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The rise of (healthy) summer camp culture

The s'mores are vegan, kayaking is exercise, and sleeping outside is "glamping."
Girls campingMost of us have fond memories of the carefree, fresh air days of summer camp (or fantasies created by Wet Hot American Summer and Moonrise Kingdom).

And lately, wellness culture has latched on to that fascination, creating camp-themed experiences and products—from workouts and getaways to healthy supplies you’ll need tent-side.

In this new camp culture, the s’mores are vegan, kayaking is exercise, and sleeping outside is “glamping.” (Come on, you didn’t actually want to revisit dirty cabins and hot dogs at every meal, did you?)

Here are nine fun, healthy ways to channel summer camp nostalgia this season, whether you’d prefer to sleep among skyscrapers or are thinking of heading to the mountains to stare up at the stars. —Jamie McKillop

(Photo: Maui Maka)


Get Started
KammokKammok Roo Hammock, $100

Kammok’s easy-to-hang Roo Hammock is made from lightweight fabric, allowing for a quick pre-campfire aeriel yoga sesh. Or hang it in your apartment next to a window for Sunday reading.

(Photo: Amber Elizabeth)


Juniper Ridge IncenseJuniper Ridge Campfire Incense, $12

Natural scents company Juniper Ridge makes all of its products from actual wild plant trimmings. (Their slogan? The mountains in a bottle is what we do). And its Campfire Incense evokes the scents of California’s coastal forests—more specifically, you, chilling by a campfire, in them. Light it in your stuffy fourth floor walk-up to banish taxicab fumes.

(Photo: Juniper Ridge)


Soul Camp 2014Soul Camp, $837

This three-night adult summer camp, located on the actual site where Wet Hot American Summer was filmed, is turning the woodsy getaway concept bestowed on children into a holistic experience for nature-deprived adults. In addition to organic meals, you can expect yoga and fitness classes, inner-life workshops, and dance parties with some of the country’s leading mind-body experts. If Patricia Moreno and Ashley Turner were your counselors way back when, maybe you wouldn’t have called home so often?

(Photo: Soul Camp)



vegan-campfire-smoresLunch Box Bunch’s Vegan S’mores Recipe

No camp experience is complete without s’mores. But Hershey’s and Jet-Puffed marshmallows (and the ingredients they’re made from) just don’t cut it anymore. Make this vegan version from the Lunch Box Bunch for your next camp out—or night in.

(Photo: Lunch Box Bunch)


NYSC Summer CampSummer Camp at New York Sports Club

NYSC’s new summer class—free for both members and non-members—involves kitschy exercises that mimic the motions used in outdoor camp activities, like volleyball spikes, frisbie twists, water skiing, tug o’ war, and stand-up paddling (pictured), all done on the green grass (AKA Astroturf). Capture the Flag not included.

(Photo: New York Sports Club)


WildfoxWildfox I Love Camping Sweatshirt, $190

Let your top do all the talking with this playful pullover from the slogan-savvy folks at Wildfox—perfect to snuggle up in at a nighttime beach bonfire.

(Photo: Wildfox)


Camp OrendaCamp Orenda

“Glamping” sounds silly—but it looks kind of awesome. A trip to Camp Orenda in the Adirondacks includes fully furnished canvas tents with actual beds, plus daily activities, a gourmet kitchen, and even massages. Much better than sharing a tiny tent with the camp bully.

(Photo: Camp Orenda)


natural_bug_repellantFarmaesthetics Tansynella Organic Bugscreen, $17

This artisanal natural beauty company makes repelling bugs a chic—and non-toxic—experience. The formula is an organic blend of sunflower oil, tansy, citronella, and other oils that you can mix into your sunscreen or body lotion.

(Photo: Farmaesthetics)


Handcrank blenderGSI Outdoors Vortex Hand-Crank Blender, $115

Don’t ever go without your morning green smoothie thanks to this hand-powered blender. It’s not a Nutribullet, but when you’re roughing it, some sacrifices must be made. And maybe you’ll further tone your arm muscles while you’re at it?

(Photo: Without Walls)


TarynToomey_theClassMore Reading

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