Where is the Berkshire Soccer Academy for Girls?
The Berkshire Soccer Academy for Girls (BSA) is located at the Berkshire Sports Academy’s state-of-the-art athletic facility in the quaint New England town of East Otis, Massachusetts, just ten miles north of the Connecticut border and approximately 2 hours by car from Boston and 2.5 hours from New York City. It sits on a pristine wooded hillside along the shores of its own private lake.
The Academy is adjacent to 4,800 acres of Tolland State Forest with miles of hiking and running trails; and is one mile from Otis Reservoir, a 1,200-acre recreational lake with public access.
How does my team get to the Academy?
We do not provide transportation to or from the Academy. Most teams in the area rent a bus or carpool. We recommend flying through Bradley International Airport (BDL) or Albany International Airport (ALB). We do provide ground transportation for campers flying into Bradley International Airport (BDL) or Albany International Airport (ALB).
Facilities & Activities
What are the athletic and program facilities like?
The newly-renovated facilities provide athletes with an elite training experience as well as exposure to a wide variety of fun activities.
Soccer Fields – 2 large grass fields (with lights), and 1 turf practice field lit (with lights)
Shooting Wall – with turf surface, 48’ wide x 16’ high
Outdoor Court – for basketball or soccer-tennis
Strength & Conditioning Room – with equipment designed specifically for girls/women
Larkum Lake – a private, 20-acre lake with docks, canoes, and a blob
Dining Hall – large, lakeside building with full kitchen
Rec Deck – our 4,000 square foot deck at the center of camp, outfitted with table-tennis, foos ball, and other recreational games
Hiking Trails – a one-mile trail wraps around the lake and connects to a nearby waterfall
Recreation Hall – with stage
Arts & Crafts Studio – a large building dedicated to creative projects like tie dye
Campfire Area – the perfect place to start and end each camp session!
What optional activities does the Academy offer?
To supplement the soccer training, Team Prep groups can request from a wide selection of activities to offer their players off the pitch, including:
* Waterfront: Swimming, Fishing, Canoeing, The Blob
* Fitness & Wellness: Yoga, Strength & Conditioning
* Camp Games: Ping-pong, Foos Ball, Futtoc, Frisbee, Soccer-tennis
* Outdoor Adventure: Hiking, Orienteering, Campfire building
* Creative: Arts & Crafts, Dance, Theater
What happens at the Academy if it rains?
Soccer sessions and most other activities carry on in the rain. However, when there is visible lightening, extremely heavy rain, or strong winds, we work closely with Team Prep groups to implement a “Rainy-Day Schedule”. The training, games, and fun continue indoors until the weather improves. In the event of an extended heavy rain or lightening, we can make arrangements to transport groups to a nearby, indoor turf facility in which we have short-term rental agreements in place.
What happens at the Academy if there is a heat wave?
We keep a close watch on the weather every day. Schedule changes may occur if we decide it is too hot to train. With so many activities and venues at our fingertips, these modifications are easy to make. For instance, a technical session on the field may be moved to the evening when it’s cooler, and replaced with a swim in the lake! A mister with eight spray nozzles is situated adjacent to our fields and provides quick cooling after a heavy workout.
Staff & Supervision
Who will be my team’s point of contact at the Academy?
Directors Liza & Eric Wittenberg will be your team’s point of contact at the Academy. Liza and Eric work full-time year-round as the Directors of the Berkshire Soccer Academy for Girls. With over 20 years of combined camp experience and extensive backgrounds in education, competitive soccer, and sport psychology; Liza and Eric embody the mission and values of BSA, creating a safe, inclusive environment. They live at the Academy during the summer to ensure that your Team Prep experience is the best it can be.
Can we request additional soccer staff to work with our team?
Most teams bring their own soccer staff, however we can provide additional coaches, if requested in advance.
What is the Elective Staff like?
The Academy has an excellent team of Elective Staff that our Team Prep groups can request. They are qualified individuals who lead all of our activities off the soccer field. From the waterfront to the hiking trails, each member of our Elective Staff possesses an expertise and passion in their activity. Following the American Camp Association standards, we require that certain Elective Staff have required licensing, as well as American Red Cross certifications.
Who supervises the players at night in the cabins?
We require players under the age of 18 to be supervised by at least one counselor in each cabin. Team Prep groups should bring their own counselors, unless otherwise requested.
Health & Wellness
Who will care for my daughter’s health?
The Academy’s top priority is the safety, health and well-being of every player and coach. Our new Health Center is available to Team Prep programs upon request. We have 2 nurses and an Athletic Trainer that can work with your group to manage illnesses and injuries.
Food & Nutrition
What kind of food does the Academy serve?
We pride ourselves on providing healthy food options that provide Team Prep athletes with the energy and nutrition they need. Each day, our Head Chef and kitchen crew prepare a well-balanced menu of camp favorites that include tasty protein-based entrees and a variety of side dishes served in our lakeside dining hall or at an outdoor cookout. Fruit, salad, and pasta bars are always featured, with fresh local produce and whole grain pastas, breads and cereals. We offer healthy snacks every evening, with indulgences like ice cream, homemade desserts, and s’mores upon request.
Where do the teams and coaches live?
Team Prep players and coaches live in newly-renovated cabins which house 8-12 players and 1-3 cabin counselors. Separate housing is available for coaches and parents/chaperones. Most of the cabins are clustered together in a centrally located area. Every cabin has its own bathroom with showers, sinks, and toilets. All cabins have electricity, windows with screens, comfortable beds, and individual storage areas. Guests bring their own bedding and towels.
Is laundry service provided at the Academy?
Laundry service can be provided to Team Prep programs, upon request. There is a laundromat located in Otis, a short 5-minute drive from the Academy, where teams can do their own laundry if they prefer.
How are cabin assignments made?
Teams can determine their own cabin assignments for players and coaches.
How do I get more information about the Team Prep Program at the Berkshire Soccer Academy?
The Academy Directors, Liza and Eric Wittenberg, are available full-time, all year round. Please feel free to contact them by phone at: 800-326-9219, or by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.