Daycamps

Welcome to summer daycamps at Nearby Nature! We’re so glad you decided to join us. We can’t wait to share some amazing nature adventures with you and your family!

The Basics:

WHAT: Adventure, play, nature, science, art, & gardening! Different camp each week!

WHERE: Outdoors in Alton Baker Park and at our Learnscape Garden and Outdoor Classroom (plus one camp at the Cascades Raptor Center and three at Mount Pisgah Arboretum).

WHO: Kids ages 3-13 in five age groups, max 12 kids per camp, taught by experienced nature educators.

WHEN: June 17-August 30, week-long camps, half & full day options.

HOW MUCH: $120-$295/week — cost varies depending on member/non-member status, half/full day length, and whether or not there are additional fees for special activities. Scholarships are available! Apply when you register online. For returning families, special activity fees are now included in the base camp price rather showing up in registration as add-on fees.

REGISTRATION and PAYMENT: Enrollment is online. When you enroll, you will create an account and your registration information will be saved for future programs. Be sure to read our cancellation policy on this page below. Returning families — please review and update your online information yearly. 

 

The Details:

Camp Topics

Camp topics change every week. From bugs to bikes, rivers to rocks, wheels to wings — we’ve got something for everyone! See details here.

Our Site in Alton Baker Park

“I LOVE the location. It is magical!” — Parent, Summer Daycamper

Children have a myriad of opportunities to connect with nature at our camps — on the “wild side” of Alton Baker Park and in our Learnscape Garden and Outdoor Classroom.

Alton Baker Park: Features hiking trails, bike paths, bug catching meadows, a canoe canal, shady forests, and the riverside. It’s also home to lots of cool natural neighbors — great blue herons, dragonflies, foxes, squirrels, fish and more!

The Learnscape: Our veggie gardens, fruit trees, and berry bushes help kids make a connection between the earth and what they eat. Leafy tunnels in the Cave of Wonders, stepping stumps in the Squirrel Kitchen, and natural materials in the Nature’s Builder’s Playspace give kids a chance to challenge their bodies and stretch their imaginations. And our sandbox and grassy lawn provide opportunities for free play, creativity, and exercise.

*Note we also have one camp based at the Cascades Raptor Center, three at Mount Pisgah Arboretum, and several with different field trip drop-off/pick-up sites.

Small Groups

“Great camp – my child came home exhilarated and exhausted every day!” — Parent, Summer Daycamper

We cap our enrollment at 12 kids per camp. We love getting to know your kids! Your child will get lots of individual attention.

Experienced Instructors

“My kids really enjoyed the programs and I felt great about leaving them in your care. The counselors were terrific!” — Parent, Summer Daycamper

Three staffers run each camp — one lead staff instructor, a trained adult volunteer, and a teen Outdoor Leader. Staff instructors are experienced educators (First Aid/CPR certified and background checked) and volunteers have all participated in our camp training program.

Age Groups

Your kids will be in camp with other children the same age — divided into five different age groups. If you have a choice of levels, choose the “younger” or “older” level that suits your child best.

  • *Minnows: ages 3-4 (*Minnows must be potty trained.)
  • Dragonflies: ages 4-5
  • Tree Frogs: ages 6-8
  • Blue Herons: ages 8-11
  • Owls: ages 11-13

A Typical Day at Camp

Each camp in Alton Baker Park has its home base at a special space in our Learnscape site — Hazelnut Hollow, Squirrel Kitchen, Pollinators Playground, or Frog Haven. Kids love to build in the Nature’s Builder’s playspace, gather green goodies in the Edible Schoolyard, eat berries in the Nest, and get wet at the Beaver Dam!

A typical day includes both exploring the park and activities in our Learnscape. Planned activities as well as time for unstructured play (creative, spontaneous, wonderful!) and munching garden goodies are included in each day.

Camps are all outdoors, rain or shine, with our covered Discovery Lab or Yurt providing shelter if it ever gets really wet. Water and bathroom facilities are available at the Learnscape.

Off-site camps (at the Cascades Raptor Center-Ridgeline Trail, Mount Pisgah, or on bike trails) have a similar feel but just take place in different environments.

2019 Camp Costs and Important Notes

“My son was excited to go to summer camp every morning and he was equally happy when I picked him up.” — Parent, Summer Daycamper

  • Half day camps — $120-$130/week for members or $140-$150/week for non-members (camps with special locations/activities cost slightly more)
  • Full day camps $240-$255/week for members and $280-$295/week for non-members (camps with special locations/activities cost slightly more)
  • Pre-care (8:30-9 am) — $25/week or $5/day drop in, Alton Baker Park camps only
  • Lunch care (noon-1pm) — $35/week or $7/day drop in. Lunch care is included in full day camps and free for campers who register for both morning and afternoon camps on the same week.
  • After care — not currently offered weekly, but may be available if demand is high enough — if interested fill out the appropriate request on your registration form
  • A minimum non-refundable deposit of $35 is required to hold your camp space.
  • Full payment is due a week in advance. Payments can be made by credit card online or in person by check or in cash.
  • Note — there is no camp on July 4th — costs for camps on this week are prorated.
  • Register by March 31st and save $5 per camp!
  • Each child who enrolls in our camps gets a FREE t-shirt!

Membership

Scholarships

Nearby Nature believes all children should have affordable access to outdoor adventures in nature nearby. Scholarship assistance is available through our Youth Scholarship Fund. To apply, fill out the Scholarship section as you register online for camps. Donations to the Scholarship Fund are also welcome.

Additional Information

Click on the following links for more information about our camps.

Cancellation Policy

All camp registrations include a $35 non-refundable deposit. This deposit holds your space and covers part of the cost of enrolling your child and preparing for camps.

Nearby Nature sincerely hopes that your summer will go as planned. We understand, however, that sometimes cancellations are unavoidable. If you need to cancel a registration for any reason, please do so as far in advance as possible so we will be able to refund as much of your payment as possible.

Note to camp registrants from prior years: we have updated our policy as of February 2018, so be sure to read through the details below.

  • Cancellation by you by noon on Monday two weeks or more before your camp starts qualifies for a full refund less the non-refundable $35 deposit ($10 for scholarship recipients).
  • Cancellation by you by noon on Monday one week before your camp starts qualifies for a 50% refund of camp tuition.
  • No refunds for cancellations after noon on Monday one week before camp starts.

Cancellation by us may happen if there is insufficient enrollment seven days prior to a camp. You will be notified promptly and your full payment refunded.

Questions?

Contact our Daycamps Coordinator, Grace Chollar-Webb, at 541-687-9699, ext. 2 or email programs@nearbynature.org if you have any questions or problems with registration.