Camp staff 07.05.17

Tradition is Everywhere at Jewish Summer Camp

Tradition is Everywhere at Jewish Summer Camp

Written by In the City Camp

Jewish tradition connects us to one another and to past generations; it provides the path for our Jewish future.

In the City Camp is Jewish day camp created to deliver the benefits of overnight camp—authentically Jewish identity formation, lifelong friendships, personal growth, and a positive connection to the Jewish community and Israel—tradition is at the core of our programming.

Our camp opened its doors in 2012, and every summer since campers and staff have gathered at the foot of Atlanta’s Stone Mountain and together we’ve embarked on a hike to the top. Year after year it has become an In the City Camp tradition that is memorialized with a group photo at the peak.

It may not sound like a typical Jewish tradition, but we’ve turned it into one by connecting it to Jewish values. Just as Jewish tradition calls on our people to push ourselves to accomplish big things, we provide experiences like the Stone Mountain hike to push our campers beyond their perceived limits and instill confidence and a can-do attitude. Similarly, just as Jewish tradition calls on us to take care of those in need, we train our staff to help campers who are struggling up the mountain by sharing words of encouragement, a water break, and even a lift.

At camp, Jewish tradition is everywhere.

It drives us to sing Hatikva each morning, to make latkes at cooking, to paint our faces green (yarok) and blue (kahol) during color war, and, for our entire camp, to complete our annual Stone Mountain hike.

Each of these traditions is rooted with deep intention.

We sing Hatikva to connect our camp community with Israel.

We make latkes at cooking to learn about Hanukkah during the summer in a way that is memorable and fun.

We have color war to provide a traditional overnight camp experience to our day campers and a new opportunity for leadership and creativity to our staff.

We hike Stone Mountain to give campers and staff an experience that challenges them physically and emotionally and rewards them at the end with a sense of accomplishment.

And just as Jewish tradition calls on us to lift a Bar/Bat Mitzvah in a chair, we surprise campers with a camp-style mazel tov in the form of a refreshing convenience store kosher slushee on the way back to camp following the hike. Because: tradition!

In the City Camp is an independent Jewish day camp that delivers the outcomes traditionally found at overnight camp: lifelong friendships, personal growth, and a positive connection with the Jewish community and Israel.  Our affordable and replicable program for children entering Kindergarten through 8th grade provides a culturally Jewish experience to the 90% of American Jewish youth who do not attend Jewish overnight camp. Learn more about our innovative program at