Clear Lake

About Us

Our team lives "10 for 2"!

Simply stated, we spend ten months of the year anticipating what is the most amazing time of the year...the golden summer months, filled with fun, excitement, and new experiences. Since 1984, we have partnered with thousands of families resulting in extraordinary "10 for 2" memories... 

 

The Camp Connection takes pride in the deep relationships we have with hundreds of select programs, not only in the northeast US but across the country and worldwide. 

 

We don’t just work with any program. We take great steps in vetting the credibility, experience and facilities of each of the programs we partner with. Our process includes conducting on-site visits during the summer, along with a comprehensive analysis meeting with owners, directors, family members and 3rd-party companies ensuring we are providing you the latest and most up-to-date information on every program in our network. 

 

The Camp Connection is a personalized, phone-based concierge service. At no charge to your family, The Camp Connection is your partner, providing unlimited access to our team throughout the important summer camp and program decision-making journey.

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How We Got Started

Laurel and Norm Barrie founded The Camp Connection in 1984 from their kitchen table. With a long history in camping, Norms family owned a day camp in Atlantic Beach, NY, and Laurel worked there as a lifeguard! So it began… they got married, Norm worked as a Social Studies teacher then as an Assistant Principal, and Laurel as a Speech Pathologist. They had their summers off and decided to work at a sleep-away camp in upstate NY. 

 

After 20+ years of working and running camps, they had a great idea… "Let’s make it easy for families to connect with summer camps and programs…" 

And The Camp Connection was formed! 

We bet you’d like to meet our team…

Meet the Team

 
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Laurel and Norm Barrie

Laurel and Norm Barrie founded The Camp Connection in 1984 from their kitchen table. With a long history in camping, Norms family owned a day camp in Atlantic Beach, NY, and Laurel worked there as a lifeguard! So it began… they got married, Norm worked as a Social Studies teacher then as an Assistant Principal, and Laurel as a Speech Pathologist. They had their summers off and decided to work at a sleep-away camp in upstate NY. 

After 20+ years of working and running camps, they had a great idea… "Let’s make it easy for families to connect with summer camps and programs…" And The Camp Connection was formed!

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Melissa Cohen 

Melissa Cohen is Laurel and Norm's daughter and a partner at The Camp Connection. 

 

Melissa recalls laying on the floor in her Merrick home as a little girl listening to her mom talk to clients day in and day out. She remembers the time and patience Laurel spent with each and every client, and the amazing knowledge she had of every individual camp. Melissa knew back then, as a little girl, this was going to be her future.

 

Prior to joining The Camp Connection, Melissa attended The University at Buffalo and earned her Masters in counseling from New York University. She then began a rewarding career as a High School guidance counselor which gave her invaluable experience working closely with families. Melissa lives in Dix Hills, NY with her husband Brian and her two children Drew and Cameron. 

 

Sleepaway camp isn't just a job but her passion as some of her life’s most amazing moments occurred at Sleepaway camp!  Almost 40 years later, Melissa is honored to be the 2nd generation of The Camp Connection. 

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Sloane Barrie

Sloane officially joined The Camp Connection team in 2019, after a 20-year career in recruiting.  While she loved working with job seekers to find them great opportunities, she couldn’t resist the opportunity to work with her family at The Camp Connection, placing kids in their summer homes! 

 

Sloane grew up on Long Island and went to traditional sleepaway camp and tennis camp, ultimately working as a counselor. Her camp years were some of the best of her life! 

Sloane graduated from Lehigh University with a bachelors degree in Psychology and Spanish.  She currently lives on Long Island with her husband and two daughters, ages 11 and 14. When she’s not at work, talking about camp, you can find her on the tennis court or playing canasta with friends!

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Susan Pecker

Since 2004, Susan Pecker has been a camp advisor with The Camp Connection. Before this role, Susan worked in the field of Public Relations for one of NYC’s top firms.

Susan lived and raised her family in Westchester county for 30 years and held leadership positions in her community’s synagogue, PTA, and ambulance corps. 

Because of her connection to so many people and fond memories of summer camp, she was approached by a neighbor suggesting she’d be the perfect resource to help parents find summer programs for their children. 

Thousands of happy campers later, now Susan assists families in NYC and continues to in Westchester. 

She lives on the Upper West Side with her husband and their two dogs - yet close (enough) to her two married daughters and grandson. 

When not talking to parents, meeting directors or visiting camps, you can find Susan walking the reservoir in Central Park or on her Peloton - but she will always stop to talk CAMP!

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Ronni Bergman

Camp has been part of Ronni’s psyche since she was a camper herself. Ronni has held roles in the camp including counselor, waterfront director, group leader, head counselor, and a parent of campers! Becoming part of The Camp Connection, NY consulting team in 1990 was a natural fit for her. Living in Delray Beach, Florida since 2006, she continues to assist families in finding the right summer spot for their children. 

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Lisa Bloom

Lisa Bloom is a lifelong camper!! She started beach club camp at the age of 2 and spent every summer in various day camps on Long Island before starting a sleep away camp in upstate New York at age 9. 

 

She fell in love with camp and spent the next 13 consecutive summers there, continuing through college as a counselor and then group leader. After graduating from the University of Maryland, Lisa went on to pursue a Masters Degree in Elementary Education and became a teacher for the NYC Department of Education. But deep down, she always missed her summers at camp!  Once she completed her 2nd Masters Degree in School Administration, Lisa and her husband (also from a camp family) returned to Long Island and she continued to teach while growing her family.

 

Her two daughters, age 8 and 13, began day camp at an early age before finding their summer home in Pennsylvania. Lisa joined us at The Camp Connection in 2016, bringing to us her love of camp, understanding of children, and the desire to help parents find the perfect summer homes for their family.