Is your camp accredited and licensed?

Yes, Tamarack Day Camp is licensed by the state of NJ and accredited by the American Camp Association. In addition to all local and state regulations, Tamarack also adheres to the over 300 national standards established by the American Camp Association for summer camps. ACA Standards cover all facets of camp operation including staffing, safety, facility maintenance, athletics and pool operation.

Do you conduct criminal background checks on your counselors?

Yes, Tamarack Day Camp performs a national criminal background check and a national sex offender search on all staff over the age of 18. This is neither a state nor an ACA requirement, but we feel that the safety of your child is our primary concern; therefore we take the extra step to perform these checks. Any staff member who is unwilling to sign the release for the check is not eligible for employment.

Do you provide lunch? What if my child has a dietary requirement?

Yes, Tamarack provides a full hot lunch program and can accommodate any dietary requirements. A different hot entrée is provided every day with alternatives for those campers who may not like what is being served. Click here to learn more about our Lunch Program.

When, if ever, do campers go off-site?

At Tamarack, trips start in the Senior Division, 5th & 6th graders. Our Seniors go on two regularly scheduled trips over the course of the summer, and also leave camp on rainy days. The 7th, 8th, & 9th graders participate in the Teen Travel Program, meaning that they leave camp for a day trip two or three times a week.

What happens on rainy or excessively hot days?

On rainy days, our 5th graders and up leave camp for a day trip, which opens up all of our indoor air conditioned space for our younger campers. On excessively hot days, we suspend field play and add a 3rd period of swim.

Do you have a nurse on site?

YES! At Tamarack, we have one RN on site at all times during the regular camp day. Additionally, our pool and leadership staff is trained in first aid and in the use of our Automatic External Defibrillator.

Will my child learn to swim at Tamarack?

Absolutely! All campers, Pre-K through 6th grade, participate in morning swim lessons. The campers are grouped into swim classes based on their individual level. We use the Red Cross Learn to Swim Program along with Red Cross certified instructors to ensure that all campers, regardless of their level, improve their swimming ability. One of the many benefits of our facility is that our pools vary in depth and are heated, so all campers can become adjusted to the water in a pool where they can stand, and then, when they are comfortable, progress into deeper water.

What if I cannot be home to meet the bus either before or after camp?

We do offer Before and Aftercare Programs so parents can drop off as early as 7:15AM and pickup as late as 6PM. We can also pick up your child from one location and drop off at a different location, such as a babysitters or parent’s office, so long as they are consistent throughout the summer. Please contact the office to discuss all the options.

Maybe one day, you are simply running a little late. Prior to the start of the summer, you will receive your bus driver’s phone number so if you are running late, you can contact your driver directly. Campers will not be left home alone unless they have written permission to do so. If the driver is at your house and no one is home, we will try to contact you, and in the event that we are unable to reach you, the camper will be returned to camp.

What activities are offered to younger campers?

Our younger campers under the age of 6 get the full camp program less Archery, Pickleball and Mountain Bikes. There is no nap time for pre-schoolers, nor do we find one necessary.

What is your camp’s philosophy?

Camp philosophy is perhaps the most important thing in choosing a summer program for your child. At Tamarack, ours is one of uncovering your child’s potential by creating success opportunities for them through our multifaceted camp program. At Tamarack, our staff follow three basic Prime Directives.

  • The physical and emotional safety of all campers
  • The understanding that our program exists to create success opportunities for campers. The staff must validate and share in that success. To do that, they MUST be INVOLVED with the campers in every aspect of their camp experience.
  • Staff must be positive role models! All staff must be aware of the tremendous responsibility they carry as role models to young children.
Are there any programs offered after regular camp hours?

Yes, Tamarack offers both an Aftercare Program (until 6PM) as well as Private Lessons in many of our camp activities (Swim, Pickleball, and Biking are some of the most popular). Private Lessons give your child one-on-one instruction with one of our qualified instructors and really improve their skills. Aftercare allows parents to pick up their campers from camp as late as 6:00pm and provides the campers with an additional swim, snack, and time in some of our most popular camp activities.

Will my camper be able to choose the activities they participate in?

Yes, campers in the 2nd Grade and above have a period on their schedule called Choice, which enables them to participate in an activity of their choice during that time period for one week at which time they are able to choose again. In addition, half way through each summer the group’s schedule is completely rewritten, and the group is encouraged to provide feedback on which activities they would like to see in their schedule more often and which they would not.

What safety precautions do you take when transporting children?

At Tamarack we use professional drivers and air-conditioned buses. All drivers are approved by our insurance company, and each bus also has a bus counselor. Each driver has a cell phone in the case of an emergency, and we are beginning to equip our fleet with GPS tracking devices so that we know the exact location of our buses at any time.

What is your discipline procedure?

Every camper at Tamarack has the right to an amazing camp experience! Each situation is a little different and requires an individualized response. All campers must follow the basic rules of safety and respect for the feelings of others. At Tamarack we use a 3-step discipline procedure.

  • The counselor is trained to deal with basic behavior issues.
  • The Division Head (Supervisor) is called in if the behavior does not improve.
  • We partner with the parents to help find ways to get campers to succeed here.
What are the qualifications of your Camp Director and Administrative Staff?

The camp owner, Jonathan Gold, has over 40 years of experience in camping and more than 25 years as a director! Jonathan owns two other day camps in NJ, Pine Grove and Oak Crest, where he is the onsite director. Tamarack’s Director, Dana Miller, has been a part of organized camping for as long as she can remember, growing up attending Meadowbrook and Oak Crest Day Camps and later joining the summer staff team as a lifeguard and ropes specialist. Dana is a consummate camp professional and has been the Director of Center Day Camp in Maine, the Associate director of Pine Tree Day Camp in Maine, the Assistant Director of Camp Summit in Paradise Texas and the Outdoor Director of YMCA Camp Eberhart in Michigan. She has served as an ACA accreditation visitor, and on the EPIC and education committees for ACA New England.

The Tamarack administrative staff is a combination of full-time camping professionals and professional educators who work during the summer to ensure the best possible experience for your child.

What is your refund policy?

All tuition is fully refundable until March 1st. We also offer tuition insurance which would make your camp tuition fully refundable up to the start of camp.

Are there any items Campers are not allowed to bring to camp?

The following items are strictly prohibited from camp at all times;                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Alcohol, drugs, all tobacco products, vapes, fireworks and weapons of any type. Campers may not bring cell phones, electronics or pets to camp at anytime.