Summer Camp Preparation

Preparing for Summer Camp

Kettleby Valley is a traditional summer day camp in the heart of York Region. We are situated on 60 private acres with forests, fields and waterfront. Our day camp offers the amenities of a northern summer camp without the three hour drive.

Our day camp hosts approximately 240 campers each week throughout July and August. Many of these children grow up with us here, choosing to return to Kettleby Valley over other day camps in the area. Our camp is large enough to have the energy and enthusiasm to make kids feel like they’re part of something special. Yet we are small enough to be able to get to know and understand each individual child.

We understand that there is a connection between independence and confidence. Our approach to day camp aims to leverage this connection. We provide the help and support that each camper needs, while giving them the room to develop a healthy sense of independence.

Safety is a priority for our day camps. Kettleby Valley is an accredited member of the Ontario Camps Association. The OCA provides strict youth camps standards and guidelines that Kettleby Valley meets. We Offer More Than Just Day Camps

Kettleby Valley offers more than just Newmarket and Aurora day camp services. Twice each summer, our day campers can get a taste of what overnight camp is like by combining their regular day camp experience with our one-night overnight camp session. This program is offered once in July during the first week of camp and again in August during short week. These summer programs are a great way to introduce our day campers to the concept of spending a night away from home.

Kettleby Valley is also an Overnight Summer Camp for 100 children each week. With our ‘Resi’ program, the participants benefit through building deeper connections with their counsellors and other campers. A greater sense of independence is achieved and confidence grows throughout their camp session. Campers arrive on Sunday and depart on Friday of each week. Our overnight campers choose the activities that they participate in throughout their experience. We offer all the great day camp activities for our ‘Resi’ campers and more. Additional activities include Paintball, Frisbee Golf, Pottery and Slack Lining. Evening program is always a highlight and includes activities such as campfire, cookout and capture the flag. Our Overnight Camp host campers ages 6 to 14 and sessions range from one to two weeks long.

Finally, Kettleby Valley offers Algonquin Park canoe tripping adventures for our Senior Campers. These programs start at Kettleby Valley, where participants spend Saturday and Sunday building the skills and techniques they will need to have a safe and successful trip. On Monday, campers depart for Algonquin Park, where they spend the week paddling and portaging together. Our Campers return on Friday with memories that will last a lifetime.

Whether it’s a day camp, an overnight camp or a northern adventure that you and your children are looking for, Kettleby Valley is the place where everyone feels a sense of belonging.

Sharing Information

Many parents feel apprehensive about sharing information with us about their child such as their behaviours at school, previous camp experiences, or medications that they take. They are worried that their child will be labeled while at camp and subsequently feel ostracized and be treated differently than the other campers.

The truth is, by having this pertinent information, we are more capable and better equipped to ensure this does not happen. In fact, knowing that your child has a learning disability, ADHD, difficulty making friends or has had an unfavourable previous camp experience helps us to better meet their needs in a supportive environment so that they can simply enjoy camp and be a kid. It also helps us to better prepare our counsellors, gives us time to modify programs if needed, and match group needs with the best suited counsellor. The more we know about your child, the greater likelihood that they will have a fun and successful time at camp!

Director's Note

We recently began asking parents for a small piece of information they would want their child’s counsellor to know before they met at camp. The idea was to give us some insight into what might make the child’s camp session memorable and enjoyable.

Helpful notes included those that described situations where the child has struggled in the past. By disclosing information such as: ’my child can become uncharacteristically defiant and resist following direction when she is hungry,’ allows the counsellors to give extra support and respond accordingly.

Information on situations where a child thrives is also important. ‘Last summer, my child loved archery and is really looking forward to it again,’ or ‘my son finally passed level 5 in swimming and is excited about working on level 6,’ helps us to understand a camper’s expectations for their camp experience.

Adaptation is an important part of a quality camp experience. By taking the time to provide us with a brief note, you’ll play an important role in this process. Thank you for participating in our camp this summer and please contact me at if you have any questions.

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