‘Taking the stress out of the search’

Consultant helps families find ideal overnight camps for kids

Taja Johnson/The Sun
Jennifer Rosen Petkun has been an overnight camp expert for nearly three years. Her advice to families is based on her own transformative camp experiences.

In the realm of childhood experiences, few hold as much potential for growth, independence, and cherished memories as attending overnight camp. But for many families, navigating the vast array of camps available can be a daunting task.

Help can come from consultants like Jennifer Rosen Petkun, an overnight camp expert for nearly three years who matches families with ideal summer retreats.

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Petkun’s own journey to consulting was born from her own transformative experiences at camp. She understands first hand the profound impact camp can have on a child’s life.

“I went to overnight camp when I was younger,” she said, “and it was a foundational experience of my childhood. I loved it and am still passionate about what a rewarding experience camp can be.”

Drawing on those experiences and her expertise, Petkun assists families in navigating the sometimes intricate process of selecting the perfect camp for their children. Through personalized intake calls, she delves into the specific needs, preferences, and interests of each family and child.

“My goal is to make the process of looking for a camp fun and exciting,’ she explained, “and to take the stress out of the search.”

The intake process is comprehensive, covering aspects such as budget, location, length of stay, camp size and special requirements like dietary restrictions or medical considerations. Petkun’s meticulous approach ensures each family gets tailored recommendations that align with their personal criteria.

“We work with camps all across the county and we really narrow in on the camps that would be the best fit for each family,” Petkun noted.

By leveraging her extensive network and years of experience, she curates a shortlist of approximately five camps that meet the families’ specific needs and preferences. But Petkun’s services extend beyond traditional overnight camps; she also assists families in exploring teen tours, specialty camps and even niche programs like gaming camps.

Petkun’s goal remains consistent: to match each child with an enriching summer experience that fosters growth, independence and lasting friendships. And her consultancy comes at no cost to the families she helps. Instead, her compensation comes from the camps themselves.

As for the impact of overnight camp experiences, Petkun emphasizes their profound role in fostering independence, resilience, and personal growth.

“If you can send your kids to an overnight camp,” she asserts “it can be one of the greatest gifts that you can give to a child.”

As a trusted advisor to families, Petkun has witnessed numerous success stories, from children thriving in their newfound independence to families finding the perfect summer retreat.

For families hesitant or overwhelmed by the prospect of an overnight camp, Petkun offers reassurance and support, and with her wealth of expertise, she empowers them to navigate the journey with confidence.

“It truly is rewarding to hear and know that we had a hand in facilitating this result for them,” she said of her clients.

To connect with Petkun and explore the possibilities of overnight camp or more information, families are encouraged to reach out via email at jenpetkun@campspecialists.com or visit www.campspecialists.com.

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