Since 1902, Surprise Lake Camp has provided a haven for Jewish children in the picturesque mountains of Cold Spring, NY. What makes SLC the best is the beauty of the site, the richness of the people and the program, the sense of history and tradition, and the magic we create when the whole thing comes together.
Our program is filled with camp favorites like soccer, volleyball, ropes courses, a zip line, basketball, tennis, gaga, floor hockey and more. We also have more creative opportunities, such as extensive arts & crafts, drama, music, dance, photography, Israeli Culture and more!
Our waterfront program offers Red Cross swim instruction, swim teams, sailing, canoeing, row boating, kayaking, windsurfing, and aqua-jump water trampolines.
We have delicious kosher food service, two kinds of Shabbat services, fun & engaging Jewish activities, and a unique Bar/Bat Mitzvah program for those who never had the chance to have one.
Surprise Lake Camp has 4 and 8 week sessions which vary based on age. For campers who are considering a sleep away experience for a future season but aren’t sure if they are ready, we offer a 5-day "Get Your Feet Wet" program in August for first time campers entering grades 1-5. Surprise Lake Camp has a sliding fee scale based on family income and size and we offer $1,000 discounts to most first time campers.
Bradley has been working with young people, training staff and overseeing camp, travel and residential youth programs for more than 25 years. Before coming to SLC, Bradley served as the director of youth engagement for the Union for Reform Judaism he also served as the director of Brandeis University's Office of High School Programs. Bradley received rabbinic ordination from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion as well as a masters degree in Jewish education from the Jewish Theological Seminary. Bradley has held graduate fellowships at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and is currently a Schusterman Fellow. When he is not at camp, Bradley lives in Brooklyn with his wife Aliza and their three daughters: Ela, Gila and Nomi.
Camp Director & Associate Director | Sheryl Kirschenbaum
Sheryl has been involved with Jewish Camping for most of her life. Sheryl came to us from a long and distinguished tenure as the Mid-Island Y JCC's Director of Youth and Camping Services. She brings her passion and excitement for Jewish camping to Surprise Lake Camp. In 2009, Sheryl was promoted to Camp Director and, in this role, continues SLC's tradition of excellence.
"Hosting Shlichim during the summers remains a wonderful experience for our family. Each year we meet dynamic and fascinating young Israelis with whom we maintain contact long after the summer has gone. Our kids are the greatest beneficiaries of the experience, finding in the Shlichim individuals who they come to regard as older siblings. It is an event we look forward to every year with good reason and plan on continuing for years to come."
- Soberman Family, The Jack and Pat Kay Centre Camp, Prosserman JCC
Connecting with Israel
“Although it was so new, Israel brought upon me a familiar sense of belonging much like what I feel at Camp Chi every summer. The ability to be in a place where one feels so free and proud to be a Jew is a feeling that makes me so proud to be involved in my Jewish heritage.”
- Joshua Krawitz, 17, Camp Chi, JCC Chicago