Summer Camps Confession

by Sandra Foyt on June 21, 2010

in Enrichment Ideas

heldeberg_camp I know I said that I would post a guide to summer camps, but I never got around to it.  Sorry.  In my defense, it’s been years since I signed my kids up for a summer camp.  Our summers are so short, and our travel plans so long, that it’s almost impossible to cram in a week of camp.

Most of my friends booked summer camps way back in March, and some even earlier.  I’ve only done that early bird booking twice.  The first time was the year that my son was crazy about fossils, and we wanted to get him into the Helderberg Workshop Fossil Hunting Camp. I had heard that their camps tend to fill up fast, and I didn’t want to take any chances. Still, it was probably late April before we filled out the registration, and I wouldn’t be surprised to discover that they have camp opening even now.

zoo_camp The second time I signed up the kids early was the year that we planned to visit friends in Maryland, and we wanted the kids to hang out together at the National Zoo Summer Safari Day Camp.  Oh, my, that was an experience.  Those DC families are in a different league of competitiveness!

Fortunately, my mommy friend had registered her kids the previous year, and she knew exactly what to do.  On the February morning when the camp registrations were to go online at 10 AM, both sets of parents were poised at a computer terminal, finger ready to register one child.  That’s all you can do before the camps fill out.  Yes, it’s that crazy!  But, it’s worth it, because the programs are excellent, at a reasonable price (for Washington, DC) and the kids truly loved the camps and visiting the animals.

Other than those two camps, our summer camp registrations were very mellow.  I’m sure that if I wanted to, I could easily find any of a number of excellent summer camp openings even now. In fact, I’ve received a few notices that I’ll post on the blog this week.

If you’re looking for a summer camp right now, you might do well to check any of the following resources:

Do you have a favorite Summer Camp in the Capital Region?  Please share!

| Sandra Foyt is a storyteller, photographer, and road trip junkie. A veteran of six cross-country road trips, she drove Route 66, the Lincoln Highway, the fossil freeway, the extraterrestrial highway, and even “the loneliest road in America.” Find her on, an award-winning destination guide to extraordinary travel in and from Northeast USA, on her portfolio site at, and in freelance gigs on Family Travel 411, Minitime, Huffington Post, and Matador Network. Email:, Twitter @SandraFoyt.

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