Summer camps will soon be buzzing and in full swing, but if you’re thinking about a Maine summer camp for next year, now is the time to plan! There are just seven shorts weeks this season to see camps active and firsthand, a very important step before deciding what will be your summer home. Going to summer camp is a very significant investment – financially, emotionally, and in a way that is sure to be life shaping. So plan ahead and book your visits NOW. To help you get started, here are the top summer camp tour tips from our Maine CampciergeTM – the expert in all things Maine and summer camp.
- Book and Tour Early
Getting ahead of the game gives you a few advantages. Not only will it let your family choose the tour date and time that works best for you, but it will help you secure a spot in a popular age group or session, AND leave you enough time to see additional camps if need be. Seeing a few camps, while not necessary (you may fall in love at first sight), can give you peace of mind that you chose the right place.
- Decide What Summer Camps To Tour (Aim for 2 – 4)
Doing some research up front can make narrowing down your list of camps to tour a bit easier. Base your decisions on a few criteria, like
- Session Length (they vary from 1 – 8 weeks)
- Gender (choose from coed, all boys or all girls, and brother/sister camps)
- Types of Programming and Activities (Some camps are known for sports, music, etc.)
- How Rustic You Want To Go
And here are some great resources to help you start your search:
- Laurie, our Maine CampciergeTM, who provides personal assistance and recommendations
- The Select-A-Camp tool, which can help you narrow down camps based on session length, gender, etc.
- Self-posted Testimonials from camp families who have been there
- Maximize The Tour
Taking a tour is a great opportunity to see the camp’s facilities, where campers live, the waterfront, arts and activities they enjoy, and hear about the camp’s favorite summer traditions. Here are Ten Ways To Have The Perfect Summer Camp Tour:
- Limit the number of tours per day (1 – 2 is deal)
- Include downtime between tours to have the chance to process the last camp visit, and prepare for the next
- Consider the time of day and your child’s energy level and attention
- Dress comfortably and make sure your child (and siblings!) are well-fed and hydrated. Hungry kids can’t focus on the fun of camp!
- Prepare your questions ahead of time for the tour guide, and make sure to spend some time with the camp director
- Be sure to see areas of interest to you and your child
- Watch the campers in action, and talk to a few – your child’s age and older (which is where your kid will be in a few years!)
- Talk to the staff
- If you can, try to take an individual family tour, so you can focus on your own thoughts, experiences, and questions without being distracted
- Consider taking the camp for a test drive via a rookie day or weekend this summer (if the camp provides), after you tour the camp
- Consider the Summer Camp’s Location
A camp’s location is more than just its address – it’s a built-in opportunity to see the breathtaking beauty that is Maine. While touring camps, visiting campers, and before and after camp sessions, Maine parents and siblings get to experience the natural beauty, culture, sights, and amazing food that Maine has to offer. Make sure that in addition to the camp being all that you are looking for, that it is a place you’ll want to return to year after year. After all, they don’t call Maine “Vacationland!” for nothing!
Have any questions? Contact Laurie and she’ll be happy to help. Or if you’re all set to go, get booking! Now’s the time to get those tours scheduled so you’ll be all set for 2016! Have fun!
Maine Camp Experience Resources & Tools
Looking for the perfect Maine camp for your child? Try out our helpful tool where you can select a camp by choosing: type of camp (girls, boys or coed) and session length (1-8 weeks). It helps to narrow down a few camps to a manageable list that includes rates. Then you can research these camps in more depth.
Next, be sure to contact our Maine Campcierge™ to discuss these camps as well as for free, year-round advice and assistance on choosing a great Maine summer camp for your child.
Talk to Laurie, our Maine Campcierge™, about choosing the right camp for your child and what to do in Maine.