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Here’s what actually happens at an adult sleepaway camp

Hannah Streck

I spent the majority of my childhood summers at a two-week sleepaway camp on the shores of Lake Michigan. So when I found out there was an adult version of summer camp just two hours from NYC, I packed my bags, grabbed my friends and hit the road to Club Getaway in Kent, CT.

While prepping for the trip, I was a little nervous it might be one giant bender-orgy combo—my weekend in particular included an open bar and was hosted by a Manhattan club promoter. But in reality, my action-packed weekend left me tired, sunburnt and all smiles. The trip starts the minute the bus leaves the traffic-jammed West Side Highway with a full bar and the chatter of fellow campers. The ride flies by with the help of a couple glasses of red wine, and before you know it you're at camp!

Now let's recap the four main things I learned during a weekend at Club Getaway: 

  • You actually don’t mind waking up early.

On a typical weekend, you'd be hard-pressed to get my ass out of bed before 10am. But this weekend, I was up before my friends, pushing them out the door so we could get in as much as possible. Between zip-lining, a giant swing, Geronimo (a 30-foot free-fall from a tree), kayaking, bike rides and so much more, I didn’t want to miss a thing.

Club Getaway

Photograph: Hannah Streck

  • Communing with nature is a thing.

Manhattan is a concrete jungle, so you better believe that you will want to roll down the grassy hills (points if you can do it with a drink in hand) or just be in awe of the mountain backdrop while you sit on the dock with your toes in the water. 

Club Getaway

Photograph: Hannah Streck

  • You will dance the night away at the boathouse.

Every weekend at camp has its own particular theme with corresponding activities. My weekend was a flashback to the 90s à la Wet Hot American Summer. A cover band played all the hits while campers showed off their beer pong skills or made their way down the Slip ’N Slide. Later that night, I pulled out my best Gwen Stefani outfit and headed to the 90s prom, complete with a homemade wrist corsage. 

Club Getaway

Photograph: Hannah Streck

  • You will not want to go back to the real world.

Once Sunday afternoon rolled around, I planted myself in a chair with a drink in hand and seriously contemplated holing up in one of the cabins and spending the entire summer there. 

Club Getaway

Photograph: Maddy McArn

As the bus pulled away from camp, though, I was sure of one thing: What happens at Club Getaway, stays at Club Getaway (besides this story, of course). 


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