What KNC Camp is All About
Nature Up Close Camp is a day camp for kids that is committed to providing fun and meaningful experiences in nature. Everyone is welcome! We believe that all kids can participate in our program, no matter what their ability. We encourage community, understanding, teamwork, stewardship, fun, respect, emotional and physical health in a safe and nurturing environment. Camp is a place where children will make connections with the natural world using all their senses to explore and observe the beauty of Michigan. It is a hands-on setting where campers and staff have the types of real life experiences that many only get to watch on TV or read about in books.
We have the opportunity to work with children ages 3- to 17-years, representing diverse cultures, abilities and socioeconomic backgrounds. Campers generally come from the Greater Kalamazoo Area, but also attend from other states and countries. Children do not have to be members of the Kalamazoo Nature Center to attend, but we encourage family membership in order to enjoy our site and programming year round. We put the safety and well-being of our campers first, providing as many opportunities as possible for them to have fun. We want each of them to make a connection with nature and with the other campers in their group.
Summer Camp sessions are Monday – Friday programs; 9 am – 5 pm for 1st grade and up, and 9 am - 12 pm for pre-K and Kindergarteners.
Each of our camp sessions are designed with themed programs planned and delivered by the Summer Education Staff, supplemented by guest visitors, overnight camping events and field trips. One Senior Educator and one Junior Educator lead the camp group on exploratory hikes throughout the property, incorporating art, stories, games, skits and songs to supplement the weekly and daily themes. Camp groups are organized by grade, with plenty of chances for everyone to come together as a whole during all-camp activities such as group games, Rally Roundup flagpole ceremonies and Friday Family Fest.
We also offer one-day Winter and Spring Break camps for 4 and 5 year olds and 1st - 8th graders. School Break camps follow the same format of Summer Camp, with daily themes. Check out the Programs Page to see current offerings.
Participation in Nature Center programs is open to everyone. KNC does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, ethnic origin, physical or mental disability, veteran status, height, weight, sexual orientation or identity, marital status, or political affiliation.