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Get Ready for Summer Camp

Find camps with outdoor adventures, science explorations, and on-stage experiences this summer. Check out summer camp options from around West Michigan.

Please note that the below information was accurate at the time of publication. You are encouraged to confirm availability, schedule, and current safety protocols with organizations.  

Art & Theatre Camps

Let your children experience the joy of creativity this summer at Saugatuck Center for the Arts. Inspired by the lush lakeshore environment that surrounds the Art Center, all of SCA’s classes include experience-based art projects, multidisciplinary learning, outdoor kinesthetic activities, and healthy snacks to keep both mind and body active and creative. This summer, young creatives will be invited to cook at Coast 326, forage in the woods at Outdoor Discovery Center, explore the SCA Market, tour behind-the-scenes of Mason Street Warehouse theater, and work alongside talented Saugatuck-based artists as well as visitors from L.A., New York, Kalamazoo, Muskegon, Grand Rapids, and Holland. Find more information and register online

Students interested in all things theatre, both on stage and off, are encouraged to attend one or both sessions of the week-long summer workshop at Tibbits Opera House in Coldwater. The morning session, available to students grades 3-12, is performance focused, with students honing their acting skills through acting games and collaboration exercises to work on the camp’s performance showcase. The afternoon session, for students in grades 5-12, explores technical theatre and the world of theatrical design. Whether exploring lighting, prop, set, or sound design, the camp will give a well-rounded, hands-on technical education where camp members will work on becoming the crew for the performance showcase. Led by professional actor and theatre instructor Chad Tallon at Tibbits Opera House July 11th-16th, the camp culminates with the showcase on July 17th for students to show off their new skills. 

 

 

Science Explorations

You don’t have to wait until summer for fun STEAM programs. The virtual MSU Science Festival is happening April 1-30 with over 200 experiment-along activities, talks with global experts, demonstrations, tours, and citizen science activities. Featuring activities involving bird watching, artificial intelligence, astronomy, the magic of chemistry,  zoology, and so much more.

Join the Grand Rapids Public Museum this summer to explore the wonders of science, history, and culture in person or from your home. 

  • Camp Curious – In these in-person, small group camps, kids ages pre-K through high school will have special access to the Museum to use as a learning lab, experimenting, creating, exploring, and having fun! Camps will be offered in small group settings for the safety of campers. COVID screening and masks will be required. 
  • Digital Discovery Sessions – Kids in 1st through 7th grade will have access virtually to explore the Museum from home. In the Digital Discovery Sessions, kids will have short, virtual instructions to experiment, create, and explore using supplies from around the house.

This summer, Blandford Nature Center in Grand Rapids will partner with the Lower Grand River Organization of Watersheds (LGROW) and Trout Unlimited’s Great Lakes Program (TU) to offer STREAM Girls, a watershed-based education program for girls. The camps for girls entering Grades 5-8 will take place the week of July 19th in two sessions: 9:00 am-12:00 pm for 5th and 6th Graders, and 1:00 pm-4:00 pm for 7th and 8th Graders. The program employs STEM education (science, technology, engineering, math) plus recreation and arts to explore the local watershed. During the program, girls will assess a community stream, sample macroinvertebrates, journal and sketch their experiences, and learn to tie a fishing fly and cast a fly rod. The program instills an interest in science and confidence in STEM-related learning while also connecting participants to their community’s watershed. 

There is a wide variety of summer camps to keep your kids busy this summer in Mecosta County. Find camps for sports, academics, design, engineering, and more through Ferris State University in Big Rapids.

 

Animals & Outdoor Adventures

Summer is on its way and Binder Park Zoo in Battle Creek offers a unique alternative to summer day care – Summer Day Camp! Your child will be so busy exploring the world of nature they won’t even realize they’re learning. Children who attend camp will have many opportunities to shape and expand their knowledge of plants, animals, and conservation, all while enjoying a summer they won’t soon forget.

There’s always something fun happening at the Critter Barn in Zeeland. Come for hands-on fun and learning, and be ready for adventures! Bottle feeding Jersey calves, brushing the donkeys, running with goats, collecting eggs from the hens, or holding a bunny…these experiences await you at Critter Barn’s summer day-camps. There are classes for kids age 3 through 8, and kids ages 8 through 15 are invited to Critter Camp. But that’s not all! After you take the Critter Camp class, you will be a member of the Critter Crew and get to return as a volunteer with the staff. Click here to learn more and register for an experience you’ll never forget!

Welcome to Action Wake Park in Hudsonville, West Michigan’s premier water sports camps! Action Camps are the perfect place for riders of all levels to expand their skills both at the cable wake park and behind Mastercraft boats.

The Grand Rapids John Ball Zoo Summer Zoo Camp has been enjoyed by campers for over 25 summers! Kids ages 4 years through going into 9th grade have fun exploring different animal themes in small class sizes. Each class follows a particular theme and instructors plan various activities and tours to bring the class to life. Camp activities may include: games, zoo tours, park exploration, behind-the-scenes tours, keeper talks, hands-on animal demonstrations, stories, songs, art projects, and more.

Summer Camp at BattleGR Tactical Games in Comstock Park includes laser tag, archery, dodgeball, basketball, volleyball, soccer, science, pizza making, arts and crafts, water balloons, board games, and making tie-dye shirts. Camps are offered for three age groups, 4 – 6 years old, 7 – 10, and 11 – 13 years old, and available multiple weeks in June, July, and August. Find camp schedules and registration information online.  

Dunes Harbor Family Camp and Grace Adventures in Mears offer a variety of retreats and Summer Camps for kids of all ages. 

This summer, CranHill in Rodney is offering traditional summer camp experiences, as well as horsemanship camps, a target sports camp, and adventure camps that will be traveling to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. They also offer Friendship Camps for people with special needs who are ages 15 and up. Find camp details and registration information on CranHill’s website. 

How about a summer camp for adults? The Inland Seas Education Association in Suttons Bay is offering a Ladies on the Lake sail, a three-day sailing program aboard a 77′ schooner. Nine women will have the opportunity to learn navigation, sail the ship with the crew, explore the lakeshore, relax, and more. You choose your level of engagement.

Grass River Natural Area summer day camp is back! Enjoy five weeks of camps at GRNA in Bellaire for 6 – 11 year old children, each week consisting of four days of camp (Monday-Thursday) with a variety of activities. Campers can come for multiple weeks and participate in a wide array of programs. CDC guidelines will be followed. Space is filling fast, so reserve your date(s) now.  

Charlevoix’s Camp McSauba is a summer day camp for kids ages 5 – 13. The camp offers 8 themed weeks full of fun, adventure, learning, and laughter. Explore nature, swim in Lake Michigan, learn about animals and their habitats, play new games, and enjoy some old favorites. Campers will make new friends and memories at Camp McSauba!  

Get the kids out for an adventure they won’t forget! Keweenaw Adventure Company in Copper Harbor will provide your summer camp with all the equipment, gear, and staff necessary, and take care of the logistics, so that you only have to focus on getting your campers there. With activities ranging from Lake Superior sea kayaking to inland lake stand-up paddleboarding and canoeing, there’s plenty to do on the water. If you prefer the land, they offer the best mountain biking in Michigan and guided eco-interpretive hiking as well. Group discounts available.