Camper of the Week | Michelle + Alison | Co-Founders of Soul Camp

7.17.14 by

Do you ever envy your kids over the summer and wish you could go back to camp? Well, believe it or not, you absolutely can! Let us introduce you to Michelle Goldblum and Alison Leipzig, the co-founders of Soul Camp, an adult sleepaway camp for the soul. These Summer 365 Campers of the Week both went to the same 8-week sleepaway camp in the Poconos and reconnected as adults over color war, Girl’s Sing, and hundreds of old camp memories. Now they are crushing it by bringing fitness, nutrition, yoga, and personal transformation to the greatest place on Earth…. CAMP!

Read their soulful story here!

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What are you currently doing? 

Alison: I am a body confidence coach and brand designer, helping women feel beautiful in their bodies and with their onliness businesses. I also started a summer camp for adults with my camp friend, Michelle Goldblum.

Michelle: I am the Founder & CEO of I AM. creative, a full service brand strategy, design & marketing agency for the mind/body/spirit, wellness, self improvement & empowerment space.

What are your top three essentials that you packed in your trunk?

A: The coolest stationary, a fun new pair of sneaks, and of course Country Time Lemonade.

M: The coolest comforter, a clip on fan, and Country Time pink lemonade!

What are three words to describe your camp experience?  

A: Freedom, Family, Spirit

M: Eye opening, exciting, familiar

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Who was someone at camp that you looked up to? 

A: A girl a year older than me who saw that I was walking alone my first day of camp ever and took me to her bunk with her friends to play Jax! She was so welcoming, had so much confidence, and was truly genuine in every interaction I saw she had. I don’t know if she even remembers this, but it always stuck out in my camp memories!!

M: This awesome girl, Shelby, who was just a few years older then me. She just seemed so fun and confident and truly embraced everything that camp stood for. AND she is coming to Soul Camp as one of our head counselors!

Why do you think it is important to go to camp?

A: FRIENDS! My best friends are my camp friends. They are the girls that know me at my worst and my best and we have a bond that won’t be able to replicated anywhere else. Also, nowadays, with all of our amazing technology, it’s especially important to be able to experience what it’s like to be present without all of those distractions. Sleepaway camp is one of the few places left where that can occur and without that skill, we forget who we really are.

M: At camp, you are faced with situations that shape your personality and allow you to practice and hone skills necessary for adulthood.  Sharing, quick conflict resolution, learning what you like and don’t like, independence, relationships. I am patient and generous after living with 20 girls every summer!

What is your favorite camp memory?  

A: It was actually when I was a counselor. I used to be SO afraid of the rock wall and as a counselor (my 8th summer), I finally made it to the top. Hearing my girls cheer me on from below and getting called up to the flagpole was priceless.

M: I have to say getting Camper Captain during Olympics 1999. It was SUCH a big deal to me at the time, and I remember crying tears of joy! Stepping into that leadership role during Olympics has also shaped me as person.

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How has camp affected your adult life? Is there something you learned there that you still do today? 

A: I learned a lot about friendships at camp. Something I learned was that it’s okay to have different points of views and little arguments with your friends. It doesn’t mean that your friendship is over. It just requires empathy, compassion, and a good old laugh to move on.

M: I say I love you all the time, to almost everyone.

Words of wisdom for current and future campers?

A: Enjoy it all!!! You will never again be able to experience summers the way you are now and you have been given a tremendous gift. Soak it all up.

M: Find friends that love you for you, even if they are not in the “popular group”- they will be the ones that stick with you for years far after camp is over. Try new things- climb that ropes course wall! Play lacrosse! You won’t have all of these opportunities at your fingertips forever.

What is your favorite camp tradition?

A: Singing “Friends, Friends, Friends.”

M: Girl’s Sing :)

What was your favorite camp food?

A: French Toast Sticks

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What is your favorite camp cheer?

A&M: “We welcome you to Camp, we’re mighty glad you’re here!”

What was your favorite summer reading book? 

M: Without question “Summer Sisters” by Judy Blume. That book circulated through every single girl during my last summer at camp!

What is your favorite movie about camp/that you saw at camp? 

A: Wet Hot American Summer of course!

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Favorite canteen candy?

A: Sour Patch Watermelon

M: Kit Kats!

Favorite / most requested item on visiting day? 

A: Bagels and whitefish salad.

M: Definitely bagels.

What was your favorite activity at camp? 

M: I really loved rest hour- I loved the times we were all together in one place.

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What is your favorite camp word/expression? 

M: SWAK (Sealed With A Kiss)!

Did you ever get homesick at camp?  How did you deal with that? 

A: Only a few times my first summer or when I was sick and wanted my mom! I told a counselor I trusted or a friend I loved.

Check out our exclusive Summer 365 Soul Camp Discount, made especially for you! If you are yearning to get back into those camp vibes, Soul Camp is the place for you! Use discount code SUMMER365 to save $100 on your Soul Camp getaway! 

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