Issue: Winter 2016

Download the printable version of the Louise Lighthouse.

> Circle Day: May 25, 2016
> Reunion: September 16-18, 2016

Letter From the President

Andie Snyder

I can’t believe winter is already here – and that Circle Reunion was a few months ago! It feels like just yesterday that we were folkdancing in Social Hall and celebrating Shabbat in Solarium at our biggest Reunion ever! I am already looking forward to the warm weather of the summer (and visits to camp)!

Now is a great opportunity to become more involved with Circle and all that we do to give back to Camp and strengthen our relationships with each other. If you love attending Reunion, consider joining one of the Reunion committees! We always are looking for volunteers to help plan and execute our biggest event of the year. Or, join one of our many Membership and Fundraising committees, and attend Circle social events throughout the year. I, along with the whole Board, are always looking for ways to make Circle the best it can be, and we can’t do that without you! For me, Camp has always been such an important part of my life, and becoming actively involved with Circle was a natural extension of my desire to give back. One of my favorite aspects of being on the Board is getting to know and work with so many Circle members and learn about past generations of Camp.

We are also always in need of financial support so that Circle is able to continue giving back to the current campers and staff of Camp Louise and supporting our membership. No amount is too small to have a big impact on our future. If you are looking for a way to memorialize or honor a loved one, consider purchasing a Leaf on the Circle Tree of Life, dedication plaque in the Dining Hall, or commemorative brick to leave a lasting, visual impact at Camp! Read on to find out more about all of these wonderful opportunities.

I would like to extend a huge thank you to those Board members whose terms have ended this year – Debbie Apple, Jana Kalish Hummel, and Lesley Levin – for all the time you have dedicated to Circle over the past several years. And, to all continuing and newly-elected Board members, thank you so much for all that you do to make Circle great! In the past year, we have launched online Board nominations and voting and re-instituted online donations and registrations; enhanced the Lighthouse; held the biggest Reunion ever; had many happy hours, #CircleDay15, and mid-winter bowling; planned a great Camp History Day; built the nature nook; expanded our membership, and so much more!

Lastly, don’t forget to keep any eye on our website, Facebook group and page, and your email, to make sure you stay up-to-date on Circle happenings! I’m so excited to see what 2016 will bring for Circle and to get to know even more of you of you in the months ahead. If you ever have any questions, suggestions, or concerns, feel free to contact me or any Board member. Thanks to the Lighthouse Committee for your work on this latest edition – even though it might be snowing outside, I know that reading through these articles will take my thoughts right back to Camp!

Andie Snyder (Circle 2006)
President, Camp Louise Circle

Letter From the Director

Alicia Berlin

When I made Circle back in 1990, asking someone to pin you was important and took a lot of thought. Who had a positive impact on you at camp so far, who was a role model for you in and out of camp, and whom did you want standing next to you on that important day? We took it seriously back then, just as they do now. However, in recent years the ask looks A LOT different.

Now, many inductees start planning their “pin-posals” well in advance – just ask some of our current campers. I know for a fact that some of them are already thinking about it. Some still elect for a more personal ask while others lean toward a more public display. There are surprise presentations at a show or in the Dining Hall, there are flash mobs and poems or songs written for the occasion. In public or private, the reasons are still the same… who has helped make camp special for you?

This year, we were so proud to welcome 40 new members into the Circle! During the traditional ceremony in the Library, we read from the original charter which talks about the bonds of friendship and loyalty, and of course Aunt Lil’s famous words: “We welcome you into the Circle. Now you belong to us, Camp Louise. Wherever you go, live the good you have learned here!”

Staff members Orel Habrie (Circle 2014) and Jessie "JRC" Reter-Choate (Circle 1973) spoke about the Circle of Friendship and the Circle of Loyalty. See their speeches below.

As you read their speeches, remember your Circle Ceremony and think about the person who pinned you whether it was just this year or many years ago. Look through old pictures. If you are no longer in touch with the person who pinned you, write them a note, give them a call, and let them know how important they are to you. We all have a camp story. Be sure to share yours and ask others about theirs. That’s what keeps us strong. 93 and counting…

Alicia Block Berlin (Circle 1990)
Director, Camp Louise

Circle of Friendship

By Orel Habrie (Circle 2014)

Friendships started at camp can be separated by miles and months without losing any of their strength. I’m going to tell you a secret: I know all about the miles. I also know that camp has given me the strongest and most important friendships in my life. Meeting a new friend at camp is different than anywhere else because we are sharing one goal: providing an awesome summer for our amazing campers. We know we can support each other and look to each other for guidance.

As a former member of the IDF, I thought I knew what it meant to be part of a brotherhood, a family. But that definition changed for me when I arrived at Camp Louise. Since the day I walked through the gate, I have met friends who are still making an impact on my life today.

During the year I work for an insurance company, wearing a suit every day. I count down the days until I can be at my summer home where I know that my friends will support all of my crazy decisions, like wearing a dress or a monkey suit. My friends at camp know that we can count on each other for anything. We have grown up together and shared unique life experiences. Who else can say that they met their best friend from Louise on the porch or Airy’s uphill social hall? Or that their friends planned a surprise baby shower for them during the busiest week in the summer? I definitely can. And these are only my stories. Think about all of the friendships we make year after year at camp. All of the special stories we share in common.

The Lion King sings about the Circle of Life, I want to start singing about the Circle of Friendship.

Circle of Loyalty

By Jessie "JRC" Reter-Choate (Circle 1973)

Morihei Ueshiba (Mo ri hay OO e shi ba) founder of the Japanese martial arts form of Aikido wrote: Loyalty and devotion lead to bravery. Bravery leads to spirit of self-sacrifice. The spirit of self-sacrifice creates trust in the power of love.

Loyalty requires sacrifice. Yes, sacrifice. The Circle was formed because a number of counselors felt they had sacrificed summers to work at and be a part of Camp Louise and they felt that three summers showed faithfulness to commitment. They sacrificed being home with family, school friends, boyfriends, even fiancés to be a part of Camp Louise and eventually the Circle. The early Circle counselors are not so different from our Circle counselors and staff today. They sacrifice being with their family, friends, and significant others. They give up the comforts of home to rough it in the mountains of Cascade. And probably everyone of us, Circle or not, will say there is financial sacrifice.

Why do we do this summer after summer? Because somewhere along the way, maybe in three days or three weeks or three years, it doesn’t seem like we’re making sacrifices anymore. It seems like we’ve come back to camp family and camp friends and others will have to understand that we’ve developed a commitment of faithfulness to this place called Camp Louise.

Here we become brave: we can make mistakes and have huge successes. We bravely push ourselves to new limits. We bravely do a job that many people do not understand and then we reach that place of self-sacrifice. We do it for the campers and other staff. We give up the last piece of toast, the last peanut butter on the table, an OD coverage and maybe an hour or two of precious time off. And once we have reached that point of self-sacrifice we find loyalty. We find we love this place and we are home.

Welcome to a Circle of Loyalty.

Circle Inductees

Each summer, our Circle family grows a little more. The Lighthouse committee broke down the demographics of the 2015 Circle inductees by the numbers.

Circle Inductees 2016

Thank You to Our 2015 Donors!

Circle has made an impact to our members, current staff and campers of Louise by contributing to summer programming at Camp, recognizing counselors and staff with an end-of-summer gift, providing scholarships for 15 of your Circle sisters and brothers to attend Reunion at a more affordable cost in 2015, contributing to Camper scholarships, and so much more. All of this is accomplished thanks to our donors.

Carla Loebman
Ayme Lederman
Lesley Levin
Ellen Levy
Carla Loebman
Iris Maslow
Margery Meltzer
Melissa Perlin
Jennifer Falik Rains
Carey Roseman
Jill Rosenthal
Sandy Saval
Sharon Selko
Nancie Severs
Stephanie Sloane
Susan Smith
Andria Snyder
Lisa Yarmis
Laura Young

Deborah Apple
Lisa Blatt Bennett
Alicia Berlin
Sara Berlin
Joan Block
Jeri Blum
Paula Bragg
Sarajane Brown
Cobi Cohen
Arthur Drager
Ellen Goldstein Fishkin
Wendy Fredericks
Pam Friedman
Patricia Grossman
Sheila Hayes
Lauren Hirt
Jessica Katz
Ellen Mae Kaye
Lawrence Kravitz
Debra Ladwig

Join the 2016 Donor List »

Save the Date for Circle Day 2016

Last year, Circle Day was born and Circle members around the globe took time out of their day to share photos, get together with other members, and generally live the good learned in years spent at Camp Louise.

Mark your calendars and join us on Wednesday, May 25 for our 2nd Annual Circle Day celebration.

Events in Baltimore, Columbia, and DC are already being planned, and we're looking for members willing to coordinate get-togethers in other locations around the country and the world!

Please contact Sandy Bresnick Saval at if you're interested in helping make this year's Circle Day a success.

Committee Update: Membership

Iris Maslow

When it’s cold outside, and you’re stuck in traffic or busy cooking holiday meals, camp could not feel further away. Isn’t that always how the winter feels? Everyone gets caught up in the details, and sometimes stopping to remember camp warms us enough to get through the stress.

Social/Special Events

Need some face time with your Circle sisters and brothers? Happy hours, coffee dates and more are being planned for the spring. Stay tuned and continue checking Facebook for updates.

Also, mark your calendar for #CircleDay16 for May 25th. If you ever have an idea for a social and special event, contact Alyssa Chircus at

The Lighthouse

With the second edition of the digital version of the Lighthouse, what do you think? Do you miss having the physical version (you can still download it here)? Is something broken? Just like at camp, your feedback helps us get better with each new edition. And if you ever have an article idea, please contact Rachel Gutin Medvin at As always, you can stay connected with membership and other Circle updates on our Facebook organization page, the Facebook group, and the website. Have a wonderful 2016!

Thank you to all the members of the membership committee for your help this past year! And thank you to everyone for participating in the events we plan, contributing to the Facebook page and group, and for taking the time to read the Lighthouse each issue. It’s people like you who make the membership committee so much fun to be on!

Iris Maslow (Circle 2009)
Vice President of Membership

Committee Update: Reunion

On September 25th, nearly 300 Circle members, family, friends, and guests gathered at Camp Louise for the 2015 Circle Reunion. This was officially the largest Circle Reunion ever!

Throughout the weekend, attendees were able to able to catch up with old friends and create new ones while enjoying the various activities that are offered at reunion. From Friday Night Folkdancing and Saturday morning Shabbat services to Sunday morning brunch, everyone had a blast making new memories while reminiscing about wonderful days as a Camp Louise camper and/or staff member.

Facebook Album from Circle Reunion 2015 »

I would like to thank all of you for coming and taking part in the best reunion yet. I would especially like to take the opportunity to thank all of the volunteers from our own Circle board members and beyond that helped make the weekend a success.

Alison Kaplan

The next Vice President of Reunion is Alison Cederbaum Kaplan, (Circle '06). She's already underway in planning next year's reunion and together we hope that the 2016 reunion can top 2015’s! As you can imagine, it takes many people to make our largest event successful. If you're interested in getting involved, contact Alison at I hope to see you all back in Cascade on September 16, 2016.

Jana Hummel (Circle 2006)
Previous Vice President of Circle Reunion

Circle Reunion 2016:
September 16-18, 2016
2016-09-16 18:30:00 2016-09-18 20:00:00 America/New_York Save the Date: Circle Reunion More details about registering for Circle Reunion will come out in late spring/early summer. Camp Louise, 24959 Pen Mar Rd, Cascade, MD, 21719, USA Camp Louise Circle

Committee Update: Fundraising

Paula Bragg

It's never too early to get started on your 2016 contributions - now is the time to make your 100% tax-deductible gift in support of Camp Louise Circle. Your gift can support the general work of Circle, Reunion Scholarships, Camperships, etc.

Make your gift.

Other ways to support Camp Louise Circle:

  • Leave your legacy with a Circle Sisterhood Tree of Life leaf, a dedication plaque, or a brick.
  • Mitzvah Cards
  • AmazonSmile - With every purchase, Amazon will donate .5% back to Camp Louise Circle Fund, Inc. if you designate it.

If you have any questions about your donation or would like to donate an amount other than specified above, please contact the Circle Treasurer, Dani Hercenberg.

Paula Bragg (Circle 1997)
Vice President of Fundraising

Give »

Recipe: Andie's Mom's Kugel

By: Andie Snyder (Circle 2006)


6 eggs
1 package (12 to 16 oz) broad egg noodles
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup raisins, any color
1 pint sour cream
1 brick cream cheese
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1 pound small-curd cottage cheese
pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Topping: combination of brown sugar, nuts, etc. usually I mix brown sugar and whatever kind of granola I have laying around, carol uses a mix of brown sugar, walnuts, cinnamon, and other things, some people use corn flakes. Basically some sort of combination of brown sugar and pie-type toppings. You'll need about a cup.

To make:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 13x9 baking dish
2. Begin cooking noodles, according to directions on package.
3. In a bowl, mix together the eggs, sugar, raisins, salt, and vanilla
4. Once noodles are done, drain and place empty pot back on stove. Pour in the dairy products (sour cream, cream cheese, cottage cheese, and butter), and stir until melted. The heat from the pot should be enough to melt everything - but you can turn the stove back on low to help it along (just keep an eye on it so nothing burns!)
5. Add noodles to this mixture and mix well.
7. Add egg mixture the pot, mix well.
8. Pour in to greased pan, cover evenly with topping.

Bake for 45 minutes to an hour, let cool before serving (it continues to set up a bit).

Download Recipe »

New Circle Spotlight: Tali Cowen

The New Circle Spotlight features someone who joined Circle in the most recent induction class.

Location: I am from Rockville, Maryland, but I am currently a student in Boston, Massachusetts at Boston University.
Age: 20
Year you made Circle: 2015!
Years on staff: I've worked at camp for 3 years; my first two years were in Unit A, and this past summer I was a CA counselor. I also became a lifeguard between my first and second summers so I spent the past two summers at the pool!
Job in the real world: I’m a junior at Boston University majoring in Deaf Studies with a minor in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences. I will hopefully be staying at Boston University after undergrad to receive my Masters in Deaf Education, and plan to become an elementary school teacher for Deaf kids!
What brought you to camp? My uncle attended Camp Airy when he was a kid. I'm not sure why my Mom or their other siblings didn't attend, but my cousins (who are a few years older) started going before my brother, sister, and I started going. I started in bunk 16 in 2003, and then was a counselor in bunk 16 in 2013 (my first year on staff)!
Sadly (and not sadly) I will be abroad in New Zealand until July, so I will not be working at camp full time. But I am making arrangements to volunteer!
Favorite camp memory: One of my favorite stories to tell is that when I was in bunk 18 (with Andie Snyder as my counselor!), one of my counselors sang us the Babysitter Song by Dar Williams every night as we went to sleep. When I got home that summer, I began singing my little sister to sleep with it until she decided she was too old for it. I also sang it to my campers when I was a Unit A counselor!
Hobbies: While it is part of my major, I do consider Sign Language a hobby. Some others include cooking, traveling, coloring, and reading.
What are you looking forward to in 2016? On January 1, I will set out for New Zealand to study abroad for 6 months at Auckland University! While I'm there, I will take classes and intern in a deaf elementary school. I am SO nervous and SO excited at the same time! I know for sure that I will be visiting Fiji, but I also hope to visit Australia and Thailand! If you've ever been to New Zealand or any of those places, please reach out to me! I'd love all the suggestions I can get!

Crossover Circle Spotlight: Dr. Steve Thompson

The Crossover Spotlight features someone who is a member of both Camp Airy's Order of the Leaf and Camp Louise's Circle.

Location: Baltimore, MD
Age: 53 (but I rarely act my age).
Circle Induction Year: 2015
Leaf Induction Year: 1980
Job in the Real World: Well for me, Camp is my real world and everything else simply serves to support my time there! I'm a Pediatric Neurologist and Neuro-Oncologist treating children with neurologic disorders, brain tumors, and neurologic complications of cancer. I also teach medical students and residents. I work in downtown Baltimore where my title is Associate Professor and Medical Director, Division of Pediatric Neurology, Department of Pediatrics, University of Maryland School of Medicine.
What Brought You to Camp? My mom and her siblings went to Airy and Louise. It was only natural for my brother and I and our cousins to attend Camp.
Number of years worked at camp/department: I was an Airy CIT in 1978, and a counselor from 1978-1980. From 2003, I began working as a camp doctor; after several years, I became Medical Director for Camp Airy and then a few years after that I took on my current role as Director of Medicine for Camps Airy & Louise.
Do you still work at camp: Yes.
Favorite camp memory: I have so many wonderful memories, here's a short list: having Mike Schneider as my counselor, learning archery from him, then being a counselor with him as my Unit Leader. Summers looking out at the view from the Camp Airy Unit A Line-Up area. Hikes along the railroad tracks (we don't do those anymore due to safety concerns). My first hike to Thurmont Vista. The Camp Louise Country Fair when I was a camper. Being a counselor and watching movies on the USH with my Campers piled all around me. Shooting archery, even from as far back as the road at Airy. Sing songs on bus trips. Watching my son become a part of Airy - that has been so special, seeing a third generation Camper start as a young boy and seeing him become a young man on our mountain.
Hobbies: Archery, guitar, cycling, fishing (especially with my son and my father), reading.
What are you looking forward to in 2016? Another wonderful summer seeing old friends and making new ones. Spending a full week working in the Health Center at Camp Louise in addition to my time over at Camp Airy.

Transplant Circle Spotlight: Katie Brodsky

The Transplant Spotlight features someone who is not Homegrown or didn't attend camp as a camper. Instead, this person came to love camp later in life.

Location: Lindenhurst, NY

Age: 36
Year you made circle: 2004
Job in real world: Mad Scientist, After School Program Coordinator at Mad Science of Long Island. I coordinate and teach science enrichment programs to kids all over Long Island, grades K-5.
Who brought you to camp? Becca Wolf!
Favorite camp memory: It is so hard to just pick one! Being a color game captain at the Womerica Games in 2002, Folkdance, late nights in Solarium, making t-shirts for EVERYTHING, secret pals, Drama department and singing *all the time*, and the wacky antics of the campers, along with their ability to sometimes just completely amaze you with talent, wisdom, or compassion. All the side-splitting laughter fits, all the smiles when you see someone, even if you already saw them 295 other times that day. Nowhere else in the world is there a place that constantly reinforces how awesome every person is, or has the capacity to be, like at Camp Louise.
Hobbies: Singing, crafting, reading, gaming... considering new hobbies.
Something that I’m looking forward to in 2016: I'd like to get into photography, get in shape, go on a real vacation, create something, start writing to pen-pals… And, of course, Circle Reunion!

Golden Circle Spotlight: Mary Maslow

The Golden Circle Spotlight features someone who is 50 years old or older and still passionate about Camp Louise.

Location: Baltimore, MD
Age: 60
Circle Year: 1998
What brought you to camp? My college roommate, Joan Fine. She asked me in the Spring of 1976 what my summer plans were and when I said I had none, she asked me to come to camp with her because “I’d love it.” Sure enough, I fell in love with Camp Louise that summer. I couldn’t come back the next year, but I made it back when my children were old enough to come to camp. I’m grateful that camp is a place where I can bring my children to and have them fall in love with it as much as I did. I also can’t imagine what kind of person I would have become without my great roommate, Joan, recommending that I come to camp that summer. It’s a place where I go and I can be who I want to be and not have any worldly troubles on my mind.
Favorite Camp Memory: Sitting on the parking lot watching the fireworks on July 4, 1976. We were on the “top of the hill” right in front of the street hockey court (which were tennis courts back then). The whole camp sat there and we watched fireworks from Ft. Ritchie. I have so many memories, and that’s why I keep going back – so I can make more.
Job in the Real World: I am a fitness specialist for cardiac rehabilitation at Northwest Hospital. I also do personal training in the home.
Hobbies: Beading, cooking (although sometimes that can be a chore), crafting
Do you still work at camp? What are you looking forward to in 2016? I volunteer because I love it! My soul needs a dose of camp each year. In 2016, I'm excited for another exceptional year at camp! AND getting camp prepared to receive my soon-to-be-born granddaughter!

Points on the Circle


> Erica Tucker (Circle 2001) and her wife had a baby, Bradley Morris Tucker on November 17, 2015.

> Elisha Robinson Manassa (Circle 2008) is expecting a baby boy in January 2016. She and her husband, Aaron, are looking forward to raising a little Airy camper.

> Molly Van Grack (Circle 2005) and her husband Alan welcomed Jonah Elliott Van Grack on December 29, 2015. He was 7lbs 5oz and 21.5 inches long with a full head of dark hair.

> Mary Maslow (Circle 1998) is going to be a grandma! Her daughter, Crystal, is expecting a future Louise camper in early February. That also makes Iris Maslow (Circle 2009) an aunt!

> Dani Berger Hercenberg (Circle 2006) gave birth to a future Airy camper, Charlie Solomon Hercenberg on July 29, 2015. Mom and son are doing well!

> Davina Kleid (Circle 2006) gave birth to Rebecca Leah Kleid on June 7th at 10:56 am. This future Louise camper was 7 pounds, 2 ounces, and 19 inches long!

> Cyndi Heinecke became a grandmother recently with the birth of her grandson, Kamden, on 11/3/15!

> Laurie Edelman Goodwin (Circle 2003) and her husband welcomed son Samuel Leib Goodwin on November 18, 2015. He is named for Shlomo (her maternal grandfather, and holocaust survivor) and Leib (her husband's paternal grandfather).

> 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 with a shipping address and size.

Career Achievements

> Mazel tov to Amy Weiss (Circle 1999) who is officially retired after 25 years of teaching!

> Hannah Weitz (Circle 2013) graduated from Washington University in St. Louis in May and moved to Chicago to work as a Consultant for Morningstar Financial.

> Mollie Matz (Circle 2013) graduated from University of Michigan in the spring and is currently living in Minneapolis working in marketing for SC Johnson.


> Marilyn (Maz Cohen) Olarsch (Circle 1948) passed away this past June. Her daughter sent in a letter on behalf of her. If you'd like to read the letters, please click on the images.

> Myra Polen (Circle 1956) passed away December 11.She led a full and fulfilled life to 96 years old. Read about Myra's camp story in the past issue of the Lighthouse.

Engagements & Weddings

>Suzanne Bass (Circle 2007) married Joshua Sztul on September 6, 2015 at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, where they currently live.

Other Announcements

> Sherry Rubin’s (Circle 1991) son, Jeremy, became a Bar Mitzvah on December 1.

> Lawrence Kravitz (Circle 1998) continued his adventures as he traveled to Central Europe in September. Lawrence says, “I sought the crafts in Poland, Hungary, Austria, Slovakia, and Czech Republic. Krakow with its display of amber and the infamous camps were my personal highlights of that tour. I returned to Uzbekistan in November to visit friends. There were appealing artisan knives, rugs, and silk crafts here.”

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 contact Henri Goettel at to check and update your record.

Contact Henri »

Jane's Joke

Happy New Year from Jane Sacks (Circle 2005)! Jane brings you a new joke with each issue of the Lighthouse.

Honor someone, share your pride, or give back:
License Plate | Mitzvah Cards | Sisterhood Tree of Life Leaves | Bricks | Dedication Plaques

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