We think of Summerkids as an extension of our family.

Joe and Maria Di Massa

Joe and Maria DiMassa started Summerkids almost 40 years ago, when they sought to create an atmosphere of warmth, creativity and fun for their own children’s summer experience. They are still the camp’s driving force. 

At camp, they are known as “Cowboy Joe” and “Mamma Maria.”

Retired as professors at Pasadena City College, they are the parents of Giancarlo, an emergency room doctor, and Cara, who runs camp’s day-to-day operations. 

They are also the grandparents of four current campers (pictured here with their "Nonni").

Cara and Giancarlo Di Massa

Cara and Giancarlo DiMassa, Joe and Maria's children, take an active role in making Summerkids work in the incredible way it does. 

Cara, a former writer and editor at the Los Angeles Times, is the Camp Director. She oversees daily operations at camp, supervises counselors, schedules activities and, in her spare time, maintains this website and all of our publications. She is the mother of two school-age daughters, both of whom attend Summerkids. 

Giancarlo oversees health and safety, the Summer Challenge, and is a zany addition to campfire. Each summer, he rearranges his ER shifts so that he can be with us on a regular basis. He is the father of two school-age sons, also Summerkids campers!

Their presence at camp means that most likely, you’ll be greeted by a group of DiMassas each morning at our front gate!


Jaimi Harrison

We are joined in the office and at camp by the fabulous Jaimi Harrison, our assistant director. She comes to camp with experience working both in the private sector and at an area public school for 12 years. 

Jaimi and her husband, Chuck, are the parents of two grown children, Joey and Samantha, both of whom work in the health care field. 

Jaimi will often be the friendly voice you hear on the phone at camp...or the cheerful person calling names at the gate...so please say hello!

Arnold Astengo (L.) and Jose Magallon (R.)

Arnold Astengo is our full-time caretaker. He lives on the campground, in a beautiful log-cabin house that is "off-limits" to campers, and is responsible for making sure that our campsite is in top working condition for the many things we ask it to do all summer. 

He is joined on our staff by Jose Magallon, our groundskeeper. Jose is a jack-of-all-trades and is just as comfortable fixing our sprinklers as he is "ushering" a bird out of our lodge (and he's done both!).