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Boston’s Best Summer Day Camps

February 21, 2014 6:00 AM

Photo credit: BC Rec

It is the dread of many parents that their children will spend their summer days cooped up indoors absorbing useless information non-stop from the television. Thankfully, Boston-area parents have many options when it comes to keeping their children occupied physically and intellectually over vacation. There is a day camp for virtually every type of kid, even those who prefer to spend their days playing video games. From learning environments to traditional camps, parents have a lot of choices.
Photo credit: Facebook/MIT

Photo credit: Facebook/MIT

MIT Summer Day Camp
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02139
(617) 253-1000

It has been more than half a century since MIT started using the summer months as an opportunity to offer programs to young minds. This highly respected school focuses on creating both an athletic and learning environment for summer day campers. Moreover, it takes extra care to celebrate the differences between students so everyone feels included. Some sessions of camp offer such activities as sailing and lifeguard training, so children are learning life and recreational skills.

Photo credit: Hill House

Photo credit: Hill House

Hill House Day Camp
Hill House
127 Mt. Vernon St.
Boston, MA 02108
(617) 227-5838

The Hill House summer day camp has a diverse range of activities for kids, including dance parties, field trips, swimming and art creation. Campers from ages seven to 12 can opt for afternoons with an exclusively athletic camping experience as well. This includes athletic activities on the Boston Common and Teddy Ebersol’s Red Sox Fields. Both options have the same morning activities so all campers get to socialize with children who have different interests.

Related: Boston’s Best Sleep Away Summer Camps For Kids

Photo credit: New England Aquarium

Photo credit: New England Aquarium

Harbor Discoveries Camps
New England Aquarium
1 Central Wharf
Boston, MA 02110
(617) 973-5200

Harbor Discoveries Camps are an amazing opportunity for kids who like the New England Aquarium. Participants are allowed behind the scenes at the facility to get a better idea of what the animals are and how staff is able to care for them. Campers also get to venture out onto Boston Harbor and visit some of the harbor islands. Field trips to habitats north and south of the city are included as well as some traditional summer day camp activities.

Photo credit: Facebook/Boston Center for Youth & Families

Photo credit: Facebook/Boston Center for Youth & Families

Boston R.O.C.K.S. Out!!
Boston Centers for Youth & Families
35 Locations in the City of Boston

Boston R.O.C.K.S. Out!! is not one individual day camp. It is a citywide initiative that turns a number of locations, from parks to community centers, into day camps for city children. It is on a first-come, first-served basis and is provided on a sliding pay scale depending on a family’s ability to pay. These places are offering exercise, sports, arts and more. Children who could use the socialization and parents who could use the help will benefit from this program.

Photo credit: BC Rec

Photo credit: BC Rec

Recreational Day Camp
Boston College Flynn Recreation Complex
140 Commonwealth Ave.
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
(617) 552-0797

Boston College offers an athletic, recreational and social day camp run by caring camp counselors. These individuals work for, attend or have attended the college. Activities offered by the camp include lounging outside with friends, having a pizza party, swimming, diving and engaging in a number of silly field day games. This is a chance for kids to get a taste of what it is like to meet new friends in a new environment where they have to work and play together. In short, it is a great precursor to college, but without all of the studying.

Related: Best Summer Arts Activities For Kids In MetroWest

Shelly Barclay is a professional freelance writer and amateur author. She writes on a variety of topics from food to mysteries. She loves to share the culture and rich history of her birthplace and home, Boston, with the rest of the world. Her work can be found at

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