While some Scarsdale middle schoolers were away at camp this summer, others enjoyed a travel camp that provided the fun of sleepaway camp without actually leaving home. Now in its seventh summer, the Scarsdale Rec’s Teen Travel Camp takes middle schoolers on fun daily adventures to waterparks, amusement centers, baseball games, whitewater rafting and more. This year, the program included two sessions; one for two-weeks and another for three-weeks to accommodate everyone who wished to sign-up.
Scarsdale’s Sabrina Wirth and Tamara Chapro signed up for the three-week session and had a great summer. They enjoyed mixing it up with other kids going into sixth, seventh and eighth grades, and even liked the time on the air conditioned Coach bus getting to and from some wonderful places.
What’s the daily routines? The girls explained that they were given a schedule sheet that outlined the plans and let them know where they would go, what time they were leaving and what they should wear and bring each day. Among their favorite trips were the days at Six Flags, rock climbing, Mountain Creek Water Park for cliff jumping, the shark speed boat at the South Street Seaport and the movie tour of Manhattan where they saw where many famous films were shot.
The farthest they travelled was 2 ½ hours each way on the bus, but since movies were shown en-route, getting there and back was part of the fun. The kids are even given lanyards to work on as they travel allowing them to multi-task.
Did anyone ever get lost we asked? Apparently not -- as campers wear special T-shirts and are assigned buddies. They are given plenty of freedom to roam but everyone seems to find their way back to the designated meeting place. The students were supervised by six counselors who kept the group moving and made it fun.
We spoke to Vicky Latouris who started the program seven years ago when she joined the Scarsdale Rec Department who told us that this year, both sessions for 40 campers were sold out. She said that other Westchester towns run similar programs though some include overnight stays as well. And when we asked if there was anything she wanted to add, she asked to give a shout out to the staff. She said, “I'm very proud of my staff. I have a great group of staff members that do a fabulous job each year. My Camp Director Lisa Zirolnik, who is a math teacher, EMT,and a lifeguard, has been with the camp since 2006. My counselors who are mostly teachers during the year are also certified in lifeguarding and most have been with us for a few years.
And this great team must be a big part of the reason that Sabrina has been participating in the program for three years and this year convinced her friend Tamara to join her. Learn more about the Teen Travel Program here: