Lake Huron, PA (July 6, 2021) – Although the first week of sleepaway camp is barely in the rearview mirror, many camps across the US have lost a considerable number of staff who could not keep up with the physical and mental demands of being a bunk counselor. In past years, a camp could rely on foreign, mostly European, staff to make up nearly one-third of the camp’s workforce but due to Covid-related travel restraints, these integral members of a camp’s makeup remain an ocean away hopeful to return next summer.
Several camps in the northeast have faced mass defections only days into the summer of 2021. Citing a recent four-day heatwave followed by two days of cooling rain, dozens of counselors determined it was too hot and the weather too unpredictable to spend the next six weeks frolicking in the pool and lake, playing sports with campers, and making lifelong friendships while being compensated handsomely in the form of salary, room and board.
Jake G. (name withheld for privacy reasons), 19, recently quit his job at camp in upstate New York because of the horrific work conditions. “The air conditioning in the bunk was only put on at night, I had to work one activity in the morning AND another in the afternoon, and I couldn’t leave camp at night to go drink room-temperature White Claws in Jake H.’s Jeep.”
Camp Huron Lake Director Marty Feldstein, a veteran in the world of camping, has seen a few of his skeleton crew of counselors express a desire to leave for the familiar comforts of home but has managed to retain those young adults through his new incentive program designed to keep his staff motivated to remain at the camp through the end of the season. His unique weekly array of themed activities has not only re-energized his counselors but has also attracted new twenty-somethings to join the camp’s ranks.
In keeping with strict Covid protocols, Feldstein hosted a “Three P’s in a Pod” night on Boys Side but open to all staff, a fun yet educational event created to not only help his staff relax but to also emphasize the need to keep campers in non-intermingled pods or groups. Each staff member was able to smoke pot down by the lake, enjoy the company of a local individually-selected Covid-negative prostitute, and eat a personal 18” pizza in any order of their choosing.
“Everyone’s struggling and if I can do something that is beneficial to my staff while helping the local economy, I’m all for it,” Feldstein commented while inhaling some legally purchased cannabis, one arm each around scantily-clad night walkers Krystyl and Vaxxxine, both of whom Marty is considering hiring full-time as Arts & Crafts specialists because of their tremendous skills with makeup and body glitter.
On Girls Side, but again open to all staff, Feldstein and his senior administration put on an event called “Be Comfortable in Your Own Skin” where they emphasized body positivity, acceptance, and how to increase one’s online presence. Each staff member was given the option of grabbing a pair of Gucci slides or Golden Goose sneakers as well as a choice between Aviator Nation or Free City sweats. Additionally, all participants were treated to a series of spray tan sessions to give the look of spending a few hours on the equator. And one lucky girl also got to meet with Tik Tok superstar Charlie D’Amelio for tips on gaining more online followers in order to artificially and superficially boost her social standing.
Feldstein has also recruited the area’s best and brightest students to take the SAT/ACT for the lower academically achieving CIT’s and first-year counselors to ensure they at least get the minimum range scores for the University of Wisconsin or University of Maryland. For the more advanced students, JK Rowling’s nephew has been flown in to personally pen each junior staff member’s personal manifesto and one other common application essay.
“Marty has really stepped it up this year and we appreciate it,” noted Ultra Counselor Elyzybyth Frankel. “Rumor has it that Week 7’s event will be Cosmetic Surgery night because one of my campers, Heydi Silverstein, said her dad, who she lets everyone know is a plastic surgeon on a daily basis, is coming up for a few nights in August. It better not just be a Botox injection. I’d really like to do something about my jawline and cheekbones before sorority rush this fall.”