I began Camp Poyntelle Ray-Hill in 1963. My father, Ernest Simon was the Assistant Director under Ethel Abrams. My first few years I attended the smallest girls bunk as a day camper and finally at age 8 was permitted to sleep in the bunk like a regular camper. I finished Poyntelle and went to Lewis Village where I learned to roof the cabins we were going to live in. My favorite activity was the lake and at 15 I started working at the lake for both camps finally becoming the waterfront director until I graduated Penn State University with a degree in Physical Education. I became a Special Education Physical Education teacher for the NYC public schools.
When my twin girls turned 6 I took the waterfront director job at another camp, which was 10 miles from the camp my father went to work at after Camp Poyntelle. I still work there today even though I have retired from teaching.
Camp Poyntelle Ray-Hill was such a good and positive atmosphere for my formative years, teaching me tolerance, a respect for Judaism and other faiths, how to work with others, how to live with others, how to listen to others, how to aspire to make my world a better world for those that I have the honor of teaching, that I insisted that my children have the same camp experience. They also still work at camp when their careers allow.
For me life is camp and camp is life.
Hometown: Manalapan, NJ
Camper: ’63 – ‘76
Staff: ’77 – ‘80