The evolution of Liberty Lake Day Camp, from late-1970s picnic-grove hot spot to its current existence as 60 acres of summer fun and life-altering learning, was always meant to be. For the past half century, Liberty Lake has been a hub for corporate parties, family reunions, graduation and birthday parties, charitable and political events, and community days in Burlington County. Due to its generous acreage, Liberty Lake continues to be the venue of choice, with multiple events running simultaneously on most weekends.
When owner Andy Pritikin founded Liberty Lake Day Camp in 2002, he was leasing the property. But within a few years, the camp’s potential was obvious. Liberty Lake was on its way to becoming the largest private day camp in its part of the universe (also known as South/Central Jersey).
And since 2006, we’ve been entrusted with guiding and caring for over 1,000 campers each summer. That’s a lot of celebratory group slushies (for our campers with summer birthdays)! Children and teens travel each summer day to Liberty Lake from five New Jersey counties (Burlington, Camden, Mercer, Monmouth, and Ocean). The journey is an easy one, because Exit 52A of 295 (North or South) doubles as the unofficial driveway to the camp’s entrance.
And speaking of journeys, here’s another one we invite you to take with us: Andy Pritikin’s progression from wannabe rock star to camp owner/director (and president of the American Camp Association, NY/NJ). Andy enjoyed his 15 minutes of fame on Star Search back in 1991. Even though Andy’s band met with success after college, his first real-world job fell through, and he was disillusioned with his career path.
Influenced by his high-school band director, Andy went back to college for his master’s in education to become a teacher. He subsequently became the coolest band teacher on the planet, teaching by day and playing music gigs by night. When the band broke up, Andy considered becoming the ultimate authority: a school principal.
But fate intervened once again. A camp owner he was working for inquired if he had any interest in becoming a full-time camp director. Intrigued by the opportunity to continue impacting children’s minds and talents, Andy left his teaching job in 1996 to pursue the life of a camp professional. Fortunately, his (at the time) pregnant wife, Jill, signed the permission slip…
Thus, Andy Pritikin learned a lot about running a camp while working at some of the finest private day camps in northern New Jersey and New York. After five years as the director of a camp on Long Island’s North Shore, Andy completed his “doctorate” in day camp, with a minor in resident (sleepaway) camp. He then had the opportunity to found Liberty Lake Day Camp in 2002. Andy placed all his energy into creating a unique camp experience in a geographic area lacking this type of destination for children and teens. And now you know the Liberty Lake Day Camp story!