Summer camp was one of the best parts of growing up. From the canoe rides to the tug of war tournaments to the lanyard-making sessions, it was a time of freedom and fun and no parents. These days, finding time away from work is difficult enough, and unplugging is almost unheard of, even if you do manage to get away on vacation. But luckily, some forward-thinking folks have recently launched adult summer camps, complete with outdoorsy activities, great food and, of course, a little booze to help make things even more enjoyable. If you’re itching to get out into nature and have some good old-fashioned fun, visit one of these adult summer camps and get your fix of s’mores and capture the flag.
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The first of its kind, Club Getaway began hosting adult summer camp sessions in 1976. A generation later, the Kent, Connecticut, retreat is still going strong with rustic-chic, air-conditioned cabins, elaborate buffets, daily cookouts, and a slew of activities that range from yoga to rock climbing to water skiing. Club Getaway is especially known for its boisterous nightlife scene that kicks off with a live music and frozen Margarita happy hour. Slap cup and beer pong are always options at beer garden karaoke, and epically themed DJ dance parties—think prom, silent disco and ‘80s night—go down at The Boathouse Club. Save some energy for a nightcap and s’mores by the late night campfire.
No matter where you live in the United States or Canada, there’s bound to be a Camp No Counselors weekend happening near you. The company partners with the most beautiful summer camps across North America to bring weekend revelers comfy beds, delicious meals and plenty of activities to keep them busy. A typical day is filled with both classic and modern pastimes like archery, dodgeball, tie-dying and zip-lining, with a special afternoon block dedicated to napping and relaxing. When was the last time you set aside an entire afternoon for napping? At breakfast, campers enjoy unlimited Mimosas and Bloody Marys, while lunchtime brings with it a custom Margarita bar. Once happy hour starts at 6:30 p.m., Camp No Counselors offers a full open bar, which lasts through dinner and into the nightly theme party.
If you’re turned off by the LED lights and ultra-boozy vibes of some modern adult summer retreats, then Camp Bonfire in Greeley, PA is for you. Yes, there is beer by the campfire and awesome dance parties, but the camp is more focused on connecting with strangers and enjoying nature than it is about getting turnt 24 hours a day. The day starts before breakfast with running and yoga at 7 a.m., with a ton of fun camp activities filling out the rest of the day. Flex your crafting skills by making lanterns and kites or get moving with sports like kayaking and ultimate frisbee. There are all-camp activities like capture the flag and cabin olympics, but you’re also welcome to simply nap in a hammock if that’s what feels right. Evening festivities like a talent show, bonfire dance party and midnight cookies mark a day well spent.
Think Moonrise Kingdom come to life. This quirky adult retreat features vintage—aka “old and unimproved”—cabins on a campground in Elkhorn, Wisconsin, the former location of the Wandawega Hotel, which was constructed with secret cellars and trap doors to conceal an underground Prohibition-era speakeasy. Today, guests can book one of Camp Wandawega’s cabins through Airbnb to escape from it all—no passwords required. While there’s no food or beverage service, full kitchens and grills are provided, and there are plenty of restaurants nearby if you don’t feel like roasting wieners. Campers can partake in games like horseshoes and volleyball; water activities like swimming, boating and fishing; and even ice skating and snowmobiling in the winter. Come prepared with a few flasks full of campfire-friendly whiskey cocktails and live that Wes Anderson life.