Choosing a Summer Camp: More Resources Online & In Print

On the Web

Free Web-based camp-finder services have largely replaced the printed versions. If you do not have access to the Web, try calling the ACA or NCA and ask whether they can help you locate a camp or whether they can mail you a printed guide to camps in your area.

American Camping Association (ACA)
– 765-342-8456, – offers a searchable database of the 2,000 day and residential camps that have earned ACA accreditation, which assures that the camp is safe and provides a quality program. The ACA Web site has the most detailed entries. A parents’ information section – – offers tips for choosing a camp, preparing kids for camp, packing for overnight camp and much more.
– – is a nationwide directory of summer camps – day, overnight, sports, arts, special needs and more. This site is a good place to start. The entries are not very detailed, but they do provide basic information.

National Camp Association (NCA)
– 800-966-CAMP (2267), – This industry trade organization provides parents with personalized guidance and referrals to overnight camps for children worldwide. All camps recommended by the NCA are accredited and have received a positive evaluation from the NCA and from parents.
– – lists 15,000 camp programs. You can search using only very broad criteria, and the basic entries are not very detailed, but you can fill out an online form to have more tailored information sent directly to you:


Camping Gear on the Web
– The commercial enterprise of, this site sells camping gear, luggage, stationery, cameras and more.
– Offers everything you need for your camper, starting with the packing list. Order flashlights, backpacks and sleeping bags as well as warm socks and an array of camping gadgets.
– This site sells iron-on or sew-on labels for clothing identification.



The Summer Camp Handbook: Everything You Need to Find, Choose and Get Ready for Overnight Camp – and Skip the Homesickness
, by Christopher A. Thurber, Ph.D., Jon C. Malinowski, Ph.D., and Mark Scott; Perspective Books, 2000.