What is “Discover Camp with PJ Library?”

“Discover Camp with PJ Library!” is a series of three trips to Jewish overnight camps that will take place on three Sundays in June and July, 2020. Families can choose which trip to attend where they will spend the day viewing the camp facilities, meeting the staff, participating in activities and getting familiar with the concept of overnight camp. We hope this will make parents and children excited to register for one of these Jewish overnight camps in the future!


Who is eligible for “Discover Camp with PJ Library”?

Families with at least one child between the ages of six and nine years old can join this program as long as they live in the Greater Philadelphia’s five-county region, including Philadelphia, Chester, Delaware, Bucks and Montgomery Counties.  Every family that registers must include a minimum of one adult and one child between the ages of six and nine.  Families may bring up to an additional two adults and three children of any ages; however, all activities will be designed for children between the ages of six and nine and adults will be required to supervise younger kids.


How will we get to and from camp?

Transportation to and from camp will be by coach bus. There will be air conditioning, snacks, a bathroom, and activities to do together on the bus.  Buses will depart from the Plymouth Meeting Mall parking lot on Germantown Pike (in Plymouth Meeting, behind the Lukoil gas station,) at 8:00 am and arrive at camp between 9:30 and 10 am.  We expect to leave camp between 3:00 and 3:30 pm and be back at Plymouth Meeting Mall between 5:00 and 6:00 pm.  Families can also arrange to drive themselves by emailing camp@jewishphilly.com.


Which Jewish Overnight Camps are included in Discover Camp with PJ Library? What are the dates of Discover Camp with PJ Library trips?

In 2020, we will be visiting each of the following camps on the date listed.  We highly recommend looking at the camp websites to fully explore the character of each camp.  All trips will contain similar activities (see below) and are designed to allow families to gain a sense of overnight camp in general, as well as the specifics of the camp they visit.


Golden Slipper Camp – Trip date: Sunday, June 28, 2020

Embracing Jewish traditions and values since 1948, Golden Slipper Camp, a not-for-profit overnight camp located in the Pocono Mountains, enriches the lives of children and young adults from varied backgrounds by providing a wide range of activities that promote teamwork, tolerance, self-esteem and personal growth along with modern facilities that enhance safety, security and comfort. Our campers contribute to the engaging spirit of Golden Slipper just by being themselves. Though the Camp is rooted in Jewish tradition, Golden Slipper campers are a diverse group, in culture and faith, who live and grow together, forming new lifelong relationships.
Camp Havaya – Trip date: Sunday, July 12, 2020

Camp Havaya is all about the joy of summer camp…with the freedom to be who you truly are in a diverse and accepting community.  At Havaya, people of all races, sexual orientations, gender identities, family structures, and Jewish backgrounds are welcomed and celebrated.  With so many activities—from the high-ropes challenge course to learning a new song, from the trampoline in the lake to any number of sports—the biggest challenge at Camp Havaya is figuring out what’s the most fun!  Havaya is affiliated with Reconstructing Judaism and offers spiritual experiences for campers that allow them to build lasting connections to Judaism and the Jewish people.


Camp Harlam – Trip date: Sunday, July 26, 2020

The mission of Camp Harlam is to create a vibrant, fun and caring camp community which enriches and strengthens Reform Jewish identity and values while cultivating lifelong friendships. Established in 1958, Camp Harlam has developed a strong tradition of success and excellence based on Jewish values and a highly skilled staff dedicated to the spiritual, physical, social and emotional well-being of each child.  With a 300-acre facility equipped for a wide range of activities, a population of approximately 550 campers each session, and a staff of over 225 exceptional role models, Camp Harlam is committed to being a place where each individual who participates has the opportunity to become the best version of themselves.


What is the cost of this program?

A $36 deposit per family is required to hold your registration.  After participating in the program, you can receive a full refund or choose to donate your deposit to the important work of the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia.  The Discover Camp with PJ Library program is paid for by generous donors to the Jewish Federation.  If the deposit fee is a barrier to your participationplease contact Abby Weinberg at camp@jewishphilly.com to discuss other options.


What sorts of things will we do at camp?

Each camp trip will include a variety of typical camp fun, including arts & crafts, sports, water-related activities and the chance to challenge yourself on an “adventure course” and/or zip line!   Each trip will include a tour of camp and an opportunity for parents to engage with camp and Jewish Federation staff to learn more about the benefits of Jewish overnight camp and get help in finding the best Jewish overnight camp to match your unique child!


Someone in my household has a physical disability.  Will this trip be accessible to us?

The camps sit on large, outdoor campuses with a mixture of wooded areas, paved and unpaved pathways, buildings and fields. Camp staff will be happy to make arrangements to ensure that people with special needs are able to benefit from the day.  Please indicate on your registration form any special needs your family has, including food allergies and physical limitations. Someone from the camp staff will call you to discuss how we can accommodate your situation.


How many of the trips can my family attend?

Families can register for only one trip.  If you register for more than one trip, you will be waitlisted for the second and third trips and only be allowed to join if there is room once registration is closed.  Each trip will take up to 45 participants, including a maximum of 25 children.


Are there any grants or scholarships available to help pay for my child’s camp tuition if I decide to sign my child up to attend summer camp?

YES! There are several potential sources of funding to help reduce the cost of Jewish Summer camp.  To learn more, click here, or contact scholarships@jewishphilly.org. In addition to what Jewish Federation provides to the community, Discover Camp with PJ Library Participants can receive an additional $300-$500 camp tuition grant (depending on the chosen camp) for the first summer of camp they attend. This grant will be available for the first three summers after the child participates in “Discover Camp with PJ Library!” in addition to any other grant or scholarship they may receive from Jewish Federation or any other source.  This grant can be applied to any number of days at any authorized Jewish summer camp.


I am not available on these dates and/or I am interested in visiting a different camp.  Are there other opportunities to discover Jewish overnight camps?

YES!  Click here and scroll down to a list of events taking place at many different camps this summer to help you learn about how you can change your child’s life in just a few weeks!


What is PJ Library?

“PJ Library” refers to two wonderful programs in our Jewish community called “PJ Library” and “PJ Our Way” in which families with children aged 0-12 can sign up to receive books and activities with Jewish themes every month, free of charge!  For more information about this program click here.