Camp Moshava Wild Rose, a rare modern Orthodox Jewish camp in Wisconsin, will welcome back campers for summer sessions this June as the camp continues with renovations and improvements.
Over the past few years, Camp Moshava Wild Rose has been busy making big changes. The camp has invested more than $4 million into renovations and improvements, including rebuilding the dining hall and installing a specialty kosher kitchen.
“Our next plan is to build a new infirmary. So we’re definitely in that capital and growing stage,” said Dikla Weitzner, camp director. Weitzner, a Camp Moshava alumna, has worked as camp director since the fall of 2018.
The camp raised money through donors and grants and continues to fundraise for further renovations like the new infirmary. While some changes have created new buildings, the camp has also worked on renovating existing structures.
Weitzner added that the camp administration is “very nostalgic” for the camp’s decades of history. “We have a synagogue, for example, that was beautiful, and we didn’t want to tear it down. So we asked a donor to renovate it,” she said.
Increased enrollment over the past two years has been driving the need for recent renovations and improvements. The camp’s enrollment has remained steady even after canceling 2020 summer sessions because of Covid-19, Weitzner said.
“Our parents were amazing,” she said. Some parents rolled their tuition over to the next year or donated their tuition, according to Weitzner.
There are four Camp Moshava locations across North America, in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and California, and there is one location in Canada.
“I’d say we cater mostly to the Chicago community. About 50% of our campers are from Chicago,” she said. Chicago may have a larger modern Orthodox population than Wisconsin, but campers have also come from Wisconsin. Camp Moshava Wild Rose also hosts campers from Mexico, Canada and Israel every year, Weitzner said.
“Wild Rose is a nice town of 725 people. They’re wonderful, wonderful people, and they welcome us into their community and into their town every summer,” Weitzner said.
The camp moved from Pennsylvania to Wild Rose, about 50 miles west of Appleton, in 1955, and has stayed at the same location since, according to Weitzner.
The camp’s offerings as a modern Orthodox institution, and alumni returning with their children, has helped sustain the camp’s success, she said.
“I think it’s a very incredible community behind us that love the camp.”