Summer camps for kids

cmartinez

Joined Jan 17, 2007
6,993

#12

Joined Nov 30, 2010
18,210
I learned so much from spending summers in a very poverty stricken part of Appalachia that I don't know how modern kids can be so effective and self sufficient.
Wait...
They aren't.
All the more reason for me to say, "I approve".

Modern kids can act like the world is in peril if they can't Tweet or Facebook (or whatever is the latest). Learning how to survive without any form of electricity is a wonderful thing. Dressing it up in a recent fad is a fun idea. I think you found something very valuable.
 

WBahn

Joined Mar 31, 2012
25,906
I was in an organization starting just before I was 8 that had a required summer camp every year. The first week was just for the officers and NCOs (the organization was patterned after the military), about 40 or 50 total IIRC, and we spend a huge amount of time and effort getting the camp physically ready for everyone else as well training the newer NCOs what their jobs would be during the following week. The next week was the full blown camp. Very little free time but lots and lots of activities. Most of them were training activities of some kind, from marching to survival training but a lot of other activities as marksmanship and archery. Barracks inspections every day, kitchen patrol at least six meals over the course of the week, liming the outhouses, scrubbing the shower house. But also a handful of crafts and multi-hour hikes and some big war games on the mountain behind the camp at the end. Was definitely a highlight of my youth.

The officers (none of whom was older than 18 since that was the mandatory retirement age -- and you couldn't join the organization once you turned 12) ran things, with some guidance and oversight from a very small handful of adults (I think there were typically six adults at the camp compared to about four hundred kids -- well over two thousand in the heyday of the organization between 1916 and the early 1960's, anti-Vietnam War sentiment killed the organization) and the corporals, few of whom were older than ten, were generally the squad leaders and were responsible for training and supervising their squads of about six people (year round, not just at the camp, although the make-up of the brigade tended to get shaken up a bit to accommodate the physical facilities and the small fraction of kids that, for one reason or another, couldn't attend camp).

I would dearly love to find anything remotely like it for our daughter -- something that would put her under a mild amount of stress, have significant and real challenges and responsibilities, and require her to develop leadership skills. But I don't think that a camp like the one I went to could exist in today's society.
 

WBahn

Joined Mar 31, 2012
25,906
I was in an organization starting just before I was 8 that had a required summer camp every year. The first week was just for the officers and NCOs (the organization was patterned after the military), about 40 or 50 total IIRC, and we spend a huge amount of time and effort getting the camp physically ready for everyone else as well training the newer NCOs what their jobs would be during the following week. The next week was the full blown camp. Very little free time but lots and lots of activities. Most of them were training activities of some kind, from marching to survival training but a lot of other activities as marksmanship and archery. Barracks inspections every day, kitchen patrol at least six meals over the course of the week, liming the outhouses, scrubbing the shower house. But also a handful of crafts and multi-hour hikes and some big war games on the mountain behind the camp at the end. Was definitely a highlight of my youth.

The officers (none of whom was older than 18 since that was the mandatory retirement age -- and you couldn't join the organization once you turned 12) ran things, with some guidance and oversight from a very small handful of adults (I think there were typically six adults at the camp compared to about four hundred kids -- well over two thousand in the heyday of the organization between 1916 and the early 1960's, anti-Vietnam War sentiment killed the organization) and the corporals, few of whom were older than ten, were generally the squad leaders and were responsible for training and supervising their squads of about six people (year round, not just at the camp, although the make-up of the brigade tended to get shaken up a bit to accommodate the physical facilities and the small fraction of kids that, for one reason or another, couldn't attend camp).

I would dearly love to find anything remotely like it for our daughter -- something that would put her under a mild amount of stress, have significant and real challenges and responsibilities, and require her to develop leadership skills. But I don't think that a camp like the one I went to could exist in today's society.

But I might look into this Zombie camp you've found -- although my daughter is not at all into Zombies or anything remotely "scary" -- what a wuss she is. :D
 

MrChips

Joined Oct 2, 2009
21,303
Who says summer camp is only for kids? There is summer camp for big kids too.
We have been going to summer "family" camp each year for the past 15 years. The one criteria is you have to have adults and children in order to attend.
 

Thread Starter

nsaspook

Joined Aug 27, 2009
7,342
Who says summer camp is only for kids? There is summer camp for big kids too.
We have been going to summer "family" camp each year for the past 15 years. The one criteria is you have to have adults and children in order to attend.
We plan to have a family camp this year too. https://oregonstateparks.org/index.cfm?do=parkPage.dsp_parkPage&parkId=24

and we day camp here frequently in the summer as it's close to the house and I have a yearly pass.
https://www.oregonmetro.gov/parks/oxbow-regional-park/camping-oxbow

She's already had the school sponsored 'outdoor school' camp for kids last year. Camp Z seems a bit more zany and fun.
https://www.mesdoutdoorschool.org/namanu.html
 
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WBahn

Joined Mar 31, 2012
25,906
Who says summer camp is only for kids? There is summer camp for big kids too.
We have been going to summer "family" camp each year for the past 15 years. The one criteria is you have to have adults and children in order to attend.
My understanding is that family-oriented camps were very common, particularly back east, in the post-WWII years and many families would "summer" at such places for weeks or even a couple months.

Right now, since the kidlet just got her Open Water SCUBA cert, we are trying to plan a vacation that allows us to dive. But we would like to find a family-oriented one- or two- week mountain camp for next summer or perhaps the summer after.

In large part I don't care about the setting, I just want us to do a lot of stuff together as a family as she nears her teen years so that, hopefully, we can stay close as she navigates her way through them.
 

MrChips

Joined Oct 2, 2009
21,303
One of the things we established in building a strong family is having and maintaining family traditions.
For example, some things we did annually were:

1) camping for one week in July
2) strawberry picking
3) family camp for one week in August
4) apple picking in October
5) going to a Christmas tree farm and cutting our own tree in December
 

Thread Starter

nsaspook

Joined Aug 27, 2009
7,342
6) family trips to Vegas. Kids really enjoyed it during the 90's when it was 'Family Friendly'.


Now it's a pool complex that's amazing but a lot less kid friendly.
 

cmartinez

Joined Jan 17, 2007
6,993
Bummer about the zombie camp (what happened?) But that Camp Caldera looks awesome... and kids spending time developing their artistic skills is an excellent way to spend the summer.
 

Thread Starter

nsaspook

Joined Aug 27, 2009
7,342
Zombie camp had a timing conflict on the requested date. She's headed to this camp with her BFF from school so it should be a ton of fun for her.
 
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