City of Oakland Summer Camps
My kids (son and daughter) always loved Touch the Earth in Oakland. The kids get dirty, build forts and do basic camp activities.
Check out the multitude of camps run by the City of Oakland, City of Berkeley, City of Piedmont, East Bay Regional Park District, etc. We had a great experience last summer with the City of Oakland's boating camp (they also teach sailing for older kids like yours!) and with EBRPD's camp for young kids. Camps run by public agencies tend to be much more affordable as they are essentially subsidized by tax payers. Typically you'll get a resident discount, but won't necessarily need to be a resident to participate.
Archived Q&A and Reviews
- General Questions about Camps
- Oakland Fine Arts Summer School
- Oakland Tot Soccer
- Sheffield Village Recreation Center
- Special Needs Day Camp
I'd like to hear from anyone with recent experience with the Oakland Parks and Rec day camps at Dimond Park, Montclair Park, Redwood Heights or Joaquin Miller. My son will be going into 1st grade and likes to be active and creative, but isn't into sports. Thanks Mom
Sheffield Village Rec Center has a great camp for young kids -- very ''camplike'' ie they learn camp songs with their youth counsellors and have lots of time to just run around the play area, some art, snacks, etc. MWF, 9-3.
My son also enjoys Cubs Camp at Montclair Rec Center and the Montclair Summer Arts Workshop is great. Performing and visual arts as well as some free time to run and be a kid.
I live near Dimond and, from what I've seen, their camp looks a lot like After Care at school. (Maybe because they host that during the school year & the structure seems similar?)
Don't know about Redwood (but their field trips seems like they're geared to older kids) nor Joaquin Miller. Anon, please.
Re: Afternoon-only summer camps?
My children enjoyed (for several years now) the afternoon session of the Oakland Fine Arts Summer School (OFASS) offered as a collaboration b/w OUSD and Oakland Parks and Rec. MOCHA teachers teach the afternoon sessions, each afternoon consisting of 4 classes for each child (many classes overall but each child gets enrolled in 4), such as sculpture, pantomime, theater, drawing, instrumental music, movie production, dance, . . Some kids enroll for morning and afternoon session, making it a long day with about 7 classes, but many kids come for just afternoon. You can register for this camp on-line at www.oaklandnet.com (Parks and Rec), starting March 1. Maria
I am thinking of signing my 2.5 year old up for the Tot Soccer offered thru the Oakland parks & recs. We didn't have much luck at the little kickers program in Alameda. My son is really focused on the ball and wasn't too interested in the other games they play (not many games with the balls). What was your experience with the class? I'm not sure if he's too young, he doesn't follow directions well yet. Soccer Mom
My kids had the best time doing tot soccer and tumbling at Dimond. Birrel Nicholson is a wonderful teacher. His focus is on having fun and following directions. The kids get lots of fun outdoor time, incidentally learn some skills and make a lifelong friend in Birrel. Jan L
Re: Only need camp for 2 days of the week
Sunbirds camp at Sheffield Village Rec Center is partial - M,W,F 10-2. And, it's only $55 a week. Check it out on the Oakland Parks and Recs website. My son goes every summer for a couple of weeks and has fun. ~Alison
Oakland Parks and Rec has a ''Director of Inclusion'', Scott Means, whose job it is to make all OPR programs fully inclusive to children with special needs.
I was looking for camp options earlier this month for my high-functioning but multiply disabled kindergartener, dialed his number (it's listed on the Arroyo Viejo page in the OPR spring booklet) and was so impressed with the service.
He said - pick a rec center, pick a camp program, and we'll work with you and the director to accommodate your child. We talked about when and where my son might need an aide (he doesn't need one all the time, only for physically challenging things like a long hike, the swimming pool, etc.), and what my son's issues are. Scott recommended particular centers in my neighborhood whose directors have worked well with special needs before. I called Dimond on his recommendation, talked to Michelle, the director , and had a great conversation. I'll be enrolling my child in the regular camp there.
The OPR brochure doesn't make it clear that they'll accommodate all special needs. Be sure and call Scott Means at Arroyo Viejo center. Leila