Time together as a family, activities planned just for you, and new friends with aligned values… that’s what you’ll experience at a JFAM family camp weekend. JFAM family camps specialize in helping families relax, have fun, and spend quality family time together while building community, making new friends, and engaging with and learning about Jewish rituals and customs.

Camp Mountain Chai JFAM family camps believe every Jewish family belongs at camp and seeks to warmly welcome all family structures, families with members who do not identify as Jewish, families of all races, ethnicities, sexual orientations, gender identities and families with children and/or adults with disabilities.

Learn more about JFAM: Jewish Family Camp

Sample Schedule

5:30 PMWelcome and Registration
5:15 PMOptional Camp Tour
5:30 PMMeet the Staff and Welcome Shabbat
5:45 PMShabbat Dinner
6:45 PMSong Session
7:15 PMOptional Early Bed Time
7:30 PMOptional Bed Time Story
 Optional Adult Program
8:15 PMLaila Tov (Goodnight)
8:45 PMOptional Adults Only Program
6:00 AMOptional Cold Breakfast
Optional Play Room
8:00 AMBreakfast
9:00 AMShabbat Services
10:00 AMShabboptions 1 - Family Shabbat Activity Options
11:15 AMFamily Scavenger Hunt
12:15 PMLunch
1:15 PMMenucha (Rest Time)
2:15 PMShabbatoption 2 - Family Shabbat Activity Options
3:30 PMMaking Havdalah Spice Bags as a Family
4:30 PMOptional Family Social Hour/Mixer
5:30 PMDinner
6:30 PMCampfire Havdalah and S'mores
7:15 PMOptional Early Bed Time
7:30 PMOptional Campfire Song Session
8:15 PMLaila Tov (Goodnight)
8:45 PMOptional Adult Only Program
6:00 AMOptional Early Riser Cold Breakfast
 Optional Play Room
8:00 AMBreakfast
9:00 AMDecorate Your Family Picture
9:45 AMClosing Friendship Cluster
10:15 AMOptional Meet the Mountain Chai Staff and Tour
10:30 AMDepart

Upcoming JFAM Family Camp Events

JLA Family Camp: October 13-15, 2023

More Info About JLA Family Camp

Event FAQ

Family Camp Coordinator

Katie Samiljan – CMC Family Camp Coordinator
[email protected]

Travel and Parking

Camp is located on the road to Big Bear, approximately 2.5 hours from San Diego/Los Angeles. Full address of camp will be provided prior to the weekend. Arrival time at camp is 4:30 PM, please plan for traffic. Shabbat programming will begin promptly at 5:30 PM with dinner to follow. Families who need to arrive later should contact Katie, the Family Camp Coordinator.

Upon arrival you may drive to designated areas that are closer to your cabins to make moving in a little easier. Staff will be available to direct you. After dropping off your stuff, please move your car to the designated parking area and back-in so that your car faces the exit. This is a law imposed by the National Forest Service in the event of a wildfire evacuation. Vehicles may not be parked next to cabins.


Each family is encouraged to connect with other families to arrange your cabin and set your preferences.  If families do not indicate preferences, Camp Mountain Chai can help you coordinate with other families. Cabins range in capacity from 6 – 10 bunk beds (upper and lower).  Cabins are carpeted, winterized, and heated. Each cabin has a bathroom and shower. Camp does not supply bedding, so please bring your own pillows, bed linens (sheets and blankets) or sleeping bags, towels and toiletries.


Meals are prepared by Camp’s professional cooking staff and are provided starting with Shabbat dinner through Sunday lunch. All dietary requests made on your application will be available at each meal. Outside food is not allowed in the dining hall per kosher/allergy restrictions. If you have any other dietary needs please indicate them on the registration form. We also have snacks available throughout the weekend. You may bring your own snacks, but they must be Kosher and not contain any kind of nuts. Communal refrigerators and microwaves will be available.

Packing and Weather

It will be Spring in the mountains so plan for moderate weather during the days and cooler nights. Bring the clothing and toiletries that your family requires for the weekend, but be sure to include: jackets and sweaters, hats, and comfortable, closed-toed shoes for working outdoors and hiking.

Please do not bring items of value to camp. Camp Mountain Chai is not responsible for your personal items. Refrain from bringing heels or platform shoes as they will make it difficult to navigate rough terrain. No pets are allowed at camp unless they are a service animal pre-approved by the CMC staff.

For a full weather report, please visit this site. Temperatures at CMC are often 5-7 degrees cooler than listed.


Adults are responsible for supervising their children when they are with them (meals, family programs, bedtime, etc.). Staff will be available to help supervise throughout the day and will supervise children when parents/guardians are in adult programming.


The camp is at an elevation of 7,200 feet. If you have health issues, including heart problems or respiratory or altitude issues, please consult your doctor, prior to Camp, to ensure that you will be comfortable at this altitude. Because of the altitude, we encourage you to double your fluid intake 24 hours prior to camp, and in the first 24 hours at camp.

While there will be no official medical staff available during this weekend, there will be confirmed attendees for the weekend who are first aid/CPR/AED certified and who have some medical education who can be of assistance in the case of an emergency.  First-aid kits and AEDs are readily available. The closest medical facility is in Big Bear, approximately 30 minutes camp.  

Cell Phone Reception

We hope that you will take advantage of the opportunity to disconnect from personal electronics and reconnect with one another. Adults and youth are welcome to bring their own cell phones, however we discourage use during meals, programming or volunteer work.

Cell phone reception is limited in the mountains. Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile work best, and AT&T is limited.

COVID-19 Protocols

We strongly encourage all attendees to take a rapid antigen COVID-19 test within 24 hours of coming to camp and recommend all participants to be vaccinated/boosted.

Scholarship and Financial Assistance

Camp Mountain Chai and the Jewish Federation of San Diego continue to fulfill the mission of instilling the joy and community of Judaism for all generations. We are blessed to be able to offer need-based scholarship for this event to those who need financial assistance. Scholarships are limited. Please reach out to Katie Samiljan – CMC Family Camp Coordinator at [email protected] if you are seeking financial assistance.