The Ultimate Guide to Overnight Camps: Why They’re Important and What to Expect

During summertime, many parents start thinking about how to keep their kids busy and active during the long break from school. One great option is an overnight camp. These camps have been popular for generations and offer a wide range of activities and experiences for kids of all ages. But what are overnight camps, exactly? And what makes them so special? 

What Are Overnight Camps?

Overnight camps (sometimes called sleepaway camps) are residential camps where children spend several nights away from home. Campers stay in cabins or dormitory-style buildings and participate in a wide range of activities, from arts and crafts to sports to outdoor adventures like camping and hiking. Depending on the type of camp, campers may be grouped by age, gender, or interests. Many camps are staffed by counselors who help supervise activities and provide support and guidance to campers.

Why Are Overnight Camps Important?

There are many reasons why overnight camps are important for kids. For one thing, they offer a chance for kids to develop independence and self-confidence. Being away from home and navigating new experiences teaches kids to rely on themselves and develop problem-solving skills. They also get to experience the feeling of growing up as they get to do what they want in a structured and supervised environment.

Overnight camps also offer a chance for kids to make new friends and build connections with others who share their interests. Many lifelong friendships are formed at camp as kids bond over shared experiences and create memories that last a lifetime.

What to Expect at Overnight Camps

At overnight camps, kids can expect a full schedule of activities and events. Depending on the camp, they may participate in things like swimming, hiking, arts and crafts, sports, archery, drama, and more. Meals are usually served in a communal dining hall, and there are often evening campfire activities where everyone gathers around the fire to sing songs and tell stories.

Counselors at overnight camps are trained to deal with homesickness and other issues that may arise so parents can rest assured that their children are in good hands. However, it's important to make sure that your child is ready for the experience before sending them off to overnight camps.

How to Choose the Right Overnight Camp

Choosing the right overnight camp for your child can seem like a daunting task, but it doesn't have to be. Start by asking friends and family for recommendations, and then do some research online to find camps that fit your child's interests and needs. Many camps offer virtual tours or open house events where you can visit and see the facilities in person.