Rich parents are spoiling their pampered campers with pricey, over-the-top care packages

(credit: Warner Brothers)

Many of us have fond memories of summer camp: water balloon fights, our first crushes and silly pranks. But these days, the children of the ultra rich are making some different memories — ones that feature Nobu sushi, takeout from Mr. Chow, platters of smoked salmon from Zabar and $70 candy-covered lacrosse sticks.

Even though most children stay just several weeks away from home at camp, parents send them elaborate care packages that can cost anywhere from hundreds to thousands of dollars. And it’s not enough to just gift their little angels pricey treats; many parents also supply their offspring’s bunk mates with wares as well.

“There might have been a rumor that somebody gave iPod shuffles to every girl in the bunk one year,” a director of an all-girls camp in New York gossiped to the Post.

Not to be outdone, “[My employees] bring Ziplocs and containers and Sharpies and label everything,” says one cash-laden mom. “They’ll put dryer sheets between each layer of clothes, so when they come to camp, it smells good. And they’ll put a nice gift on top, too,” she says of the new trend of a “trunk gift.”

Some over-indulgent parents want camp to truly be a home away from home — even going so far as to bring their own nannies along or other staff members.

“Every year, there are parents who bring their housekeepers to [clean],” says one Upper West Side parent. “They’re there wiping the floors and spraying the Lysol.”

Clearly all this “extra” doesn’t come cheap. Prices for elite sleep away camps can run $8,000-$13,000 for a full seven-week term. Add to that customized gear like $100-paint-splattered sleeping bags and $175 monogrammed Uggs and specialized packing services at $100 an hour with a three-hour minimum.

And let’s not forget that many parents (and staff) also opt to forgo “roughing it”, arriving in style themselves on visiting days on private plane or Blades. Obviously, the summer splurging isn’t solely reserved for the pampered campers. [NYP]