Kamp Kewanee
The Kamp Kewanee Knocker
    La Plume, Pa. Sunday, May 16, 2021   
Kamp Kewanee

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Chuck Half
April 28, 2021 14:57:02 (EDT)
Now that we have moved from Pittsburgh to Davidson, NC, Marilyn and I figured it time today to check out how my KK canoeing skills survived after being in storage for 60 years. My J-stroke still works well. No chewing tobacco spitting from the stern is allowed by Town environmental laws. Come and visit when in Charlotte area....

WFIL
January 28, 2021 15:48:33 (EDT)

bill lenihan
January 28, 2021 00:51:21 (EDT)
Thanks, Steve Buch. The Susquehanna River is an obvious candidate, but the problem is (a) Tunkhannock, PA is where it's closest to La Plume, PA (15-20 minutes), but the river is barely more than a creek at that location, not the big mother of a river I remember from an away meet we had in 1969. On the other hand, (b) at Susquehannock State Park the river is nice and fat like I remember it, but that's over 3 hours from KK, and I have a hard time believing we could tolerate a 6 hour round trip, which in turn leaves little time for the athletic competitions (I do not recall doing sleep-overs at the away camps). Sunbury, PA is the furthest north where the Susquehanna River is fat enough, but it's anyone's guess whether it's 2 hour travel time from KK would be a deal-breaker (schlepping 200 kids in ?? buses).

Steve Buch
January 16, 2021 18:53:37 (EDT)
Re: Bill Lenihan's question, I went to KK way before you, but the two camp meets I remember were Susquehanna and Susquehannock.

bill lenihan
December 24, 2020 00:30:32 (EDT)
We all remember the Black vs. Red intra-squad competitions every summer, but there were also one or two one-day quasi-Olympic-like competitions against other nearby sleepaway camps. Does any 1968-70 Kamper remember (or has the memorabilia to research)
(a) the names of those other camps?
and/or
(b) what body of water the swimming events were held at when such competitions occurred on their turf ('away games', NOT competitions at KK & Manataka Lake)? i.e., Bullhead Bay, Susquehanna River, Lake Carey, etc.,


__/__/1968 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________
__/__/1968 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________
__/__/1968 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________
__/__/1968 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________

__/__/1969 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________
__/__/1969 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________
__/__/1969 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________
__/__/1969 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________

__/__/1970 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________
__/__/1970 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________
__/__/1970 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________
__/__/1970 vs Camp ___________ at Lake/River ___________

Larry Rosensweig
December 16, 2020 12:47:18 (EDT)
My brother Donn Rosensweig - victorious Red Team captain and Honor Plaque 1961 - passed away on Dec. 9. He regularly attended KK reunions and always enjoyed reminiscing about his 7 summers in LaPlume.
OBITUARY FOR CANTOR DONN R. ROSENSWEIG
On December 9, 2020, Cantor Donn Roger Rosensweig passed away in his sleep at the age of 74 from lung cancer. Born into a close family in Kingston, PA, the son of Dr. William and Lois Levy Rosensweig, he grew up singing – around the piano at family gatherings, in synagogue, eventually forming a folk music trio in high school and going on to perform in many musicals throughout college and his later life. After graduating from Hobart College in 1968, Donn earned his Master of Arts in Teaching from Oberlin College, where he met Ruth Adler, whom he later married and with whom he had his beloved sons Matthew and Daniel. After stints as a teacher, chef and actor, Donn completed his cantorial education at Hebrew Union College in Manhattan. He worked as a cantor in New Jersey, then moved to Andover, MA, where he was Cantor for Temple Emanuel for almost twenty-five years. In 2010, he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Music from Hebrew Union College to commemorate his service. Donn was also extremely committed to supporting the Merrimack Valley Jewish Federation and received a special tribute from them in 2005. He touched so many lives as an educator at the synagogue, developing close relationships with his students of all ages while preparing them for Bar/Bat Mitzvahs, in addition to leading the choir and performing rites.
Following his retirement, Donn turned his attention back to secular singing and acting, performing with Acting Out Theatre Company, Spotlight Playhouse and the Andover Choral Society. Roles with special meaning for Donn include playing “Morrie” in “Tuesdays with Morrie,” and Littlechap in “Stop the World I Want to Get Off.” He was especially moved when he sang the Verdi Requiem with the Berkshire Choral Festival in Prague at the site of the Terezin concentration camp. He also volunteered to lead services regularly at Atria Marland Place in Andover.
Besides his passion for music, Donn loved baseball. He was a diehard Brooklyn Dodgers fan who eventually transferred his support to the Boston Red Sox. He also had wonderful memories of summers as a child at Kamp Kewanee in Pennsylvania, and kept up those early friendships by continuing to go to reunions as late as 2019. He loved hiking with friends and family, particularly favoring a loop trail on Mounts Welch and Dickey in New Hampshire. Above all, Donn loved his family, both immediate and extended. He tried to attend as many of the celebrations and holiday gatherings as he could.
Donn is loved and will be sorely missed by his sons Matthew and his wife Melissa Dallon, and Daniel and his fiancée Janine Gilkes, siblings Nancey, Larry and Rick Rosensweig, sisters-in-law Nora and Diane, brother-in-law Dan Arshack, numerous Levy and Rosensweig cousins, nieces and nephews, as well as the Adler family.
Donations in Donn’s memory can be made to the Sig Adler Lung Cancer Research Fund at Mass General Hospital or the charity of your choice.

Steve Buch
October 9, 2020 16:06:46 (EDT)
Had a nice visit today from Alan Monheit who just moved to Bucks County from Long Island. It was great catching up after 58 years! We may have seen each other at a reunion or two, but this was our first chance to chat one on one. Kee Kee Wah!

jack maguire
June 25, 2020 00:32:46 (EDT)
Postcards from ~1968-1970 (click to zoom)

WFIL
May 15, 2020 14:15:20 (EDT)
I have just added another section to the website - the

Gordon Lawrence
May 15, 2020 09:36:20 (EDT)
As world events become more intense, our thoughts return to Kewanee and our summers in tents.

WFIL
April 16, 2020 14:15:17 (EDT)
I'm sorry to report that we've lost another loyal KK alum, David Breakstone ('49-'54).

Serving as captain of the 1954 Red Team at Kamp Kewanee was one of his proudest memories.

Sandy Jo
April 7, 2020 19:30:55 (EDT)
Has anyone thought about doing a reunion on the internet?
Right now my High school class of 1962 is putting a ZOOM meeting together. We started collecting names 24 hours ago and right now we are up to 37. This includes people from the United States, and the Pacific Rim. With everyone having not much to do but sit around, this could work for us. Anyone interested?

Sandy Jo
March 27, 2020 22:06:34 (EDT)
Amen Dave

dave rutstein
March 27, 2020 18:30:35 (EDT)
Thinking about all KK'ers hoping you are safe and well. Wish Mary Wren were around to solve this medical problem--although a bit more difficult than cracked toes. All of us must exercise patience so that we don't become patients. Dave Rutstein

Moose (posted by WFIL)
March 22, 2020 15:08:04 (EDT)
Jon (Moose) Adland made these remarks at the 2019 Reunion:

Kamp Kewanee 2019

It is hard to imagine for me that in 2020 it will have been 50 years since my final summer at Kamp Kewanee. The images are still so real in my mind: the tents, the mess hall, the flag raising, inspection, all of the ball games, color war, the lake, and the friendships. It was a long time ago, but I think most of us feel it was just yesterday. I retired from my last congregation in Canton, OH on June 30 and over the last few months packed up my office. I gave away a lot of books, wrapped up mementos, but there was one unique box that I packed. It was filled with moose—stuffed moose, canned moose, wooden moose, other moose—of various sizes and looks. Most of these had been given to me as gifts by congregants as they heard about my nickname. Except for the dozen or two that sit in various places around my home from a moose menorah to a fishing moose to a beautiful photograph of a moose, most will be in a box that I hope to give to grandchildren or some day maybe just give away.

At the final light-hearted bbq that the congregation gave for me, I told them about how I got the name from Harry Zavacky and how some younger kampers never knew my name was Jon. In July, I went on a retirement trip to Canada and glimpsed a moose and this always brings me back to Kamp. I know the property has gone to seed from what I understand, and the buildings have crumbled. It is sad because that place held such a force in us, but we all know that Kamp Kewanee is more than just the place. Like many kamps across the country, those summer days of youth place a vital role in developing our skills, our ability to live and work with others, and for me how to win and lose with grace and kindness. Kamp Kewanee helped build our characters. The camps my children went to continue to play a vital role in their lives and shaped who they are today. Kamp Kewanne is unique to us, but camp and its impact is awesome to so many.

I don’t know how many more times we will get to gather and celebrate this incredible place of our youth. These reunions have been important and worthwhile for me who came in on the last years of the kamp to meet the people and hear from the people on whose shoulders my experiences stood. None of us walked away from LaPlume unchanged. I know that my years as a rabbi, the leadership and the ability to work with others was largely formed in LaPlume, PA. I don’t mean to be somber and I could certainly tell funny stories, but at this point Kamp Kewanee is deep in my soul and that is where these thoughts come from today.

So how do you explain to the uninitiated this Kamp? Today camps try to be electronic free telling parents to keep their kids cell phones at home. Some parents don’t send their kids to camp if it doesn’t have air conditioning. Parents fret over their kids being gone for two weeks or just under four. Their kids will undergo dramatic changes and they won’t be present for those moments. We went to camp for 8 weeks. Saw our parents for one day (and many of us couldn’t wait for them to leave) and didn’t speak to them any other time. And YES! we changed—wasn’t that the point. We grew up a little and maybe became a better ballplayer or woodworker or butterfly catcher and before my time a marionette person. We may have acted in a play or spoken before a group that we just wouldn’t do at home. We canoed and sometimes got naked. We made fun of each and loved each other and cried when it was time to go home. We ate food that was at times unrecognizable, but we didn’t totally complain, but boy did we enjoy our night at shadowbrooke or at the Fleetville Fair. Does that fair still exist? (The answer is yes, but it now happens in September). We cheered each other on and got over our losses because there was another game the next day. Yes mom and dad we grew up and kamp and that is the point. We lived away from you for two months and lived with you for 10 just waiting for the next 2 again.

So let me say this—none of us knows if we will gather again, but if we do I will be here, but if this is the last one then I say thank you to those whose stories have enriched my time at Kamp Kewanee and I say thank you to those who were there with me.

With my rabbi hat on, blessings to all of you for having made my life better.

moose adland
March 21, 2020 15:51:28 (EDT)
Thanks Mike for the kind words and you nailed what the reunion means to so many of us. KK will always be a part of us no mater where our journeys take us. I hope we can do this again even as the numbers continue to diminish slightly.

Stay safe everyone.

WFIL
March 19, 2020 22:39:34 (EDT)
The web site is back after a hard drive failure.

KEE KEE WAH

WFIL
January 30, 2020 20:13:19 (EDT)
Mike Lowenstein sent this in shortly after the reunion:

Reunion highlights for me [Mike] included:

1. Seeing old friends, especially the "Kid's Table" discussed below.

2. Some really moving words from Moose, befitting a recently retired rabbi, and some other speakers, that will lead me to purchase the Divad DVD using the attached Old Dominion Broadcast Form.

3. Seeing Ricky Macey for the first time in 50 years. Not only was he my first Red and Black captain (who won by a huge margin) but, as I reflected on it on the drive home, a few years later, at one of our overnights, at a time when I believe he was a visitor and not a counselor, he led the best dirty joke telling session of my entire life.

4. Meeting some new friends, including Fred Half and his very lovely wife, and WFIL's mom.

5. Parts of the Pitt-Penn State game.

6. Tripp's wife Barbara remembering Doug Bradley as the guy who ran the Jeopardy game.

7. Visiting with John Spear and telling him he better get back to the main table if he still wanted to have a girlfriend: "I am not that easy to replace."

8. Some really awesome photos, especially for our age group, that Greg Morris drove much of the night to bring, and from Fred Half, in the attached reunion program.

WFIL
January 15, 2020 19:01:16 (EDT)
Lou Moskowitz gave this speech at the September 2019 Reunion:

Kamp Kewanee was founded in 1916, in the middle of World War 1, five score and three years ago. That’s 103 years for those that think that “score” means something else. When Lincoln delivered his Gettysburg address, in 1863, in the middle of the Civil War, he started with “Four score and seven years ago,…”, or 87 years since the Declaration of Independence was signed. So, for those keeping count, we out-scored Lincoln by 16 years.

Kamp closed 46 years ago, yet we continue to gather to celebrate what was and to renew old friendships. Exactly what it is that repeatedly brings each of us back, after all these years, varies, but includes a shared set of experiences, during a critical period of personal development. Much, of course, has changed over these 46 years. For example, I can no longer type Kamp Kewanee with “K’s without my spelling auto-correct changing the “K” to a “C” and Douglas DC-3’s no longer land at Avoca airport with kampers emplaning. But, the essential Kamp experience seems to have varied little from the beginnings of Kamp in 1916 through the final taps in 1973. For me, the magic was always with the experienced teachers and others turned kamp counselors; men like Frank Dolbear, Dave Sechrist, Bonnie Sabatini, Ted Pawloski, Eddie Chiampi, Johnny Ludd, Harry Zavacki and Dick “Nehru” Sundheim, to name but a few from my era. So, drink your bug juice, go on a nature hike, take your compulsory dip, dust off your pump lamp, get ready for inspection, paddle your canoe, compete in Red/Black tug of war, listen again to your favorite Gilbert and Sullivan operetta, identify that small butterfly with the red stripes that just landed on your deck chair, as a Red Admiral, and listen to a trumpet playing revile and, later, taps. Smile at what was and that helped get you to who you are today. Be grateful.

Kee Kee Wah.

Ernest Urvater
January 4, 2020 13:09:45 (EDT)
At the time I went to KK I was known as Ernest Schlosberg, my mother's married name. I went to one reunion, which was in the year that the camp closed, but can't remember exactly when that was. What year did the camp close? I walked away from that reunion with the 1947 plaque, the ones which circled around the room in the lodge--my name is on it along with D. Lorch. He wasn't there, so I got to take the plaque home. Thinking of attending the next reunion. Thanks in advance for your reply. Ciao, Ernie

WFIL
January 2, 2020 15:59:21 (EDT)
Rick Vatz gave this speech at the September 2019 Reunion:

My Kewanee -- Rick Vatz

Greetings and Kee Kee Wah to all of you. This would have been a one-hour speech, but Bugs Melnikoff told me earlier that I could not repeat anything I had said at earlier reunions, so now it is about 5 minutes.

I imagine that many of us have changed over the years and not just in our maladies from aging. Personally, I am happily married to my one and only wife and have 2 wonderful children and 2 wonderful grandchildren.

At Kewanee, I was a Pirate fan and still recall Johnny Spear's singing "For I am a Pirate fan,"¯ I was a Steeler fan, which my wife and I still are, despite the drubbing we received last Sunday at the hands of the Patriots. But foremost now I am a Baltimore Orioles fan and a Baltimore Ravens fan, but I still love the Pittsburgh teams from the early days. My wife, incidentally, won't watch the Ravens, except out of loyalty to me.

I still play tennis the same deplorable way, but I no longer win many sets.

Yes, Kamp Kewanee made most of us competitive life-long, and that great kamp has had effects on me throughout my life.

In fact, I owe a tremendous amount to Kewanee, especially my years as a kamper.

My days as a kamper were almost ideal.. My first year I had Roy David as a kounselor, one of the neatest guys I ever met.

My other favorite kounselor was George Koval, and I with Bobby Wertheimer worshipped him…so neaat and cool and an adult at an early age.

Foster Goldman was my Kounselor in the ensuing year, and he was always getting into squabbles due to his urbane humor and the lack of such in one or two of the other kounselors. There was a counselor whose name some of you will recall, but I don't, nicknamed "Tarzan."¯ We had a swim meet and Tarzon started shrieking at Foster that his – Tarzon's – rules would prevail in tn the competition of ten year-olds. Tarzon, who could beat up 99.99% of the earth's inhabitants, prevailed, as Foster said, "O.K., we'll do it your way."¯ Tarzan, however, did not return to Kamp Kewanee.

One of Foster's persuasive strength's was that he was related to the owner, and that seemed to resolve a lot of problems, just not immediately.

I learned from that situation that it was good to be close to those with power. I was very close to the Governor of Maryland from 2003 to 2007, and I taught the wife of the next one, Martin O'Malley, and I am sort-of buds with the current one, Gov. Hogan and have had him speak in my class and his Lieutenant Governor is speaking in my class in a couple of weeks.

Some of you know that I am a political conservative, and yet Nancy Pelosi spoke in my class last October, and she was great,

I have, as a result of Joe Ludgate and Dave Sechrist's performances, a love of Gilbert and Sullivan, always loved Pirates of Penzance and H.M.S. Pinafore and Trial by Jury. I still sing songs at home that I learned from Johnny Spear. My wife, once a professional singer, cautions me that he ain't no Enrico Caruso, whoever that was.

There was Jimmy Samter – one day I was walking to my tent, and there was a dozen kampers surrounding Jimmy. He announces that he could blow smoke out of his mouth without smoking. He did so, but to this day I don't know if medical science can explain it.

Due to him and the late, great Bobby Siegel, or Soggy Bagel as I believe he was then known, I have never smoked. One day in his tent when I was about 12, I said that I admired his smoking and was ready to try it myself. He said, O.K., here is a cigarette; take a puff. I sort of did and Bobby said, that's not how you smoke; inhale the smoke!"¯ I did so, and after recovering 5 days later I knew that I would never smoke again.

I adored Sam Strauss (Sa-am – and I confess I do not know the originator of that pronunciation of his name or why the entire kamp uttered it when technology broke down in the lodge) who ran the Kewanee Theater Guild for a while and one of my other absolute favorite counselors was Mike Courson, although Bobby Wertheimer and I argued whether he or George Koval was a better counselor. I should at this point always make the argument that I adored Henry Mosler who convinced me as a ten-year-old that when I called Sam Snead "Damn Sneeze,"¯ I was making a hilarious joke.

My adulthood has benefitted from other Kewanneans, such as the late Bruce Kaufman and especially, perhaps, Robert Cohen who when I told him I was writing a book on Persuasion -- which book came out a years ago, by the way -- told me he had done a play on Machiavelli. B.S. Cohen on Machiavelli? Never would have guessed it.

I was told repeatedly that Breezie Stein was the coolest guy ever. I talked with him at length last night, and he still is the coolest guy ever. Trippy looked half his age at kamp and still does.

Dave Rutstein's photographic memory is still on display, as of this morning.

There are so many other people as well to whom I admired additionally to the ones I have named, people who simply made Kewanee a great happy and enjoyable experience, such as Steve Moses, Gordy Lawrence, Lou Moskowitz, Steve Klein, Nehru, Johnny Samuels and some others here today. There were so many just wonderful additional people that it would take forever to name them all.

All in all, Kamp Kewanee produced so many seminal memories, memories which have helped me in every aspect of life; I shall never forget you, or at least many of you.

Richard E. Vatz, Ph.D.

Towson Distinguished Professor
Towson Student Government Association first Faculty Member of the Year, 2009-2010
Professor, ILPD; University Senate since 1980; Towson University
Blogger, Red Maryland
Thomas Szasz Civil Liberties Award
Psychology Editor, USA Today Magazine;

WFIL
December 23, 2019 18:07:39 (EDT)
Linda Goldman sends this pic of Foster, Bob Shoenberg, and me (WFIL) at the September reunion.


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