The New Jersey Center for Tourette Syndrome & Associated Disorders’ (NJCTS) 9th annual Family Retreat Weekend is coming up fast! Taking place June 7-9 at YMCA Camp Bernie, the weekend once again promises to be the “best weekend of the year” — even moreso after NJCTS received a generous grant from the Brad Cohen Tourette Foundation to help offset the cost! If you’re going, here’s a little of what you can expect:
- After check-in and prior to our usual campfire, join in a pick-up game of basketball or volleyball. Then sit back, relax and bask in the glow of a roaring, warm campfire — complete with s’mores and glow necklaces!
- In additional to the exciting array of camp activities — the climbing wall, swimming, canoeing, arts & crafts, etc. — we will have two special guests: licensed social workers Gayle Forman and Lisa Cox Ph.D., who will present a workshop on family dynamics. Cox also will facilitate a panel of young adults, college-aged and over, who will discuss life with TS.
- While parents are occupied with Gayle & Lisa, the kids — accompanied by our dedicated gang of volunteers — will be split into groups to do some team-building exercises, then learn how those same skills can be applied throughout their daily lives. Volunteers this year include 5 PhD students who work in the Rutgers TS genetics research program!
- On the musical side, we are pleased to announce that the winner of Bravo TV’s “The Kandi Factory,” South Plainfield High School senior Cory Singer, will be on hand to perform. And at night, DJ Harry Hubert will lead us in our annual Talent Show. If you have a talent and would like to share it, this is your chance! Just don’t forget to bring your props, and keep your act to 3 minutes. Only one act per person or group.
- From 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., we’ll feature “The Doctor Is In” for parents. Dr. Tolga Taneli, a psychiatrist at UMDNJ with years of TS expertise, will answer any questions you might have.
- For the kids, the normal set of camp activities will be available, plus a yoga class.
- We will conclude our camp activities at lunch, and we’ll even sneak in a hula-hoop contest. Hope to see you there!