Cape Fear Botanical Garden

Cape Fear Botanical Garden Camps

Note: Due to the nature of our programs, and the excitement children demonstrate when observing nature, we request that all children ages 5 and older, as well as parents and adults, wear a face covering during education activities. If you have questions or concerns regarding face coverings, please discuss this with our education team prior to attending a class or program.

Summer Camp At The Garden

Uncover the wonders of the natural world through outdoor exploration, art projects, science experiments, and learning games. This year’s summer camps include a mix of one-day and weeklong camps, as well as a 3-day camp just for our oldest campers (ages 11-15). All our camps instill a love for nature and focus on hands-on, fun, and outdoor learning activities. Early bird registration for members starts March 19th. April 1st registration will open to the public.

Child must be the minimum listed age as of the first date of the camp session – age exemptions with staff approval are sometimes made within one year of the age range. Full payment is due at the time of registration. Membership discount applies at Household Membership level, to include children. Camps will be canceled no later than one full week out if a minimum of six children is not met. Participants wishing to withdraw from a camp that has not been canceled by the Garden must provide a written request one week before the start of camp. No fees will be refunded if registration is canceled after the week prior deadline. Maximum 12 children per camp. All camp dates contingent on the school schedule for the Cumberland County Public Schools.

Register early – spaces fill fast.

What to Bring?

All camps will go outside every day, weather allowing. Please send children dressed for the weather, with sunscreen and bug spray pre-applied and close-toed shoes (no flip-flops or sandals please). All camps include a snack provided by the Garden. Campers for the Day Camps should bring a packed lunch. Reusable water bottles and backpacks will be provided at the beginning of weeklong camps. Day Campers should bring their own water bottle.

These programs are brought to us by a Summertime Kids grant of Cumberland Community Foundation, Inc.

Please register for camps on our website calendar of events page or in our Gift Shop.

This Years Camps!

Nature Nuts: STEAM Explorers (Ages 6-10)

May 24th – 28th 8:30 am – 12:30 pm Get ready for a super fun week of science experiments, engineering projects, outdoor explorations, artistic creation, and nature adventures. Each day we’ll explore one of the STEAM letters (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) as a new way to learn about nature. Highlights include breaking geodes, solar-cooked pizzas, and nature object art.

Fees: $65 for Garden Members and $80 for Non-Members

Nature Nuts: Stories and Tales Camp (Ages 4-7)

May 31st – June 4th 8:30am-12:30pm

Classic children’s stories like the Lorax and Stone Soup help our young campers engage with nature in a new way. We’ll make Lorax puppets and plant a tree, make our own stone soup, and look for real “rainbow fish” in the pond.  

Fees: $65 for Garden Members and $80 for Non-Members

Nature Nuts: Science and Nature of Video Games (Ages 8-12)

June 7th-11th 8:30am -12:30 pm

This unique camp explores the role of nature in popular video games. Enjoy your favorite games and characters while getting away from the screen and out into nature. Each day the theme will be a new game including Animal Crossing, Pokémon, Minecraft, Mario, and Angry Birds. Children do not have to have played the games to enjoy camp! Activities will include designing our own Pokémon, playing life size Angry Birds, a Mario obstacle course, learning about carnivorous plants, and even meeting live animals.

Fees: $65 for Garden Members and $80 for Non-Members

Day Camp: Garden Grows (Ages 5-8)

June 23rd 9am-3pm

This one day camp is all about growing plants. We’ll create our own fairy or dinosaur gardens, make seed mosaics, and discover the unique plants of the Garden. Please bring a packed lunch.

Fees: $20 for Garden Members, $30 for Non-Members

Day Camp: Day of Mud (Ages 4-8)

June 29th 9am – 3pm

In honor of the International Day of Mud this one day camp will let kids get dirty and have fun! We’ll make mud paint, play with live worms, and eat delicious “dirt and worms” treats (made with cookies and pudding). In between the fun, kids will learn about the importance of soil and the many animals that live underground. Please bring a packed lunch and wear clothes that can get muddy and bring a complete change of clothes as well (with a second pair of shoes/socks).

Fees: $20 for Garden Members, $30 for Non-Members

Day Camp: Serpents and Sea Monsters (Ages 8-12)

June 30th 9am-3pm

This one day camp will explore the science behind the myths of dragons and sea monsters. We’ll meet a live snake, use nets to look for animals in the pond, create dragon puppets, and learn about myths from around the world. Please bring a packed lunch.

Fees: $20 for Garden Members, $30 for Non-Members

Day Camp: Summer Splash (Ages 5-10)

July 1st 9am-3pm

This one day camp is all about getting wet! Campers will enjoy a water obstacle course and pond dipping, while learning about the importance of clean water for people and animals. Swimsuits are optional, but should be worn under regular clothes if desired. Please bring a towel and complete change of dry clothes (including shoes and socks – flip flops/sandals are allowed as dry shoes to change into). Please also bring a packed lunch.

Fees: $20 for Garden Members, $30 for Non-Members

Nature Nuts: Naturally Creative (Ages 6-10)

July 5th -9th 8:30am -12:30 pm

Let nature be your artistic inspiration! We’ll explore the colors of nature, use natural and recycled materials to create sculptures, make hiking sticks, and use natural pigments in paint. A local painter will teach a painting workshop as a guest speaker. While a few of our most popular activities will be reused, the camp will not be a repeat of prior years, so that campers can attend again!

Fees: $65 for Garden Members and $80 for Non-Members

Nature Nuts: Let’s Go Green (Ages 8-12)

July 12th-16th 8:30am – 12:30 pm

Discover new ways to explore nature while leaving less of an impact. We’ll learn about clean water, the leave no trace principles, endangered animals, and more! We’ll conduct a solar powered experiment, decorate reusable grocery bags, spot endangered species on a scavenger hunt, and build rafts out of recycled materials.

Fees: $65 for Garden Members and $80 for Non-Members

Summer Naturalist (Ages 11-15)

July 20th-22nd 9am-3pm

This three day camp is for our oldest campers only! It will feature a collection of our best adventures pond dipping, live animals, off-trail expeditions, a nature photography scavenger hunt, and a campfire. Plus, new science experiments and art projects including bristle bots and desktop zen gardens. For this camp only, campers may opt to purchase lunch from the Garden Café or bring their own lunch from home. See the café menu here: They also offer a selection of kid’s specials like Grilled Cheese for $5.

Fees: $55 for Garden Members and $70 for Non-members

Day Camp: Mosaics, Murals, and Masterpieces (Ages 8-12)

July 26th 9am – 3pm

Connect with your inner creativity as we explore the works of artists who focus on incorporating nature into their pieces. In this camp, we’ll mimic the works of Lorenzo M. Duran and Walter Mason as we cut shapes and images into leaves and other natural materials. We’ll get playful with light and shadows when we paint, and even get geometrical with tile pieces when we make birdbaths. Later on, we’ll collaborate as a team to make a mural that represents the beauty in nature. Please bring a packed lunch.

Fees: $20 for Garden Members, $30 for Non-Members

Day Camp: Dino Dig (Ages 4-8)

July 28th 9am – 3pm

Let’s learn about dinosaurs with a sand pit fossil dig, a chance to look at real fossils, a dinosaur craft, and more! Please bring a packed lunch.

Fees: $20 for Garden Members, $30 for Non-Members

Day Camp: Sensational Shells (Ages 5-10)

July 30th 9am – 3pm

This one day camp is all about shells: sea shells, snail shells, and even turtle shells. We’ll learn what animal shells are made of, meet two live shelled animals, create a craft with real shells, and look for shelled animals in the Garden. Please bring a packed lunch.

Fees: $20 for Garden Members, $30 for Non-Members

Nature Nuts: Weird and Wonderful Nature (Ages 5-10)

August 2nd-6th 8:30am – 12:30 pm

This camp is all about the strange plants and creatures that live in our backyard. Each day we’ll explore a new natural oddity, like how Venus flytraps actually eat or learning if flying squirrels really fly. We’ll roll logs to search for mysterious critters like the hammerhead worm, investigate the forest for fungus, and make spore print art. 

Fees: $65 for Garden Members and $80 for Non-Members

Day Camp: Slithering Snakes (Ages 5-10)

August 10th 9am – 3pm

This one day camp celebrates snakes! We’ll meet a live snake, create a wooden wiggle snake, look for snakes in the Garden, and find camouflaged snakes on a fun scavenger hunt. Please bring a packed lunch.

Fees: $20 for Garden Members, $30 for Non-Members

Day Camp: Fossil Finds (Ages 8-12)

August 12th 9am – 3pm

In this camp we’ll learn about new discoveries in paleontology (the study of dinosaurs). We’ll make fossil molds, look at real fossils, unearth our own trilobite fossils, discover living fossils in the Garden, and learn how new fossil evidence continues to change the way we understand these very old animals. Please bring a packed lunch.

Fees: $20 for Garden Members, $30 for Non-Members

***These educational opportunities were made possible through the generosity of the Summertime Kids Grant and Cumberland Community Foundation.