Best Summer Day Camps In The North Bay

February 21, 2014 5:00 AM

Summer Camp (credit: John Moore/Getty Images)

145364872 Best Summer Day Camps In The North Bay(credit: John Moore/Getty Images)

Summer is on the horizon and now is the time when many parents start to plan for how to keep the kids busy once school is out. The North Bay area has a multitude of camp options ranging from traditional day camps to drama and horseback riding camps. In addition to the options listed in the Best Sleep Away Summer Camps For Bay Area Kids, here is a list of five local summer camps. Some camps are very popular, so make sure to sign the kids up early to secure a spot.

Camp Doodles
Strawberry Point School
177 E. Strawberry Drive
Mill Valley, CA 94941
(415) 388-4386

Camp Doodles is the quintessential old-fashioned summer day camp for kindergarten through 6th grade children. With three North Bay locations, as well as a San Francisco site, Camp Doodles offers loads of traditional camp activities like hiking, arts and crafts, songs, sports, games and more. Days combine scheduled program activities, free choice activities and free play time so kids have the perfect combination of structure and self-driven creative play. Well-known for its safe and fun environment, the camp programming and staff is dedicated to helping kids make friends through use of a buddy system and ice-breaker games. Siblings and friends can be grouped together upon request, and scholarships are available.

Sonoma Humane Society Camp
5345 Highway 12 W.
Santa Rosa, CA 95407
(707) 542-0882

The Sonoma Humane Society offers two day camp programs for kids. For kids grades two through 12, there is an Animal Adventure and Education camp. There is also a teen career camp for grades eight through 12, where campers can explore careers in such areas as veterinary medicine, animal rescue and dog training. Both groups include several field trips to other area animal welfare organizations such as the Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue and Bergin University of Canine Studies.

Arts in Action
Saint Mark’s School
39 Trellis Drive
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 472-8000

Each year, Saint Mark’s School runs a two-session, two-week summer drama and arts camp. At the end of each session, campers put on a Broadway-style production and are responsible for making all of their own costumes and stage props. Arts in Action is offered for grades one through four, and the sessions begin June 17th and June 30th. Saint Mark’s also offers several other camps including this summer’s new Coding Surfers camp which covers all things techie for students in grades eight and nine, who will learn programming and how to make web pages. Also available are Super Tech and writing day camps.

Cloverleaf Ranch
3892 Old Redwood Highway
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
(707) 545-5906

Cloverleaf Ranch in Santa Rosa offers a number of different day camp options for kids ages five through 12. Camp choices range from an adventure day camp to equestrian and classic camp. Half-day programs are also available. Days include everything from hanging out in the swimming hole, to hiking, trail riding, games of Capture The Flag, photography and air rifling. On Thursday, all campers participate in a camp carnival and have the option to join in an overnight campout complete with s’mores over the campfire. Friday includes a horse show where campers can showcase their new riding skills.

Terwilliger Nature Camps
76 Albert Park Lane
San Rafael, CA 94901
(415) 453-1000

Wildcare Bay Area offers summertime Terwilliger Nature Camps for children ages three through 12. The day camps are focused on instilling a love of nature in kids. Each weekly session includes one or two off-site hikes and plenty of environmental education. The day camp complements Wildcare’s ongoing dedication to the rescue and rehabilitation of local wildlife.

Joanna Metheny is a freelance writer covering all things South Bay. Her work can be found on

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