CRS 2018 season has come to an end

The Louis August Jonas Foundation and Camp Rising Sun are so proud of the 2018 Camp Season. Throughout the summer our campers had fun on wilderness hikes and working on projects, they bonded with other campers, navigated tough conversations, and learned about servant leadership. In total, we had 126 campers this year with 62 girls and 64 boys from 31 different countries. Although our campers' time at Camp has come to an end their journey is just beginning. We hope their evolution into campers for life brings with it all the remarkable lessons, experiences, and friends from their Camp days. Thank you to the parents and guardians, the campers, the counselors, and the alumni for a successful season. We look forward to Camp Rising Sun 2019.


Letter from the Director of Programs

This past week, the 88th season of Camp Rising Sun came to an end as our second group of campers returned home with the help of our alumni and parent host families in the New York area. Thanks to our parent and alumni volunteers, the 2018 campers had a chance to explore New York City and enjoy their last few days with their new camp friends before boarding their flights back home. We are grateful for our alumni and parent volunteers who ensured our campers had a safe and smooth transition back home.

As the campers boarded their flights back home, our summer staff were up at Camp wrapping up the season and preparing the campus for winter. This summer, our counselors came from over 12 different countries, each with unique educational/professional skills, including economics, education, psychology, filmmaking, political science, peace and conflict studies, mathematics, philosophy, computer science, engineering, and more. Our counselors approach each camp season with the utmost professionalism and respect for the Camp mission, and dedicate their time and energy to creating transformative learning experiences for our campers. It cannot be stated enough: CRS could not happen without the care and dedication of our amazing camp counselors.

Throughout the summer, we were also lucky to welcome several alumni volunteers to Camp for a few days to a few weeks at a time.  I would like to extend a huge thank you to all of our alumni volunteers, including Michael Von der Muhlen (’69), Sarah Uttermann-Merritt (’02, ’03, ’12 - '16, '18), Totti Tyynila (’10), Jessica Diarra (’15, ‘16), Amit Singh (‘12, ‘16, ‘17) and Una Joakimsdottir (’09, ‘17), who were all able to volunteer their time for a week or more this summer.

This year marked my 5th summer on staff at Camp Rising Sun, and each year I am continually impressed by the new ideas, discussions, and adventures that the campers create each year. Though projects, instructions, and other core elements of the camp program remain the same, each season is formed by the unique interests and motivations of the campers. This summer, our campers used their leadership skills to construct new projects, such as a lean-to on tent hill, a trail expansion across the lake, and several new murals across campus. I am always amazed by the vast skills and knowledge our campers choose to share with one another through camper-led instructions on topics such as 20th century art, Hungarian song and sign language, origami, sustainable development, topology, lyrical structure, identity, ancient history, Middle East conflicts, and so much more. The passion with which campers approach the exchange of knowledge and culture is truly inspiring. I am so proud to have been a part of the magical experiences created by the 2018 campers and counselors.

To the campers, counselors, parents, alumni, and friends of CRS, thank you again for another successful season, and I look forward to working with you all as we begin the journey towards Camp Rising Sun 2019.

-Janessa Schilmoeller, Camp Director

The 2018 campers created a video to highlight some of the activities from the first few weeks of camp. In the video, Lior, from Israel, captures some of Camp's fun moments from the first few weeks of the session, bringing to life a part of Camp that normally only campers get to see.

We are excited to be adding 126 more alumni to our list of campers for life. It’s our campers’ growth that inspires all of us at Camp Rising Sun and the Louis August Jonas Foundation to continue to do the work that we do. We are so thankful for the hard work that Cameron (Facilities Manager), Janessa (Program Director), and Mads (Alumni Relations/Camp Director) put in to make this a very successful season at Camp. Thank you to the parents and guardians, the campers, the counselors, and the alumni for a successful season. If it wasn’t for our devoted community of supporters and donors we wouldn’t be able to do the work that we do. So, from all of us at the Louis August Jonas Foundation: “Thank You!"  We look forward to Camp Rising Sun 2019.