weighted shoulder wrap, stress balls, bean bag chairs, fidget toys, etc. I also included items to help campers who were in a more lethargic place, such as a trampoline, a variety of lighted toys, sensory tubes, a slime toy, etc. The next step was to order everything and wait for it to come in!
During our staff training week prior to campers arriving, I provided a basic training for all of our camp staff about the sensory area. I wanted our staff to know about the sensory area, what was in it, and my goals for how it was to be used. We began by talking about its name – we would be calling it “The Chill Zone”, instead of the sensory area, again looking to reduce any possible stigma. We also set the expectation that while any camper was allowed to be in it, they must be accompanied by a counselor or Camper Care staff member. I wanted the space to be accessible, however I did not want it to be a place where anyone could go to get out of activities they did not want to attend. Staff seemed excited by the new space, and I was eager to see how it would be used.
Over the course of the summer, the space proved to be a welcome addition. It was
primarily used by our Inclusion campers, though a few other campers and staff did use it. We happened upon a wonderful teachable moment one afternoon. One of our Camper Care team members was walking with a camper, and they saw a counselor in the Chill Zone. The camper got worked up at first, thinking the counselor was breaking the rules by being in there. The Camper Care specialist motioned to the counselor, to see if they could talk to her, and the counselor agreed. They asked the counselor what she was doing in the Chill Zone, and the counselor explained that she was feeling anxious and had a free period, and felt that she needed to come to the space to calm herself down and get herself back into a good space. The Camper Care member asked her what she was using to help her calm down, and they talked through the strategies she was using, and showed the camper the items she had chosen. The camper got excited because she liked to use the same things to relax, and was so excited that they had something in common. This camper often talked about how she was different, and here was a counselor who was "just like everyone else” using strategies like she did. It was a wonderful, natural, teachable moment.
Overall, I could not be more proud of the journey that Camp Louise has officially started this past summer. In moving from supporting our campers naturally to becoming formally inclusive, we have taken what we have always done well and embraced it as a community, and I could not be prouder!
Sara Schreurs (Circle 2012)
Circle Board Member, Camp Louise Division Head and Inclusion Coordinator
Committee Update: Membership
I don’t know about you, but Circle’s feeling 82! Membership committee has been busy this year making sure that old age doesn’t slow us down! Check out what we’ve been up to this year (and remember, if you ever have ideas for events, let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org)!
Thank you to everyone who participated in Circle Day! For those of us who can't return to camp each summer, it was a nice reminder of the community we're a part of.
Camp History Night took place on Saturday, July 7th, and took campers through time as they heard stories from past campers and counselors (and current Circle members!), created bunk time capsules to celebrate the present, and helped to beautify our Sound Garden to preserve Camp for future campers.
Circle pinning and induction takes place on Sunday, July 22nd, as we welcome a new class of members to Circle. Make sure to say hi when you see them at Circle Reunion on September 21st-23rd!
This is my first year on Circle Board, and I am loving it! Three times a year, I get to meet with women I’ve admired for years (including four former counselors, one former unit leader, and a former CIT), and we sit and talk about how to improve Circle, how to celebrate and give back to Camp Louise, and how best to preserve friendships and bonds made during Circle’s almost 82 years - what more could you possibly want? If that sounds like fun to you (as it should), here’s the form for self-nominations. If you know of someone who would be great on board, email Randi Moody at email@example.com.
Lots of Circular love,
Janie Brown (Circle 2015)
Vice President of Membership
Committee Update: Reunion
Mark your calendar for this year’s reunion which will be held Friday, September 21st to Sunday September 23rd, 2018. This year's reunion theme is “Circle Like A Rockstar” and is set to be a rocking’ weekend!
Registration information has been emailed out, and you may have noticed a slight difference in how online registration will work. Rather than select a price that fits your position, there are two different prices for single day and full weekend, and then you enter the appropriate discount code:
Are you a Circle member? The code CIRCLE18 gives you 15% off!
Did you work at Camp this summer? The code STAFF18 gives you 65% off!
Are you a new Circle inductee? The code INDUCTEE18 gives you 100% off!
If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As always, this weekend is fun because of our attendees like you! Help us provide the activities you'd like to see by volunteering to run one of our programs below:
- Campfire/Song Session
- Copper Enameling
- Ice Breakers throughout the weekend
NEW! After Party with Leaf
This year, mark your calendar for the "after party" at The Ott with Camp Airy Leaf. No RSVP required - Stop by or stick around on Sunday!
Where: The Otthouse Pub (Emmitsburg) When: Sunday around lunch Who: Anyone - Circle and Leaf!
Note: You'll be responsible for your own bill.
2018-09-21 18:30:002018-09-23 20:00:00America/New_YorkSave the Date: Circle ReunionMore details about registering for Circle Reunion will come out in late spring/early summer. Camp Louise, 24959 Pen Mar Rd, Cascade, MD, 21719, USACamp Louise Circlelesleyl@camplouisecircle.org
Committee Update: Fundraising
Circle needs your support to make it possible for Circle to continue its mission of maintaining friendships and providing service and leadership to Camp Louise. There are a number of ways that you can give back to camp, visit our Give Back Web Page to learn more.
July 16th is Amazon Prime Day! Do all your shopping from smile.amazon.com and select Camp Louise Circle Fund, Inc., and Amazon will donate .5% back to Circle!
New this year, Circle has reduced the prices of our Circle Sisterhood Tree of Life leaves ($86) , dedication plaques ($216), and bricks ($150). These are great ways to honor family and friends while supporting Circle. Leave your legacy now!
Camp Louise Stationery (formally known as Mitzvah Cards) are great to send to friends for a thank you note, Birthday cards, or just because! The cards cost $2 for 1 card or $18 for 10 cards. Order your cards today!
Finally, you can make a 100% tax-deductible gift in support of Camp Louise Circle, where you can support the general work of Circle, or a more specific fund like Reunion Scholarships. If you make a donation in someones honor, a Mitzvah Card will be sent to the individual. Make your gift.
All orders and donations forms have been centralized. No matter how you choose to support circle, please use this form to support Circle: Give Back – Camp Louise Circle form. After you fill out the form, you will be contacted with information on how to send your payment to he Circle Treasurer, Dani Hercenberg.
Sandy Saval (Circle 1997) and Lynda Dye (Circle 1997)
Vice Presidents of Fundraising
Camp is approaching its 100th anniversary (only 5 more years!). As current Circle board historian, I was put to task with coming up with ideas of how we can best preserve Circle and Camp’s history. A few years ago, there was a fundraiser for creating a history book, but I believe we could preserve the history better through the website.
We have an opportunity to scan and digitize important Circle and Camp documents, including the charter, photos of induction classes, and interesting stories from our shared history. Wouldn't it be great if we can view those things even when we are not in 21719?
Perhaps with all of this digitized, it would make compiling a book easier in the long run. I think it would also be nice to be able to give out a mini book (or even coloring book!) out to campers for the 100-year anniversary to get them excited about Circle!
If you have other ideas or want to be apart of this project in any way, please consider joining Circle Board this fall!
Sarah Sherman (Circle 2009)
Inductee Spotlight: Alyssa Green
The Inductee Spotlight features someone who is joining Circle in the most recent induction class.
Location: State College, PA Age: 20 Job at camp: CIT counselor Job in the real world: I'm a rising junior at Penn State When did you know you wanted to make Circle?: When I signed up for CIT summer! What does making Circle mean to you? It’s one of those camp goals. When you’re a camper you want to be a CIT, when you’re a CIT you want to be a counselor, and when you’re a counselor you want to make Circle. It’s a very meaningful thing to me. What are you looking forward to most about being in Circle?: I’m looking forward to pinning other people (if I get asked)! I just want to be able to make the same impact on other people that my friends and counselors have made on me at Camp. Who and why did you choose the people you asked to pin you?: I asked Sarah Sherman (Circle 2009) and Alyssa Chircus (Circle 2011). I really look up to both of them, and I feel like they’ve been a constant in my life. We still talk all the time, and I’m always excited to see them. Unit D was one of my favorite summers at camp, and I think both of them were a big reason why.
Inductee Spotlight: Rachel Wolman
The Inductee Spotlight features someone who is joining Circle in the most recent induction class.
Location: Richmond, VA Age: 28 Job at camp: Songleader/head of the Songleading department. Job in the real world: I’m a song leader in real life! I help build music in communities all over the country. Number of years at camp: I was a camper for six years, then I took a ten year break, and this is my fourth year on staff, so this is technically my tenth summer. How did you end up coming back to camp?: Rabbi Elissa found me song leading at a conference in DC and told me that they were looking for a songleader at Camp Louise that summer. I had already committed to another summer program, but I came to Camp for 2 weeks, and I’ve come all summer ever since! What did you know you wanted to make Circle? I was obsessed with everything Camp after my first summer, but I don’t think the concept hit me until I was in unit E. My AIM profile had all my milestone years on it, like “Senior 04, ST2k5, CA2k6, CIT2007, and Circle 2010.” When I didn’t come back for CA summer, it was a really big deal for me. What does making Circle mean to you? It’s something that I wanted for such a long time, and I never knew this would happen; it’s such a surprising thing, and it feels really special even though I’m so much older than I thought I would be when I made Circle. Also, the fact that I’m a third-generation camp here is a big deal, but both my grandma and my mom were both here for only a year, so I’m the first one to stay and really commit to Camp. What are you looking forward to most about being in Circle?: I think it’s just being part of Camp forever, and always having a home here. I’ve worked and been at other camps, but there is really something special about Louise that I can’t explain. Who and why did you choose the people you asked to pin you?: I asked Robyn Kleiner (Circle 2010) and Jesse Reter-Choate (Circle 1974). Robyn has been a partner in this work with me, and I think it’s even more special that she’s not Jewish; what I do is so Jewish, and she gets it on such a deep level. It was also nice last summer to have someone who gets where I am in life, and I get where she is, and we just work so well together. It just felt right. JRC is literally the best boss I’ve ever had. She also was my camp director growing up, which is a cool thing. She’s also a big reason I came back after my first full summer on staff; if I didn’t have a good supervisor then things would have been a lot more challenging, but she’s the greatest.
Points on the Circle
> Jeremy Sitnick (Circle 2006) welcomed Nava Elyse Kammerman-Sitnick to the world on June 8th, 2018, where her very excited big sister, Ruby, was waiting!
> Suzanne Bass Sztul (Circle 2007) welcomed Daniel Martin Sztul on March 23rd, 2018, weighing in at 8 pounds, 5 ounces.
> Know someone expecting? Surprise them with a camp shirt for their baby! Camps Airy & Louise offer free 12 month, 2T, or 4T shirts to any alumni. Contact email@example.com with a shipping address and size.
> Melanie Blatt (Circle 2009) was ordained as a cantor at Hebrew College and is joining the senior staff at Beth El Congregation of Baltimore.
> Jessica Berger (Circle 2015) is moving to Brooklyn and has begun a job at Writers House, a literary agency where she’ll be handling foreign contracts and tax exemption forms for John Green, Stephenie Meyer, and Neil Gaiman.
> Lauren Roche (Circle 2017) started an internship at a startup called Zentail in Columbia.
> Hayley Spolter (Circle 2016) graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University and started a job as a data analyst.
> Keri Baxter Hoffman (Circle 1997) graduated from West Virginia University with a BS in Medical Laboratory Science, and has a job working as a medical technologist at Uniontown Hospital in Uniontown, PA.
Engagements & Weddings
> SJ Frost (Circle 2009) got engaged on May 20th, 2018.
> Melissa Lozinsky (Circle 2013) is having a great year; she started a new job at a curriculum company, AND got engaged!
> Alissa Maryn Aponte (Circle 2013) got married on October 7th at Liberty Mountain Resort (the location of Camp Louise’s staff banquets!).
> Amy Rewilak (nee Cory) (Circle 2012) married Johan Rewilak on June 1st, 2018, with Emily Kay (Circle 2010) as a bridesmaid. Amy’s hen do/bachelorette party was “Camp Amy” themed, and she and her friends enjoyed a weekend of folk dancing, arts and crafts, athletics, photography, nature, and cab night.
> Randi Moody (Circle 1998) celebrated the Bat Mitzvah of her daughter, Ashleigh, on October 21st, 2017.
Join the Database
Just a reminder to all Circle members and Louise alumni: The Circle maintains a database that contains your contact information (address, phone and email) as well as your camp history. If you've moved or changed your name or address since your record was created...if you're not sure you even have a record, please fill out the alumnae database form on the website.