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Summer Camp in High Park

Summer is filled with bugs, flowers, sun, and fun! Kids can explore High Park, make new friends, and learn through active outdoor play!

A blue notice pebble stating that registration for Summer Camp in High Park opens February 7 at noon.

Registration for Summer Camp for Kids in High Park is now open!

Please review our Tips for Registration Day to ensure a smooth and hassle-free registration process. Never used our CampBrain registration portal before? Review our handy CampBrain Tutorial.

We are now accepting applications for our Happy Camper Fund Bursary for Summer Camp. 

NOTE: The High Park Nature Centre is considering offering before and after care for Summer Camp. We are looking for feedback from participants to help us in our planning and decision making process. Please use our form to provide your feedback.

NOTE: We are excited to offer participants extended care for summer camp this year! Click here to learn more and sign up your child for extended care. We’re also able to offer a unique opportunity for campers to enjoy up to 4 weeks of summer camp at High Park Nature Centre instead of the usual 2 weeks. Secure your spot and make the most of your summer camp experience.

Our summer camps are designed to offer kids hands-on nature exploration through active play and discovery in High Park. We get up close and personal with nature, and aren’t afraid to get super dirty! Our camp days will be filled with nature hikes, birding, tracking, plant and wildlife ID and lots of fun games and activities to connect kids of all ages with the natural world.

NOTE: To give more kids a chance to experience nature in High Park, we limit each camper to a maximum of 2 weeks of camp. Please note that most camp activities will be the same each week. 

Some sessions are now full. Waitlists are available for all sessions.

Applications for Happy Camper Fund Bursary for Summer Camp are closed for 2023. 

Our summer camps are designed to offer hands-on nature exploration through active play and discovery. We get up close and personal with nature, and aren’t afraid to get super dirty!

Activities we do at camp may include:

NOTE: To give more kids a chance to come to camp we limit campers to a maximum of 2 camp sessions. Please note that most camp activities will be the same each week. 

For all programs, participants must be of the minimum age for the group they wish to register for on or before the start of camp. We do this to ensure a fair registration process for those within the camp group age bracket. Thank you in advance for understanding! Exceptions can only be made for extenuating circumstances. Please contact us if you have any questions.

Leafhoppers Ages 4-5

Leafhoppers are a creative group that love to have fun. Leafhoppers will make crafts, read stories, play games, and explore High Park!

Cicadas Ages 6-7

Cicadas are active and curious! They play nature games, make nature crafts, go on scavenger hunts, and meet lots of new friends.

Dragonflies Ages 8-10

Dragonflies are seriously into nature! Campers will have fun learning more about nature while exploring the park.

Mantids Ages 11-13

Mantids will have fun learning how to hone their observation, identification, and stewardship skills, while working together as a team.

Leaders in Training (LIT) Ages 14-16

LITs take care of High Park while becoming environmental leaders in the community. In their first week, LITs will develop important teamwork, leadership, and nature skills. After their week of “training”, they will come back to volunteer with summer camp for one week.

Ramblers Ages 12-14

Ramblers develop important skills and perform meaningful stewardship work in the park. They will work with tools, develop ID skills, go on hikes, and bond with youth who share their passion for nature.

Leaders in Training (LIT) Ages 14-16

LIT’s take care of High Park while becoming environmental leaders in the community. In the first week of camp, Rangers will develop important teamwork, leadership, and nature skills. After their week of “training”, Rangers will come back to volunteer with summer camp for one week.

At High Park Nature Centre, we believe every child should have the opportunity to connect with nature in High Park. Our tiered pricing model allows you to choose a rate that best suits your family while supporting our commitment to accessibility and our financial sustainability as a charitable organization.

Tier 1
Subsidized

Price: $465 for 5 days
($372 for 4-day weeks)

Don’t let cost be a barrier. Access our summer camps at a slightly reduced rate from our true costs.

Tier 2
Standard

Price: $475 for 5 days
($380 for 4-day weeks)

Covers the true cost of summer camp for your child and sustains our nature programs.

Tier 3
Support

Price: $495 for 5 days
($396 for 4-day weeks)

Spread the joy of nature and support other families to send their kids to summer camp.

Scroll down to learn more about our tiered pricing model.

Looking for financial assistance to sign up your child for summer camp? Don’t forget to apply to our Happy Camper Fund. This bursary fund allows kids to attend our summer camps in High Park for free or subsidized rates.

A table showing the weekly schedule of the High Park Nature Centre's 2024 Summer Camp.

Note: Week 1 (July 2-5) and Week 6 (July 6-9) will have only four days of camp due to statutory holidays — Canada Day and Civic Holiday. Prices shown above reflect the true cost of one week (5 days) of camp. Please view our tiered pricing model to learn more.

At the time of registration, we require a non-refundable $50 deposit for each session. The remainder of the fees will be charged to your credit card on June 3, 2024.

Camp spots fill very quickly! Be prepared for registration day by reading the tips below and by making sure you already have an account. Learn more by checking out some of our tips for registration day.

At High Park Nature Centre, we believe every child should have the opportunity to connect with nature in High Park. Our tiered pricing model allows you to choose a rate that best suits your family while supporting our commitment to accessibility and ensuring our financial sustainability as a charitable organization.

  • Tier 1 – Subsidized

    • Price: $465 for 5 days ($372 for 4-day camp weeks)

    • Supported by your community

      • Don’t let cost be a barrier to accessing our nature camp. This tier allows families to access our camps at a slightly reduced rate from our true costs.

      • This subsidized tier has been made possible thanks to generous community members, making camp accessible to all families.

      • Looking for more financial assistance? Check out our Happy Camper FundThis bursary fund allows kids to attend our summer camps in High Park for free or subsidized rates.

  • Tier 2 – Standard

    • Price: $475 for 5 days ($380 for 4-day camp weeks)

    • Pays for itself

      • Covers the true cost of camp for your child.

      • Sustains our nature programs in High Park.

  • Tier 3 – Support

    • Price: $495 for 5 days ($396 for 4-day camp weeks)

    • Spread the joy of nature

      • Covers the true cost and supports two kids to attend camp at the subsidized rate.

      • Fosters inclusivity and facilitates accessibility in our urban wilderness.

Note: Higher tiers in tiered pricing model are not donations. No charitable tax receipts will be issued. Payment tiers do not affect your chance to get a spot in our summer camps.
 

Why tiered pricing?

  • The High Park Nature Centre is committed to being part of the High Park community for the long term. This also means supporting our financial sustainability amid continued rising costs. This pricing models reflects our commitment to keeping our programs as financially accessible as possible for everyone.
  • We are working hard to cover the costs of operating a charitable organization that connects people with nature. This tiered pricing approach is one step towards supporting our operations and the community’s needs.
  • Please note that we continue to accept applications for our Happy Camper Fund bursary program should community members need additional financial assistance to attend our nature programs.

At the High Park Nature Centre, we want all kids to experience the joy that time in nature can bring and grow up with a connection to the natural world.

The High Park Nature Centre strives to ensure that all kids get the chance to experience the joy of nature. This is why we offer a financial aid program called the Happy Camper Fund. If you are in need of financial aid to attend our programs, please apply here.

Our Happy Camper Fund is made possible thanks to your generosity and support. Consider making a donation today to continue supporting this fund.

Note: For our 2024 summer camps, we can only provide financial assistance for a maximum of one week (five days) of camp per camp participant.

At the time of registration, we require a non-refundable $50 deposit per camper for each session. The remainder of the fees will be charged to your credit card on June 3, 2024.

Children may be enrolled in a maximum of two camp sessions per summer.

As a charitable organization, the High Park Nature Centre (HPNC) relies on program fees to support our operations and mission. We understand that circumstances may arise that require participants to cancel their registration, and we strive to accommodate these requests while also managing the costs associated with cancellations.

Requests for cancellations or refunds must be made via email to the Nature Centre. 

  • Requests for refunds made 14 or more days before the start of the program will receive a full refund minus the $50.00 non-refundable deposit per registrant per registration paid at the time of registration. This deposit helps cover administrative costs, including fees from software systems and staff time to process registrations.
  • Requests made less than 14 days before the start of the program will receive no refund.  
  • Refunds are not granted for inclement weather or missed days.

If a program is full, you may choose to be added to the waitlist through our online system. When a space becomes available in a camp we will contact those on the waitlist by email.

Campers will be divided into counsellor groups based on age. If you know your child has friends attending the same week and age group as your child, please fill out the friend requests form upon your registration.

Friend requests must be made in writing before the start of your child’s camp week. Friend requests made upon your arrival to camp will not be accommodated.

Camp drop-off starts at 9AM. Pick-up starts at 3:45PM.

Summer Camp check in and pickup is at the High Park Nature Centre’s Forest School building located at 375 Colborne Lodge Drive.

A number of changes were made to the travel network within High Park as part of the High Park Movement Strategy that might influence your decision to drive to High Park. In case you’re driving we strongly recommend you to park your car at the public parking lot near Grenadier Cafe.

We continue to recommend using the TTC or biking as the best way to get to High Park and the Nature Centre. The Nature Centre is situated just a 5-minute walk from the High Park Subway Station. In case you were biking, there are bike racks available in front of the Nature Centre.

Visit our How To Get Here page to learn more about planning your trips to High Park.

  • No Nuts, Please!
    The High Park Nature Centre is a strictly nut-free zone. Campers cannot bring snacks containing tree nuts or peanuts to accommodate campers and staff with life-threatening allergies. If your camper’s lunch or snacks have Sun Butter or Wow Butter, you must leave a note to let staff know that it is not peanut butter.
  • Pack a Litterless Lunch
    We encourage everyone to pack a litterless lunch to reduce our impact on the planet. We recommend big lunches with lots of extra snacks to enjoy throughout the day. If your camper has any food allergies, accommodations, or dietary restrictions, please let us know.

At the High Park Nature Centre, we strive to create a safe, inclusive environment for everyone. We want to work with participants/caregivers/teachers to overcome challenging behaviours. Our staff use behavioural management techniques like setting clear expectations for behaviour, positive reinforcement, empowering language, and friendly reminders of what appropriate behaviour looks, sounds, and feels like. When conflicts arise, we guide participants through conflict resolution discussions so they can change their behaviour and continue taking part in High Park Nature Centre programming. When necessary, staff will discuss with participants/caregivers/teachers strategies for improving behaviour.  

A Program Coordinator can make the decision to remove a participant from the program due to inappropriate behaviour and refunds will not be provided. Participants will be asked to leave immediately. If the participant is a minor, caregivers will be called in to pick up their youth/child. Examples of inappropriate behaviour include (but are not limited to): violence to themselves or others, hateful/offensive/abusive language, bullying, damaging property, refusing to follow safety rules, repeatedly running out of sight, or continued disruption of the program.  

The High Park Nature Centre promotes awareness and respect for nature through year-round, hands-on outdoor nature education and park stewardship activities. We strongly believe that an important part of connecting with nature involves responsible, active outdoor play.

At Nature Centre programs, we engage in activities such as playing in the soil, balancing on logs and getting dirty. Our staff prioritizes safety by establishing clear guidelines for all participants. Children are encouraged to decide if/when they are ready to participate in these activities and are supervised throughout.

Programs will proceed with rain, snow, or shine. Please be sure to dress your child appropriately for the weather as we will be outdoors for most of the activities. Indoor programs will be run in the case of severe inclement weather such as heavy rain, thunderstorms, snowstorms, or high winds over 35 km per hour.

If you have questions or would like to talk with staff about your child’s participation in active outdoor play, please talk with us.

Our Leaders in Training (LIT) program for youth ages 14-16 years is an important part of our mission to promote awareness and respect for nature through year-round, hands-on outdoor nature education and park stewardship. Youth are the leaders of tomorrow, and we recognize the importance of helping to build their confidence in facilitating nature education programs. This leadership and mentorship program will cultivate a sense of wonder and respect for nature. Participants will develop their naturalist and leadership skills in a fun, welcoming, and inclusive camp community.

This summer’s LIT program has two parts:
 
  • Week 1: Leadership Training (July 8-12, 2024)

    The Leadership Training session this summer will take place from: July 8-12, 2024.

    The first week is a combination of naturalist skills-building activities such as orienteering, introductory birding skills, plant identification, hands-on restoration work, as well as leadership skill development. Through team-based activities, reflection, and problem-based learning, participants will focus on communication, behaviour management techniques, program development, and building confidence as a leader in a camp setting.

  • Week 2: Volunteer Placement

    For their subsequent Volunteer Placement week, participants can volunteer for any camp week following their leadership training. They can continue volunteering at summer camps after their placement week to gain more experience and community volunteer hours.

    Participants will apply their leadership training in a role that best fits their interests and abilities. Tasks could include supporting camp counsellors to lead camp groups, assisting with administrative or stewardship tasks, engaging in digital content creation or any other volunteer tasks at the Nature Centre. With the guidance and mentorship of Nature Centre staff, they will practice learned skills and gain experience.

    Participation in our LIT program will contribute towards community involvement and volunteer hours required to graduate from secondary school in Ontario.

    To learn about year-round youth stewardship opportunities, check out our High Park Rangers program.

Camp Policies

Camp spots fill very quickly! Be prepared for registration day by reading the tips below and by making sure you already have an account. Learn more by checking out some of our tips for registration day.

Our Leadership in Training program (Ages 14-16) is an important part of our mission to promote awareness and respect for nature through year-round, hands-on outdoor nature education and park stewardship. Youth are the leaders of tomorrow, and we recognize the importance of helping to build their confidence in facilitating nature education programs. This leadership and mentorship program will cultivate a sense of wonder and respect for nature. Participants will develop their naturalist and leadership skills in a fun, welcoming, and inclusive camp community. 

There are two Leadership Training sessions to choose from: July 3-7, 2023, OR July 31-August 4, 2023. 

For their Volunteer Placement, participants can volunteer for any camp week following their leadership training. They can continue volunteering at summer camps after their placement week to gain more experience and community volunteer hours.

Week 1: Leadership Training

The first week is a combination of naturalist skills-building activities such as orienteering, introductory birding skills, plant identification, hands-on restoration work, as well as leadership skill development. Through team-based activities, reflection, and problem-based learning, participants will focus on communication, behaviour management techniques, program development, and building confidence as a leader in a camp setting. 

Part 2: Volunteer Placement

In the second week, participants will apply their leadership training during their volunteer placement at summer camp. They will spend a week in a volunteer capacity, in partnership with an Environmental Educator to facilitate programming for a camp group. With the guidance and mentorship of Nature Centre staff, they will practice learned skills and gain experience working with children. 

Participation in our LIT program will contribute towards community involvement and volunteer hours required to graduate from secondary school in Ontario.

For more information on our year-round leadership programs, visit our High Park Youth Rangers  page.

Requests for cancellations or refunds must be made via email to the Nature Centre. 

  • Requests for refunds made 14 or more days before the start of the program will receive a full refund minus the $50.00 non-refundable deposit paid at the time of registration.  
  • Requests made less than 14 days before the start of the program will receive no refund.  
  • Refunds are not granted for inclement weather or missed days.

Summer Camp sessions are offered for $465.00 per week.

See the section “Weekly Schedule Overview & Camp Fees” below, for a week-to-week schedule of programs.

Happy Camper Fund Bursary

The High Park Nature Centre strives to ensure that all kids get the chance to experience the joy of nature. Thanks to a generous donor and several donations made by supporters of the Nature Centre, we are able to provide our financial assistance program called the Happy Camper Fund Bursary. If you would like to apply, please follow the link below.

Click here to APPLY for the Happy Camper Fund Bursary.

Note: For our 2023 summer camps, we can only provide financial assistance for a maximum of one week (five days) of camp per camp participant.

At the time of registration, we require a non-refundable $50 deposit for each session. The remainder of the fees will be charged to your credit card on June 1, 2023.

Children may be enrolled in a maximum of two camp sessions per summer.

If a program is full, you may choose to be added to the waitlist through our online system. When a space becomes available in a camp we will contact those on the waitlist by email.

Campers will be divided into counsellor groups based on age. If you know your child has friends attending the same week and age group as your child, please fill out the friend requests form upon your registration.

Friend requests must be made in writing before the start of your child’s camp week. Friend requests made upon your arrival to camp will not be accommodated.

Camp drop-off starts at 9AM. Pick-up starts at 3:45PM.

  • No Nuts, Please!
    The High Park Nature Centre is a strictly nut-free zone. Campers cannot bring snacks containing tree nuts or peanuts to accommodate campers and staff with life-threatening allergies. If your camper’s lunch or snacks have Sun Butter or Wow Butter, you must leave a note to let staff know that it is not peanut butter.
  • Pack a Litterless Lunch
    We encourage everyone to pack a litterless lunch to reduce our impact on the planet. We recommend big lunches with lots of extra snacks to enjoy throughout the day. If your camper has any food allergies, accommodations, or dietary restrictions, please let us know.

At the High Park Nature Centre, we strive to create a safe, inclusive environment for everyone. We want to work with participants/caregivers/teachers to overcome challenging behaviours. Our staff use behavioural management techniques like setting clear expectations for behaviour, positive reinforcement, empowering language, and friendly reminders of what appropriate behaviour looks, sounds, and feels like. When conflicts arise, we guide participants through conflict resolution discussions so they can change their behaviour and continue taking part in High Park Nature Centre programming. When necessary, staff will discuss with participants/caregivers/teachers strategies for improving behaviour.  

A Program Coordinator can make the decision to remove a participant from the program due to inappropriate behaviour and refunds will not be provided. Participants will be asked to leave immediately. If the participant is a minor, caregivers will be called in to pick up their youth/child. Examples of inappropriate behaviour include (but are not limited to): violence to themselves or others, hateful/offensive/abusive language, bullying, damaging property, refusing to follow safety rules, repeatedly running out of sight, or continued disruption of the program.  

The High Park Nature Centre promotes awareness and respect for nature through year-round, hands-on outdoor nature education and park stewardship activities. We strongly believe that an important part of connecting with nature involves responsible, active outdoor play.

At Nature Centre programs, we engage in activities such as playing in the soil, balancing on logs and getting dirty. Our staff prioritizes safety by establishing clear guidelines for all participants. Children are encouraged to decide if/when they are ready to participate in these activities and are supervised throughout.

Programs will proceed with rain, snow, or shine. Please be sure to dress your child appropriately for the weather as we will be outdoors for most of the activities. Indoor programs will be run in the case of severe inclement weather such as heavy rain, thunderstorms, snowstorms, or high winds over 35 km per hour.

If you have questions or would like to talk with staff about your child’s participation in active outdoor play, please talk with us.

Nature is an amazing adventure all children should experience. We strive to keep our programs accessible to all families and invite anyone who finds our program fees limiting to apply to our Happy Camper bursary program. Our bursary program is available to individuals and families for our clubs and camps.

Looking for volunteer opportunities with our camp programs this season? We are accepting applications for Nature Camps Assistants! Don’t forget to apply and assist our outdoor educators at the High Park Nature Centre!

Please ensure you’ve read and understood our registration policies: