You’re probably already exploring Summer Camp options for your kids (and your kids are probably already counting the days!).
Well, we’re here to help!
There are so many awesome, unique summer programs for your kids in the Madison area, whether they’re into sports, adventuring, sailing, STEM activities, arts, animals, nature, or anything else!
We hope you find this list helpful in your summer planning. After all, in Wisconsin, we live for our summers!
The Summer Camp Guide is sponsored by our featured programs. We so appreciate the support of the community and the opportunity to present our readers with valuable resources such as these.
Summer on the Farm at Kids Express
Kids Express Learning Center’s enrichment programs make “Summer on the Farm” a unique experience for children. Through the years, Kids Express has offered programs such as Rock & Roll for Kids, engineering, gardening, yoga, gymnastics, zumba, golf, nature, and cooking.
Ages: 6 weeks – Age 12
Dates of programming: June 12 – August 30
Wisconsin Historical Foundation
Give your child the experience of downtown Madison with the Wisconsin Historical Museum’s Summer Camps. These camps will be adventure filled, educational, and will teach campers the wonders of their city and their state!
Ages: Grades 1-5
Dates of programming:
Wisconsin Animal Pals & Tales
Grades 1 – 3 · June 25 – 29
Grades 3 – 5 · July 9 – 13
Wonderful Wisconsin Animals
Grades 3 – 5 · July 23 – 27
Enrichment Camps at Engineering for Kids
Create, Explore, Engage!
This summer, let your children’s creativity and imagination go wild. Creativity is contagious at EFK, the ultimate place where little future scientists and engineers meet to collaborate and think big!
Dates of programming: June 10 – August 31
Camp Odayin provides fun, safe and supportive camp experiences and community building opportunities for young people with heart disease and their families. The cost to attend camp is $25.
Residential Camp allows campers in grades 1-11 to enjoy swimming, boating, arts and crafts, volleyball, horseback riding, nature, basketball, and music in a safe, medically-supervised environment during a five-day experience.
Day Camp allows campers in grades K-3 to experience arts & crafts, nature, and new friends while receiving an introduction to our mission during this five-day program.
Ages: Grades K-3 (day camp) and grades 1-11 (residential camp)
Dates of programming:
Residential (Overnight) Camp
- July 9-13, 2018 (Chippewa: Grades 1-6) – Crosslake, MN
- July 16-20, 2018 (Flambeau: Grades 6-8) – Crosslake, MN
- July 23-27, 2018 (Namekagon: Grades 9-11) – Crosslake, MN
- July 30-August 3, 2018 (Nokasippi: Grades 1-11) – Elkhorn, WI
- August 6-10, 2018 (Grades K-3) – St. Paul, MN
The Little Gym
Day camp at The Little Gym of Middleton gives your kid the summer camp experience without the bug bites, poison ivy and week-long commitments. Combining fun physical activity, games, and arts & crafts, we’ll help your child beat the summer heat by staying cool at The Little Gym. Our fantastic camps in Middleton are also available during some other school breaks!
Weekly Themes like Neat Ninjas, Pirates, Pajama Party and Color and Castles with fun activities that change daily to keep kids interested and inspired while having fun and growing skills!
Dates of programming:
Kids Quest Camps
June 11- August 24, ages 3-8 years old
MWF 9 am-noon
T/Th 1-4 pm
Skill Thrill Camps
June 11-August 24, ages 6-12 years old
Tues 4-7 pm
Swift Nature Camp
Swift Nature Camp is an overnight children’s Summer Camp for boys and girls ages 6-15 located in Wisconsin. Their focus is to blend traditional summer camp activities while increasing a child’s appreciation for nature, science, and the environment. Swift offers a noncompetitive, caring, and compassionate overnight experience that includes nature, animals, and 22 water & land activities. 92% of campers return for more!
1st timer? Swift Nature Camp specializes in creating successful camping experiences for all kids. Their 2-week Discovery Camp program is just for kids trying out overnight camp for the very first time.
Dates of programming:
June 17-June 29 (Discovery Camp for beginners)
July 1-July 20
July 22-August 10
July 1-August 10
August 13-17 (Canadian Canoe Trip)
Summer Discovery at Madison Country Day School
Ignite your imagination with STEAM on our 45-acre campus! All new MCDS Summer Discovery sessions for 2018 include environmental science, “technovation,” engineering, chemistry, physics, art design, music, math, coding, and sports science. Discover a world of possibilities this summer with sessions that will engage and captivate your child’s imagination with project-based, hands-on experiences.
Ages: Incoming grades K-8 (ages 5-13)
Dates of programming: Weekly camps from June 18-Aug 3 (except July 2-6). Pick and choose your weeks or try all six for a reduced rate!
Mindfulness at Camp Beginnings
Certified teachers hired for Camp Beginnings will use unique curricula like Star Wars, Kids Yoga, Creative Arts and Outdoor Adventure to motivate and help teach students how to practice mindfulness and personal leadership in their daily lives.
Campers will spend time enhancing self-esteem, learning strategies for self-regulation, and growing in emotional literacy. Families with children who need extra help growing mentally, emotionally or socially will benefit from curriculum that highlights individual strengths versus deficits. LGBTQ+ tweens and teens are encouraged to attend with mentoring opportunities available.
Dates of programming:
Wisconsin Youth Company
Say hello to summer with Wisconsin Youth Company! Summer programs are available for children ages 5-15 and include weekly theme-based day camps, skill-building Immersion Camps (theater & circus), Wander Wisconsin Adventure Trips, and hobby and skill-based courses with Middle School U. Our campers enjoy daily hands-on summer fun and are supervised by experienced, trained and caring role-models. Join us for 2018 Summer of Dreams! Registration begins March 3, 2018. Wisconsin Youth Company is state licensed and American Camp Association accredited.
Dates of Programming: June 11-August 24
Earth Focus Day Camp at the UW Arboretum
Earth Focus Day Camp helps children develop an understanding of how ecosystems work, nurtures a sense of wonder for nature, and guides children as they explore the habitats, plants, and animals of the Arboretum. Children are empowered to be a positive influence on their world. Our naturalists are enthusiastic and experienced, but the real teacher is our most treasured resource: the land. Join us to learn, grow, and be a part of this special place!
Camp consists of five programs: Learning Together (preschool ages), Young Explorers (kindergarteners), Explorers (elementary ages), Eco-trekkers (middle school ages), and Afternoon Adventures (a new program for elementary and middle school ages).
Dates of programming: Various camps, June through August. Full day and half day options.
Summer at the Edge
At Edgewood High School’s Summer at the EDGE, your child can explore a wide variety of academic subjects or sports.
– Design your own schedule from over 20 options! Join us for full days, for mornings only, or for afternoons only.
– Register for hot lunch if desired!
– After Care is available until 5:30pm daily!
– All Sports Camp, Basketball, Dance, Dodgeball, Football, Soccer, Ultimate Frisbee, Volleyball, Tennis
– Academic camps for grades 1-9
– Athletic camps for grades K4-12
Dates of programming:
Session 1: June 11-15, 2018
Session 2: June 18-22, 2018
Session 1: June 11-15, 2018
Session 2: June 18-22, 2018
Session 3: June 25-July 26, 2018
Do you want to learn the hula like Moana? Maybe see what it takes to be a Dance teacher? Or how about make a sun catcher to capture some of the Summer sunlight?
If so, come explore the world of performing and fine arts through a variety of daily camps or some of our evening classes in dance, acting, musical theatre and vocal instruction during Studio Dansu’s 8-week summer session! One-on-one classes are also offered throughout the Summer for students who are looking to really focus in on their
performance technique. No prior experience required for most of our classes, and all our classes are available for students from any studio affiliation or background.
Ages: 2.5 and up
Dates of programming: June 18th – August 17th
Madison School and Community Recreation (MSCR)
MSCR (Madison School & Community Recreation) is the place Madison has been finding fun for over 90 years! MSCR offers a wide variety of summer programming and summer camps for preschool, elementary, and middle school students. Interest areas include: swimming, sports (t-ball, tennis, soccer and more), arts, dance, nature studies, outdoor adventure, childcare and more! There is also a unique intro to high school camp just for incoming freshmen. Being part of MSCR is being part of the Madison community!
Preschool: 3-5 years old
Elementary: 6-11 years old
Middle School: entering grades 6-9
Dates of programming: June 18 – August. Please check the MSCR Summer Guide for specific dates of programs.
Camp Glacier Hollow
YMCA Camp Glacier Hollow offers a variety of traditional Resident Overnight Camps, Day Camps and Adventure Trips for youth ages 7-17. We are dedicated to providing a safe, fun and small group environment, which develops the spirit, mind and body of each individual. Camp is a special place where youth and teens learn about the environment, develop positive values, make meaningful friendships, learn new skills and increase self-confidence. In our community of caring adults Y Camp Glacier Hollow summer camp helps kids grow and find themselves.
Dates of programming: Various camps from June-August
Swim & Gym Summer Camp
At Swim & Gym Summer Camp, the goal is to give each camper a fun, exciting and truly rewarding summer experience they’ll never forget. With gymnastics lessons and swimming lessons, on top of the week’s themed activities and field trips, kids will be as healthy as they are happy!
Dates of programming: June 11- August 24
Keva Sports, Golf, and Adventure Camps
Keva’s sports camps are packed with games, activities, crafts, and fun! My First Sports Camp is for ages 3-6, and Super Sports Camp is for ages 7-14. All snacks, activities, and field trips are included in the weekly price.
Dates of Programming:
My First Sports Camp: June 11th-August 24th
Super Sports Camp: June 11th-August 30th
Madison Children's Museum
Madison Children’s Museum offers a wide variety of weekly summer camps for all ages! Themes include pioneer living, downtown adventuring, STEAM engineering (build a cyborg!), gadgets and robotics, and much more. Join us for Wizard Academy Camp, Sci-Fi Camp, DJ Camp, Planet Protectors Camp, and Camp Kindergarten – just to name a few! Get ready for a full summer of fun and learning!
Ages: Entering grades 1-5
Dates of programming: Various camps from June 18 – August 10
Girl Scout Camp
At Girl Scouts, everything she’ll do is for girls about girls!
Girl Scounts offers day camps and overnight camps. Be sure to check out CampHERO! At this special day camp, she’ll be with real firefighters, police officers and EMTs and experience what it’s like to be a hero every day.
New this year: My First Sleepaway Camps at Camp Brandenburg, near Middleton. These are one-night programs where parents get to stay with their girl for dinner and an activity before she spends her first night at Girl Scout camp. Also available: Mom/Daughter and Dad/Daughter camps.
We invite you to get let your daughter Camp Like a G.I.R.L.!
Ages: Girls entering K-5
Dates of programming: Various dates, June-August
YMCA Summer Camps
The YMCA of Dane County helps kids hop the summer learning loss gap! Y summer camps are filled with healthy activity, rewarding experiences and memories that last lifetimes. From sports, imaginative play and outdoor exploration to science, art and swimming, our programming challenges and inspires. Our high-quality youth leaders are committed to the physical and emotional safety of the campers in our care, and need-based financial assistance is available because the Y is here for all!
Dates of programming: June 11-August 31
Camp Pawprint at the Dane County Humane Society
Camp Pawprint – Summer Break at Dane County Humane Society is a weekly day camp for young animal enthusiasts! Campers will enjoy animal-related lessons and activities, while having fun with other animal lovers! Camp activities include animal interactions, humane education lessons, service projects, group games, crafts, and daily presentations from local animal experts.
Ages: 7-13 years old
Dates of programming: June 11-August 31 (No camp 4th of July week)
Hoofbeat Ridge Camp
Hoofbeat Ridge Camps has been family owned and operated since 1962. It sits in the gently rolling countryside of south – central Wisconsin and is about 25 miles west of Madison. Campers enjoy trail rides through our 250 acres of beautiful birch forests, oak and hickory groves, and deep valleys.
The Day Camp program is for girls ages 7-12 and boys ages 7-9. Campers are offered daily Western riding lessons, horse-care classes, crafts, sports, theme weeks, and more. Bus service is provided from three Madison locations and Cross Plains. Please see the website for more information.
Ages: 7-12 (girls); 7-9 (boys)
Dates of programming: June 11-15 through August 13-15
Aldo Leopold Nature Center
Treat your child to a summer they’ll never forget with ALNC’s summer camps, where young adventure-seekers can canoe Wisconsin’s waters, budding scientists can discover pond critters, and future archaeologists can unearth ancient artifacts on a dig site! ALNC’s action-packed summer camps will provide your youngster with exciting, hands-on experiences to explore, learn and enjoy the wonders of nature.
Offering more than 150 exciting and educational hands-on nature camps for an action-packed summer, and giving your child many opportunities to explore, learn and enjoy the wonders of our natural world.
Dates of programming: For flexibility for your busy family, ALNC offers half day or full day sessions, extended day options (8 am – 5:30 pm), full week packages, and more!
Smokey Hollow Day Camp
At Smokey Hollow, summer starts with an energetic staff who all share a passion for children. Kids get to take advantage of the camp’s connection with Smokey Hollow Campground and all its cool stuff — swimming pond with sand beach, giant water inflatables, jumping pillow, trikes, mini-golf and more. Add in weekly themes, hands-on activities, team building, field trips and you’ve got the Best Summer Ever!
Dates of programming: Programs between June 4 – August 24 with flexible enrollment. Sign up for three days, a week, a month, or the entire 12-week program!
Bethel Horizons is a camping ministry, located on 548 acres of cliffs and valleys, that welcomes campers of all backgrounds. Campers will get to explore the neat natural aspects of Horizons as they grow in harmony with God, self, others and nature. Some camps include Horizons Explorers, Nature at Night, Aquapalooza, Underground Adventure, Musical Theater Camp, and many more!
Camp is located in Dodgeville. A bus leaves from and returns to 312 Wisconsin Avenue in Madison each Sunday and Friday.
Ages: Youth grades 2-11
Dates of programming: Camps run Sunday through Friday from June 10th-August 10th – full weeks, or some half weeks for first time campers.
Troy Gardens Camp at Community Groundworks
Calling all 7-11 year-olds! Come play and grow with us at Troy Gardens this summer! We will explore the winding prairie paths, build forts in the forest, grow delicious food and prepare healthy snacks together in the garden. Join us for one week, or the whole summer!
Dates of programming: June 18 – August 10
Henry Vilas Zoo Camp
At Henry Vilas Zoo Camp we put campers into the shoes of zookeepers, vets, scientists and engineers as they try to solve real-life challenges. Along the way, campers help out with some keeper chores, get to amazing opportunities to interact with the animals up close, gain confidence in STEM and conservation topics, and have a lot of fun. This year we’ve significantly lowered our prices to make our camps more affordable!
Ages: Children going into K-8th grade
Dates of programming: June 9th – August 24th
Angelic Organics Learning Center & Farm Camps
Angelic Organics Farm Camps let kids experience the rhythms of a real working farm while enjoying freshly harvested organic meals, exploring nature, and building relationships with the land, animals and each other. We offer day camps and overnight camps for kids, as well as camps for families & adults, on our 200-acre farm, only 60 minutes from Madison. Visit us at one of our upcoming monthly Open Houses, or visit our website anytime to learn more!
Ages: 5-16 for Day Camps; 8-14 for Overnight Camps
Dates of programming: We offer overnight Family Camp and Spring Break Camps during our “Kidding Season”, beginning 3/17/18. Summer Farm Camps for kids begin 6/11/18 and run through 8/10/18. Adult and family camps run year-round.
A Hero's Journey Camp at Indigo Trails
A Hero’s Journey with Horses Summer Camps offer kids a way to be in the world with humans and horses, dogs, chickens, the earth and sky, and everything natural. Based on a beautiful little farm in Verona, WI, this summer camp promises to take campers on a journey of self-discovery. They will learn to care for the animals and the land, learn about gardening, nutrition and edible plants, go hiking, do art projects, tell stories, learn ground work with horses and much, much more!
At the same time, we will be teaching about feelings and how to communicate effectively, building trust and self-esteem, and inspiring campers to believe in themselves and discover their very own hero within.
Dates of programming:
June 25-29 (8-12 year olds)
July 9-13 (13-15 year olds)
The Seventeenth Radish
It’s camp every day at the Radish! With fun art, sensory and science activities themed to a different exciting topic each week, you can create-your-own camp schedule. AM Summer School (8:30-11 | $26/Session) and PM Explorer Club (12:30-3 | $20/Session) offered daily! Schedule drop-in or book a regular weekly schedule to explore Pirate Fun, Island Adventure, Pond Habitats, Farmer’s Market, Camping and Bugs, just to name a few! Extended day, half day and other flexible schedules also available.
Ages: 1-7 years old
Dates of programming: June 4th-August 30th
Creative Soul Camp
A summer camp opportunity allowing kids (ages 6-13) to expand and explore their creativity. Each day campers will have fun practicing yoga and mindfulness with litle om BIG OM, get messy and create with Studio 7504, practice and perform in theatre class with All About the Drama, and make some healthy and delicious creations in culinary class with Yummy Sprout.
Dates of programming:
- Week 1: June 18-21
- Week 2: June 25-28
- Week 3: July 30-Aug 2
- Week 4: Aug 6-9
Summer Math Help at Mathnasium
Camp Invention’s all-new summer program, Fast Forward, shows children that even the wildest and craziest ideas can become reality! Campers in grades K-6 will create a vehicle of the future, design a mechanical robot dog, and build futuristic dream homes. Local educators lead the week of fun, hands-on, STEM activities that encourage children to think big, explore their curiosity, and never give up!
Ages: Children entering grades K-6
Dates of programming: Several weeks throughout June and July
Eseedling Youth Entrepreneur Camp
The Eseedling Youth Entrepreneur Camp for kids ages 10-13 teaches kids how to use their ideas, talents and passion to create their own business. They learn how a business operates by playing the Biz Ops Game and running a paper airplane business. Kids run a real Team Lemonade Stand business to earn money for the camp scholarship fund. The camp ends with a poster presentation and awards ceremony for families and friends.
Dates of programming: June 18-22. Kids can register for the entire week to get the full experience. There is also an option to register for Mon-Wed for the basics or Thurs-Friday if they already have a business they have been working on. Camp is from 9am-4pm (optional add on for early drop off and late pickup).
UW Recreational Sports
Bring your Jr. Badgers to UW’s campus this summer! Rec Sports Summer Camp is a day camp featuring campus field trips with groups like Outdoor UW and Babcock Hall Dairy Store, theme days, tons of activities, and more for 10 one-week sessions. Plus, each participant will receive a t-shirt to commemorate their summer!
Dates of programming: Weekly sessions starting June 11th and the last session of camp is August 20th. No camp the week of the 4th of July.