Loosen Up!

From time to time, moms need to take a well-earned break from the worries of parenthood and work. At this camp, every day is Mother's Day.

What: A twice-yearly camp for stressed-out women
Who: Cindy Rota of Camp Getaway Inc.
Where: Oceanside, California
When: Started in 1996 by Myra Peck; purchased by Rota in 2000

If you're a mom, chances are you don't get much time to put your feet up and relax. "I felt there was a need for women to get away from the stress and strain from either motherhood or work," says Myra Peck, of her reasons for founding Camp Mom in 1996.

That's what Cindy Rota needed--a weekend away--back in 1998, when she first attended Camp Mom. She had so much fun, she bought the company when Peck decided to sell in 2000. For Rota, a 37-year-old stay-at-home mother of three boys, the decision to buy the camp was easy. "The enjoyment of sitting back and watching these women let their hair down and have girl-to-girl time is what made me go from being a spectator to the owner," she says.

Camp Mom, which expects year-end sales to reach $200,000, offers traditional camp activities, such as arts and crafts, scrapbooking, hiking and swimming. Campers can also opt to lounge poolside and be pampered with manicures, facials and massages.

Rota had moved the camp from its original location in Irvine, California, to a larger facility in Lake Arrowhead, California, that can accommodate 360 participants for two weekends per year. Camp Mom should soon be available nationwide, thanks to a licensing agreement that would allow other entrepreneurs to open and operate Camp Moms. The camp's popularity spreads mostly through word-of-mouth, with many customers returning year after year in search of a relaxing, hassle-free weekend.

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This article was originally published in the June 2002 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Loosen Up!.

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