Six Grand Rapids Summer Camps To Keep Your Kids Busy


It’s summer, which means finding ways to get the kids out of the house before they drive you crazy (is it September yet?!)

A productive way to keep them busy and engaged during their summer vacation is camp. Today “Parent Trap” camps are few in number. Most camps now are centered around more than just play — they’re educational helping keep kids minds active. And, with fun activities like building cars and closing down the John Ball Park Zoo at night, you might just want to join them!

Camp Blodgett

Camp Blodgett offers six 5-day camp sessions for students, 8-13 years of age, who attend school in Ottawa or Kent County.  The sessions are themed, offering curated, engaging experiences like Hero Week (superhero themed), Time Travel Week (exploring the prehistoric to the future) and Adventures in Reading (think Harry Potter and Percy Jackson). Space is limited, and many sessions are already filled.

Blandford Nature Center

If sleeping away from home is too much for your little one, try Blandford Nature Center’s day camps. Seven sessions run from June 18 to Aug. 23, catering to ages 4-12. It probably goes without saying, but the sessions are heavily nature themed, from “Hooray for Herptiles” (toads, turtles, salamanders and snakes) to “Cycles of the Farm” (hands-on experience in the animal barns and farming).

John Ball Zoo

For more than 25 years, John Ball Zoo has been hosting a variety of overnight and day camps. Their programs are either created for students in grades 3-5 or 6-8. Overnight programs, like “Keeper Night Shift” give kids a behind-the-scenes view of what it’s like to be a zookeeper. They help close down the zoo at night and open it the next morning.

Kent Career Tech Center Camps

For seventh, eighth and ninth graders looking to get a hands-on taste of real-world professions, Kent ISD offers a variety of day camps. From the learning how to program your own video game to working on cars, there’s a camp for a variety of interests.

Kendall College of Art and Design

From June 11-Aug. 14, Kendall College of Art and Design hosts weekly day camps on a portfolio of creative skills. Kids can try their hand at everything from 3D and sculpture to architecture and from video game design to cartoon drawing. Classes range for kids age 6 to 17.

Camp Wildflower

Camp Wildflower is a free one-day grief camp for kids ages 8-17 who have experienced a loss. Activities will include pet therapy, drumming, a climbing wall, and more. This one day camp takes place at Camp Tuhsmaheta in Greenville on June 22.

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