Team of campers at Camp Herrlich
Photo: Courtesy of Camp Herrlich

Camp Herrlich

For two weeks each summer, Camp Herrlich hosts 80 low-income children from Astoria and Long Island City at its 156-acre campus in Patterson, N.Y. These kids — ages 8 to 15 — live at the camp where they enjoy fishing, boating, swimming, hiking, archery, zip lining, arts and crafts, frog catching, sports, nature discovery, and more. Through their exploration of nature and engagement with the camp community, they develop a sense of cooperation and independence, boosting their self esteem and confidence and developing leadership skills.


One of the main goals of the program is for campers to “graduate” to becoming Counselors-in-Training (CITs), Junior Counselors or Senior Counselors. Thus far, approximately 10 percent of campers have become CITs, Junior Counselors or Senior Counselors.


Shamar Coleman has been a Camp Herrlich camper since he was 9 years old, becoming a Counselor-In-Training (CIT) during his sixth summer. This summer, at 16, he anticipates a promotion to Junior Counselor. Shamar considers his Camp Herrlich experience life-changing. He credits the counselors and their caring nature for his eagerness to return each year. He explains that they’ve imparted the importance of caring for others.