EXPLORING THE MAGIC AND WONDER
Venture Into The Wilderness
Wonder and imagination take shape each day as our youngest campers take time and enjoy the simple delights the wilderness offers on 600 acres located at the foothills of Killington Ski area/resort in Vermont.
From chasing crickets, milking goats, swimming and waterfront activities to creating splatter-paint art, the great outdoors provides a playground for learning and growing individually and as a community. Climbing and costumes, greased watermelon races and pirate gold hunts will have your child delighting in the creative activities and experiences in an age-appropriate way. Barn Day campers also enjoy hosting a farm stand every week for the local community.
My first summer at Farm & Wilderness I spent as a cabin counselor in Mandalay cabin at Tamarack Farm in 2001. During those weeks, I experienced and guided the teen campers through “work is love made visible”, an important mantra at F&W. Not only did we nail siding to the barn, stack hay in the loft, and clear trails for ease of walking, but we enjoyed singing on the steps of the front porch, swimming in the lake, and reading stories before falling asleep. I was captivated by the joy and community built through simple activities.
Once my children were old enough to attend Farm & Wilderness, we traveled from Texas to offer them the magical experiences available at the Barn Day Camp. As a parent, I stood at the fence watching the counselors creatively perform a skit about that afternoon’s activity offering, wondering what my children would choose. In 2019 and 2021, I joined the Support Staff at the Barn Day Camp, lifeguarding, leading activities, and assisting children and staff.
I am so looking forward to bringing my years of experience in education, program coordination, and coaching to the Barn Day Camp as Director! In the off-season when I am not preparing for camp, I support families as a Parent Coach in private practice in Charlottesville, Virginia. You can also find me being active outdoors, reading books, and engaging in community-building activities.
|Session 1||June 27th - July 1st|
|Session 2||July 4th - July 15th|
|Session 3||July 18th - July 29th|
|Session 4||August 1st - August 12th|
Barn Day is about taking time for the simple pleasures. We provide a safety-first environment where kids can be kids, learning, discovering and thriving. Barn Day Campers are a part of age-based groups of 10-12 campers, with 2-3 counselors for each group. An additional counselor or two will join the group on adventure day and the overnight trips.
Campers are provided with a cubby to store their backpack, lunchbox, a change of clothes, and projects they want to bring home from camp.
Campers bring their own lunch and are provided two snacks a day. A healthy protein snack in the morning to help fuel their day and a fruit/veggie option in the afternoon. Many of these delicious snacks are from our own farms!
Overnight trip: Barn Day kids hike to local wilderness locations, set up their sleeping bags in shelters or tents, taking turns helping to cook the meal while exploring and playing in the woods.
Facilities: Shared facilities are nearby for all their hygiene needs.
WHAT OUR CAMPERS SAY
Explore Life At Camp
Every day there are new things for our campers to discover, learn, grow, cultivate, build and explore.
Mornings we gather together with songs followed by enjoying the wonders of the outdoors. Campers delight in the sights and sounds as they explore the variety of insects and plants growing alongside them. Campers learn responsibility and a greater appreciation for the food we eat by caring for the farm animals and tending to the garden. Small camp projects offer the opportunity to build something substantial to contribute. There is also time for morning swim lessons and splashing around at the waterfront, as our youngest campers work hard, play hard and forge deep friendships.
Afternoons are filled with wholesome lunches and garden. Silent reflection around our beautiful tree-ringed circle offers campers time for listening and connection before embarking on new adventures. Will they take goats on a walk? Make ice cream or enjoy a game of camouflage in the woods? Or enjoy a favorite pastime at camp; building our own pinball machines from scratch! Campers hammer a pattern of nails into a board of wood, put rubber bands around the nails and fling a marble around inside. It’s a person powered electricity free pinball machine! So many choices, they just may choose to participate in all of them! After singing and our final circle, the Barn Day campers head home happy and eager for the next day.
Overnight camping trips are always the highlight of each two-week session. Children carry their sleeping bags, stuffed animals and other belongings to the campsite. Our campers are thrilled to sleep out under the stars and cook their meals (and s’mores!) over a fire. The evenings sing the music that only nature can provide as they drift off to sleep listening to the crickets and gentle evening wind.
EXPERIENCE LIFE IN THE OUTDOORS
Slide down a sudsy hillside, splash in streams, hike to a lookout – let’s play!
Barns and Gardens
Campers plant flowers, feed farm animals, garden and harvest vegetables. Sometimes the children have the opportunity to help with the chick hatching, watching eagerly for cracks in the egg shells in the incubator. Goats, bunnies, chickens, ducks and pigs live on the Barn Day Camp farm.
Creativity is unleashed in the arts barn with a variety of activities taking center stage. Campers learn how to make beeswax candles, build collages, paint and draw with watercolor pencils, letting the rain splash their artwork in a collaboration with nature.
Outdoor Living Skills
Older campers learn how to read a compass, erect a tarp for shelter and build a fire in all types of weather. Younger campers learn tree identification, fire building and tent skills. We teach “leave no trace”, environmentally sound camping to all our campers. Campers ages eight and over can learn proper knife safety and whittling.
Both a classroom for daily swim lessons and a playground for supervised free time, the waterfront is a great place to cool off and play. Our campers also use the waterfront for learning paddle strokes for canoe trips or building beach forts and structures with buckets, shovels and other favorite toys.
Using tools is essential for fun with a variety of projects teaching new skills. Campers also learn how to design a project, learn the steps needed for assembly and use hand tools to create their vision.
Rope courses and outdoor rock climbing provide exciting physical activities for our youngest campers. The indoor climbing wall is used for team-building exercises, non-competitive games and other activities to challenge each camper.
Youth Environmental Sustainability
With the wonderment of a child’s perspective, campers explore their natural surroundings from bugs and bird nests, to animal tracks and forest sounds. The wilderness inspires most of our imaginative games and activities. The land, lakes and forests are our outdoor classrooms. Campers perform experiments along with their exploring where they are looking at things under a microscope, dissecting scat and shooting bottle rockets to learn about pressure systems.
Our two week campers experience one overnight camping trip in a wilderness setting. Our oldest campers, ages 9-10, have the option to explore more adventures in a two night trip. During these trips, campers experience the wonders of the wilderness in an age appropriate way. Tasty s’mores by the campfire are a delight for all!