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Focus Stories

Camp J

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Featured Photo from Camp J

Goliath amounts of fun at the JCC this summer!

A foam ball flies out of a young girl’s hand and sails across the screen. Its intended target is the legendary Biblical bad guy, Goliath, played this time by an adorable little boy. Along the way, the projectile flies past scenes of a horse ranch, the Milky Way, a Caribbean island, and more before striking the gargantuan Goliath in the head, prompting the talented young actor to tumble dramatically to the ground.

Off-screen, fellow actors giggle with glee and then high-five the two Biblical combatants to congratulate them on a stellar performance.

This isn’t Hollywood — it’s the set of a creative take on the traditional David and Goliath story, filmed by nine­- and ten-year-olds at last summer’s Camp J in Maitland.

Camp J, located at The Roth Family JCC in Maitland since 1973, is a summer camp for kids entering kindergarten through ninth grade. Camp J offers activities like art, sports, music, daily swimming, field trips, and filmmaking, all in an environment that emphasizes Jewish values and culture while welcoming campers of all faiths and backgrounds.

Building community is a major part of Camp J’s philosophy. Through staff training, curriculum, traditions, and routines, camp leadership strives to give each camper a sense of belonging within their group.

“We foster this feeling of belonging for each camper through all of our administrative decisions, from our two-week session format, to the way we open and close each day in song together, to the way we present awards to campers,” says Robby Etzkin, the JCC’s executive director. “We’re also careful in our hiring of staff to look for counselors who have the special ability to make each camper feel valued, safe, and also challenged to try new things.”

Camp J at the JCC also provides a significant convenience for busy families. Because the JCC offers the renowned, year-round Richard S. Adler Early Childhood Learning Center for infants through Pre-K, parents with multiple children can enjoy a single drop-off and pick-up at Camp J. Young learners will develop essential skills for life at the Early Childhood Learning Center, while specific programs for each age group at Camp J will keep older kids’ minds and bodies engaged throughout the day.

Families new to Camp J can take advantage of a $100 discount per camper for this year. To get the $100 coupon, or to learn more about the camp, go to visit.orlandojcc.org/camplife.

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