Camp Bauercrest aims to build Jewish identity and self-esteem in young boys by promoting and teaching the values of our STAR Principles.
Our approach to Jewish living at camp incorporates life lessons and traditions in a relaxed manner that is both meaningful and accessible to all campers. As a camp, we are non-affiliated, meaning we are not directly connected to any Jewish movement (i.e. Reform, Conservative, etc.). We do not have religious classes or designated periods of the day for required cultural activity.
We are an all-inclusive community, and we welcome campers from all backgrounds, beliefs, customs, and traditions. Many of our campers come from interfaith families; some aren’t Jewish at all. While some campers come to Bauercrest to enhance their Jewish identity, others are exposed to Jewish culture and traditions for the first time. This makes for a rich experience where everyone can feel comfortable just being who and what they are.
Integral Jewish components of summer camp life at Bauercrest:
Prayer (the Motzi) before the meal
Brief prayer after the meal
Friday Shabbat dinner with Kiddush and concluding Birkat; followed by a lot of camp songs and cheering
Saturday activities are different from the other days, as we run “All-Camp” events that correspond with a limited activity level. This brings the whole camp together during Shabbat in a low-key, non-competitive environment.
Shabbat at Camp
On Friday night, we usher in Shabbat with a short, 30-minute service, followed by a traditional Friday night meal. On Saturdays, we have a longer, 45-minute service in which we integrate both traditions and life lessons. A senior member of the counselor staff serves as the Camp Rabbi, and campers and staff volunteer to lead readings in Hebrew or English.
Our Israeli Staff
In recent years, we have welcomed Israeli staff members to the Hillside. These individuals, all age 21 or over, share a wealth of diverse life experiences as well as Israeli culture with our campers and counselors.
Camp Bauercrest has a rich history. Learn how we got started.
"The fact that it was all boys and sports was extremely important to us, but the fact that it was a Jewish camp was the cherry on top. It was exactly what we were looking for as far as keeping with our faith."
- Jen, Camper Mom