Sleep away camp. It used to be the place where you were sent to lose weight, learn about Jesus or keep out of your parents’ hair during summer break so mom could bang the mailman in peace. After the experience, you might have returned home with a bitchin’ lanyard keychain or macramé god’s eye and, if you were lucky, a few racy, embellished stories to share with the kids on your block.
Today sleep away camp isn’t just for unwanted, overweight children – it’s now a place where adults with extra cash and time to burn can live out unrequited vocational fantasies.
Here are five adult fantasy camps you can attend right now.
1. Special Ops Camp
If you’ve ever dreamed of running secret missions, negotiating hostage situations or finding yourself in the thick of school shooting excitement, Incredible Adventures offer several camps that facilitate the special operations experience. Promising campers all the “thrills and excitement of the clandestine life in a completely safe and secure environment,” wanna-be operatives learn how to ram through barricades, make dynamic room entries and engage multiple targets.
In addition, high-level intelligence officers from both the U.S. and Europe, the CIA, MI-6 and the DGSE will show you how to spot a “tail,” how to communicate secretly in an enemy controlled environment and how to recognize different types of explosives and booby-traps.
Camp Highlight: “Hostage Rescue Operation – A team of ruthless terrorists will kidnap a member of your class, and you will be charged with planning and executing a mission to free him from captivity, under the supervision of some of the world’s top counter-terrorist experts.”
Noticeably Lacking: The chance to drive from one end of Los Angeles to the other in under five minutes all while downloading the schematics that Chloe sent to your Nextel phone
Best for: Travis Bickle types
Price: $3,799 for three day covert ops adventure
2. Space Camp
Sure the space program is in the dumper and the last time an astronaut made the headlines it was tabloid fodder, but that doesn’t take the fun out of readying one’s self for a pretend space mission. Space Camp allows adult armchair astronauts to experience the rigors of training for a hypothetical launch into space.
Camp Highlights: “Tumble and spin in the Multi-Axis Trainer; Float on Air in the 5DF Simulator; Walk like Apollo astronauts in the 1/6 Gravity Chair; Experience a world without friction in the MMU Simulator.”
Noticeably Lacking: The opportunity to land on a real life asteroid and destroy it with a nuclear weapon while jamming out to a weepy Aerosmith power ballad
Best For: Tang Drinkers
Price: $999 for six days
Book It: http://www.spacecamp.com/adult
3. Rock Star Camp
Let your rock and roll fantasies come to life when you attend Rock Camp. Not only will you experience the thrill of performing live, you’ll get to rub elbows with established musicians who lost any semblance of self-respect decades ago. Big on the dream, but short on the talent? No worries. Rock Camp assures us that all experience levels are welcome. If you don’t play an instrument, at their suggestion, you can play tambourine, cowbell, sing, sing back up or write lyrics. You know, a lot like every pop star on the radio these days!
Camp Highlight: “The opportunity to write and record a ‘hit’ original song.”
Noticeably Lacking: High-risk tour bus sex with unclean groupies
Best For: Those not depressed by seeing their former rock gods reduced to jamming with soccer moms and air guitarists.
Price: Packages start at $2,995
Book It: http://www.rockcamp.com/index.php
4. Hollywood TV Star Camp
The priciest camp on our list, Hollywood Star Camp offers you a look at Hollywood’s innermost workings. Not just a place to learn acting techniques, campers are promised all of the perks allotted to a television star. Camp amenities include your own trailer room with a star on the door, your own cast chair with your name on it and catered meals. Catered meals? Only in Hollywood!
Among the lunch or dinner guests will be a working actor in the field who may or may not be the guy who played Ben Seaver on Growing Pains, and an industry leader to tell you how a television show starts and what it takes to get it on the air.
Camp Highlight: “One to two scenes with a known industry actor, who will also join the cast for lunch.”
Noticeably Lacking: Crippling cocaine addiction and anorexia
Best For: Aspiring thespians with no respect for money
Price: $9,995 for five nights
5. Hard Hat Adventure Camp
If you think it’s ballsy to charge 10 grand for the privilege of dining at a Craft services table, you’ll be impressed with the pair on Hard Hat Adventures. This one day camp allows you the opportunity to experience a day in the boots of a construction worker. Clock in and spend your time working on a 21 acre construction site, learning to operate three mega-ton earth moving machines.
Camp Highlight: “Learn what it takes to operate a CAT 315 Excavator, a CAT 257B Skid Steer Loader, and a CAT D3 Bulldozer from a professional heavy equipment operator.”
Noticeably Lacking: Mob connected Teamsters on the payroll solely for the purpose of laundering drug money
Best For: Someone who’s never worked a day in their life
Price: $850 for one day of camp