Inspiring exploration, appreciation, and conservation of our natural world.

Nature Day Camp Information

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2020 Summer Nature Day Camp is canceled. The following is a letter from our Camp Director: 

In consultation with several local leaders, guidance and feedback from the American Camp Association, and most importantly, a strong desire to keep our camp participants, parents, and staff safe, we have made the tough decision to cancel our 2020 Summer Nature Day Camp program at the Boardman River Nature Center.

As we worked through numerous scenarios, two things became clear:

The first is that we believe in science, and science is telling us that COVID-19 is not going away any time soon. With the high number of campers, parents, staff, and daily visitors on our property and in our facility during Summer Camp, we believe that the risk of transmission of this virus will remain high. We cannot in good conscience put all of you and your family at risk.

Additionally, the amount of time for program planning, staff hiring, and training to prepare for an amazing summer with your children is not insignificant. Because we don’t have a firm “return to normal” date, it is logistically impossible to prepare for an unknown future start date, particularly due to the rigorous staff training that must be accomplished to maintain our camp license and ensure a safe and wonderful experience for our participants. Factors well beyond our control, both known and yet to be determined, weighed heavily in our decision-making process.

There is no greater joy than watching your children laugh, play, learn and develop a lifelong love of nature and being outside and, although we will miss our campers this summer, we look forward to welcoming them back in 2021! We appreciate your continued support and understanding.  The safety of our campers, staff, and community is our priority right now. While we wait to reopen we are continuously looking for new ways to safely stay engaged in nature together and will continue to provide the solace and wonder of nature to our campers and community through our open trails, habitats, and green spaces. So please continue to get outside.

We are working on several options for modified programs to allow your camp to be engaged and connected to the outdoors this summer. Stay tuned for more information.

We appreciate your patience and understanding during this crisis as well as your continued support. If you have questions or concerns, please email

Be well,

Ms. Taryn

After Care for Full Day Camps

$10/day per camper 4:15 pm-5:30 pm
If your child craves more time outdoors or the camp schedule is challenging for you, register for this before and aftercare program! Depending on camper interest, they may dip at the pond, play games, explore fields or just relax in a hammock.

Wait List

If the camp you wish to register for is full, we encourage you to place your child on a waitlist. Should a spot become available, you will receive an email notifying you of the opening. You will
have 48 hours to make a payment to reserve your child’s spot.

Health Form

The online health form may be completed during the registration
process OR you may come back prior to the start of camp.
Completed health forms are required for each camper.
Once you begin the form, you must complete it. You may not
save it and return to it later.

Health Concerns or Special Needs

We strive to provide a positive experience for all campers and are able to accommodate children with most health concerns (allergies, asthma, diabetes, etc.) and many other special needs. Our ability to accommodate children depends on their needs, staff availability and the camp the child is interested in attending. Being prepared to serve campers who need a little extra attention or assistance allows us to provide an even better experience for your child. Please contact Taryn Carew, Camp Director, prior
to registering. She can be reached at or 231-941-0960 x 24.

Our Staff

Nature Day Camp staff are selected based on experience, maturity, and dedication to GTCD’s mission of inspiring exploration, appreciation, and conservation of our natural world. ‘ All staff are screened with a background check, sex-offender registry check, central registry clearance (for child abuse/neglect). Staff is certified in First Aid and CPR and has participated in Nature Day Camp Staff Training. We hope you will find our staff to be committed to providing an outstanding experience for your child.

Camp Cost

Weekly Camp Options
Half-day Week Long Camp $105

Half-day week-long camps run as follows: AM Session 9:00am-12:00pm OR PM Session 1:00pm-4:00pm.
Half-day camps available to all ages

Full-day Week Long Camp $230

Full-day week-long camps run from 9:00 am-4:00 pm. Lunch must be brought from home.
Full-day camps available to all ages

Daily Camp Option
If a whole week of camp is not something you are interested in, you may sign up for two or more days of camp, three or more weeks of the summer. The daily camp rate is not eligible for discounts.
Half-Day  Daily Rate- $24/day for AM or PM session
Full-Day Daily Rate-$48/day

All Nature Day Camp sessions include indoor activities and outdoor physical activities and provide a unique combination of content-rich programming and complimentary games and crafts. All programs are designed to encourage the curiosity of the natural world, allow exploration of natural areas, and promote a sense of stewardship in the next generation.
Special requests for camp placement MAY BE able to be accommodated

*There will be a $10 registration fee for each registration processed that is non-refundable  

Camp Confirmation

Your child will be enrolled once we have received your completed online registration and payment. Payment does not have to be made in full but can be made through a payment plan. Please call 231-941-0960×24 if you have questions regarding the processing of your registration.

Camp Cancellation or Transfer

Transfer: If your plans change and you need to transfer to a different session, we will be glad to accommodate you if a new session is available.
Please note the following:

  • Transfers must be requested in writing or email at least one week prior to the beginning of the camp session.
  • There will be no retroactive transfers of deposits and/or full payments of camp sessions.

Refund and Cancellation:

There are no refunds for cancellations within 10 business days from the camp’s start date (the Monday for the week you are canceling) including illness or injury.  A $10 processing fee could be charged for any cancellation prior to one week before a camp’s start date.    If a camp is canceled, you will be notified by the Tuesday before the camp’s start date and you will receive a full refund.

Camp Location

All camps are held at the Boardman River Nature Center  located at 1450 Cass Road in Traverse City

Preparing for Camp

The Boardman River Nature Center and Nature Day Camps are a State of Michigan Licensed Day Camp Facility and Program

Friends & other discounts are available. Discounts can not be combined.