The benefits of summer camps are well-known. Instead of shutting down their brains, sitting on the couch, and vegging out all summer, children can be outside, try new activities, and get some much needed exercise. That excitement that children feel about attending summer camp usually starts to dissipate when they reach their tween years. So what does one do with a tween or teen who thinks they are “too cool” for camp? We have answers right here. Check out these non-traditional camp options offered in Long Island just are perfect for an older child.
Great South Bay YMCA – Performing Arts Camp
For children who have always wanted to be in a full-blown theater production, here is their chance. The Great South Bay YMCA Performing Arts Camp will put on a full production of Hairspray this summer with their campers. Campers will learn all about putting on a show, including: auditioning, rehearsing, taking singing and dancing lessons, and learning backstage skills. At the end of the six weeks of camp, they will perform for their friends, family, and the community. Campers will also be given the opportunity to participate in a theater workshop in New York City where they will learn a song and dance from Wicked the musical. There is also a three week option for the Performing Arts Camp. The three week camp will perform Seussical Jr., and instead of the theater workshop they will have a circus arts day. Camp is appropriate for children ages 9-17.
Where: Great South Bay YMCA, 200 West Main Street, Bay Shore, NY
How much: $1790 – 6 wk session and $910 – 3 wk session
Contact Info: (631) 665-4255
Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts
For performers and would-be performers alike, Usdan Center is a place of learning, exploration, and fun. During the summer, Usdan Center offers 40 programs of study within the fields of Music, Theater Arts, Dance, and Visual Arts. Students pick one course for major study where they would like to receive the most training, and one course for minor study based on their interests. All students attend a daily assembly which features a performance by a distinguished artist. In the past, performers have included: Yo-Yo Ma, Emmanuel Ax, and the New York City Ballet. Usdan Center is located on a 200-acre campus and has 70 studios and theaters that campers are able to utilize. Camp is held for seven weeks from June 25–August 10. Campers either attend all seven weeks or the first four weeks.
Where: 185 Colonial Springs Road, Wheatley Heights, New York
How much: $3,325 for the 7-week Program ($3,825 for Theater Arts, Video Arts, Video Game Art and Design). $2,925 for the 4-week Program. Registration, insurance, and transportation are additional.
Contact Info: (631) 643-7900
Island Cruisers Program
The Island Cruisers Program at the Stony Brook school is a two-week voyaging program. Participants will receive training in sailing, racing, navigation, and seamanship. Once they have learned their lessons well enough, they will go on several one-day excursions as well as one two-day overnight excursion. For participants who are 14 and over, sea-time during this course will count towards their USCG captain’s license. The program is appropriate for beginner or intermediate sailors in grades 7-12. Children will be placed in boats according to age, gender, and skill. There will be two sessions held, July 2-13 and July 30–August 10.
Where: Stony Brook School, 1 Chapman Parkway, Stony Brook, NY
How much: $850 per session
Contact Info: (631) 751-1800 ext. 595
ECO Overnight Camp
ECO Overnight Camp will be held at Suffolk County’s 4H camp, Peconic Dunes. Campers will utilize scientific tools to research ecology, environmental science, and biology topics. At the beginning of the week, campers will choose from three main projects: the Long Island Sound project, the woodlands project, and the pond study project; they will spend the rest of the week conducting research on their chosen project. But ECO Overnight camp is not all work and no play; all ECO campers will be able to participate in traditional camp activities for half of the day, including campfires, arts & crafts, and games. Camp is held from June 24 to August 18 in one week increments. ECO Overnight Camp is for children ages 12 and up. Full scholarships are available.
Where: Peconic Dunes 4H Camp, 6375 Soundview Avenue, Southold, NY 11971
How much: $579 per week
Contact Info: (631) 852-8629
Television and Radio Broadcasting
Summer Sportscasting Institute For Teens
For teens who love sports and never miss an episode of Mike and Mike in the Morning, Hofstra University is offering the Summer Sportscasting Institute for teens. During this one week workshop, teens will learn the fundamentals of sportscasting. They will learn how to conduct an interview and write their own segments, as well as do announcing and commentary. Classes in the Institute will be taught by professional New York sportscasters. Only one session of this program is offered this summer, from July 16-20. An early-bird discount of $100 is offered to students that sign up by June 1. Please note that an application is required for this program.
Where: Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY
How much: $1150
Contact Info: (516) 463-7200
Maximum Teen Travel Camp
Each day is an adventure with Maximum Teen Travel Camp. They take their name literally and try to ensure that all camp attendees have the maximum amount of fun each day and each summer. Every day, campers will experience a new adventure, whether it is an amusement park, a show, or the beach. Camp is broken down into two sessions with one three-day overnight trip and one five-day overnight trip each session. Maximum Teen Travel Camp is for children ages 10-14. The cost of camp includes door-to-door transportation, all meals on overnight trips, and some meals on day trips.
Where: 3132 Long Beach Road, Oceanside, NY
How much: $4999 for 1 session, $6499 for 2 sessions
Contact Info: (516) 594-2000
Oasis Long Island Teen Travel Camp
Teens will get to experience the best Long Island and New York City have to offer during Oasis Long Island Teen Travel Camp. Four days a week, teens will travel to different locations including amusement parks, baseball games, and the beach. On Fridays teens will remain at camp where they will participate in on-campus activities and go swimming. Campers must sign up for a minimum of two weeks up to a maximum of nine weeks of camp. Camp is offered in three locations on Long Island: Point Lookout, Port Washington, and New Hyde Park. All campers will go on the same trips each day. Lunch is not included in the cost of camp, but Oasis will provide lunch for campers for an additional $30 per week. Transportation from central pickup locations is also offered for an additional $75 per week. Oasis Long Island Teen Travel Camp is for children ages 12-15.
Where: 15 Parkside Avenue, Point Lookout, NY
Where: Tully Park, 1801 Evergreen Ave., New Hyde Park, NY and Manorhaven Beach Park, 158 Manorhaven Blvd, Manorhaven, NY
How much: $1050 for 2 weeks up to $3745 for 9 weeks
Contact Info: (718) 596-4900
By Mikaela Walker