2014 North Branch Nature Center
Day Camps for Curious Kids
Ages 4 to 14
Woods and water explorations, games, hikes, live animals, nature study, crafts, friends and fun! The North Branch Nature Center has been offering fun, exciting and educational nature camps for children for nearly 15 years. Catching frogs, watching hawks, following grasshoppers, making new friends - isn’t this just what a child’s summer should be?
Our 2015 Summer Camp Schedule will be posted early next year.
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*Camp will not be held on Friday, July 4 and all camps June 30 - July 3 are prorated to reflect the 4-day week.
The field, forest and river of North Branch Nature Center are home to an endless variety of insects just waiting to be discovered. Swinging nets and flipping logs, we’ll explore the land in search of these tiny creatures. Join us as we learn about their unique role in the environment through fun nature activities.
A hike through the woods will turn up many mysteries, and in this camp we’ll try to solve some of nature’s riddles. Who left those tracks in the mud? Why is that tree growing sideways? What animals are hiding in the beaver pond? Join us as we unravel some of Mother Nature’s mysteries.
Avian Wonders (camp full, waitlist only)
Birds have captivated people for generations. From egrets to eagles, hawks to hummingbirds, come search alongside experienced birders for many birds that share our backyards. We’ll explore some of Vermont’s birding hotspots, from the summit of Mt. Mansfield to the shores of Lake Champlain. Whether you are a passionate 'birder' or just getting started, this camp is for you! Sign up soon – this camp is limited to just 10 kids.
AmphibiKidz (AM Full, PM space available)
Have you ever wondered what types of wildlife live among the slippery rocks of rivers and ponds? This week we’ll search for turtles, frogs, crayfish, and other small creatures that call the North Branch of the Winooski River home. So come join us as we learn about all things wet, wild and wonderful!
Do you enjoy science? Ever wonder what it’s like to be a scientist? Vermont’s scientists work outside all summer to study our environment and its inhabitants. We will take several field trips to meet some of these scientists and learn about their fascinating work. We’ll use cool tools of the trade and get up close and personal to see what it’s like to be a scientist in the summer. Sign up soon – this camp is limited to just 10 kids.
From birds to bats to butterflies, we’ll learn how nature has taken flight by looking at the winged wildlife of NBNC. We’ll catch, observe, and investigate these curious creatures and do our own experiments to further explore how to defy gravity. Fascinating fireflies, hovering hummingbirds, delightful dragonflies and more await discovery!
Do you love animals? Do you love being in and around water? Come cool off with us this week as we learn everything we can about birds, mammals and insects that make rivers, ponds and wetlands their home. A fascinating world awaits us just beneath the water’s surface!
Have you ever felt like you weren’t alone in the forest, or heard voices in the woods and turned only to find nobody there? This week we’ll delve deeper into the spooky ghost stories and scary legends that haunt the Green Mountain state’s enchanted fields and forests. So prepare yourself for ghosts, ghouls, and specters as we go on the Haunted Hikes of Vermont! Sign up soon - this camp is limited to just 10 kids.
Forest Builders (AM full, PM cancelled)
Time to break out the hard hats and put on your work gloves because during this camp our Nature Center will be transformed into a preschool construction zone! We will be building with a large variety of natural materials and special tools. With the forest as our background, the possibilities of what we can construct are endless.
Calling all young entomologists! An endless variety of insects are hiding just about everywhere outdoors, waiting for us to find! From the tiny springtail to the giant water bug, we’ll flip logs and swing nets for bugs high and low as we discover the amazing world of these often overlooked creatures.
Since the time of ancient cave paintings people have been fascinated with depicting nature through art. From the realist paintings of John James Audubon to the abstract sculptures of Andrew Goldsworthy, we will spend a week exploring the connection between nature and art through games, crafts, natural exploration and more!
Woodland Wanderers (AM space available, PM cancelled)
Dates: Monday to Friday, July 28th to August 1st
Hours: 9:00 am to 12:00 pm
For: Pre-school children ages 4 to 5 (entering Kindergarten)
Cost: $120 member, $130 nonmember
Wander the forest this week as we flip logs, crawl through bushes, and sift through soil, all to discover the many creatures that call the forest home. From tunneling worms to towering trees, the woods offer endless explorations!
Hiking the Appalachian Trail: West Hartford, VT to Kent Pond
North Branch Nature Center is proud to offer our first foray along the Appalachian Trail. We’ll be hiking along a 33 mile section, starting in the village of West Hartford and ending at Kent Pond, near Killington. We’ll average 8 and 1/4 miles a day as we traverse the rolling mountains and forgotten farm fields. While no previous overnight backpacking experience is necessary, participants are expected to provide their own gear and be able to hike while carrying a 35 lbs pack. Please contact us with any questions or for more details.
Becoming Animals (AM full, PM cancelled)
Do like pretending to fly around like a bird or eat like a bear? How about chewing like a beaver? Every day this week we’ll become a different animal and explore their world through imaginative play! We’ll build dams, make nests, and dig dens as we become animals!
People say that everything in nature is connected, but how? We will be investigating a wide variety of habitats to explore these connections through games, hikes and many other nature activities. Come play and learn in the diverse habitats of North Branch Nature Center and surrounding parks.
Did you know that you can make rope from milkweed plants? How about tea from pine needles? This week we’ll practice our outdoor living skills as we learn how to make use of the many amazing materials that our environment provides. From building shelters with sticks found on the forest floor to learning how to prepare wild edibles, we’ll be working with the tools that nature gives us.
We are proud to offer online registration for our 2014 summer camps. Here are the ways you can register for camp:
Please make checks payable to “North Branch Nature Center”. Full payment in advance is required, except by prior arrangement. Send your registration form and payment to North Branch Nature Center, 713 Elm Street, Montpelier, VT 05602 or call (802) 229-6206. Upon receipt of registration and full payment, we will send you a confirmation letter with detailed camp information.
Post-Camp Child Care
Every year, unfortunately, children are turned away from our camps due to lack of available room. The more notice we have of cancellation, the better our ability to fill that space with another interested child. If your child is ill or, for any reason, misses one or more days of camp, we will not be able to provide a partial refund. Send registration form and full payment to:
Branch Nature Center