Summer Communications

Surprise Lake Camp offers lots of ways for you to stay in touch with your child and their activities all summer!

News & UpdatesWatch for highlights

News & Updates

During the summer we will be posting highlights on a daily basis on our Lake Views blog.

We will be posting videos a few times each week on our Youtube channel.

You can look for photos through your Camp-in-Touch account.

Look for an update from your camper’s Unit Supervisor usually 1-2 times each week, sharing highlights of some of the Unit’s adventures.

Families of first-time campers, one of our senior staff will call you sometime during the first week of camp to tell you about how your child is settling in.

Postal MailCommunicating with your camper

Postal Mail

Send Mail

We urge you to start mailing letters about a week before camp begins, so that your child receives mail right away. Address letters to:

CAMPER NAME, UNIT NAME (or Mainside / Teenside if you don’t know the unit name)
Surprise Lake Camp
382 Lake Surprise Road
Cold Spring, NY 10516

You are welcome to send care packages, too, but you certainly don’t need to. If you do: keep it simple. Games, craft activities, the Sunday comics, or a Mad Lib are always a good time. Websites like just4camp.com or eswak.com offer pre-packaged options.

Please note: Food and candy are not allowed on Mainside, and discouraged on Teenside. Food in the bunks attracts insects and animals—a bonus “gift” that no one wants inside.

Any food sent to Teenside campers must be peanut and tree-nut free and fit into a lidded plastic bin (capacity is  27-1/8″ x 16″ x 6-1/4″ h). Soda and energy drinks are not permitted. Drinks such as iced tea, Gatorade, and lemonade are permitted, if they fit in the bin. Powdered versions of these drinks are the most space-efficient.

Get Mail

Campers are required to send a letter home at least every Wednesday and every Sunday. You are welcome to call and speak with your child’s unit supervisor if you do not receive mail in a reasonable period of time, but please bear in mind that our local post office can be slow, and that mail is particularly slow over the Fourth of July weekend.

Photos & EmailConnect through CampinTouch

Photos & Email

Login to CampInTouch to see the hundreds of photos that SLC uploads each week. Look for your own camper or simply get a sense of what kinds of things are happening at camp. You can share these photos with friends and family.

Follow the “Email” link on your CampInTouch dashboard to send your camper a note of up to 50 lines. We print these emails each morning and deliver them with mail after lunch.

You’ll see that each costs one “CampStamp.” SLC will fill your account, at no charge, with five CampStamps per camper, per parent, per week. That means each parent can send an email almost every day, for free. If you wish to purchase additional stamps, you can so at any time with a credit card. Please note: we print these emails in black-and-white. You can say “no” to the colorful borders (which cost one CampStamp to add) because your camper will not see them.

Phone CallsFor emergencies only

Phone Calls

If your child will celebrate a birthday at camp, we can pre-arrange a time for your child to call you from the camp office. Otherwise, the only situations in which we permit phone calls are to help solve a problem or in an emergency. This policy is standard at most sleepaway camps.

Unit SupervisorContact for when you need it

Unit Supervisor

Unit Supervisors are in constant touch with bunk counselors, specialists, and each other to make sure every child is thriving. If your child is struggling, the Unit Supervisor will call you to discuss your child’s needs.

You are welcome to email your child’s Unit Supervisor using the email address we’ll provide you at the beginning of the summer. You can also call the camp office and leave a message for your child’s Unit Supervisor. Please keep in mind that Unit Supervisors are with campers from morning until night and may not have access to email or phone for several hours after you reach out. If you have a time sensitive issue, call the office and ask to speak with one of the directors.

VisitsVisiting Days Only


We will not be having a visiting day during summer 2021 due to new Covid-19 protocols.

Our commitment to restricting people in and out of Camp means we will be unable to have a visiting day for full-summer families. We recognize that it’s hard to go a whole summer without families and campers seeing each other in person. We will schedule video calls for full-summer campers so that they are able to get some face time with their families. It’s not the same, but it is the safest way to keep you connected to your child’s summer experience.

Visits at other times are not permitted. They disrupt the camper experience.

Social MediaConnect with SLC