Schools might be out for the summer, but that doesn’t mean kids should watch TV and play games all summer long. These New York City summer camps are a place where your kids can enjoy fun-filled activities, improve creativity, and bolster physical well-being. At these programs, NYC kids can have an educational and fun camp experience they won’t forget.
In this article, you’ll find the best summer camps in New York City to enroll children. While there are plenty of camps within the entire state of New York, NYC has plenty of options on its own, including those that specifically follow the American Camp Association guidelines. This list contains all types ranging from sports camps, performing arts camps, day camps, and more.
Best NYC Summer Camps
The Manhattan Youth Downtown Day Camp operates out of a private community center in Warren, New York. This 30,000-sq ft. space includes activity rooms, performing arts studios, and a 75-foot heated pool.
Outside the campsite is the Battery Park City Ball Fields, where campers get involved with sporting activities. Capture The Flag, relay races, soccer, sprints, and parachute games are some of the sports and camp games. The nearby Pier 25, an expansive facility that houses a mini-golf course, volleyball courts, and a playing field, offers even more fun for kids.
Manhattan Youth offers different activities for juniors and seniors. The junior camp provides a wide range of fun activities and allows children to explore their interests and build new skills while benefiting from adequate support and encouragement. A junior can take part in STEM classes, aquatic sports, and arts-and-crafts programs.
Seniors have pursuits tailored to satisfy their specific interests and preferences. They also participate in programs designed to improve their relationships with other campers and keep them interested and engaged. Everyday activities available to seniors at the Manhattan Downtown Day Camp include visual arts, field sports, water sports, and many more.
92Y is a Jewish cultural institution that promotes community interaction and relationship-building through the arts and culture. For years, 92Y has operated several summer day camps, mini-camps, and sleepaway camps from its extension facility at Rockland.
The summer camps at 92Y bear influences of Jewish culture and promote Jewish values of self-improvement and learning. Programs vary by age group and length, with different start and end dates.
Programs like Camp Yomi are offered for minors in kindergarten through 6th grade and encourage all-around learning and development. The fun activities enhance cognitive development, physical well-being, and creativity. Camp Tova and Bari Tov give children a chance at enjoying the perks of summer camp — sports, outdoor fun, education, and interaction — in an inclusive and supportive environment.
At every 92Y camp, activities are plentiful and richly varied. From outdoor exploration and STEM camps to cultural immersion programs and arts-and-crafts sessions, their programs allow participants to learn, have fun, and create beautiful memories.
YMCA New York runs multiple summer camps for NYC kids as well as after school programs. Popular locations include Staten Island, Bronx, Queens, and Manhattan.
You can sign up your kids for a traditional summer day camp or enroll them in a specialty camp for a more tailored learning experience. Specialty camps vary by type and age group.
For example, Spanish and Japanese centers provide a fun environment for kids to learn new languages. There are also STEAM and Robotics weekly classes that encourage campers to develop critical skills in science and technology.
With a mixture of creative and physical exercises in their daily schedule, you can expect your child to improve in all areas. An average day for campers involves book reading sessions, STEM club projects, and artistic activities like singing and acting.
Kids In The Game camps teach children crucial life skills and inspire healthy self-confidence in them through sports. Founded in 2003 by Coach Matthew Murphy, Kids In The Game organizes in-person sports camps for over 25,000 kids in the New York area every year and has gained critical acclaim for promoting an active lifestyle in the city’s youth.
The summer camps have different sporting programs, leaving you to decide what sports they get to play. With a coaching team made up of individuals passionate about positively impacting the next generation, your child will be in good hands.
The summer programs include track and field sports, swimming, and creative/performing arts. Your child will learn important life lessons and form long-term relationships with peers and adults alike.
If you want your child to spend their summer learning or excelling at a sport, you can’t do better than Chelsea Piers Summer Camp.
Built in 1985, this New York City summer camp is one of the best places for kids to explore their interests in various sports. They can select from a list covering everything from team sports, like soccer and basketball, individual sports like gymnastics and ninja parkour, to winter sports like ice skating and hockey.
The acclaimed Chelsea Piers facility is along the Hudson River and has world-class facilities and a safe environment that encourages development in young athletes. Your child can benefit from a tailored sporting curriculum, expert coaches, healthy diets, and age-appropriate educational activities aimed at keeping them engaged and energized.
SOCAPA is an in-person summer residential program for aspiring actors, filmmakers, photographers, and creatives of any kind to hone their skills. Students enjoy access to world-class dance studios, production facilities, and conducive classrooms where they learn from industry experts.
The SOCAPA program is exciting, not only for educating younger campers but also for letting them explore the sights New York City offers. On selected days, campers can visit restaurants, take part in karaoke nights and games, and meander through iconic areas like Times Square and Coney Island.
The East Village Campus is the perfect place for attendees to learn filmmaking and acting, with its ties to Hollywood. It has multiple dance and filmmaking studios, along with rehearsal areas.
Classes are also held at the Feirstein-Pratt Campus, nestled within the Brooklyn Navy Yard. This state-of-the-art film school houses soundstages, 4k screening rooms, post-production studios, training facilities, and digital design labs.
What better place for your child to explore their interests in acting than New York City, the epicenter of indie film-making. A summer residence at the New York Film Academy equips young talents for future success through rigorous, hands-on classes in acting, film-making, screenwriting, and musical theatre.
The NYFA makes provisions for extracurricular activities. Recreational activities include trips to the famous Bowling Green, walks through NYC’s finest neighborhoods, and movie nights at selected IMAX cinemas.
Kids are housed in a multi-story facility with supervisors and security. With the Buddy System that prevents students from roaming alone and the efforts of trained supervisors. You can expect your kids to have a safe, fun experience in the Big Apple next summer.
Martin has been in the summer camp industry for 7 years now. He has worked in different roles for camps, including as a marketing director for summer camps in the United States. Martin enjoys all kinds of outdoor activities but likes hiking and kayaking the most. He’s also a huge fan of traveling.