What if you could relive the entire sleepaway experience you remember from childhood, or perhaps never got the chance to enjoy? Over a single weekend, Club Getaway in Kent, Connecticut, provides visitors with that opportunity -- but with a whole lot more alcohol.
My wife and I (both sleepaway veterans) recently stayed at the adult summer camp with two friends (both sleepaway virgins), and all four of us had a blast -- playing tennis, volleyball, and softball (complete with a dugout keg, of course) and experimenting with wall climbing, water skiing and a tremendously fun "bungee trampoline."
The site even has an actual trapeze with staffed experts who teach campers how to do a couple of basic moves, though personally I wasn't able to master anything more than swinging back and forth like a dead monkey.
But nothing could have prepared us for the insane party that this entirely unique company throws for its guests each weekend. For $59, campers can take the official Club Getaway bus from New York City, which features an endless flow of wine throughout the two-hour ride. If you're prone to motion sickness or have a weak liver, this method of transportation is probably not for you (I almost puked twice). I've never seen this many drunk people in one moving vehicle; I believe the driver was the sole abstainer.
Here are some of the other wild things I witnessed while reveling at Club Getaway...
The Human Mascot
Club Getaway has a mascot, and his name is Bluto. The "Director of Entertainment" greets campers shortly after their arrival, and is always in some kind of costume, each of which is simultaneously the best and worst thing you've ever seen in your life.
I wouldn't dare ruin all of the surprises, but one of my personal favorites was his hula outfit, complete with shell bikini. It's worth a visit just to party with this extremely dedicated dude, who may act and look like he never left college –- but also happens to be one of the nicest guys you'll ever meet.
Ultimate Flip Cup
I helped organize some pretty epic games of flip cup during my time in college, but none beat the one I witnessed at Club Getaway. (The above photo doesn't do it justice.) During a rained-out afternoon, over 40 competitors from every walk of life spilled across multiple tables to flip plastic cups.
You haven't lived until you've seen a 20-something frat guy high five a woman old enough to be his mother for her ability to chug faster than the two young ladies in bikinis across the way. Club Getaway brings disparate worlds together in puzzlingly perfect harmony.
Booty, Booty, Booty, Booty Rockin' Everywhere
On our first night, one of the staff members warned us that no surface on campus had been unsullied. "If you can think of something to have sex on, someone has had sex on it," he said, when I pointed out a spot that looked perfect for some romantic evening stargazing.
Perhaps he was exaggerating for comedic effect, but I did walk in on a couple engaging in ear-shattering intercourse in the men's bathroom during the evening dance party. Unless what I had actually encountered was a four-legged dude with two pretty feet enduring food poisoning bad enough to render him a soprano.
Quiet Clubbing in the Woods
That's a hundred dancers writhing in the middle of a pitch black forest clearing amidst sheer silence. At first I thought I had stumbled upon a mime troupe's reenactment of the wild rave from "The Matrix: Reloaded" -- until I realized that these party-goers were all donning headphones tuned to one of three customized stations, and had partnered up accordingly to grind away the night.
My favorite part of the evening was roasting marshmallows at the bonfire that followed the party. At last, fully detached from our hectic daily lives -- in a rare moment of nostalgic bliss -- dozens of strangers were instantly united by a singular experience universally shared in youth. It really brought us all back, you know?
And then we had some more drinks.