Kids Summer Camps 2010
General Interest Camps
Banner Day Camp Set in idyllic Lake Forest, Banner offers two private lakes, a large aquatic center with four heated pools and two water slides, plus indoor and outdoor facilities for sports, music, dancing, wall climbing and more. 1225 Riverwoods Rd, Lake Forest (847-295-4900, bannerdaycamp.com). Camp runs Jun 21–Aug 13, Mon–Fri 9am–4pm. Four-week session $1,870–$3,400; Eight-week session $1,400–$5,600. Ages 3 to 14.
Boys and Girls Club of Chicago Campers spend the summer exploring our fair city with field trips to baseball games, water parks and museums. Clubs include Cotter, Jordan, McCormick, Valentine, King, Little Village, General Wood and Logan Square (312-235-8000, bgcc.org). Dates, times, prices, ages and locations vary.
Brookfield Zoo Summer Day Camp Pint-size animal lovers will learn about animal habitats and life as a zookeeper and take a sneak peek into the world of zoology with behind-the-scenes zoo activities. Brookfield Zoo, 8400 31st St, Brookfield (708-688-836, brookfieldzoo.org). Dates and times vary. One-week session $265–$375; half-day $135–$185. Ages 4 to grade 8.
Bubbles Academy Imagination Camps Imagination camps incorporate all of Bubbles Academy's programs including yoga, creative movement, art, science, music, cooking, drama and storytelling—and with special themed days, no two days are alike. Bubbles Academy, 1504 N Fremont St (312-944-7677, bubblesacademy.com). Camp runs Jul 5–Sept 3. $250 per one-week session; day passes available for $65. Ages 3–6.
Chicago Park District Expect traditional summer day camp activities including field trips, visits to the local pool, arts and crafts, nature exploration, sports and games at more than 190 parks throughout Chicagoland. Contact your local park for its specific camp agenda. Locations throughout the city (312-742-7529 chicagoparkdistrict.com). Jun 14–Aug 22. Prices and sessions vary. Ages 6 to 12.
Chicago Waldorf School True to the school’s educational ideals, camp days revolve around arts, nature, crafts, sports, beach play and weekly field trips to places like the Botanic Garden. 1300 W Loyola Ave (773-465-2662, chicagowaldorf.org). Jun 14–Jul 30, Mon–Fri 9am–3pm. One-week session $200, single-day drop-ins available. Ages 4 to 12.
The Chopping Block Grade-school gourmets can choose from three different four-day camps, including one that will take their taste buds around the world to Mexico, France, China and Italy. In addition to exploring new foods, the focus here is on following recipes, learning about ingredients, and working cleanly and safely in the kitchen. The Chopping Block, 4747 N Lincoln Ave (773-472-6700, thechoppingblock.net). Camps run Jun 7–Sept 2. $150. Ages 7–11.
FasTracKids Young scientists run experiments centering on a weekly theme (think dinosaurs, anatomy and astronomy) from 9am–noon Monday through Friday. Campers get to meet working scientists and develop their own projects with this specially designed camp curriculum focused on biology, technology, communication skills and critical thinking. FasTracKids, 725 W Wrightwood Ave (773-281-5437, www.fastrackids.com). Camp runs Jun 7–Sept. 3. $175 per month. Ages 3–8.
Francis W. Parker Summer Programs Your wish is their command. Offering every sport (like yoga and soccer), activity (think LEGO architecture and chess) and class under the sun (such as ACT prep and drivers ed), kids are guaranteed to find something right up their alley. Francis W. Parker School, 300 W Webster Ave (773-797-5104, fwparker.org/summers) Jun 21–Aug 27. Days, times and prices vary by age and session. Ages pre-kindergarten to 9th grade.
Fred’s Camp Kids in junior, senior and tween sessions develop physical coordination, social skills and self-esteem. Field trips, swimming, bowling and more are on the docket at this popular teacher-founded camp. DePaul University Athletic Training Center, 2323 N Sheffield (773-818-8027 fredscamp.com). Camp runs Jun 21–Aug 13, Mon–Fri 9am–3pm. $1,900–$2,000 for four weeks; $3,425–$3,615 for eight weeks. Ages kindergarten to 8th grade.
Glenview Park District This suburban park district offers everything from tennis and golf camps to Nature Rangers camp, where kids explore plant and animal life, to Claymation Movie-making Camp. Download a brochure at glenviewpark.org to see all the arts, dance, sports, hobby and technology camps and more that are open for sign-up. Glenview Park District Park Center, 2400 Chestnut Rd, Glenview (847-724-5670, www.glenviewpark.org). Prices, dates and ages vary; visit website for details.
Jewish Community Center Day Camps Programs range from the traditional camp experience to specialty sessions geared toward the arts, sports and adventure. Jewish values, tradition and Israeli culture are woven into camp days through stories, games, art and celebration. JCC also provides a residential camp in Wisconsin. Visit website for camp locations (gojcc.org). Dates, times and prices vary. Ages 3 to 10th grade.
Kendall College Summer Camps Spice up your little chef’s summer with day or overnight camp at Kendall College, where kids learn cooking techniques from some of the city’s fine food and dining stars. Courses cover culinary skills, international cuisine and advanced chocolate (mmm). Overnight campers will develop their culinary skills as they explore the city with activities such as attending the Broadway in Chicago theater series, restaurant dining and boat tours of the city. Kendall College, 900 N North Branch St (312-752-2206, culinary.kendall.edu). Dates vary. Day campers: Mon–Fri 8:30am–4:30pm. One-week day session $675–$800; one-week overnight session $1,100–$1,225. Scholarships available. Ages 13 to 18.
The Kids’ Table Kids get to roll up their sleeves to chop, slice, dice, and even wash dishes and sweep up after taking these hands-on cooking classes. Themes change from week to week; go to kids-table.com for a complete list and info about times for specific age groups. The Kids’ Table, 2337 W North Ave (312-235-2665, kids-table.com). Camp runs Jun 14– Sep 3. $45–$250. Ages 2–10.
Lakefront Children’s Academy Summer Camp Songs, games, literature, art, cooking and more—it’s all here. Each week centers around a different theme, such as Under the Sea, Wild Kingdom and On the Go. Campers take weekly field trips to places like the zoo. 400 E Randolph St (312-819-1760, lakefrontchildrensacademy.com). Camp runs Jun 21–Aug 20, Mon–Fri, times and prices vary. Ages 2 to 12.
Lakeshore Athletic Club At LAC’s Pee Wee Club, kids burn energy through active endeavors like swimming, arts and crafts, tumbling and outdoor play. An Adventure Camp with activities geared to ages 8 to 13 is also available. 1320 W Fullerton Ave (773-477-9888, lsac.com). Camps run Jun 21–Aug 20, Mon–Fri 9am–6pm with pre-camp available at 7:30am. Mon–Thu $81/day, Fri $86, Mon–Fri $365 (discounts available for members). Ages prekindergarten to 13.
Latin School of Chicago Day Camp Activities range from swim lessons to computers to cooking at this day camp. Beach days, scavenger hunts and trips to local climbing walls and water parks are also on tap. Summer academic and recreational programs are available for high-school students. Latin School of Chicago, 1531 N Dearborn Pkwy (312-582-6080, latinschool.org). Camp runs Jun 14–Aug 6. Days and times vary depending on age of camper. Four-week session $650–$1,400. Ages 3 to 14.
Lincoln Park Zoo Conservation Camps Send your kiddo where the wild things are. Campers explore the inner workings of the zoo while counselors educate them on topics such as why we have zoos, how zoos function and environmentality. Lincoln Park Zoo, 2001 N Clark St (312-742-2056, lpzoo.org). Camp runs Jun 14–Aug 13, Mon–Fri. One-week session half-day $150; one-week session full-day $300. Ages 4 to 14.
Little Gym Day Camp Interactive themes like space and the sea inspire the three-hour camp day with fitness and fun—think obstacle courses, arts and crafts, and group games. Parents can customize when campers attend: a day, a few days, or several full-week sessions. Little Gym, 3216 N Lincoln Ave (773-525-5750, thelittlegym.com/chicagoil). Camps run Jun 14–Aug 20, Mon, Wed, Fri 9am–noon; Tue, Thu 3pm–6pm. One day $50, two days $90, three days $125, four days $155, five days $180. Ages 3 to 12, kids must be potty trained.
Near North Montessori Specialty camps and day camps encourage journeys of discovery and exploration in a nurturing environment. Campers will have the opportunity to swim each day, explore the city by train and develop new talents. Near North Montessori, 1434 W Division St (773-384-1434, nnms.org/summer/). Camps run Jun 21–Aug 6. Prices TBA. Ages 3 to 14.
Oasis Summer Day Camp Started by a teacher and his wife, Oasis Summer Camp is packed with activities ranging from swimming to sports tournaments to costume contests. Weekly field trips take children to the Lincoln Park Zoo, the Lake County Fair and more. Oasis also features the “Tree Fort Challenge,” an optional reading program designed to reward campers who read all summer long. 180 W Ridge Ave, Winnetka (847-858-0415, oasisdaycamp.com). Camp runs Jun 14–Aug 13, Mon–Fri 9am–3:30pm. Six-week session $1,900–$2,050. Ages 5 to 12.
Pump It Up Summer Jump Camp Specially designed curriculum lets children enjoy playtime on inflatables, creative expression with arts and crafts, and unique exercises with theme-focused days, such as rock climbing Mondays. Snacks included. Pump It Up: The Inflatable Party Zone, 821 W Eastman St (312-664-7867, pumpitupparty.com). Camp runs Jun 28–Aug 5. $600; 15% sibling discount. Ages 5–9.
Summer at Sacred Heart School Daily agendas range from classic camp activities—arts and crafts, drama, cooking, sports, beach play—to academic endeavors. (Think language courses, math lessons, etc.) There’s also an overnight option in July. Sacred Heart School, 6250 N. Sheridan Road (773-681-8313, shschicago.org). Camp runs Jun 21–Jul 30, Mon–Fri, 9am–3:30. One-week session half-day $150–$250; full-day $300. Ages 3 to 15.
Smart Love Preschool Summer Program Tiny tots ages six months to four years will bask in the beauty of summer with outdoor activities in the school’s enclosed gardens. They’ll also get (a little) messy creating artistic masterpieces. And a little tuckered out enjoying other play-based activities. Ahh, summer. Smart Love Preschool 800 W Buena Ave (773-665-8052, smartlovepreschool.org. Jun 21–Aug 13; Tue, Wed and Thu 9:15am–10:30am or 11:00–12:15. $23 per class; eight-week session $552. Ages six months to 4, caregivers or parent must attend.
Smarty Party Little smarty pants can join the Smarty Party this summer, a flexible and varied summer camp where moms and dads can pick and choose which time frames work best for them—a few days? A week? The whole summer? It’s up to you. Every senior staffer on the team is a certified teacher, so in addition to the usual summer-camp classics like arts and crafts, sports and story time, this camp also pays attention to reading and literacy. Smarty Party, 1846 W Belmont Ave (773-687-0521, smartyparty.us). Times and prices vary. Ages prekindergarten to 2nd grade.
Summer Lab at the University of Chicago Lab School Whether kids want to stretch their brain cells academically or just run around in a traditional camp setting, U. of C. has it—and everything in between—covered. There are six options: Summer School, Adventure Kids Day Camp, Summer Lab Sports Camps, Fun in the Sun and Summer Lab on Stage. Bonus for non–Hyde Parkers: Summer Lab will operate a courtesy North Side bus this year, with the same lakefront itinerary used during the regular school year. 1362 E 59th St (773-702-9450, ucls.uchicago.edu). Camp runs Jun 21–Jul 23, Mon–Fri; times vary. Prices $360–$1,165. Nursery school to twelfth grade.
YMCA Summer Camps With camps all across the city offering a variety of programs ranging from drama to science, there’s plenty to get those little synapses firing. Discovery camps offer children the opportunity to explore their local areas as well as travel to forest preserves to learn about a wildlife environment. See website for YMCA locations, pricing and dates (312-932-1200, ymcachgo.org).