Andy Kaufman first goofed on Elvis at summer camp

The 30th anniversary of the death of Andy Kaufman, the legendary entertainer, actor and performance artist came and went last week with a series of recollections of the eccentric performer who starred in the TV show Taxi, read novels at public appearances, impersonated Elvis and sang along to Mighty Mouse records.

One of those recollections came from his brief stint at summer camp.

Michael Sigman recalls going to camp with Kaufman at Camp Lenox in Massachusetts in a Huffington Post article.

Andy’s time at Lenox didn’t last long. I woke up one morning well before summer’s end to find that he was gone. His parents had apparently fetched him and taken him home. Our counselor, who was weird, told us it was because Andy was weird, which scared me because I thought I was pretty weird too and didn’t want my parents whisking me away in the dead of night.


Sigman contacted the camp to see if he could find out more about why Kaufman’s stay was so short. He didn’t find an answer but did hear tell of Andy visiting the camp again and saying that he got his start in show business there impersonating Elvis. Or as the R.E.M. song about his “Man on the Moon” puts it, “goofing on Elvis.”

Read the rest of the article HERE.

Matt Ralph

Matt Ralph

I'm the editor of Summer Camp Culture and also blog at and I live in the Philadelphia area and went to camps and camp meetings growing up in Ohio, Maryland and New Jersey.

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