Last June, my husband and I were invited to a Bat Mitzvah at a sleepaway camp in the Poconos. We spent two days without a steady phone signal eating camp food, drinking bug juice and sleeping in sleeping bags on mini cot-sized beds in single-sex bunks with people we barely knew.
And it was freaking awesome! So what if I had to get ready for the big Saturday night dance party in a bathroom with 10 other girls elbowing each other out of the way for a peek in the one tiny mirror above the sink? There were s’mores! And Coronas! And an epic game of tug-of-war! Plus I got to wear face paint and a blue tutu all weekend because we’ve got spirit yes we do, we’ve got spirit how about YOU?!
OK, so I might have gotten a little carried away. But this summer marks the fifth that one or both of my kids will be off at sleepaway camp, and I’d be lying if I said I’m not totally jealous when I watch that bus pull away from the designated pick-up zone each year. Apparently I’m not the only one, because now there’s a company called Camp No Counselors that will curate a boozy, activity-filled weekend at various camps across the country just for us grown-ups.
And yes—all evidence to the contrary—we are the grown-ups.
Camp No Counselors was founded by Adam Tichauer back in 2013 after he’d arranged a weekend at camp for a large group of his friends. “I realized that the majority of our adult life is spent in situations where we are expected to be confident and we are rarely afforded opportunities when it’s ok to be truly vulnerable,” he says on the CNC website. “Camp was that chance. I saw a highly accomplished and driven group shed their work identities and become their truest selves … More people had to experience it.”
If you’re up for the challenge, here are the upcoming camp dates: June 4-7 in Chicago, May 28-31 and Sept 4-7 in New York, August 20-23 in Nashville, and October 1-4 in LA. The $475 – $575 price tag gets you roundtrip transportation, three nights of lodging (co-ed bunks!), all snacks and meals, nightly theme parties, and access to activities like archery, art and crafts, softball, slip n slide, tubing, wakeboarding and ziplining.
There’s also a camp-wide talent show on the last night, where it’s not unusual for campers to get up and let loose in front of a room filled with people they just met a few days ago. And yes, there’s also an open bar all weekend—Bloody Marys at breakfast!—for those of you who require a little liquid courage to do so.