A Drive Away from the Everyday 

 

Located in the beautiful foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains of West Virginia, Camp Tall Timbers provides a summer getaway where boys and girls ages 7-16 can come to unwind, enjoy the great outdoors, and make new friends along the way. Our camp experience promotes independence, socialization, skill-building, confidence, creativity, and self-discovery in a safe and nurturing environment. We are proud of the fact that families across the country entrust us to take care of their children and provide them with this experience. We work hard to have a national presence, but we are especially proud to have become a top summer destination for campers from Mid-Atlantic states. Exploring A drive away from the everyday, we wanted to take a look at a few of the benefits that families in the region stand to gain from sending their kids to a sleep away camp near home. 

Easy access grants peace of mind 

Camp Tall Timbers is a convenient drive from Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Washington DC, and Dulles Airport. Our convenient location makes camp a breeze to get to and that accessibility is a major benefit for our families on many levels. For starters, it cuts down on drive time making the trip to and from camp each year as easy as possible on our campers— with a scenic drive along the way to boot! We also find that our accessibility gives our campers and families the peace of mind to be able to enjoy a worry-free summer. One of the greatest benefits sleep away camp provides is the restored sense of independence that it instills in a young child being away from home. Becoming more independent is an extremely important part of every child’s life journey. As liberating as it is to be off on their own for the summer, it can be stressful for younger children at the same time. At Camp Tall Timbers, we provide our Mid-Atlantic campers with a taste of true independence without having them feel like they are completely out on their own. In the case of an emergency, campers and parents could still be together within a few hours drive— Not that we ever anticipate emergency situations, but then again who does. It is a fine line to tow, but the goal is to let the campers feel like they are off on their own in the camp bubble, while also knowing that there is a safety net to fall back on should an issue arise. Our central location gives Camp Tall Timbers the perfect happy medium of the two, so that parents and campers in the DMV and greater Mid-Atlantic region can enjoy their summers apart without worry. Our location is also great for the pocketbook compared to the travel costs some families run into when forced to use planes, trains, and buses to get their children to their final destination. Being a drive away saves money getting to and from camp at the bookends of each session, plus additional trips for family weekends or other parental visits. 

Friendships that last 

Camp is also not just about any one camper; it is a social experience. Camp provides kids with chances to make new friendships that can last a lifetime, and we think those bonds are even stronger when we are able to pull campers from such similar areas around the Mid-Atlantic. Campers from the same areas arrive on day 1 already sharing common-ground, and these shared experiences make it easier to bond and form friendships. For some, it could be a love of the same sports team. For others, long days and weekend trips spent at their favorite destinations like Hershey Park or Shenandoah Valley. Even down to a shared love for cracking crabs and spending time out on the Chesapeake, we see every summer how these little connections can go a long way building social relationships between campers. 

We care about our campers, and we want their camp connections to be meaningful. The best friendships are the ones that carry on even after the sessions have ended, which is why it is such a big plus for our campers when they make friends who are from the same areas as they are. It allows them to be together year-round, linking up in the winter and spring months for fun events like camp reunions, weekend trips, and birthday parties. Even after their time at Camp Tall Timbers comes to an end, we still see our campers staying in touch and finding ways to meet up with other camp alums in their area.  

Nestled in the scenic heart of Hampshire County, Camp Tall Timbers provides our camp families with an accessible drive away from the everyday. If you are a parent in the Mid-Atlantic region looking for a sleepaway camp that near by, where your child can make lasting memories and lifelong friendships, look no further than Camp Tall Timbers. Visit our Summer Sessions page to learn more about our rates and dates for this upcoming summer. 

 

Don’t Sleep on Sleep Away Camp


For many who attend, overnight summer camps are an unforgettable experience full of personal growth and lasting memories. Activities from zip lining to rock climbing give the kids a unique opportunity to branch out from their comfort zones, while the bunk lifestyle brings campers together to forge lasting friendships. Many parents don’t realize that registration is already open, with spots filling up fast. While we do encourage our parents to sign up before rates increase, we also understand that some families need more information to know if sleep away camp is the right fit for their children. 

How Camp Can Help Your Child 

It’s not all just fun and games. Dr. Peter Scales received his PhD in Child and Family Studies in 1976 from the University of Syracuse. Since then, he has distinguished himself as an author, educator, and field expert when it comes to developmental psychology. According to the American Camp Association, Dr. Scales believes that “camps are one of the few institutions where young people can experience and satisfy their need for physical activity, creative expression and true participation in a community environment. [They] help young people discover and explore their talents, interests, and values. Most schools don’t satisfy all these needs. Kids who have had these kinds of experiences end up being healthier and have less problems”. Some of the obvious reasons why camp supports these developmental needs— which are not fully satisfied by the current educational system— include fresh air, increased exercise, and an emphasis on personal interactions rather than technology and screen time. Additionally, the structured days are designed to balance routine activities with free time blocks, which teaches campers about effective time management. Children who acquire all these things through progressive experience will be better prepared for adulthood and are shown to be healthier overall. Family therapist Dr. Michael Popkin has also commented on the importance of sleep away camps for kids, stating that one of overnight summer camp’s greatest benefits is that it empowers young people to find and cultivate their interests, values, and talents. It comes at no surprise that children are more prepared for adult life based on their camp experiences. Sleep away camp shows campers how to take care of themselves and manage their lives independently from their parents early on, compared to some other kids who do not learn to be self-sufficient until much later on in life. Not only does camp teach children these life skills, but it also builds their confidence in their abilities through experiential learning. 

Camp Tall Timbers Adapts with the Times 

Clearly there are plenty of developmental benefits to sleep away camp, however the COVID 19 pandemic has forced many families to question if the benefits outweigh the risks. Camp Tall Timbers has the solution! In the summer of 2021, we were one of the few overnight summer camps to welcome campers without a single case of COVID-19. Our Director, Glenn Smith, created a safe bubble environment by implementing thorough safety precautions designed to protect Camp Tall Timbers’ campers, staff, and families. You can see a full rundown of Glenn’s COVID Safety Plan here. These precautionary steps allowed us to run sessions that were safe without sacrificing any of the authenticity that make camp so special. We are thrilled that the 2021 summer sessions were so well received, and we can’t wait to build on that success for an even better experience in 2022!

Onward and Forward!

Do you want to learn more about how your child could have this experience? Looking ahead, Camp Tall Timbers is running bigger and better sessions in 2022, while still focusing on safety as a top priority. As part of that mission, the Tall Timbers family wants everyone interested to be able to have a taste of the camp experience for themselves, right from the comfort and safety of their own homes. Sign up today to partake in our virtual open house and see if overnight summer camp is the right choice for your happy camper.

Third Session, The Fun Continues…


Good evening from Third Session at Camp Tall Timbers! Today all the new campers arrived, and it was an exciting day for everyone. Campers were reunited with friends from previous years and began to make new friends with those who haven’t been part of the CTT family before.

We started the day with lunch followed by a short rest hour. The rest hour was spent unpacking and arranging the campers’ belongings as well as chatting away with their cabin friends. The bell then rang at 2.30pm for the afternoon activity – Clue. Joey had been murdered, found by Casey and we needed to find the culprit!
We met at the pavilion for a debrief of the situation and then each cabin went around in groups, some cabins teaming up – Cabins A and F together as well as Cabins 3 and 5, and Cabin 7 with Boys’ Tents (double trouble!). The campers had to go to several activities and try and get some clues as a reward for their hard work. We had stations at the pool, the gym mats and tennis, to name a few. Cabin 8 were the fastest team to undo a human knot at the gym mats with a score of 0.19 seconds (crazy), compared to Girls’ Tents that took just over 7 minutes.
The activity went on for a couple of hours before we were all back at the pavilion to see which team had found the clues and solved the crime!
Once the game was over we had time for free swim before our first camp dinner of this session: lasagna, calzones and garlic bread – It was a winner!
The day ended with a campfire for our introductory evening activity. Each cabin worked together to create a skit about a bear from Timber Ridge breaking in and stealing all of Bill’s food. But, there was a twist – everything had to be sung! It was a song skit, and it was highly amusing. Girls’ Tents took to the floor and did a version of ‘We are Boys’ Tents’, but ‘We are Girls’ Tents’ and presented their story of the bears being caught. Cabin F went with a Goldilocks theme with Ashlyn narrating (singing) the synopsis. It was very funny. However, Cabin A won the best skit for their performance featuring a lot of choral singing led by Dani and Sydney.
Everyone then sung a couple of songs together – Country Roads being a campfire classic and Wonderwall, before making our s’mores and heading to bed with big smiles on the campers’ faces. We can tell already that Third session will definitely be a blast!

First Day of Camp

The first full day at camp began with dippies to get the session started but it only featured some of boys’ side today (Girls are clearly preferring the sleepies option already). We’re sure this will change as the session goes on! At breakfast, all campers were handed their schedules for the next two weeks and were all very excited to see what each activity entailed and who they were going to be with.

Boys League and Girl Power Hour were first so all the boys headed to the baseball field and the girls to the gym. Two different activities were led for the boys – ultimate frisbee and kickball which offered the boys a chance to choose what they wanted to do within the class. It was a great success and allowed the campers in different cabins to begin integrating with one another and start to make fantastic memories.

Girls Power Hour focused on teaching the girls the way of ‘Girl Side’. They were taught a few of the songs and chants that are carried out at lunch time such as the ‘Girl side, what is your profession?’, the ‘Girl side synchronized cheer’ and the ‘Build me up buttercup’ song and movement. The returning campers were quick to lead the way with teaching the newer campers. It was a great experience for all involved!

Lunch time followed free swim after periods 1 and 2 and of course as it was Grilled Cheese Monday! It always goes down a treat!

The evening activity was a classic – Gold Rush. The camp was split into six different teams and competed to answer clues (riddles) the fastest and obtain the most amounts of gold. Some were harder than others ‘Look out for the Tiger in the Woods’ (Golf hill) and ‘Watch out for the Green Goblin’ (Spiders web) whereas others were a bit easier to understand ‘Find magic wherever you look, sit back, relax, all you need is a book’ (The radio room library). The teams had to figure out the clues and find where the gold was stashed. The first team that solved the riddle got to choose from the five piles of rocks and take it with them. The sixth team to figure the answer were left without any gold. The piles of gold were all weighted differently so it was a race to each pile to see who could get the best pick and the hopefully the heaviest amount. The winning team was the team whose gold weighed the most at the end.

What made it exciting was the magic rocks that teams could find. If a team found the blue rock they could freeze another team and take their gold and exchange it for theirs, if they believed the other teams gold weighed more. The emerald rock was the best though, if a team found this they kept it and it doubled the weight of their gold at the end so it was a great secret weapon!

Everyone had a great time solving the clues and finding the gold scattered around the camp – it really was a rush for gold! Trevor’s team came out on top (again?!). He was accompanied by: INSERT NAMES and they were the first to get their canteen before heading to bed no doubt exhausted from a fun filled first day of activities and adventures.