Looking for ways to bond with your family while enjoying the great outdoors? Why not try a family sleep-away camp? Here are ten terrific picks from Family Fun Magazine.
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1. Yellowstone for Families, Yellowstone National Park, Wyo.
Yellowstone for Families is for families with children 8 to 12 years old. Your family can explore canyons, geyser basins and more while learning about the natural life in the park. Activities include animal tracking, wildlife watching, photography, painting and hiking. Children have the opportunity to become Yellowstone National Park Junior Rangers. For children older than 12, try the Trails Through Yellowstone program.
There are four-day programs offered Monday to Friday and Friday to Tuesday from June 9 to August 28.
Limit: 14 people
Minimum Age: 8
Location: Four nights at Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel or four nights at Grant Village.
Mammoth Rates: $595 two adults (member's rate $585); $803 one adult (member's rate $793); $365 each child (member's rate $355) -- plus tax per week.
Grant Rates: $625 two adults (member's rate $615); $869 one adult (member's rate $859); $365 each child (member's rate $355) -- plus tax per week.
Family membership begins at $30 a year.
For more information, visit yellowstoneassociation.org.
To make reservations, call (307) 344-5566.
2. Medomak Camp, Washington, Maine
The Medomak Family Camp is set on a lake and features old barns and grassy fields. The camp offers traditional activities such as canoeing, archery, fishing, arts and crafts and campfires. The camp also provides box lunches, which are made from organic produce grown in the camp's garden. Each cabin is furnished with queen beds for parents and twin beds for kids.
Rates: By the week -- people over 13, $850; children 5 to 12, $750; children 2 to 4 $400; children under 2, free.
For more information, call owner Holly Stone at (207) 845-6001 or visit medomakcamp.com.
3. Montecito-Sequoia Family Vacation Camp, Sequoia National Forest, Calif.
The Montecito Sequoia Lodge is open 365 days a year and is located on Lake Homavalo. Montecito offers both summer and winter activities like swimming, horseback riding, snowboarding and rock climbing. Parents can indulge in a massage or relax in a hot tub.
The lodge offers 36 lodge rooms and 13 cabins. Buffet style meals are served.
Rates: For two or more adults, $925; for one adult with family, $945; children 13 to 17, $885; children 2 to 12, $835. All prices for a six-night package.
For more information, call 800-227-9900 or visit mslodge.com.
4. College of the Atlantic Family Camp, Bar Harbor, Maine
The 2006 Family Nature Camp program began June 25 and runs through Aug. 5. The program includes naturalist-led field trips like whale watching, bald eagle spotting and sea kayaking. There is a strong emphasis on learning about the local ecology. For an additional fee, families can enjoy an authentic lobster dinner in the dining hall overlooking Frenchman's Bay. The camp is located near Acadia National Park.
Depending on the size of the family, a family can share one or two bedrooms and be accommodated in suites with two to four other families. Bathrooms are shared.
Session dates: June 25 to July 1, July 2 to 8, July 9 to 15, July 16 to 22, July 23 to 29 and July 30 to Aug. 5. Families arrive Sunday afternoon, field trips begin Monday morning and sessions end Friday afternoon.
Rates: adults, $690; children 5 to 17, $290; children under 5, $105. Rates are by the week and per person. It not recommended to bring young children
5. Berkeley Tuolumne Family Camp, Groveland, Calif.
The camp is located on the Tuolumne River just seven miles from the entrance to Yosemite National Park. It accommodates about 300 campers a day. The camp also offers a Kiddie Kamp for 2- to 5-year-olds every day. Activities include family volleyball, archery and swimming. The camp's artist-in-residence program features a different professional artist each week who teaches classes in ceramics, drawing or performing arts. Campers will stay in tent cabins with porches.
Daily rates for Berkeley city residents: adults older than 16, $83; children 11 to 15, $58; ages 7 to 10, $53; children 2 to 6, $41; infants are free.
Non-Berkeley residents: adults older than 16, $86; ages 11 to 15, $61; ages 7 to 10, $56; children 2 to 6, $44; infants are free.
Rates are for five or more days. There is an additional $40 per night fee for two people and a $58 per night fee for single occupancy. The camp offers a 50 percent reduced rate for low-income families of Berkeley.
For more information, call (510) 981-5140 or visit berkeleycamps.com.
6. Cascade Science School Camps through the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) in Portland, Ore.
Families with curious kids -- and adults -- will enjoy the weekend programs offered by the OMSI. The weekends have different themes, such as the Archaeology and Paleontology Family Weekend and the Lewis and Clark Family Weekend. Don't worry, the activities are mostly outdoors, so you won't be trapped indoors on a beautiful summer day.
For more information, call (503) 797-450, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.cmiregistration.com/user/org/category.jxp?id=19480&org=651.
7. The YMCA of the Rockies, Estes Park Center, Colo.
Families can enjoy some quality time together in one of the world's most beautiful settings. The camp operates year-round, and its cabins, vacation homes and lodge rooms can accomodate up to 2,800 at any given time.
In addition to enjoying the natural surroundings, families can participate in activities including fly-fishing, mini golf, tennis and volleyball. If the weather doesn't cooperate, there's an indoor pool. The fun doesn't stop at night -- there's storytelling, campfires and concerts.
For more information, call (970) 586-3341, ext. 1010, or visit ymcarockies.org.
8. Washburn-Norlands Living History Center and Museum, Livermore, Maine
Looking for something different? Spend a few days pretending you're living in 1870 on a working farm. The farm chores will keep your family busy, but there is some leisure time scheduled in. The immersion doesn't stop at night -- you'll sleep in an old-fashioned bunkhouse. Chamber pots and privies are the bathroom facilities.
For more information, call 207-897-4366 or visit norlands.org.
9. Camp Seafarer, Arapahoe, N.C.
This popular YMCA camp is known for its excellent sailing program, but there are many different types of activities offered.
Rates and Dates for Seafarer Family Camp Weekends:
Friday, Sept. 1 to Monday, Sept. 4, 2006 (Labor Day): adults: $200, youths ages 6 to 12: $195, children ages 0 to 5: $145
Friday, Sept. 15 to Sunday, Sept. 17, 2006: adults: $150, youths ages 6 to 12: $110, children ages 0 to 5: $60
Friday, Sept. 22 to Sunday, Sept. 24, 2006: adults: $150, youths ages 6 to 12, $110, children ages 0 to 5: $60,
Air-conditioned quarters available for $200 additional charge per room.
Rates and Dates for Other Weekends:
Mother - Daughter Weekend, Friday, Sept. 8 to Sunday, Sept. 10, 2006: adults: $150, girls in first grade and up: $110
Camper - Dad Weekend, Friday, Sept. 8 to Sunday, Sept. 10: adults: $150, boys in first grade and up: $110
Air-conditioned quarters available for $100 additional charge per room
For more information, call (252) 249-1212 or visit www.seagull-seafarer.org.
10. Quimby Country Lodge & Cottages, Averill, Vt.
How would your family like its own private cottage on a beautiful lake?
Quimby Country has 20 cottages on 600 acres. Visitors get complimentary use of boats and tennis courts. Plus, there's a host of activities. The rates, which include three meals a day and daily maid service, range from $144 to $173 for adults and $70 to $113 (depending on age) for kids.
For more information, call (802) 822-5533 or visit quimbycountry.com