County and outskirts offer wide range of summer camps for children


BENNINGTON —School's almost out, and before the kiddos get settled with nothing to do, research the various summer camps southern Vermont has to offer. From trying new things like challenging the fear of heights, or touching a critter, the county and surrounding towns have a lot in store for this summer.

Fiber CrafterCamps with Hook & Needle Studio, Second Congregational Church in Bennington

Family run business with ladies who have 15 and 40 years of experience with teaching and fiber arts. Each day participants will learn how to make crafts such as headbands, wristwraps, bags, necklaces, bracelets and blankets.

Run by Kathryn L. Atkins (owner), Althea Church and Carolyn Webb. Early drop-off and late day available for $30 for the week. July 18 to July 22 from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for ages 10 and up. Student to teacher ratio is three to one.

Cost: $225 with all materials included

Contact: (718) 924-5547,,

Vermont Arts Exchange Summer Arts Camp, 48 Main St., N. Bennington

In the past, VAE has offered 16 camps in its previous facility. By moving to a smaller building, it allows utilization for different areas of the community.

"When creating unique camp offerings we reach out to neighbors not only to give a great experience for the camper and family but considering our resources and being as efficient as possible," VAE Executive Director Matthew Perry said.

All registration and payment is completed online with complete descriptions at A 10 percent discount is provided to families with two or more children enrolling for an entire week.

Pre-school summer camp for children three to five with the theme, "Lines, Doodles and Dots," from July 11 to 15 or July 18 to 22 with the theme of "Exploring Art with the Five Senses." Draw a picture with your eyes closed and make edible paint by exploring art with the five senses. From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Run by Misti Granger.

Cost: $195 per week

Full Day Art Camps: $225, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

"How to Draw Anything" with Kristen Blaker ages eight and up June 20 to 24: To anyone who can hold a pencil, learn drawing tricks and techniques that can be applied to any drawing project. This is for all skill levels. Held at the North Bennington Train Depot with a mid-day snack and swimming break at Lake Paran.

"Plethora of Printmaking" with Betsy Kane and Kristen Blaker ages six to nine from June 27 to July 1: Participants will learn how to create linocuts, monoprints, collographs, and sand prints. Everyday a different artist will be used for inspiration working in the printmaking studio generating t-shirts, greeting cards, tote bags, and more. Held at 48 Main St. campus.

"Go Girls" with Betsy Kane and Kristen Blaker ages eight and up from July 11 to 15: Co-ed camp exploring female artists work with a new artist each day. Includes a gallery visit, studio tours and presentations by local women artists.

"Make It, Race It!" with Ann Webster Lang and Arline Mayer for ages six to nine from July 18 to 22: Construct a track and zip line to race vehicles and air space ships. Participants will learn about aerodynamics, dimensions, form, function, weight, imagination and design.

"Fashion Camp" with Ann Webster Lang and Arline Mayer for ages eight and up from July 25 to 29: A popular camp that teaches the basics of sewing, embroidery and design while creating your own clothing.

"Painting in Monet's Garden" with Kristen Blaker ages eight and up from August 1 to 5: Paint flowers, landscapes, foliage and unique architecture with the inspiration of local gardens with watercolor paint, acrylic, pen, ink and watercolor pencils.

"Water Arts" with Ann Webster Lang and Arline Mayer for ages eight and up from August 8 to 12: Adventure in the woods and water of Lake Paran and Village of North Bennington collecting natural and unnatural materials to create art within the environment such as boats, rafts, shelters and forts while documenting in an art journal.

"Garden Gods and Goddesses" with Kristen Blaker ages eight and up from August 15 to 19: Learn how to create natural skin products with the resources from a garden such as lip balm, natural bug repellent and salves. Campers can also make nature based art projects with pressed flowers, naturally dyed fabric and lavender eye pillows.

"Camp Danger" with Matthew Perry and Matthew Marks for ages eight and up from August 22 to 26: Going outside of your comfort zone, campers will get messy working with fire and water, use power tools and learn basic safety and first aid with the local fire department.

"Open Studio" with Matthew Perry and Matthew Marks for ages six to nine from August 29 to September 2: Work with two and three dimensional mediums in groups, on your own, inside or outside. This camp covers a wide variety of activities.

Second Chance Animal Adventure Camp, 677 VT-7A, Shaftsbury

Camps give children the opportunity to interact with animals and nature while learning about the responsibility of owning a pet or getting a career working with animals. There will be a variety of presenters, field trips and time spent with the animal shelter residents. Submitted applications must include a $25 deposit per child and session, with the remaining due by June 17. Full and partial scholarships available.

Full Day Camps cost $200 and run from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for ages seven to 12-years-old. Some events will occur at Fisher Elementary School, 504 East Arlington Road, Arlington, VT 05250.

July 5 to 9 "It's Raining Cats & Dogs" Learn about caring for pets and careers working with animals.

July 11 to 15 "Down on the Farm" Visit working farms all week and learn about the farm animals and their unique abilities.

July 18 to 22 "Born to Be Wild" Get to know exotic, endangered and indigenous creatures and how to preserve their future.

July 25 to 29 "It's Raining Cats & Dogs" Learn about caring for pets and careers working with animals.

Half Day Camps cost $100 and run from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for ages five to six.

August 1 to 5 "Little Critters" Make animal friends, crafts and participate in games. Half day for kids five and six.

Contact: or call (802)375-2898 ext. 313 for more information.

New Experience Camp, various locations

The New Experience Camp allows kids to learn and practice "basic life skills in an encouraging, vigorous and enjoyable environment," according to a release. It is a combined effort by the Bennington Police Department, the Bennington County Sheriff's Department, the Bennington Fire Department and the Southwest Vermont Career Development Center to host the camp with most activities being housed in the fire department. There will be educational, entertaining and hands-on experiences working with law enforcement officers, firefighters, rescue personnel and other guests.

Applications must be picked up at the Bennington Police Department and submitted with the participation fee by June 12. The final schedule will be released closer to July with respective phase/age specification. Accepted letters will be mailed out at the end of June.

Phase I ages 11 to 13 up to 20 children

Phase II ages 14 to 15 up to 10 children

July 25 to 29; $225; lunch provided all week

From 8 a.m. to 4 or 6 p.m. depending on the day's activities

Monday: Southwest Vermont Career Development Center learning auto mechanics, building trades, culinary, forestry, and manufacturing and design, finished with an ice cream treat.

Tuesday: Drug, alcohol, texting and bullying awareness such as driving golf carts with Driving Under the Influence (DUI) goggles. K-9 dog demonstration, gun safety and first aid training are also on the agenda.

Wednesday: Ramblewild tree-to-tree adventure park in Lanesboro, Mass.

Thursday: Hale Mountain Rod and Gun Club in Shaftsbury for firearm safety.

Friday: Whitewater Rafting in Deerfield, Mass., followed by a family picnic.

St. Mary's Academy Eagles Nest Summer Program, 4 Parsons Ave., Hoosick Falls, NY

Day camp, $140 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., June 27 through August 19. Weekly registration. Half days available till noon for $70. Register online at Must bring a lunch, but afternoon snacks are provided.

Pre-K and Kindergarten (Beagles, "baby eagles"): Campers will learn letter and number recognition, hand writing, sight words, fluency reading and more. There will be circle time, games, crafts, exercises, nap/rest, storytime and hands-on activities.

First to fourth grade (Eagles): Learning enrichment in math, reading, handwriting, science and social studies through games, crafts, exercise, and storytime.

Contact: Principal Michael Piatek (518) 686-4314, or

Bennington Recreation Center,665 Gage St., Bennington

June 20 to August 19

Adventure Camp for four to 7-year-olds

Chill Out Camp for eight to 12-year-olds

Half day $40, full day $80, resident pricing

Tennis camp and swimming lessons also available. A detailed schedule with activities will be released next week. Bagged lunch needed for the first couple of weeks, then it will be provided.

Contact: Tracey Knights, recreation director at 802-442-1053

Kimberly Farms,1214 Cross Hill Road, N. Bennington

Kids of all ages and every level of riding ability, including first-time beginners. Activities consist of riding lessons every day, trail rides, horse care, arts and crafts, nature walks, flashlight tag, off-site field trips, late night cookouts, and more. Scholarships available through for both camps.

Co-ed day camp: For 4-year-olds to adults from June 20 to September 5, Monday through Thursday. Morning camp 9 a.m. to noon $195, full day $265 per week. Before and aftercare available for $10 extra per day.

Girls overnight horse camp: One week program up to five weeks from June 19 to July 30 ages seven to 17-years-old. $925.

Contact: for more information and a camp application form, or call 802-442-5454.

Lake Paran-Houghton Lane, North Bennington

Nature and Swim Camp

July 18 to 22 for ages four to 12.

Half day 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. $100

Full day 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. $200

Drop-in day: $20 for half day, $40 for full day

$55 non-refundable deposit due with application form by July 18th. Checks and forms can be mailed to Katrain Hastings at P.O. Box 602, Shaftsbury, VT 05262

Contact: Katrina Hastings (802)-688-9616 or

Greater Northshire Access Television (GNAT)-6378 Route 7A, Suite 1, Sunderland

Stop Motion Animation Camp: July 5 for ages 10 a.m. to 12 a.m. for $50.

With this technique, make animated objects move on its own by moving it in small increments and photographing individually to create an illusion.

Scary Movie Editing Camp: July 6,7, and 8 for ages 12 to 14 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for $135.

Learn how to edit clips, the art of storytelling, use shortcuts, import footage, and more with Final Cut Pro X.

Stop Motion Animation Camp: July 18 for ages seven to nine from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for $135.

Kid's Kitchen Studio Production Camp: July 20, 21 and 22 for ages nine to 12 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for $135.

Learn skills and make a storyboard to plan a cooking show on the first day. On the second, campers will design the set and prep and practice hosting and filming segments. On the last day, campers will star in, direct, and film an actual cooking show.

Kid on the Street News Camp: July 27 to 28 for ages 10 to 14 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for $100.

Learn the basis of scripting, filming, reporting and interviewing by working together to research stories. Day one is planning and preparing and on day two campers go to town to locate subjects.

Snacks and beverages provided, but children must bring a lunch.

Scholarships available with inquiry. Contact

Spirit Hollow-2509 Shaftsbury Hollow Rd., Shaftsbury

Offering various retreats and quests, Spirit Hollow is an evolving nature-based spiritual center run by Emery and Tracey Forest. It's tucked away in the Taconic Mountains on 100 forested acres. For the summer, the non-profit offers Spirit Quest and Goddess Camps for teens and kids.

Visit for more information

Camp organizations not listed were either not available for information, or haven't released schedules yet.

—Makayla-Courtney McGeeney can be reached at (802)-447-7567, ext. 118.


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