Whether your child is 8 or 14, a sleepaway camp is what summer's were made for. Boasting beautiful lakes and traditional settings, Connecticut has some fantastic options. Here's a list of some great summer sleepaway camps - perfect for locals and city folk alike. If you prefer a same-sex environment, we've covered boys only and girls only camps along with all sorts of other camps in our CT Summer Camp Guide.
Buck's Rock Performing and Creative Arts Camp
I first heard about Buck's Rock when I was living in the city. A family that strategically sent their child to public school saved their would be tuition money so that they could send their child to Buck's Rock all summer long. They felt that Buck's Rock was an investment in their child's future. I then was fortunate enough to visit and saw first hand what they were raving about. Any creative child would LOVE to go to this camp. Being a montessori based camp, children self-direct towards the activities they have a passion for. Metalsmithing, bookmaking, theater, costumes, sculpture, glassblowing...you name it. It's an art lover's summer dream.
Bucks Rock Road, New Milford, CT 860.354.5030
Around for 117 years, Camp Awosting is set on beautiful Bantam Lake in the Litchfield Hills. No more than 170 boys stay in one of 16 cabins on the premises with at least two counselors per cabin. At this informal and friendly camp, every camper is introduced to all of the activities during the morning instructional program. In the afternoon elective periods, the boys choose the activities they enjoy most or want to try. On the 20 acre campus, boys will enjoy swimming, canoeing, sailing, waterskiing, wakeboarding, and riding go-karts. They also have a climbing tower and zip line, martial arts, fencing, photography, video production, ceramics, drama and a woodshop where you can make just about anything. Sports include basketball, baseball, soccer volleyball, football, lacrosse, rugby, cricket and track & field.
296 West Street Morris, CT 860.567-4924
Camp Chinqueka is the sister camp to Camp Awosting. Founded in 1955, it's located on Mt. Tom Pond in Litchfield County. Campers stay in cabins with girls their own age. Two counselors live in each cabin with the campers. Over thirty activity areas are spread out on the Chinqueka campus and campers are encouraged to try everything. This includes swimming, canoeing, sailing, dance and go-karts. They also have a climbing tower and zip line, martial arts, fencing, photography, video production, ceramics, music and drama. Sports include basketball, softball, soccer, volleyball, and gymnastics.
296 West Street, Morris, CT 860.567-4924
Camp Hazen YMCA
My son gets to go to Camp Hazen with his school each year. He loves that they have skateboarding. They also do a challenging team building nature course. It's a popular trip and a lot of the kids want to go back in the summer. They have creative arts, land and water sports as well as outdoor activities such as outdoor survival and mountain biking.
204 West Main Street, Chester, CT 860.526.9529
Camp Jewell YMCA
This nationally recognized 100 year old resident camp program provides youth, ages 7-16, with an opportunity to build meaningful and lifelong friendships with fellow campers and staff. Campers become part of a dynamic camp community that fosters independence, skill building, and respect for the environment. The weekends are host to special all camp activities ranging from Carnivals, to Camp Olympics, to their World Series of Wiffleball! Plus, there’s time each day for siesta where campers have some quiet time to read a book, hang out with friends, and write letters home!
6 Prock Hill Road, Colebrook, CT 860.379.2782
If your child has never experienced an exhilarating rope-climb, a solo kayak race, or Sabbath under the stars, this is the summer to discover the only Jewish community overnight camp in Connecticut. They have a 73 year track record of creating life-long Jewish summer memories and friendships.
463 Summer Hill Road, Madison, CT 203.421.3736
Camp Sloane YMCA
Since 1928, Camp Sloane campers have enjoyed the fun, camaraderie and yes, even the comfort of tent camping in the foothills of the Berkshire mountains. Tent camping is what makes this YMCA camp unique. Campers enjoy programs like crew/rowing, water skiing, and culinary arts during their stay.
124 Indian Mountain Road, Lakeville, CT 860.435.2557
This 300-acre woodland retreat, in the heart of Litchfield County, has been an idyllic spot for children & families for almost 100 years. Campers make new friends, deepen their faith, enjoy the beauty of the area, have fun, learn new skills, and return home with memories that will last a lifetime. The purpose of the summer camp program at Camp Washington is to provide a place where children of all ages can grow spiritually, emotionally, socially, and physically. Archery, canoeing, swimming in the lake, and campfires are just some of the offerings at this Christian camp.
190 Kenyon Road, Lakeside, CT 860.567.9623
Originally published 2/13/12.
Photo courtesy of Camp Chinqueka.