Everyone has their own definition of a good time – and that can change by the hour or day! That’s why there’s no end to the options every family member can choose from at Camp Common Ground. Each day has time set aside for activities with others in the same age group, breaks for rest or solo pursuits, things you can do as a family, and events that bring the whole camp together. You’re welcome to participate as much or as little as you please!
Programs & Activities
The Seedlings Program (3-5 years old)
Our littlest campers enjoy movement, music, singing and creative projects led by experienced early childhood educators. Our leaders follow the direction of your child’s interests and character while offering games and projects to stimulate their imagination and play. These include art, messy science experiments, trips to the blueberry patch and plenty of unstructured play time.
Childcare for children two and under can be arranged for an additional fee with advanced notice.
Kidville (6-12 years old)
Children can team up by age or interest and participate in outdoor activities, crafts, cooperative games, and team sports. Kidville’s experienced leaders excel at working with children and developing a fun and creative weekly schedule.
Kids have the choice to explore nature, catching salamanders in the wetland, floating handmade boats on the creek, and building fairy houses in the woods. The Kidville building is also equipped with an array of arts and performance projects, books and games, and is fun central in any weather. The 11- and 12-year-olds can take part in activities of their own choosing, like counselor-in-training sessions helping lead the fun for younger campers or coming up with their own tween-appropriate endeavors with supervision.
Teens (13-17 years old)
As campers gain more independence, teen program leaders are there to support and encourage it. In the mornings, teens have the option to participate in one of the adult activities, help out with the younger kids’ programs, or join a game of tennis or group hike. On Thursday, teens will go on a full-day excursion to paddleboard on Lake Champlain, go zip lining, or another activity chosen by group consensus.
After lunch is teen free time, then structured activities based on the interests of the group until dinner. Activities have included self-defense, swimming, jewelry making, mural painting, and more. After dinner, teens lead fun and games for younger kids who are fast eaters so that their parents can finish dinner at a leisurely pace! Depending on the night, teens may participate in a special teens-only activity, like a campfire or group outing, or they can opt into the camp-wide activity, such as Quidditch or the talent show. Teens are free to hang out at night, but curfew is 11pm and parents or guardians are responsible for enforcing this policy.
With the kids and teens off doing their own thing in the morning, adults can dedicate time to exploring their own interests, meeting new people, or unwinding on their own terms. Classes led by professionals in their fields welcome those who are trying an activity for the first time, as well as more experienced students. Specific offerings, artisans, and instructors change each session, but in the past, adult classes have included subjects like:
- Arts: glass bead and marble making, watercolors, pastels, pottery, print making, silk painting, blacksmithing, or wood carving
- Music: singing, chamber music, songwriting, guitar, piano, or ukulele
- Movement: yoga, dance, hiking, tennis, sports, tai chi, improv, or theater games
- Wellness: meditation, writing, non-violent communication, nature exploration, or relaxation
You can also share your skills and talents with the community by offering a “camper sampler,” a one-hour-long skill-sharing session at camp.
Camp Common Ground’s family program provides fantastic multi-age activities that create shared experiences and traditions that are fun for everyone! Afternoons and evenings are family time, and we work hard to provide programs that appeal to all ages. Organized activities and choose-your-own adventures fill the afternoon and evening, and usually include:
- Arts & crafts
- Big Show (end of week talent show)
- Board games
- Brick oven pizza night
- Camper Samplers: Share your own talents during an hour block in the afternoon!
- Farm tours of neighboring Footprint Farm
- Field trips
- Giant bubbles
- Golf outing
- Guided hikes
- Kid-run carnivals
- Spontaneous surprises
- Wilderness skills classes
- and more!
All campers are encouraged to sign up to help in the kitchen, clean up the site, or even sing a morning song to wake our electricity-free campers in the morning. That’s because Helping Hands has always been an important part of the Camp Common Ground experience. Through working and playing together we build community at camp. And by sharing the work, we also make our program a more affordable experience for everyone.
More details about Helping Hands will be available in the camper packet.
A typical day at Family Camp
The days at family camp start with yoga for those who wish to participate. Others may prefer to catch a little extra sleep before heading to the dining hall for breakfast.
Morning Programs for Kids
Children’s programs meet at the Kidville where our staff works to create an environment of caring and compassion for each age group. A healthy mid-morning snack will be served.
Morning Adult Programs
While the little ones are busy with their own fun, adults and teens can pursue their interests through exciting courses offered each morning. This time is split into two morning periods (9-10:15 and 10:30-11:45), although some courses will run all morning.
In the mornings, teens have the option to participate in one of the adult activities, help out with the kid program, or join a game of tennis or group hike.
Noon Camper Circle
Kids & Adults meet together to share announcements, appreciations, and games!
Quiet & Rest Hour
The hour after lunch is a quiet time for napping and impromptu activities.
Lifeguards are on duty at our two-acre swimming pond. Some people also choose to take a refreshing dip in Lewis Creek, which borders the property.
Afternoon Teen Program
Afternoon Multi-Age Programming
Program offerings during the afternoons are geared toward the whole family.
Games for Fast Eaters
While adults may linger over their meal, children who have finished can choose to participate in group activities organized by the children’s staff. Adults are free to participate as well.
Our evening program begins after dinner with an activity for everyone, such as a contra dance, group games, campfires, storytelling, live music, and popcorn eating. During the end of the week extravaganza, the Big Show on Thursday night, everyone is encouraged to strut their stuff.
All Camp Quiet Time
The diehards may still play quiet games and chat until the wee hours. However, please respect our neighbors and other campers by refraining from any loud noises or activities. Sweet dreams!
This week has been the first vacation we’ve had that has really FELT like a vacation since our kids were born! Not having to think about meals has been amazing, especially since all of the food has been delicious. Time in the morning has been a real break, while the kids were off with enthusiastic and engaging counselors doing the kinds of activities we’d hope they’d be up to in the summer – blueberry picking, pond play, cooperative games…… wow!”
Arrival and Departure
Each session of Camp Common Ground begins on Saturday afternoon and ends on Friday morning. Meals begin with dinner on arrival day, and end with breakfast on departure day. Your camper packet will contain more details including directions, packing lists, program information, and more.