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Philadelphia/day camps in philadelphia in the 1960's

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Elliot wrote at 2006-12-13 18:02:14
I attended and worked at 2 camps in lower bucks county pa just outside of northeast philadelphia in the 80's and early 90's.  they have been around for along time. Their names are Cherokee day Camp and Adventureland Day Camp.  Both are still around.


Larry Zimmerman wrote at 2007-07-29 23:19:46
Back in the mid-50's I went to a camp called Hiawatha Day Camp.  We went to the same places you describe and I wish I could find some old camp mates from the period.  They were some of my happiest memories


JAINE wrote at 2009-04-18 21:57:37
LARRY -



I JUST FOUND YOUR TW0-YEAR-OLD QUESTION ABOUT HIAWATHA DAY CAMP. HOPE YOU STILL CHECK THE SITE EVERY NOW AND AGAIN. MY MOTHER WAS ONE OF THE THREE OWNERS, AND AT ONE TIME OR ANOTHER MY SISTER AND BROTHER AND I WORKED AS JUNIOR COUNSELLORS THERE IN THE MID 1950S. MANY OF THE CAMPERS CAME FROM THE NORTHEAST PHILA, MAYFAIR, OLNEY, CHELTENHAM AND MELROSE PARK. YOU MIGHT TRY CHECKING OUT THE VARIOUS HIGH SCHOOL WEB SITES IN THOSE AREAS AND LOOKING FOR SPECIFIC FAMILIAR NAMES. GOOD LUCK! "....HI-YA-HI-YA-HI-YA-WAH-THA - HIAWATHA HERE WE COME!"




Wayne wrote at 2009-06-03 00:45:22
Jaine ... OMG!  Just happened to Google the "Camp".  Betty (your mother), Harry (Lawyer - Philly Author), Midge(?) AND THE VW bus!!



and ... the Nature/Woodworking leader worked at The Academy of Natural Sciences!!  OMG!



We lived 2-doors down on "D...." Street.




wayne wrote at 2009-06-05 03:41:41
Uncle Sid, Gitchegume and Bug-Juice!  But of course!!  There must have been several Big-5 St. Joe fans because ... "the Hawk always flew high"!!


masadadasam wrote at 2009-09-30 14:11:03
There was a large camp called Camp Happy in Northeast Philadelphia operated by the Dept. of Recreation that I believe it was still open in the early 60s before moving up to the mountains. It was located between Frankford Ave, Linden Ave, Torresdale Ave, and Tolbut St.


Rich Watman wrote at 2009-10-24 16:43:30
Larry and Jaine: I went to Hiawatha Day Camp for many years and eventually became a counselor and then a swimming instructor. I'm still friendly with a girl I met there, Ruth Don.  Did you know her, or me for that matter?  Some other names: Mark Tannenbaum, Dave Ominsky,  "Uncle " Sid Shotz (His daughter Shelley married my best friends cousin)


Debbie kaplen-Feller wrote at 2009-11-08 14:50:12
My name is Debbie Kaplen and i went to Hiawatha Day Camp for seven summers. They were the happiest summers of my life.  I especially loved swimming with Aunt Ruth and her two sons.  Thanks to Ruth, I eventually became a swimming instructor myself.


Steve Richman wrote at 2010-04-03 02:00:28
Wow, Hiawatha, I went there from 59 -64....best summers of my life,  still remember the "old mill" and the lower fields, played captured the flag in the woods...........


rtashman wrote at 2012-02-15 05:31:34
I went to Hiawatha Day Camp for approx 5 years from  1959 to 1964   Great experience.   I remember great games of capture the flag,bug juice in metal containers, arts and crafts,  box hockey games. Hiking and a carving on a tree "killroy was here"     Rick Tashman  


Nancy Snyder Aleshire wrote at 2012-07-08 01:58:57
 I attended Hiawatha Day Camp during the fifties and sixties.  My younger brother, Howard attended as well.  It was located at Academy and Comly Aves. at what is now considered the Far Northeast section of Philadelphia.  The camp was actually torn down to build a housing development.  Many of the campers and teachers attended the Solis-Cohen elementary school, because the owner of the camp was actually the principal there.  His name was Alvin Blumberg, but at camp he was known as Uncle Al.  On Fridays we would have weinee roasts, where we had to bring in hot dogs.  We would have nature studies where we got to pet bunnies and we also had gardening where we grew beans.  That must be the root of my love of gardening and I love animals, as well.  I enjoy swimming, as well, but I had to go to Florida to learn how to swim.  I will soon turn 61, am the mother of a 28 year old son and live in Minnesota.


Bruce Blumenthal wrote at 2012-08-13 09:08:13
I have many happy memories of Hiawatha from 1957-1963 - ages 5 through 11. Aunt Jeanne & Uncle Al (who was also my principal at Solis-Cohen), Uncle Saul, Uncle Howard, so many others. I learned a song there that I've never forgotten ... "Be Kind To Your Web-Footed Friends".



Remember Color Wars?


Tom wrote at 2013-12-04 01:22:34
I grew up across the street from what was once Hiawatha Day Camp. My parents purchased one of the newly built row homes in the early 1960s. By the time i was say 8 or 9 i and my friends would go across the street and play in the woods for hours, walk around on the ruins most of which was bulldozed into a large built in pool. I use to built tree houses in the old oak trees. I researched this place and found it was actually only open from 1950 to 1961 and 1961 was around when far NE Philadelphia was developed. Before that it was a farm. as a kid i remember right around 1970 was when the entire property was flattened and the trees were chopped down and hundreds of duplexes went up and to this day in 2013 that is what became of camp Hiawatha. Oh the spring before they broke ground to start building the duplexes the circus came to town and that is right were they had it. I actually helped at the circus and got paid to to it i believe i was around 10 years old. I was one of the last kids to play on what was once Hiawatha Day Camp.


Sheila M wrote at 2014-01-24 18:29:32
Mrs Blumberg was my 3rd grade teacher at Pennell, my favorite teacher of all time, I wanted her to adopt me- lol. I went to Hiawatha for 2 summers, loved it, and yes, I remember bug-juice, arts and crafts making lariats.  


Peggy Berkowitz wrote at 2015-01-25 00:39:23
I have a Checker board that has         Hiawatha Day Camp printed on it.  And a picture of of an Indian shooting a bor and arrow.  I decided to google it and found this and another site from Temple U.  With a story of how it started.  Very interesting.

This checker board was probably passed down to my children from a cousin who lived in Oxford Circle and probably went there.


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