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Ultimate Omaha Summer Camp Guide 2024

The Ultimate Omaha Summer Camp Guide for 2024 features a wide and exciting range of summer camps available to Omaha metro kids, including:

  • Arts Summer Camps
  • Day Summer Camps
  • Outdoor Summer Camps
  • Overnight Summer Camps
  • Science Summer Camps
  • Sports Summer Camps

What are the best summer camp options in Omaha?

There are a head-spinning amount of summer camp options in Omaha. What’s “best” for one kid is not the best for another. Things to consider what makes a camp “the best” for your kid:

  • Your kid’s age. All-day camps are tough for younger kids, especially if they still nap.
  • Your kid’s interests. Whatever interests your kid, there’s probably a camp for that. Themed camps are great to introduce the idea of summer camps to kids since characters are familiar and comforting. 
  • Your kid’s comfort level for adventure. Trying new things is a big deal, and some kids thrive on it, and some do not. Overnight camp is not for everyone.
  • Is a friend going? Sometimes, my kids picked a summer camp only because they knew a friend already signed up for it. And sometimes that friend is what makes a summer camp experience unforgettable.
  • The teachers/camp counselors. It’s not easy to scope out, in advance, who’s leading camps, but ask around and you’ll learn who has top-notch staff.
  • The drop-off & pick-up process. This shouldn’t make or break your choice to send your kid to camp, but it’s always good to know in advance. I like well-organized places that don’t feel like utter chaos at the end of the day. Call me crazy.

Want to know which camps I liked best (and of course, which ones my kids liked)? Check out my Parent’s Guide To Omaha Summer Camps!

Arts Summer Camps

Arts summer camps include a wide variety of options! There are performing arts camps, music camps, visual arts camps, dance camps, and more. Camps are available for kids entering kindergarten all the way up to 12th graders.

More Arts Summer Camps

  • Try summer dance camps & classes at Bloom (ages 3 – adult). Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop, Acro, etc.
  • Doodle Art Studio has summer camps for kids ages 5-9. Dreamhouse Design, Nature Art, Upcycle University ($120), Game On!.
  • Duchesne Academy offers art camps and culinary arts camps for girls. Registration is now open.
  • Heart and Soul Art Studio Summer Camp sessions are held in Bennington, Neb. Some are open to students entering first grade and older, while others are open to ages 9 and older.
  • KANEKO Creative Camps provide opportunities for children to discover, enjoy, and expand their own creative capacities through a wide range of individual and collaborative projects. Each summer, the KANEKO team partners with professionals in different fields to provide week-long, exciting immersive session. Camps typically offered for kids in fourth grade through ninth grade.
  • Omaha Girls Rock Summer Camps are weeklong camps featuring instrument instruction, workshops, songwriting/band practice, live performances by visiting artists, and a showcase concert. Camps include Kickstart Camp (Ages 4-6), Boost Camp (Ages 7-9), Amply Camp (Ages 10-12), and Headliner Camp (Ages 13-18).
  • Omaha School of Music & Dance offers special-themed dance and musical theatre camps at the performing arts school in Omaha for kids ages 2.5-12.
  • The Rose Theater offers summer camps for kids from ages 3 to 18, with options in drama, dance and voice.
  • Sing Omaha Studios offers 5-day summer camps, for various age groups (ages 6-9, 3rd-6th grade, and 7th-12th grade).
  • July 20-27, 2024: SoundWaves is a weeklong immersive summer music camp for strings, piano, and voice students age 9-18. Learn from the best & brightest: receive instruction and inspiration from prominent guest artists from across the country. Connect through the power of music: build important musical connections in the national arts community. Create lifelong musical friendships: develop lifelong friendships with peers who are on a similar musical journey. Housed at Omaha Conservatory of Music, the country’s most promising young musicians have been flocking to SoundWaves for years to immerse themselves in the region’s premier pre-college training program. Learn from world-class faculty and immerse yourself in an exciting musical experience at our state-of-the-art campus.

Day Camps

Day Camps in the Omaha metro often combine more than one of the other categories in this camp guide. You’ll find camps with a little bit of arts & crafts mixed in with a lot of play, for instance. They may mix outdoor experiences and indoor experiences. And many of them run for a full day, or can be a full day if you purchase a morning and an afternoon session at the same place.

  • Brownell Talbot’s Camp Discovery summer camps are open to the public for kids from preschool to 12th grade. Programs focus on STEM, fine arts, leadership, sports, and future readiness.
  • Creighton Summer Camp is open to kids in grades 1-5. Kids can be enrolled in one or more sessions for days filled with indoor and outdoor games and sports, swimming excursions, museum and zoo visits, nature walks, arts and crafts, and more. Camps are held at the university where campers will have the opportunity to interact with and learn from Creighton students, faculty, and staff from various departments and fields of study.
  • Metropolitan Community College’s summer camps, College for Kids, is open to kids ages 3-12, and features classes that focus on art, entrepreneurship, science, technology, trades and more.
  • Metropolitan Community College’s summer camps, College for Teens, is open to kids ages 12-18, and features classes that focus on art, entrepreneurship, science, technology, trades and more.
  • Lee G. Simmons Wildlife Safari Park day camps include Includes interactive STEM activities, tours and animal encounters led by educators and animal care experts. June – July
  • Marian High School Summer Sampler Camps are available to girls entering grades fifth and sixth, and grades seventh and eighth.
  • Omaha Children’s Museum summer camps are offered as weeklong morning and afternoon sessions for kids ages 4-5 and 6-8. Camps are on sale now.
  • Omaha Fashion Camp is July 8-12 covering all aspects of the fashion industry, from sketching, photography and modeling, to creating a garment or accessory.
  • Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium day camps include Interactive STEM activities, tours, talks and animal encounters led by educators and animal care experts. May – July
  • Players Club Day Camp is held at the country club six weeks out of the summer. Camp is open to kids ages 4-11.
  • Summer camps at the Staenberg Omaha JCC run from May 23 through Aug. 9. Registration opens for members on Feb. 1 and on Feb. 15 for non-members.
  • Y camps offer kids aged 5-12 a fun & safe environment where they will learn, find friends, & accomplishment.

Outdoor Camps

Hummel Day Camp

Outdoor camps often offer the quintessential “summer camp” experience. There may be hikes, lessons in archery or animal footprint identification, or just a ton of fun games in the sunshine. From experience with having kids in these camps, the more your kid likes mud, the better.

Lauritzen Gardens Summer Camps

Lauritzen Gardens is a giant outdoor learning lab, where hands-on experiences with the natural world abound. Outdoor activities are supplemented with crafts, games, snacks, and in-class lessons.

Choose from a variety of full-day camps with fun themes that connect children to nature, build life skills, and foster an appreciation for the environment. Weekly camps run from May 27 through August 9. Before and after care options are available to purchase for an additional charge.

  • EARLY BIRD PRICING runs through February 29 on qualifying camps. Sign up now and save $25 per week!
  • 2024 themes: Conservation Heroes, June 3-7 or June 24-28; Expedition: Nature, July 8-12 or July 29-August 2; Going on a Nature (Story) Walk, May 27-31 or July 1-5; Insect Investigations, July 15-19; Junior Scientists, June 17-21 or July 22-26; Un-BEE-Lievable Art, June 10-14 or August 5-9
  • At Camp Adams, run by City of Omaha Parks, campers will enjoy canoeing, fishing, a hydrant party, archery, crafts, and games. Camps run Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is open to kids currently in first grade through seventh grades (spring 2024).  Bus transportation, lunch, and snacks are provided.
  • Camp Hanscom, run by City of Omaha Parks, is a week of gaga, archery, crafts, games, wall climbing, camp songs, and many other activities! Camp Hanscom runs Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for kids currently in first through seventh grades (as of Spring 2024). Bus transportation, lunch, and snacks are provided.
  • Camp Legacy’s Upper Camp in Bennington, Neb., offers week-long day camps for children who have completed Kindergarten-fifth grade. Upper Camp is open to the public; campers do not need to be current Legacy School students. Camps are on sale for current Legacy families, and will go on sale to the public on Feb. 12.
  • Camp Zorinsky, run by City of Omaha Parks, is held at Lake Zorinsky and features a fun assortment of activities ranging from canoeing, fishing, and archery. Campers also get the chance to swim at Zorinsky Water Park. Registration opens March 4 and 5.
  • Carol Joy Holling Camp in Ashland, Neb., has weeklong, on-site day camps for all elementary-age kids.
  • Farm In The Garden is an outdoor camp focused on educating our kids on urban agriculture, horticulture, and sustainability. Featuring camp supervision and education provided by Nebraska Extension Master Gardeners of Douglas-Sarpy Counties. Geared toward kids ages 6-10.
  • At Fontenelle Forest, we believe that today’s children are tomorrow’s stewards of the land. Our mission is to foster a love of our local ecosystems and inspire future generations to care for the natural world. Our staff is committed to providing high-quality, positive outdoor experiences for children ages 3 to 15. We are excited to offer another season of amazing summer camp experiences at Fontenelle Forest.
  • Gifford Farm Education Center in Bellevue, Neb., offers weeklong day camps for kids ages 4 to 12.
  • With Girl Scout campgrounds across Nebraska, Girl Scouts choose their own adventure year-round.
  • Hummel Day Camp, run by City of Omaha Parks, is one of Omaha’s most popular day camps. Camps spend a full day outdoors for one week, learning traditional summer camp activities like archery, nature hikes, wilderness skills, water and mud activities, outdoor cooking, camp songs. Bussing available. Kids are grouped by grade, and must have completed first grade through seventh grade by summer to attend camp. Registration dates are Feb. 26 through March 1.
  • Itty Bitty Hummel Camp is a shortened version of Hummel Day Camp for ages 3 to 6. For four days, littles attend Hummel Day Camp from 9 to 11:30 a.m. and get to enjoy the songs, games, hikes, crafts, and wilderness skills all without having to deal with bigger kids being around. Registration opens mid-May.
  • Nebraska Humane Society’s Camp Kindness has Junior camps (ages 6-9 years) are in the mornings and Senior camps (ages 10-13 years) in the afternoon. Each session will include hands-on experiences such as caring for our camp critters, interacting with animals, educational games, art, guest-speakers and learning new ways to show kindness.
  • Nelson Produce + Farm in Valley, Neb., has opened registration for Farm Camp ’24. Farm Camp is for ages 5-10 and Farm Camp: Middle School Session is for ages 11-13.
  • Pottawattamie Conservation’s Wild Ones Summer Camp is open to students entering first and second grade. June 4-6 (Arrowhead Park in Neola, Iowa), June 11-13 (Botna Bend Park in Hancock, Iowa), July 23-25 (Hitchcock Nature Center in Honey Creek, Iowa).
  • Pottawattamie Conservation’s Wild Seekers Summer Camp is open to students entering third and fourth grade. June 11-13 (Hitchcock Nature Center in Honey Creek, Iowa), July 9-11 (Botna Bend Park in Hancock, Iowa), July 16-18 (Arrowhead Park in Neola, Iowa).
  • Pottawattamie Conservation’s Wild Wanderers Summer Camp is open to students entering fifth and sixth grade. June 18-20 (Hitchcock Nature Center in Honey Creek, Iowa), July 9-11 (Arrowhead Park in Neola, Iowa), July 23-25 (Botna Bend Park in Hancock, Iowa).
  • Pottawattamie Conservation’s Wildlings Camp for ages 3 to 5 has morning and afternoon sessions July 29 through Aug. 2 at Hitchcock Nature Center in Honey Creek, Iowa.

Overnight Camps

Overnight camps are incredible opportunities for kids to experience independence while still being supervised and guided by experienced camp counselors. Both of my kids have loved their overnight camp experiences and come home full of fun stories.

  • Camp Kitaki is an overnight camp for ages 7-17, focuses on youth development in a natural setting. Kim’s note: Located near Louisville, Neb., this has been my kids’ favorite camp, hands down year after year! Sessions run from June to early August, and include the option of Ranch Camp with horses. Camps are on sale now.
  • Many Omaha area kids also go to Camp Foster, a weeklong camp in Storm Lake, Iowa. There’s a bus that will take the kids there and bring them back. Camp Foster sessions go on sale in August and are often full shortly after the on-sale.
  • Carol Joy Holling Camp in Ashland, Neb., has overnight camps for kids entering first through 12th grade.
  • Pottawattamie Conservation’s Into the Wild Outdoor Adventure is June 25-27 at Arrowhead Park in Neola, Iowa. Includes a canoe trip on the West Nishnabotna River Water Trail (water level dependent) and an overnight campout at Botna Bend Park. Open to those entering seventh, eighth and ninth grade.
  • Strategic Air Command and Aerospace Museum offers two overnight camps for kids ages 12-16, Weekend Flight Camp and Mission Astronaut. Camps go sale to members on Jan. 30 and to the public on Feb. 6.

Science/STEM Camps

Science Camps are anything but dry and boring academic experiences. These are often STEM-focused or STEAM-focused programs that mix in a ton of fun — sometimes messy fun — for a variety of ages. It’s all about learning without even realizing they’re learning.

  • Creighton Preparatory High School offers academic summer camps for boys and girls ranging from zoology to robotics and choir.
  • Duchesne Academy offers STEAM camps for girls entering fifth through eighth grades. Registration is now open.
  • Middle school students have a unique opportunity to go behind the scenes in healthcare settings at Nebraska Methodist College Healthcare Career Camp. Campers will take field trips and participate in interactive sessions at Nebraska Methodist College, Methodist Hospital and Methodist Women’s Hospital. Hands-on activities include practicing wound care, testing basic anatomy skills, taking vitals, reading X-rays and ultrasound scans, and more. The camp is from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. July 16-18.
  • Junior Vet camps at Oxbow Animal Health are designed for elementary through high school students passionate about animals and interested in veterinary care. 
  • Strategic Air Command and Aerospace Museum offers 3-, 4-, and 5-day summer camps that explore aviation, space and STEM themes. Camps go sale to members on Jan. 30 and to the public on Feb. 6.
  • University of Omaha’s Aim For The Stars are weeklong STEM camps held on the campus of UNO. Most camps are open to children entering grades 4–10. Totally Cool Math & Science Combo is open to third graders. Limited tuition assistance is available. Camps are on sale now.

Sports Camps

Summer Sports Camps are often focused on a single sport where campers improve skills. Other summer camps focus on building agility, self-confidence, or speed.

  • Creighton Preparatory High School offers athletic summer camps, including baseball, basketball, dodgeball, football, wrestling (co-ed), IM Legend, and soccer (co-ed).
  • Duchesne Academy offers sports camps for girls interested in basketball, cross country and soccer. There’s also a co-ed soccer camp for kids in kindergarten through fourth grade. Registration is now open.
  • Ironhawk Juniors Triathlon Club is a free, multi-week training program for girls, ages 7-14. Registration for 2024 has closed.
  • Nebraska DEVO mountain biking camp is held over eight weeks at two locations: Swanson Park and Tranquility Park. Registered riders must have the ability to ride his or her bicycle unassisted. 
  • Nebraska Parkour offers a four-week summer camp from June 17 through July 12 featuring games, nerf wars, dodgeball, and parkour.
  • University of Nebraska at Omaha’s Omaha Soccer Academy Youth Day Camps 2024 is a recreational camp run by the Omaha men’s and women’s soccer teams and will see campers interact with current Mavericks student-athletes from both teams. Registration is open.
  • Skutt Catholic High School Skyhawk Camps include skills camps for volleyball, basketball and baseball. Camp dates will be finalized on March 1.

Planning for an affordable summer camp experience

A week-long summer camp can be expensive. Believe me, I know. You can take a small amount of weight off your shoulders knowing that at least it can be calculated into childcare when you pay taxes each year. It helps…kinda?

It is tough to find affordable summer camps that are also well run and fun. They do exist in Omaha, though. KANEKO Summer Camps are donation-based camps, for instance. Some camps offer scholarships or discounts, including Omaha Children’s Museum. YMCA’s Camp Kitaki offers tiered payment options, and they also offer the choice of monthly payments or one lump sum.

For the most bang for your buck, I think all of the City of Omaha parks camps are a great value (from bus pick-up to lunch & snacks and all the activities). Of the city camps, the most affordable are Camp Adams and Camp Hanscom. Camp Adams is $40 per camper and includes bus transportation, lunch, and snacks. Camp Hanscom is $55 per camper and includes bus transportation, lunch, and snacks.

Omaha summer camp key dates to know

I hate to say it, but January is not too early to start thinking about Omaha summer camps. Some camp registrations are already open. Some fill up before the end of the previous summer. Here are a few tips I’ve learned, as well as a few key dates:

Boy strumming a guitar during a summer camp showcase at McGuigan Arts Academy

January 2024: Many places open registration for summer camps at the beginning of January each year. Registration is already open for: McGuigan Arts Academy, Omaha Children’s Museum, Shirlee & Henry Fonda Theatre Academy at Omaha Community Playhouse, Rose Theater, Fontenelle Forest, Gifford Farm Education Center, Nelson Produce + Farm, The Durham Museum, Lauritzen Gardens, and UNO’s Aim For The Stars and Omaha Soccer Academy Youth Day Camps.

Strategic Air Command and Aerospace Museum camps go sale to members on Jan. 30 and to the public on Feb. 6.

February 2024: Camp Legacy’s Upper Camp goes on sale to the public Feb. 12. Jewish Community Center’s summer camps open for member registration on Feb. 1; non-members can begin registering for camp on Feb. 15.

City of Omaha’s summer camp registrations open on a rolling basis starting at the end of February and going into March. Camp Adams registration opens for in-person sign-ups begins Feb. 24 from 9 a.m. to noon at Adams Park Community Center. Online Registration begins March 8 at 8 a.m.

Hummel camp registration starts Feb. 26 (for Weeks 1 and 2) through March 1 (Week 9). Hummel Day Camp fills up within an hour of opening. I wish I was joking.

March 2024: Skutt Catholic High School will finalize camp dates on March 1. Camp Zorinsky registration opens March 4 (for Weeks 1-4) and March 5 (for Weeks 5-8). Camp Zorinsky fills up quickly. Camp Hanscom registration opens March 6 at 8 a.m. for Weeks 1-4 and March 7 at 8 a.m. for Weeks 5-8.

May 2024: Itty Bitty Hummel Camp registration opens in mid-May.

On-going: YMCA camps like Kitaki (near Louisville, Neb.) and Camp Foster usually allow summer campers to sign up for the next year’s summer camp before they even leave camp. So, Camp Kitaki and Camp Foster are already open for registration. Many sessions for 2024 are full!

Add to the summer camps Omaha list!

Offering a summer camp this year? Don’t miss out on getting it listed in the Ultimate Omaha Summer Camp Guide! It’s easy to get started, just click the button below to fill out the form. It’s FREE to add your listing. If you have more than one camp offered, just fill out the form once.

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