Summer Nature Camp

Climb trees, race through meadows, catch frogs and explore the Caves Valley woodlands. At Irvine, nature activities are synonymous with childhood in summer – we engage children using outdoor fun to create pathways for lessons in nature and ecology.

2018 registration for Summer Nature Camp will open in January 2018! Please note there are limited spaces available. 

Ages 2-12

Enroll by January 31 and save 10%!

2018 Dates: June 11 to August 31

There are more than 40 sessions with trail walks, science experiments, nature games and crafts, and encounters with animals! Overnights and daytime aftercare are available with some sessions. All camp sessions are designed by educators, feature small group sizes and are perfect for the young and curious.

Summer Nature Camp at Irvine is a Maryland state-certified camp. Irvine members qualify for reduced camp fees. Learn more.

The answers to many questions about Nature Camp can be found in our Camp FAQs. If you have questions, please call 443-738-9220.

2018 Summer Nature Camp

To register for camp, please use the link above. 

Buds- AGE: 2-3, with parent. 

Caregiver and child discover the wonders of nature together, hand in hand. Venture through the forest and dash through the meadow during a week of sensory outdoor fun! We will meet animals, examine natural artifacts, play games and sing songs – it’s a wholesome way to discover the natural world.
A parent or guardian must accompany each child in this camp; regrettably, siblings are unable to attend.
TIME:
9:30 – 11:00 a.m.
COST:
$145 ($125 for members)

Tadpoles- AGE: 3
This is an enriching first camp experience for three-year-olds as they engage in fun, hands-on nature games and activities in a small group setting. Campers enjoy trail walks, animal encounters, puppets, songs, stories and art projects. Unlike Buds, this session does not include a parent or guardian. Campers must be potty trained. There are three themes.
Busy Bees: Campers buzz around the forest and meadow to experience nature each day. This session is a nice balance of indoor and outdoor activities to ease into your first camp experience.
Puddle Stompers: Like to get wet? We thought so! Tots will explore aquatic themes and frolic like frogs in the muddy places they inhabit at Irvine.
Sensational Summer: This session focuses on using your senses to explore nature. We listen for bird calls, smell flowers, see wildlife, touch interesting plants and taste sweet berries.
TIME:
9:00 – 11:30 a.m.
COST:
$200 ($175 for members)

Sprouts-AGES: 4
Your little camper will be all a-flutter during a week of outdoor fun! Curious kids love these camps, designed to provide fun, hands-on experiences in the natural world. Campers investigate nature each day through trail walks, live animal encounters, puppet shows, games, art projects and more. There are four themes.
Wildly Creative: If nature inspires your little budding artist, then join us for a creative week! Each day includes an art project for reflecting on the wonderful aspects of nature and wildlife.
Water Everywhere: As the name implies, water will flow through every activity in this week of camp. Campers will venture to aquatic habitats for some muddy, squishy fun. Be prepared to get wet each day!
Summer Safari: Your child will take a trip through the animal kingdom. We will trek to wilds of Irvine in search of local creatures and meet live animals each day!
Feathered Friends: Abundant, colorful, and beautiful birds make an excellent gateway to discovering nature. Each day will be filled with bird themed activities and exploration.
TIME:
9 a.m. – 1 p.m. (includes lunchtime)
COST:
$255 ($215 for members)

Discovery Camps-AGES: 5-6
Sweep for insects, explore the stream and laugh and sing with the animals! These and other fun learning opportunities await your child. Young campers love this sensory approach to exploring the great outdoors! Fun-filled activities include trail walks, nature games, crafts, stories, and animal encounters. We’ll have a midday quiet time for campers to rest their heads and legs before continuing our adventures in the afternoon. There are nine themes.
Under the Sea: Your child will be splashing around in a week of ocean themed fun. We will incorporate sea creatures and water activities each day. Your mermaid or merman will have a tidal wave of fun.
Tiny Chefs: Cooking provides a sensory rich way for children to learn about the natural world. We’ll plant a garden and then eat it and meet some garden insects along the way. We may even make mud pie!
Polynesian Beach Party: Can’t get enough of Moana? Or tropical islands? This island themed week will be filled with luaus, leis, and summer adventure.
Caterpillar Crazy: Butterflies and caterpillars are incredible creatures with many lessons to teach. Monarchs, mimicry, and metamorphosis- Oh my! Campers will use Irvine’s butterfly house as a laboratory to connect the dots of a caterpillar’s life.
Digging Dinosaurs: Go back in time when pterosaurs filled the sky! We’ll dig for fossils, play in the mud and meet some of Irvine’s dinosaur relatives.
Wild Wings: Not Angry Birds! Happy feathered friends and other winged creatures will fill each day with outdoor fun and excitement.
Nature Survivor: Imagine you are marooned on a deserted island or being chased by wild animals? No problem. We will spend the week using our imagination to save the day. Each day will be a new outdoor adventure!
Little Space Cadets: Blast off for a week or extra-terrestrial fun! Outer space themed games and experiments for every young astronaut.
Animal Olympics: Run as fast as a cheetah! Jump higher than a bullfrog! Meet Irvine’s amazing animals and learn about their gold medal adaptations.
TIME:
9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
COST:
$415 ($355 for members)

 

Explorers Camps-AGES: 7-9 
Campers investigate their natural surroundings and learn to understand the relationships of wildlife and the ecosystem. Each day lets your child be a real explorer, using science in fun ways to better understand the natural world! Environmental games, animal encounters, nature crafts, interactive stories, and other nature activities help to illustrate and reinforce the ecological concepts covered in daily adventures. There are nine themes.
Raptor Keepers: A whole week dedicated to birds of prey. Your child will get to meet a new bird each day! We will explore the outdoors and get to know some other animals along the way. Includes an offsite Raptor field trip!
*Tents and a Teepee: Join the Irvine tribe and explore Native American cultures through music, crafts, games and storytelling. The week culminates in a campout Thursday at our native American village. There is no pick-up Thursday afternoon. Camp ends at 10 a.m. on Friday.
Animal Caretakers: If your child wants to be a veterinarian, a scientist, or a park ranger, then they will love our Animal Caretakers camp! Campers spend some time each day assisting animal care professionals and naturalists to care for Irvine’s animals. We will also travel offsite to visit organizations focused on animal care.
Bugs! Bugs! Bugs!: How does a bee make honey? Where do monarchs go in the winter? Campers will explore different ecosystems to uncover these secrets through observation and experiments.
Van Gogh Outside: Art, Animals and nature! Each day will be a blend of creativity and outside activity. Kids will get a chance to hike, draw, paint and meet some animals. Includes an offsite natural art field trip!
*Child vs Wild: This week is all about surviving and thriving outdoors. We will build shelters, ford streams and learn some outdoor skills. The week culminates with a campout on Thursday night at Irvine. There is no pick-up Thursday afternoon. Camp ends at 10 a.m. on Friday.
DINO-mite: Can’t get enough of prehistoric creatures? You will become a paleontologist in a week as we explore the world of dinosaurs. Includes an offsite dinosaur field trip!
*Campfire Chefs: Is your tiny chef ready for the food network? We will cook simple healthy food in a kitchen and around a campfire. The week culminates with a campout on Thursday night at Irvine. There is no pick-up Thursday afternoon. Camp ends at 10 a.m. on Friday.
Aquanauts: Your camper will be surrounded in aquatic joy. Each day will include wetland discoveries, water games and experiments. Sponge Bob hasn’t seen this much water! Includes an offsite field trip!
TIME:
9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
*9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Monday through Wednesday; and 9 a.m. Thursday through 10 a.m. Friday
COST:
$425 ($365 for members)

Adventure Camps-AGE: 10-12
Irvine’s Adventure Camps introduce campers to more focused topics. We use STEM principles, outdoor recreation, and even cooking to better understand the natural world. Each of these camps features offsite excursions. There are three themes.
Aquatic Odyssey: Dive into aquatic studies this summer by exploring in the most hands-on way possible –getting wet! Day trips allow for water experiences such as seining, canoeing and swimming in different locales around the Greater Baltimore area. The week culminates with a campout on Thursday night at Irvine. There is no pick-up Thursday afternoon. Camp ends at 10 a.m. on Friday.
Wilderness Adventure: This is a new twist to a classic Irvine camp. Campers will learn the backcountry skills while hiking and canoeing. Each day will highlight a different wilderness skill including fire making! The week culminates with a camping trip on Thursday night at Irvine. There is no pick-up on Thursday and camp ends at 10 a.m. on Friday.
Mountains to Bay: A field trip every day! We will explore all that Maryland has to offer from the Appalachians to the Chesapeake Bay. We will spend our days traveling and exploring all over Maryland.
TIME:
9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Mountains to Bay
9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Monday through Wednesday; and 9 a.m. Thursday through 10 a.m. Friday (Aquatic Odyssey and Wilderness Adventure)
COST:
$500 ($435 for members)