Chestnut Hill Farm Summer Camp

5-10 year olds can enjoy being "junior farmers" and 14 year olds can sign up to be a "Junior CIT".

Above: Chestnut Hill Farm is again offering 8 weeks of camp this summer for 5-10 year olds. (images cropped from contributed photo and TTOR Facebook post)

With snow on the ground today, it seems way too soon to think about this. But for those already trying to organize their kids’ activities for this summer. . . The Trustees of Reservations has opened registration for its camp at Chestnut Hill Farm.

The program is for campers ages 5-10 years old. In past summers, the farm has held some weekly programs or daily programs up to 4 days. This is the first time the Southborough farm will host weeklong day camps. They are offering eight sessions this summer.

Chestnut Hill Farm Camp – for ages 5-10 years old
June 26 to August 18 (Mon – Fri, 9:00 am – 3:00 pm)

Become a Junior Farmer this summer at historic Chestnut Hill Farm in Southborough, where 170 acres of farm and woodland is the canvas for your adventure! . . .

CHF camp (contributed)Chestnut Hill Farm Camp is designed for campers who love the outdoors, caring for farm animals, getting their hands dirty, connecting to the land, being independent learners, using their imagination, and tapping into their resilience no matter the weather. A team of talented, compassionate, and energetic educators support campers in their quest to connect to the natural world and find their place within it.

The cost is $450/week per member or $550/week for non-members. (For this program, membership is definitely worth it, even for just a one week sign up. It costs $50/individual or $70/family and comes with other benefits.)

For 14 year olds, the camp also offers a Junior CIT program for $225/$275 per week. (A regular CIT program for 15-17 year olds is also noted, but the details are TBD.)

This will be the second year the farm hosts a full summer program. While the website shares parent testimonials about past happy campers, it also shares a note of caution that appear to be based on experience gained last summer from families who may have signed up for too many weeks for their child:

The daily rhythm of camp is consistent week to week. We have noticed that after 4 weeks, some campers are looking for new adventures. Please consider this when registering.

As for what campers can enjoy at the camp this summer, the website promotes:

The farm features expansive vegetable fields and pasture lands with production animals, such as goats and sheep. Nesting bird preserves and magical woodland trails complete each day’s exploration of the natural world. . . 

In the Fields

CHF camp (contributed)Authentic farm chores provide our daily structure. We will feed and care for the goats and sheep. We will seed, plant, water, weed, and harvest vegetables, flowers, and herbs from our learning garden. The forces at work below and above the soil, composting, and interacting with our farmers will help us understand where our food really comes from. Fresh farm-based recipes will allow us to taste the flavors we have grown.

On the Trails

Campers will discover local wildlife, learn to track animals, and enjoy adventures as they hike our network of trails. Each week will include opportunities for nature play, including tree climbing and shelter building. Through observation and exploration, we will witness the amazing life in the unique habitats of the forests and fields. Ultimately, campers will find a place in the natural world that they can call their own.

In the Farmstead

Fun science experiments and thematic art projects round out our days. Active games and free play with new friends assure each camper a place to be themselves, be part of a group, and discover new ideas and interests. Expect your child to come home muddy, sun-kissed, tired, and joyful each day!

Below are some more fun pics from past junior farmer events on the farm:

Chestnut Hill Farm (from Facebook) Chestnut Hill Farm (from Facebook) Chestnut Hill Farm (from website) CHF camp (TTOR pic on Facebook)

To learn more or register, click here.

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