From overnight camps to tech- and art-focused camps for kids, these great camps will leave Chicago area kids never wanting summer to end.
From cherished traditional camp activities for middle schoolers to exhilarating adventures for teens, Camp Miniwanca programs make it hard for campers to leave. Managed by the American Youth Foundation, a nonprofit youth development organization, the camp challenges kids to affect the world around them in a positive way by blending community service and adventure. Camp options include one- two- three- and six-week sessions, depending on the program.
Dates: June 26 to Aug. 5
Location: Shelby, Michigan
For more information, visit the AYF website or call 231-861-2262.
In business for nearly a century, Camp Chi has been named the the “Best Overnight Camp” two years in a row by Make It Better readers. Camp Chi sits on 600 acres in Wisconsin. Activities include watersports, outdoor adventures, horseback riding, sports, the arts and media. Sessions last two, three, four or eight weeks, depending on your child’s age and level of comfort with overnight camp.
Cost: $2,175-7,295 plus canteen fee
Dates: June 19 to Aug. 12
Location: Lake Delton, Wisconsin
For more information, visit Camp Chi’s website.
Scale 500-foot Quartzite bluffs and take in the breathtaking views of Devil’s Lake State Park in Wisconsin. At Vertical Adventures, thrill-seeking teens can take their climbing skills to new heights. Campers will learn about climbing equipment, techniques and safety skills. Though a central activity for the camp, climbing is not the sole option. Teen adventurers will also have the opportunity to go kayaking, caving, hiking and four-wheeling. Vertical Horizons caps their camps at 10 climbers per program so be sure to register early.
Cost: $699 plus $50 administrative fee
Dates: Weekly, June 15 to Aug. 24
Location: Union Center, Wisconsin
For more information, visit the Vertical Adventure website or call 708-341-3255.
Coding camps, such as PowerUp Tech Academy, are blending fun games with real instruction. Using the kid-friendly programming language, campers can create a galactic battleship, virtual pets or the video game of their choice. Children will also develop skills in visual design, animation, sound design and storylines. Recommended for kids entering grades 3-6, the summer coding camps cater to beginners as well as more advanced coders.
Dates: Weekly camps begin June 20, July 5 and 25, Aug. 8 and 15
For more information, visit the PowerUp Tech Academy website or call 773-382-0778.
Tech offers kids ages 7-17 an alternative to traditional outdoorsy programs. Students at any of the five Chicagoland locations may choose from an array of courses in coding, game design, app development, web design, film, photography and more. With a maximum of eight students per instructor, iD Tech gives students a personalized learning experience, empowering them to build valuable STEM skills. iD Tech runs weeklong camps featuring both day and overnight programs, dependent on the location.
Cost: $799-1,249 per week
Dates: Depends on location
Locations: Benedictine University in Lisle, GEMS World Academy in Chicago, Lake Forest College in Lake Forest, Loyola University in Chicago, Northwestern University in Evanston
For more information, visit iD Tech’s website or call 888-709-8324.
Let Chicago’s preeminent dance authority instruct your child this summer. The Joffrey Ballet offers weeklong camps for dancers of all skill levels. During Children’s Camp, youngsters will learn the basics of dance along with creative movement activities. Ranging from Ballet to Hip Hop, Junior, Youth and Teen Camps offer engaging instructional sessions for both beginners and intermediate dancers.
Cost: $140-320 plus a $25 registration fee
Dates: June 13-17, July 11-15, Aug. 1-5
For more information, visit Joffrey’s website or call 312-739-0120.
Does your child have a passion for theater? The Northlight Theatre’s Performing Arts Camp offers an entertaining four-week session where your child will enjoy both professional theater training as well as cherished summer camp traditions. From acting and backstage classes to field trips and guest artists, campers will enjoy a dynamic learning experience. The Performing Arts Camp wraps up with a formal production on Northlight’s own stage.
Dates: Jul 11 to Aug. 5 (Camp performance on Aug. 4)
For more information, visit the Northlight’s website or call 847-673-6300.
Feeling nostalgic for summer camp? Relive the carefree days during a one-of-a kind family vacation in New Hampshire on the edge of White Mountain National Forest. At Camp Tohkomeupog, families gather for a week of fun, camaraderie and adventure. Enjoy a morning paddle through sparkling Purity Lake, show off your waterskiing skills in the afternoon or simply relax along Sunset Beach. Later, why not show your kids who the real Katniss is with a little round of archery?
Cost: Rates depend on the size of your group
Dates: Aug 14-21
Location: New Hampshire
For more information, visit the Camp Tohkomeupog website.
Looking to enjoy a camp with your kids but dread the bugs of the Northwoods? The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) offers a five day, instructor-guided family camp where you and your little ones can explore your creative side. Work as a team or side-by-side using materials such as paint, collage, clay, pastels or charcoal. The SAIC family camp inspires participants, regardless of age, to learn, create, bond and have fun.
Ages: 4-10 with at least one adult enrollee per family
Dates: Jun 13-17 and Aug 8-12, 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., M-F
For more information, visit SAIC’s website or call 312-629-6170.
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