I Can’t Send My Camper a Care Package Because of Terrorists

| November 1, 2010 | Comments (3)

Candy Care packageCare packages are a time-honored tradition of sleepaway camp. Boxes packed full of magazines, trinkets, the hot trading cards/silly bandz of the day and candy are a camper’s delight. Or at least they used to be.

There are new rules now. Candy, at least at some camps, is verboten. At a recent camp orientation meeting for parents, my husband and I learned that some determined parents sneak in a chocolate bar or two no matter what. We laughed as the camp director recalled some recent creative attempts to sneak in the contraband: candy bars stuffed inside box of new shoes and a chocolate bar tucked neatly inside a box of tampons.

“All boxes are subject to inspection,” the director warned. But this policy isn’t just due to concern over ants, roaches or other vermin sneaking into cabins, it’s because of potential terrorists threats.

You see, we plan to send our boys to a Jewish overnight camp.

A few weeks ago, I thought the director’s concerns were a bit over the top, but with last week’s revelations that two suspicious, potentially explosive packages were shipped from Yemen to synagogues in the Chicago area, I’m a believer. A believer that the camp cannot be too cautious.

This summer will provide the first overnight camping experience my tween boys have ever had. As a mom, it’s normal to worry about them when they are away, especially this first year. But, of course, normal worries include things like, are they getting enough to eat? Are they wearing sunscreen? And because climbing towers and zip lines are all the rage these days, will they fall and break their necks? Now I should add to the list, will their cabin explode due to a mysterious package sent by terrorists?!

Oy. It’s almost more than a mama can stand.

But my boys survived preschool at the Jewish Community Center, the Walk with Israel and years of Hebrew school. Can a summer camp in Kishinev* be any worse?

I’m not that worried about explosives at camp.

Let me rephrase that.

Last summer my older boy attended an “enrichment program” (read: geek camp) at a local school. In his pyrotechnics class, he learned to make things like flaming bubbles and, um, bombs. His eagerness to play mad scientist at home is likely more likely to cause bodily or household harm than any terrorist. At least for now.

So off to camp he and his younger brother will go this summer. I won’t waste my time worrying about terrorists infiltrating the camp, but I may spend more than a few hours worrying about a disaster on the climbing tower or zip line. That said, I’ll try to channel my energy into creating fun care packages that can be easily inspected and don’t contain candy.

*Kishinev is a slang term for a far-flung or rarely traveled to destination. They will not literally be attending camp in Kishinev. Anyway, it was a place noted for its disdain of Jews. Did I say disdain? Let’s be honest, they killed a lot of Jews…except, apparently, some of my family given that the Moldofsky clan is thought to hail from Moldova or thereabout. Whatever. My kids definitely aren’t going to camp there! How did this term get handed down through the generations?

Category: New Posts

About Kim Moldofsky: Kim Moldofsky is a Chicago-area Social Media Mom of tween boys. Blogging since 2005 at Hormone-colored Days and around the web, she has a reputation as an insightful blogger who supports the momblogger community. She connects brands and bloggers for conversations, events and product reviews at MomImpact. View author profile.

Comments (3)

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  1. Lisa says:

    no candy? what’s a kid to do without candy!! so sorry that the need to even consider such a concern at a kids camp exists!! but glad to know you’re keeping a good outlook. hope you’ll share some photos of your care packages as inspirtation

  2. Melisa says:

    Is it because of the sugar, or because of the potential for tampering?? Weird!

    And the terrorist thing sucks. I pulled up to my temple yesterday and was greeted by a police car watching over it from the parking lot. It’s awful that it’s come to this.

  3. @Lisa I’ll try to remember to post some pics. It will be months before they go to camp.

    @Melisa The candy ban is due to trying to keep ants and cockroaches out of the cabin. No worries, they visit the canteen 2-3 times a week and can buy sweets there.
    But it sounds like they are increasingly leery of home-made care packages and warned parents that boxes and such may be inspected–this is because of potential terrorist/hate group dangers.

    So of course, there are now “pre-approved” sources of ready-made care packages. Though these were described as mostly consisted of a bunch of bunch of plastic junk.

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