8525 Garland Road, Dallas, Texas 75218

Summer Camps

Summer Camps at the Arboretum

Summer Camps provide children with daily hands-on investigations and garden explorations that will spark their imagination in STEM and nature. Camps integrate critical thinking, problem-solving skills and foster a sense of environmental stewardship and adventure in children.

Join us for a Dallas Arboretum Summer Camp June 3 – August 9. Each week campers will be divided into age groups with a curriculum specially designed to provide unique age-appropriate activities and explorations while sharing a common theme and bringing in special guests to enhance the experience.

  • Camps are designed for students entering grades 1st through 6th in fall 2024 
  • Camps run Monday-Friday 9am-3pm 
  • Cost is $300 for members, $325 for guests
  • Registration will open March 1st

For questions, see our Frequently Asked Questions at the bottom of the page or contact the Education Reservations Department by email at education@dallasarboretum.org or by phone at 214.515.6540 from 11am–5pm.

2024 Summer Camps

Mind of an Innovator

Do you like to build and invent new things and help to solve problems? We have the perfect camp for you!  

Grades 5-6, June 3-7  

Grades 3-4, June 10-14  

Through a partnership with the SMU Caruth Institute for Engineering Education in the Bobby B. Lyle School of Engineering, campers will work, with guidance from engineering students, on engineering design challenges, such as pollinator homes for budding engineers and water purification for experienced engineers. This camp will introduce the engineering design processes, science/math topics, as well as the general practices and skills used in electrical, mechanical, civil & environmental, and computer science fields of engineering. Kids will be designing and developing prototypes to solve real-world problems that will increase the environmental sustainability of gardens. 

*Scholarships available for students who are eligible for free or reduced lunch. For scholarship details, please email education@dallasarboretum.org. 

Registration will open March 1st

Storybook STEM

Bring beloved stories to life in the garden with Storybook STEM!

June 3-7

Bring beloved stories to life in the garden with Storybook STEM! Campers will unlock their creativity and engineering expertise as they transform cherished stories into captivating 3D creations. Through design challenges and encounters with nature, campers will bring their favorite tales to life in ways they never thought possible. Embark on thrilling journeys through the Palmer Fern Dell and Lakeside Exhibit Area, where The Three Little Pigs come alive amidst the lush greenery. Dive into more advanced reads like “Just Like Rube Goldberg,” providing real-life examples that illuminate the intricacies of the Water Island in our Children’s Adventure Garden. Join us for an engaging week of wonderment!  

Registration will open March 1st

Nature’s Motion Lab

Get ready for a summer of exhilarating exploration at our Nature’s Motion Lab camp!

June 10-14

Get ready for a summer of exhilarating exploration at our Nature’s Motion Lab camp! This one-of-a-kind physics-based adventure seamlessly combines the thrill of energy, force, and motion with the beauty of nature. Through play-based exploration, your child will delve into concepts like gravity, friction, and momentum while making real-world connections to botany and biology. But the excitement doesn’t stop there—participants will have the unique opportunity to apply their curiosity and creativity to design an interactive exhibit for the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden, transforming the captivating garden into an outdoor science museum. Join Nature’s Motion Lab for an unforgettable journey where science and nature collide! 

Registration will open March 1st

Farm to Fork

Ever wonder where your food comes from?

June 17-21

Ever wonder where your food comes from? This delicious summer camp explores how food gets from the farm to the plate, and all the processes in between. Campers will learn how to make tasty treats, using farm-fresh ingredients, such as pesto pizza and guacamole. Campers will connect with our Dallas Arboretum Horticulture team to explore our Incredible Edible Gardens, harvest fresh fruit and vegetables, and participate in chef demos. There will also be a field trip to the beautiful Blase Family Farm, in Rockwall. *An additional travel fee of $25 will apply for field trip transportation. 

Registration will open March 1st

Imaginature Explorers

Unleash curiosity and creativity in our Imaginature Explorers Camp – an unforgettable week of nature-inspired adventures.

June 24-28

Unleash curiosity and creativity in our Imaginature Explorers Camp – an unforgettable week of nature-inspired adventures. Come uncover hidden wonders in the Garden with a nature scavenger hunt at Red Maple Rill and craft vibrant eco-art inspired by land art pioneers.  
Try your hand at solar paper printing, experiment with botanical dyes, and dive into the realm of environmental stewardship by learning about conservation. Our campers will connect with art and the great outdoors on a deeper level guided by passionate educators. This transformative experience fosters a love for nature, sparks creativity and nurtures essential life skills.

Registration will open March 1st

Creature Feature

Looking for a summer camp that brings the fascination of creepy-crawlies and nature exploration together?

July 8-12

Looking for a summer camp that brings the fascination of creepy-crawlies and nature exploration together? Creature Feature is the perfect choice for curious kids who want to get up close and personal with plants, bugs, and animals big and small. Come with us as we learn about the creatures that thrive right here in the garden and study different habitats around the world. We will engage in outdoor adventures such as birding in Pecan Grove, hunting for critters in the Palmer Fern Dell, collecting pond samples to identify macroinvertebrates in our Texas Native Wetlands and visiting with expert naturalists and horticulturists who are sure to nurture a lifelong love of science and the conservation of all living things. 

Registration will open March 1st

Astronautical

Blast off into outer space and set sail across the stars with Astronautical space camp!

July 15-19

Blast off into outer space and set sail across the stars with Astronautical space camp! This stellar summer camp combines the wonders of astronomy, the thrill of navigation, and the beauty of the Arboretum, giving your aspiring astronaut the ultimate out-of-this-world experience where they learn about living things, planets, stars, comets, and more in our state-of-the-art Omniglobe Theatre. Kids will navigate the seas of space with simulations and STEM challenges. Campers will design, build, and launch their own stomp rockets or build and launch model rockets, plot courses through the stars, code their own spacecraft, and even learn how astronauts use hydroponic gardening to grow their food aboard the International Space Station 

Registration will open March 1st

C.I.A

Mix it up with a week of scientific exploration at the Dallas Arboretum’s Chemistry In the Arboretum (C.I.A) camp!

July 22-26

Mix it up with a week of scientific exploration at the Dallas Arboretum’s Chemistry In the Arboretum (C.I.A) camp! Unleash your child’s inner scientist as they explore soil chemistry and diverse ecosystems and conduct hands-on experiments that foster collaboration with peers. Set against the backdrop of the breathtaking Arboretum, this camp promises an immersive experience where learning meets adventure. With expert instructors, an inspiring setting, and the guarantee of memorable summer moments, C.I.A Camp is the perfect opportunity to spark your child’s curiosity and love for science. Secure your spot now for a week of chemistry-filled fun and discovery! It is sure to cause await for it- REACTION! 

Registration will open March 1st

Robotany

Are your kids ready to dig into the fascinating world where technology meets nature?

July 29-August 2

Are your kids ready to dig into the fascinating world where technology meets nature? Robotany is the summer camp adventure they won’t stop talking about. It is the perfect mix of screen time and green time. Younger coders will learn the programming fundamentals to control basic robots, explore electronics and circuits, and study plant biology while observing nature and going on nature hikes. More advanced coders will design VEX robots and learn how to program them to accomplish tasks designed to accomplish garden tasks more efficiently such as planting tulip bulbs or automated wateringAt the center of STEM and nature, Robotany is where science comes alive.

Registration will open March 1st

Encore

Let’s wrap up the last week of summer camp with an encore of some of our favorites.

August 5-9

Let’s wrap up the last week of summer camp with an encore of some of our favorites. Immerse yourself in the best of the Arboretums 2024 summer camps as we’ve carefully curated the most exciting and enriching activities from various camps into one spectacular program. From adventurous outdoor exploration in Creature Feature to creative arts from Imaginature and mind-stimulating challenges from Story Book STEM, Encore brings you the ultimate blend of fun, learning, and unforgettable memories. 

Registration will open March 1st

Kids planting in soil

2024 FAQs

How do I register for camps?

  1. Sign your child up for a camp that is the appropriate level for your child.
    1. Children need to be the specified age by the date the camp occurs.
    2. The grade level you choose should be the grade your child will be entering in the fall of 2024
  2. You will receive the confirmation email. Save your confirmation email. If you do not receive a confirmation email, please contact Reservations at education@dallasarboretum.org
  3. You will receive a reminder email one week before the camp.  Complete the Summer Camp Contact form from the follow-up email and email to education@dallasarboretum.org. Or, print it and bring it with you on the first day of camp. All emails are sent to the address associated with you login. All emails are sent to the address associated with your login. Summer Camp Contact Form

Can I register my child for an older or younger age group?
No. Our lessons are carefully designed for specific ages.

How will the camps be split up?
After all of the attendees are signed up and finalized, we will break up camps into small groups by age, as much as possible. Ideally, we will have one camp group for children going into 1st and 2nd grades, one group for 3rd and 4th grades, and one group for 5th and 6th grades. To balance groups evenly, we reserve the right to assign or redistribute groups to best fit the needs of the group and the child. We are unable to honor requests for group placement. If there are any concerns about a camper’s group placement, please reach out to the Camp Manager directly.

Where should I park to drop off and pick up my child?
Please enter the Arboretum at Gate 1 and park in the lot. Walk to the Main ticket booths and you will be directed to the Education classrooms. 

For your child’s safety, you will need to walk your child into camp each day and sign them in. 

At check-in on the first day, you will receive a hanging car tag and a carpool pick-up map for dismissal. This is for your child’s safety. Please have your photo ID and the hanging car tag visible on your car’s rearview mirror to pick up in carpool dismissal. Cars in the carpool line will be filled in the order of arrival. If you elect to park your car and walk up to the dismissal area, please have your pick-up tag and ID available when signing your child out for the day. 

If you need to pick up your child early, please park in the parking lot and walk to the classrooms. If possible, notify the camp teacher or manager so they will be prepared for your child’s departure. 

What should my child wear to camp?
Children should wear comfortable clothes that can get messy. Closed-toe shoes are required due to the uneven terrain in the garden. Hats are recommended. Apply bug repellent or sunscreen before camp if desired.

Do you provide a snack?
No. Each child should bring a lunch that does not need to be refrigerated or heated and a snack. Please consider packing peanut-free items for the safety of other students. 

What should my child bring to camp?
Please read your confirmation email carefully for details on what to bring. All children should bring a refillable water bottle, lunch and snack. Please refrain from sending electronics or toys.

Do you offer before or after care?
At this time, we do not offer before or after care.

How do I cancel my reservation?
Cancellations are subject to a $100 processing fee per child. Refunds cannot be issued for missed classes or cancellations made less than 10 business days prior to class. Cancellations must be sent to education@dallasarboretum.org

Am I able to transfer from one camp to another?
Transfer requests must be sent to education@dallasarboretum.org and approved at least four (4) weeks prior to the start of camp. There is a transfer fee of $25 per camp.

Do you offer a waitlist?
At this time, we are not able to offer a waiting list. Please check our website frequently for openings.

What if my child will require a nurse’s assistance during camp hours?
At least two weeks prior to the start of the camp, please email the summer camp manager to see what accommodations can be made. Submit inquiries to education@dallasarboretum.org.

See What Parents Are Saying

My child learned something new every day. He had a great time, and he made new friends. After hearing about it, I was satisfied that it was a worthwhile learning experience to keep him engaged with science over the summer.”
My daughter loved your program! She came home with wonderful art projects and had many scientific facts to share. Everyone was helpful and accommodating. We will definitely be back next year for more weeks! Wish we had signed up for more than one!”
My daughter really had positive things to say at the end of each day, and she’s told me things she learned about bugs even WEEKS after she attended. It must have really engaged her!”
There is always a good balance of classroom time and outdoor time.”
My son said it was the ‘best camp of all summer’ and he’s done a lot of camps!”
I felt very comfortable with the drop off and pick up. It was very well done. The curriculum was also excellent. My son learned a lot and had a great time in the process. The camp counselors were very friendly and helpful.”

Experience the Garden as a Family