Policies + Procedures
The important odds and ends to get you ready for the best summer ever!
Bunk assignments are made by the Camp Directors after careful consideration of appropriate placement. The Directors must consider:
- the balance of new and returning campers,
- the numbers of single session and full summer campers,
- how many bunk beds fit in each cabin,
- the recommendations of unit heads and counselors from previous summers, and
- camper requests.
Juggling all this information and making everybody happy is quite a challenge! After you register your camper, you will be able to complete a form in CampInTouch that asks you for the names of campers with whom your camper would like to share a cabin. Although we are interested in knowing the wishes of parents and campers in regard to bunk placement, our experience has shown us that part of the fun of camp is to experience meeting new people and learning to live in a group situation. A successful new friendship can be the most rewarding aspect of the camp season! At camp, friendships come quickly.
If you decide not to make a bunk request for your camper, we will surely place them in a cabin that we feel is best.
We do not accept negative bunk requests (“Please do not place my child with…..”). This is counter to the values of inclusion and tolerance that we teach at Crane Lake. V’ahavta L’rayacha Kamocha, Love Your Neighbor as Yourself, is a Jewish value that we embrace. At camp, as in life, we do not all have to be best friends, but we must get along and treat one another with care and respect. Living these values is part of our Mission Statement and paramount to the community we create at Crane Lake!
There are times when, in the best interest of a camper and other campers, bunk requests cannot be honored. In these few cases, we hope that you will trust our professional judgment.
We will not accept any cabin requests after May 15th. Cabin assignments are given out on Opening Day when you check your camper into camp. Absolutely no cabin changes will be made at that time.
Your camper’s bed will be pre-assigned prior to their arrival at camp. We cannot accept requests for particular bed placement (bottom bed, top bed, must be away from the bathroom, not near the corner of the cabin…). These requests, if accepted, would make it impossible for us to effectively place campers in cabins.
There is one exception: if, for medical reasons, your camper needs a specific bed, you may make a bed placement request.
Families often ask if they can tip their camper’s counselors. It is the policy of all URJ camps that staff members may not accept gratuities. If they do accept them, they jeopardize their position at camp.
Instead, we encourage you to contribute to the Crane Lake Staff Appreciation Fund in honor of your camper’s counselors and the good work they have done. Your contributions are tax-deductible and can be made online (the website will be shared at the end of the session) or by contacting our Development Associate, Chanel Shirazi. The counselors being honored will be notified of your family’s generosity.
The Staff Appreciation Fund is used toward initiatives that directly impact all of our staff, including enhancements to the Staff Lounge, trips during time off, and bringing in vendors (think Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream Truck!) for a mid-week treat.
It is our policy that no pets are allowed on camp grounds. Please be sure to leave your pets at home on Opening Day, Visiting Day, and Closing Day.
Evaluations and Surveys
At the end of the session, campers complete an in-person survey evaluating their time at camp. The results of this survey help us plan for the next summer.
Once your camper has returned home, we will also send you a link to the Camper Satisfaction Index (CSI) survey. This family survey helps us understand your feelings about camp, and encourage you to sit with your camper as you complete it. We learn much from these surveys and consider your participation critical to our ability to improve things at camp from summer to summer.
Crane Lake takes many measures to reduce our impact on the environment, including:
- single stream recycling throughout camp,
- posting reminders about conserving water and electricity in all cabins and buildings,
- using LED lights where we can,
- composting all our food scraps and left-overs in the Chadar Ochel, and
- learning about the environment and our responsibilities to care for the world around us as part of our Jewish Learning programming.
In order to create and maintain an inclusive Jewish Community at camp, we encourage our campers to leave all Body Talk outside the gates of camp. By Body Talk we mean any mention of another’s clothes, hair, weight, or height – negative or positive.
Avoiding such language creates an environment of comfort and acceptance by all and for all. When campers feel they are not being judged by their peers, they can relax and be themselves. This is when real personal growth takes place and campers’ self-esteem flourish. As we eliminate Body Talk in our cabins, it is remarkable to see how easily our campers spread the message of simple self-acceptance.
B Mitzvah Prep
Campers who will become B Mitzvah in August, September, October, November, or December will meet weekly with our B Mitzvah tutor and faculty members to maintain what they have already learned prior to coming to camp. Please make sure you complete the B Mitzvah preparation form (found on the “Forms & Documents” page of your CampInTouch account) and that you send 2 copies of all study and preparation materials. Our goal is to help your camper maintain what they have already learned.