“The book is a history featuring twists, turns, asides, footnotes, and cool trivia, like the fact that the first know Jewish camp was, of all things, a girl's camp, founded in 1893 by the Jewish Working Girls Vacation Society, located in New York.”
—Ohio Jewish Chronicle
“This book makes a significant contribution to understanding a major development in American Reform Judaism and the use of organized camping for children and youth as a valuable educational tool.”
—Burton I. Cohen, author of Case Studies in Jewish School ManagementCamping explains how social, political, and cultural conditions paved the way for the Reform camping movement.
“A Place of Our Own [offers] us a rare and detailed glimpse into a world that has a great deal to teach institutional Judaism today.”
—Erica Brown, the director for adult education at the Partnership for Jewish Life and Learning and the scholar-in-residence for the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, in the journal American Jewish History
“The occasion for this collection is the celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of Olin-Sang-Ruby Union Institute (OSRUI) for Reform Judaism in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin. Each of the essays contributes to the larger goal of explaining why OSRUI is worth studying and what it reveals. While former campers and camp leaders will undoubtedly find memories stirred by the essays and reminiscences in this volume, its value transcends in-group celebration and nostalgia. Taken as a whole these essays provide a valuable model for analyzing a movement and at the same time offer a powerful argument for the transformative impact of OSRUI on Reform Judaism....If you ever spent part of your summer in Oconomowoc, you will want to read this volume to rekindle memories of some of the people and activities of your youth. But for anyone else, this book is much more than a walk down Memory Lane, for its overarching purpose is to explore how camping can transform a faith community.”
—Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies