Camp @ the Camp is a program of the City of Beacon Recreation Department
Linda Richards, Co-Director ~ Linda’s experiences as a public school teacher, Education and Music Director at Clearwater, camp director at Manitoga in Garrison and the Ashokan Summer Camp in Olivebridge, and wandering troubadour have given her the skills, humor and sensitivity to enjoy children in just about any setting. Raised by a family of teachers, and the oldest sibling (by a LOT), dinner table discussions were lively and instructional! Early childhood summers, and then later summers with her own family, were spent traveling across this beautiful country - camping, learning and experiencing the great outdoors. Linda wove her education and outdoor experiences together into a lifetime fabric of musical environmental education adventures. She is currently a music and natural science teacher at the Manitou School in Cold Spring and teaches guitar, ukulele and voice privately and through the Beacon Music Factory. She also performs for kids extensively through "S.L.Y.M.I. (Sing Like You Mean It!)". Linda cherishes the camp experience and knows that summer camp can inspire the next generation of thoughtful leaders!
Ilana Friedman, Co-Director ~ Ilana is a teacher and artist who lives in Beacon with her family. Growing up in New York City, she was lucky enough to spend summers at camp, where she loved to make art, learn new games, go on hikes, and make friends from all over. She became a third-grade teacher in Brooklyn, and almost every week she took a field trip with her students to amazing museums, the zoo, and even a Chinese Scholars’ Garden. They’d return back to school to work on projects that wove together literacy, math, science and art. Now Ilana runs the Beacon Craft Workshop, offering inquiry-based art classes, and BHA Preschool, a garden-based program at the Beacon Hebrew Alliance. Founding and directing Camp @ the Camp has meant transforming the enchanting foot of Mount Beacon into a hub of play, creativity, and friendship. In other words, it’s her dream come true.
Wyatt Buesing, Assistant Director ~ Wyatt is a certified elementary school teacher with a passion for the outdoors, music and backflips. Over the past several years, he has had the unique opportunity to have worked with thousands of children in varying capacities. From substitute teaching, to working at summer camps, to performing at school-wide assemblies, he strives to provide children with positive, meaningful learning experiences. His early life camp adventures were with a Circus Camp where he learned not only the unique skills he shares regularly with kids, but also how to deepen your creative energies by trying new things. Wyatt’s compassion, energy, humor, music, enthusiasm and love of the natural world are the things he brings to our camp - where they can all be tied together.
Nate Smith, Aquatics Director (The Pool Guy) ~ Nate has been working in camps and aquatics for nearly 30 years since becoming a swim instructor, lifeguard trainer and Waterfront Director through the Boy Scouts of America in the early 1990s. Since then, he has taught aquatic activities up and down the east coast as well as Mexico and the Bahamas with the Boy Scouts of America, Outward Bound and Club Med. He’s also been part of the team at several camps across the country. Some highlights include Adventure Director at Interlochen Arts Camp (Interlochen Arts Academy, MI), Camp Director for Camp Central Park (Central Park, NY) and locally as the Recreation Director Highlands Country Club (Garrison, NY). He is currently certified as a WSI (Water Safety Instructor) and First Aid/CPR trainer through the American Red Cross. Nate brings his recreation philosophy of insuring safety, fun and learning to Camp @ the Camp’s pool time. When he’s not at the pool, Nate is a full time, year round member of the City of Beacon Recreation team who manages the After School program and can often be seen around town walking Murphy, the 3-legged wonder hound with his family.
Counselors & Staff ~ Our summer staff is a team of experienced and knowledgeable leaders, with whom we work closely to develop our weekly themes and to provide the best possible experience for campers and CITs. Collaborations: We have strong relationships with other programs and organizations who support our camp with resources, special presentations, and guest educators. These include the Beacon After School Program, Fishkill Farms, the Settlement Camp Disc Golf Club, Sargent-Downing Garden and Nursery, and Hudson River Sloop Clearwater. Past presenters also include the NYSDEC, musician-educator Gwen Laster, and dancer Felicia Ballos.
"My years are divided into two seasons - camp and not camp."