Meet Jon - Westport Moms

How old are your kids and how long have you lived in Westport? I have 3 kids, ages 12, 10, and 8. My wife, Sara, and I have lived in Westport for 10 years. We have three children, Tyler (12), Dylan (10), and Max (8).

How did you end up where you are now in terms of your job, or whatever passion project it is you might be doing? 
I’m fortunate enough to have my dream job of owning the summer camp that I went to as a kid and from which I’ve gained so many incredible experiences, memories, and friends. I’ve owned Camp Manitou – an all boys sports based camp in Maine – with a former bunkmate of mine for 23 years and have since developed a neighboring girls camp (Camp Somerset), performing arts camp (Camp Eastwood), and non-profit camp for kids who’ve had a parent or sibling that died (Experience Camps). I’ve seen first hand, as a camper, counselor, director and parent, how powerful it is for kids to have active, tech-free experiences outside of their ‘comfort zone’ (and away from their parents!). My latest passion project is to create a place here in Westport where kids can play sports, socialize, and be part of a community that believes in the values and skills that are built through a positive version of youth athletics, similar to what we do at camp. I’m really excited about the opportunity ahead and opening the doors of Fortis AC next year.

If you were not doing what you are today, what do you think you might be doing? I’m already living it. Summers on a lake in Maine, being on the fields and courts with my kids as a coach and fan during the school year, and enjoying time with the many people and experiences that make this town incredible. I would love to find more time to be on the ski mountains.

What was the silver lining of the last year and more time at home? And what are you most looking forward to as the world begins opening up? It’s rediscovering that less is more. I’ve learned to focus on what’s important and to simplify what has become an overly complicated way of living. As the world begins to open up, I think we all need to remember that feeling and make choices that keep us in the right blend of activity and simplicity.

What was your most memorable family vacation and why?  In 2019, my wife and I took our kids on a two-month sabbatical through Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and Hong Kong to shake things up and make time to reconnect as a family. It was incredible in so many ways – the elephants in Thailand, the beaches in Vietnam, the kids we met in villages along the way – but it was also the fact that we ate every meal together for 2 months straight and experienced all of these things together.

What is your proudest daddy moment? Seeing my kids doing anything that makes them proud.

What’s your favorite sport to play and/or watch (who do you root for?) And/or what’s your workout of choice?
Though football is our house favorite (there is usually a game on or Hudl film being watched most fall weekends) we participate in a variety of sports and try to be as physically active as we can. A few ‘old guy’ sports here and there for myself, some morning workouts in the basement during COVID and, recently, trips to F45. It feels great to get in a gym again. Brian does a really good job there.

What is the one thing your spouse does that you are eternally grateful for? =) Sara never went to sleep away camp as a kid, and also spent every summer at the
Jersey Shore. A Jersey girl at heart, her choosing to move north of the city and opting for summers in the woods of Maine with hundreds of kids will always hold a spot near the top of the list.

What do you wish you could tell your younger self about being a father? Don’t overcomplicate things. Be there. Listen. Play.

Scotch or Beer? Maine Beer Co.
Golf or Beach day? Golf
Play sports or watch sports? Play (or watch my kids play)
College football or NFL? NFL & PAL Football
Beer pong or ping pong? Paddle Tennis (combo)
Hot wings or Mild Wings? Hot
Comedy or Drama? Comedy
Motorcycle or Mountain Bike? Motorcycle (if I had one)

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