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YMCA Camp Kern

Let your child enjoy a summer of fun at YMCA Camp Kern! With a focus on being unplugged and connected to nature, our camps give children the opportunity to participate in fun activities, connect with amazing counselors, and build new friendships. Our camps are structured with our four core values of Caring, Honesty, Respect and Responsibility.

Address: 5291 OH-350
Oregonia, OH 45054
Website: https://campkern.org/
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (513) 932-3756
Gender of Campers: All
Special Needs Offered: Call for more information
Dates: June 2nd–August 2nd
Ages: 5-18

Q&A with YMCA Camp Kern: 

What makes YMCA Camp Kern unique?

YMCA Camp Kern stands out as a unique haven nestled by the picturesque Little Miami River. Offering an array of exhilarating activities and fostering diverse connections, it creates an unforgettable experience for campers of all ages. In essence, YMCA Camp Kern offers more than just a typical summer camp experience. It’s a place where adventure meets education, where friendships are forged across borders, and where the beauty of nature serves as both playground and teacher. Whether climbing iconic Pete’s Tower or paddling along the tranquil river, campers leave Camp Kern with cherished memories and a newfound love for the great outdoors.

Join us for our Summer Camp options which include: Traditional Camps, Specialty & Themed Camps, Horse Camps, Teens & Leadership Camps, and Day & Semi-Residential Camps for those just dipping their toes into Camp life.

What activities are offered at YMCA Camp Kern?

Camp Kern offers a thrilling range of activities, including ziplining, the iconic Pete’s Tower, horseback riding, canoeing and kayaking adventures, fishing, nature hikes, crafts and bracelet-making, swimming and water slides, outdoor overnight experiences, campfires, and much more.


What is the camper-to-counselor ratio?

Our camp-to-counselor ratio is 6:1 campers to counselor.

How much time do the campers spend outside?

At YMCA Camp Kern, campers enjoy a well-balanced schedule that seamlessly blends outdoor adventures with indoor activities, ensuring a dynamic and fulfilling experience. Throughout their stay, campers engage in a diverse range of activities designed to foster personal growth, teamwork, and appreciation for the natural world.

Does the camp provide lunch/snacks or do parents need to provide them?

YMCA Camp Kern provides all food and snacks for our campers.

What is the typical daily schedule for campers?

At YMCA Camp Kern, the daily schedule begins with a 7am “rise and shine” call, followed by the uplifting tradition of flag raising. Meals are enjoyed communally, providing fuel for a day filled with diverse activities, including outdoor adventures and magical journeys with their cabins. Campers also have dedicated rest hours for relaxation before evening programs, where they gather for entertainment and camaraderie.

How old are the counselors and how are they trained?

At YMCA Camp Kern, our diverse team of counselors, aged 18 and up, undergoes thorough background checks to ensure the safety of all campers. Hailing from various corners of the globe, they dedicate two weeks to rigorous training, equipping them with the skills and knowledge needed to prioritize the well-being of children throughout their stay, fostering a secure and enriching environment for all.

What accommodations are made for campers with special needs?

YMCA Camp Kern collaborates closely with families to understand the unique needs of each camper, ensuring tailored accommodations and support to provide the best possible camp experience for every child, including those with special needs.


Is this an overnight camp?


What does the camper’s living situation look like?

At YMCA Camp Kern, campers stay in diverse housing accommodations tailored to their age group and adventure preferences, sharing bunk beds with cabin friends and counselors in line with a 6:1 camper to counselor ratio, ensuring personalized attention and supervision throughout their stay.

How do parents and campers communicate?

At YMCA Camp Kern, campers enjoy a screen-free environment, ensuring an immersive nature-filled experience throughout their stay, while parents can still stay connected through traditional mail or our Bunk1 online system, complete with daily photo updates.

How does YMCA Camp Kern handle homesickness?

At YMCA Camp Kern, we address homesickness by encouraging campers to focus on personal goals, engage in open discussions with counselors, and build friendships with cabin mates, offering the best defense against homesickness. Additionally, we understand that some children may not be ready for full overnight camp stays, and we provide alternative options to ensure a positive and comfortable camp experience for all.

What are the meals like at camp?

At YMCA Camp Kern, campers are provided with nutritious meals and snacks throughout their stay, ensuring they have the energy they need for their adventures. With multiple meal choices available, including options from a salad bar, campers have the opportunity to make healthy selections that cater to their preferences, promoting balanced nutrition and wellness.


Can parents visit YMCA Camp Kern?

To prevent homesickness and foster camper independence, parents are unable to visit their child at YMCA Camp Kern; however, they are encouraged to maintain communication through letter writing or our Bunk1 online system to send messages and stay connected throughout their camp experience.

Parents can also gain insight into the Camp Kern experience by attending our open houses on April 21st & 28th and scheduling private tours with advanced notice, offering opportunities to see our facilities firsthand and learn more about our programs. For scheduling private tours, please contact our office.

What percentage of campers return every year?

With 51 percent of campers returning each year, YMCA Camp Kern offers a dynamic blend of new and familiar faces, ensuring an exciting and enriching experience for all campers.

Is the schedule highly structured, or do kids have a lot of free choices?

At YMCA Camp Kern, providing kids with options is a perfect blend; while structured activities challenge campers, we also empower them with the freedom to choose their own adventures, fostering independence and personal growth.

Is transportation available to and from YMCA Camp Kern?

Please note that transportation to and from YMCA Camp Kern is not provided, and families are responsible for arranging their campers’ transportation to and from the campgrounds.


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