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Everyone should be water-wise!
All campers receive swimming lessons daily from Red Cross Certified Instructors. Small groups are formed based on campers swimming ability. Campers also enjoy a free swim, where they practice their skills while cooling off. We use our floats to help campers practice their first dives. A little instruction can make a huge difference in a swimmer's skill, and the same is true of diving. We want to make sure that all of our campers learn how to tread water, float, swim, and dive while at camp. With the hot summers we've been having, almost every camper chooses to swim. Beyond being a great way to cool down, swim classes provide exercise and life-long skills keep campers safe and active around the water. We have 2 designated swim areas and different zones for beginner and advanced swimmers. By keeping our groups small and hiring many certified instructors, we have a great ratio to ensure that your child will learn at their own pace.
Archery is a great sport for teaching control and concentration. With a focus on safety, we begin archery class by teaching range rules, terminology, and technique. To emphasize the important of form and technique, we use simple recurve bows with pin sights and finger release.
After everyone knows the rules of the range and their own eye dominance, we begin shooting. We start close to our targets and work on making relaxed, repeatable shots. We work with each archer to find a comfortable anchor that they can repeat every shot, and get good groupings. We move back and keep our groupings tight, then individually we teach how to move sights and bring the grouping to the center of the target.
By the end of camp, campers should be able to string a recurve bow, and safely shoot at a range. As the session comes to an end we add some fun targets to the range and play some simple shooting games like "Kentucky V" and balloon popping. As the archers improve, they really start to enjoy a sport that may have felt boring to them. It's exciting to watch them improve and archery is a great sport because you can easily see their achievements.
We have canoes, kayaks and paddleboats available for boating. All campers must have passed a swim test before boating. The paddleboat can be used by campers who want to take it slow. Kayakers and Canoers will learn how to launch their boat, hold their paddle, and will be taught some basic strokes. We will talk about forward stroke, back stroke, sculling, prying, and j-stroke. We teach basic flatwater skills, we do not flip kayaks or learn any whitewater techniques.
As with all camp activities, we use the surrounding natural beauty of Nashoba Valley Ski Area's property to teach respect for the outdoors. From the boats, you can watch frogs and fish swimming through natural vegetation, and we try to teach campers that by watching carefully the water will stay calm and they will see more wildlife. If they chase and splash after the fish the water will be stirred up and they won't see anything.
Our boating activities are run in small groups so that our counselors can be attentive to every boat and work with each camper to develop proper strokes.
We practice catch-and-release fishing in 3 of our spring-fed ponds. Our campers have caught fish as large as an 18" bass, and based on their stories about the biggest catch we would probably have some record holders! That may just be fishy tales about the "one that got away", but one thing is for sure, they will learn how to fish at camp. We'll show them how to tie their tackle, bait their hook, and cast safely when fishing with other campers. When it comes time to remove a hook from their fish, we will assist them so that the fish can be released and continue to swim in the pond. We don't stock our ponds because they are healthy waters and support natural life. Since we release our catch, we happen to know of several large bass that are still swimming around in there, and there are tons of smaller fish growing larger every day.
Weather, age, and ability dependent.
Our high ropes course, adventure course and challenge courses are a great combination of natural appreciation and sports. Campers will quickly learn to move slowly and surely with great balance. Those who try to rush and muscle their way to the top will learn to slow down and concentrate on balancing. We use the ropes course in small groups, with highly trained counselors doing all of the belaying. Campers never belay each other at the camp, and all equipment and harnesses are given safety checks daily and before each ascent. The trapeze jump shown at the left is a prerequisite for one of our camp's most popular activities, our pond-crossing zip line. We use the ropes course as a gradually progressing challenge to test campers fear of heights. If a camper can jump off the trapeze, they'll have no trouble jumping off the platform at the zip line.
Weather, age, and ability dependent.
Our Zip Line is one of the most popular activities at our summer day camp. Before attempting this exciting zip line, campers must first demonstrate their ability to jump off a high platform at the adventure ropes course. Once they have shown that they have no fear of heights, they can try the zip line. After a quick safety check with their counselor, they climb up a tree to a platform 40' above the ground. All belaying is done by counselors. At the platform, double redundant lanyards are used as a counselor switches the camper's harness onto the zip line. The other campers count down to the big jump. At the middle of the zip line, it is low enough that campers can dip their feet in the water. For an added challenge, try flipping upside-down in "spider-style" and dip your head in the water!
Our property is over 400 acres and surrounds the slopes of Nashoba Valley Ski Area. The beginner slopes are great terrain for mountain biking, and we also have many old retired cross-country ski trails and hiking trails on the property which are ideal for mountain biking.
We have many mountain bikes for campers to use, and we also allow campers to bring their own bicycles if desired. We begin each ride by adjusting seat posts and walking each camper through a quick inspection. We'll check our tire pressure and brakes, and make sure all helmets fit properly. Then it's off to the trails and hills to get that adrenaline inducing thrill of flying down a grassy field with the wind in your face!
As always at camp, we take safety seriously and will not allow a camper to attempt anything beyond their ability level. We have huge parking lots that are vacant in the summer, and we start every camper on the flat pavement to test their skills before moving off-road, and then on to steeper trails. Mountain biking is great for balance and can improve regular road biking skills.
Arts & Crafts is a great indoor activity at the Camp. We have 4 large indoor spaces for activities, and we have enough room to do a lot of indoor activities if it's raining hard. Woodworking is also fun, and campers will learn to work with hand tools. We do not use power tools at camp. After woodworking, campers come home with their projects, which change every year, in this picture a camper is making a rolling truck with working wheels. Arts & Crafts projects change but we always tie-die shirts. It's a fun activity that campers get to keep and wear, providing a lot of entertainment and memories every time they put it on.
Drama is a fun way for campers to socialize and work on their acting skills. When it's very rainy, it's great to see more kids come inside the main lodge to the stage and try one of the drama activities. There are several games we play, like Pass the Buck, Improv, Mafia, and Snap Attack. These are simple, quick games that anyone can play and have fun right away. They're a great way to get loosened up and ready for some serious acting. More dedicated campers can plan and rehearse a performance, and at the end of the camp session they can perform in front of the other campers.
We have many fields and paved areas available to use, as well as 13 sandy volleyball courts. Every day begins with a large group activity that every camper participates in. Frequently campers choose to play a huge game of capture the flag first thing in the morning. Later on in the day after they have broken up into smaller groups, campers can play volleyball, wiffleball, soccer, ultimate frisbee, and touch football. We also have many great pad, tag, running and problem solving games.
They encourage teamwork and working together, which is what we like to see campers learning here at our summer day camp, The Camp at Nashoba Valley Ski Area.
In addition to our many daily activities, we have bonus activities that will happen once per session. (every other week)
These activities are favorites among our past and present campers. The cookouts are a relaxing break from the non-stop fun at our summer camp. New friends get a chance to enjoy a campfire while eating some bbq, watermelon, and s'mores. It's a classic camp cookout by the beach!
The Kimball's Ice Cream trip is also mentioned as a camper favorite each year. Our property is adjacent to Kimball's Farm, so we are able to travel there on our camp wagons through some beautiful wooded trails that double as mountain biking trails during our regular activity times. In all of our years at camp, we have yet to meet a camper who doesn't like ice cream!
We offer 10 activities during a camper's 2 week session, with 4 activities planned each day. Some activities are planned during the first week of a session vs the 2nd week. Other activities are scheduled as weather permits. On occasion we will offer a choice block where the camper can pick their favorite activity.