Staying in a summer camp is one of the best recreational activities that children and teenagers do during school breaks and vacations. In a summer camp, these young people can learn new skills, interact with adults and other people of their age, play sports, enjoy nature or experience high adventure. Attending a summer camp can provide very positive outlook and results for this young people.
The industry of summer camps in the USA is already 150 years old. The first summer camp in the USA was founded by Frederick Gunn. In the mid-1800s, he and his wife Abigail established a boys-home school in Washington, Connecticut. One day, they took their students on a two-week hiking trip. Striking a good idea, the couple began doing hiking programs, which gave birth to Gunnery Camp, the first summer camp in the USA.
Gunnery Camp operated for 12 more years before Camp Dudley was founded in 1885. Currently, Camp Dudley is the oldest boys-summer camp in America.
Today, there are 12,000 summer camps in the USA. These camps handle 10 million children and 1 million adults per year. Youth organizations in the US such as the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, 4H, the YMCA and Camp Fire USA integrate their summer camps with local organizations.
There are many kinds of summer camps in the USA. Many summer camps focus on academic education. For example, there are college credit camps which offer students a chance to explore a pre-college experience. There are also academic adventure camps which specialize in providing high school students a chance to study academic topics on a summer adventure program.
There are also art camps which hone the campers’ ability to draw, paint or sculpt. Performing arts summer camps develop campers’ dancing and theatrical skills.
Most campers love adventure camps which allow them to camp, travel, hike or white-raft in the wilderness. Sport camps develop young people who are into sports.
Then there are also special summer camps. For example, weight loss camps are for children and young adults suffering from obesity. These camps help them gain a fit body and a healthy lifestyle.
There is also the emergence of international summer camps in the USA. This was spearheaded by the first international summer camp in the USA, Interlocken International Summer Camp which is a UN affiliated summer camp. Camps like Interlocken allow campers and staff from all around the world to live and learn together. The American Camp Association or ACA states that a 59% increase in travel camp programs is observed between 2000 and 2007.
Summer camps are plentiful in the US. It is up to the person which one would fit him best.