(contributed by primetimepappy)
It has been 35 years and 70 pounds, since I last attended summer camp. There are many fond memories such as charismatic counselors, bonding, water sports, competitive athletics, 7:00 AM Reveille, and daily bunk inspections. Maybe the Reveille and bunk inspections weren’t so much fun, but they were an integral piece of the experience. So I was very excited by the opportunity to stay at Club Getaway in Kent CT.
Club Getaway is a summer camp for adults. It used to be a summer camp for children and teenagers. Now it allows adults to relive their camp experiences for terrific vacations or weekends. Usually, the camp is just for adults. But there are two weeks set aside for families. Once we’re married with kids, a camp vacation is far less simple. Our family of two adults and three young children were assigned a roomy cabin. While incredibly rustic, it was luxurious compared to the camp I attended. This cabin had hot water and a shower in the cabin, glass in the windows, and an air conditioner. No one would ever mistake these cabins for the rooms at the Ritz. But the wood floors, wood paneling, wooden bedframes, and rough ceiling plaster made the experience authentic.
Its setting is ideal for a summer camp. It is about 1 ½ hour from NYC, situated in the southern Berkshires at the edge of a peaceful lake. The dining hall and cabins are set on a hill. All campers do a lot of walking. The walking alone is terrific exercise. But a lot more is available.
Club Getaway offers many activities and amenities you’d expect from and look forward to at a camp. Athletic activities include tennis, water skiing, kayaking, sailing, swimming, bike riding, and hiking. There are many others also. Even trapeze lessons (with a safety net) are offered. When I attended camp, we were pushed in swimming like we were training for the Olympics, tennis for the US Open, and soccer for the World Cup. At Club Getaway, activities are far more relaxed. The waterfront was used more for sunbathing than for swimming laps. Everyone waterskiing had grins on their faces. The tennis courts had racquets and balls. But if you are serious about playing tennis, you’d be best off bringing your own racquets. Great mountain biking or road biking is available. Whether you want a leisurely ride or want to push yourself, you can. When finished, you can relax in a yoga class. If you’re looking for some own time, board games and arts an crafts are also offered. In summary, whether you prefer to relax outside or to push yourself athletically all day, your needs are met.
Individual needs are catered to in other ways also. Breakfast is serve from 8:00 to 10:30. So whether you want to face the day like a lion or sleep in like a house cat, you can. Some people have special dietary needs. We keep Kosher, another family we met only eats organic. Club Getaway make a huge effort to accommodate these needs. The organic family brought their own food. The Chef heated and served it. The dining staff is very friendly and accommodating. They really go out of their way to serve campers needs and provide a great experience.
Meals are communal in a large dining hall form breakfast and dinner. Lunch is served in a huge tent. All meals are served family style, just like at the summer camp I attended.
Because, we attended a family week, special programs for children were available. The groups were broken down by age, with age-appropriate activities The number of kids in each section varied. In the morning, the 1-3s had about ten. In the afternoons, most were so tired out they needed naps. One afternoon, our two year old son had the class to himself. He seemed quite happy with his two fun British blondes.
How did the Club Getaway find such great counselors? They were fun, engaging, high-energy, and charismatic. The same can be said for the rest of the staff also. They all had great personalities and made tremendous efforts to provide a great experience.
Their personalities also shined at night. Every night, there was fun entertainment or a party. When we were there, the entertainment was family oriented with Ice Cream Sundaes and dancing one night and a children’s song and dance performance the next. Some nights, you can make s’mores at a campfire while singing camp songs. I can only imagine how much fun the parties are when they’re adults only.
The staff weren’t the only ones contributing to the highly social atmosphere. The other campers were a lot of fun. Most were friendly, outgoing, and eager to make new acquaintances. Most were from New York and were eager for some fast friends while on vacation. People looked for reasons to strike up conversations – the stroller, my son’s dreadlocks, coffee, and shared activites like tennis and waterskiing.
I did manage to unintentionally annoy one camper. When I attended summer camp as a child, my exceptionally loud snoring drew ire and rounds of sneaker throwing. Since then, two rounds of surgery has certainly reduced the volume. However, A woman in an adjoining cabin knocked on the door one night politely asking if I could move to one of the beds further from the shared wall.
In summary, Club Getaway is a great experience. Many people return year after year. Anyone capable of walking outside would enjoy this vacation experience. I wish I had known of it when I was single. But even guests with families will receive a huge amount of fun and lots of exercise. However, 7:00 AM Reveille and cabin inspections are not included.
Primetimeparenting nor primetimepappy received payement for this post. Primetimeparenting and primetimepappy received a trip to Club Getaway in order to write this review.