| Opportunities are unlimited at family, camps
More than 10 million children will go to summer camps this year. Depending on interests and camp offerings, a day at camp can vary greatly — including so many exciting experiences and opportunities to learn something new. Every summer, happy campers return home after their time at camp with new found skills, greater confidence, and a sense of community that can only be found at camp.
Some camps offer a little bit of everything, and campers have the option to participate in a buffet of activities — including swimming, horseback riding, archery, canoeing, ropes courses, art, drama, and many, many more. Other camps may specialize in one or two activities, such as academics, the arts, or soccer. There are other activities — such as campfires, family-style meals, and quiet moments in nature — that are as much a part of the camp experience as the zip line or high ropes course.
The American Camp Association trade group reminds families that the camp community is wide-ranging, and that there truly is a camp suited for every child. Whether families are looking for an all-around experience, or one that focuses more on one or two activities, ACA encourages families to find the camp that meets their children's needs.
"It's important for families to consider their child's interests when choosing a camp," said Peg Smith, ACA's chief executive officer. "Open, honest conversation about camp expectations, and talking openly with the camp director about the camp's activities and philosophy, will ensure that the camp experience is positive and exactly right for the child."
For some campers, camp is the ideal time to try something new. According to ACA's Youth Development Outcomes study, conducted in conjunction with Philliber Research Associates and with generous support from Lilly Endowment Inc., 63 percent of parents reported that their child continued to participate in new activities learned at camp after they returned home.
Regardless of whether a child is focusing on favorite activities, or trying a wide variety of new ones, the child's camp experience will offer unlimited opportunities to make new friends and participate in camp traditions that have a 150-year history.