Summer Camp

Overview

SUMMER CAMP 2020

Dive into Summer Camp fun!

Summer Camp Dates: June 22nd- August 14th

Summer Camps will run in 2020!

COVID-19 Policies

The health and safety of our campers, staff, and volunteers is and always has been of utmost importance to the Ocean Institute. In light of the recent COVID-19 pandemic, we are constantly monitoring the status of Orange County’s public health and making decisions related to our camp programs based on the most up-to-date and scientific information from the Centers for Disease Control and the OC Department of Health. To ensure the health, safety, and well-being of all our campers, staff, and volunteers, we have modified camp protocols to be aligned with best health practices:

Drop Off & Pick Up

Drop off and pick-up times will be staggered between 8:45am – 9:30am and 3:45pm – 4:30pm. Pick up and drop off times will be confirmed when camps are booked. 

In order to minimize the number of persons on our property, campers will be registered and dropped off curbside at the Ocean Institute front entrance. OI staff  will greet and escort campers to the appropriate camp group. 

The same process will be followed for check-out at the end of each day. Parents/caregivers will show their identification and sign out their children, and OI staff will escort each child directly from the camp to their car. 

Camp Group Size

Under these modified protocols, each camp group will have a maximum of 10 campers for the entire week. Camp groups may also include a support staff member or volunteer if needed.

Hygiene Practices

Staff First Aid kits will now include extra masks, hand sanitizer, gloves etc. Campers must apply their own sunscreen throughout the day. Please make sure your child is wearing sunscreen before arrival at the Ocean Institute in the morning.

All campers must be completely proficient in restroom procedures – staff will not be permitted to help with any part of the process, including hand-washing. Restrooms will be disinfected between use.

Increased Sanitation Practices

Ocean Institute staff will be increasing the sanitation of our public use surfaces such as door handles, restrooms, etc. These areas will be disinfected at before camp, after camp, and frequently throughout the day. Campers will wash their hands after every activity and hand sanitizer will be readily available at hand washing stations throughout the facility. Every camp group will have its own dedicated materials, (such as crafts, games, supplies, etc). Materials will be sanitized between each use and will not be shared with other camp groups. 

Physical Distancing

While it is unrealistic to expect children to maintain six feet of distance from each other at all times during the camp day, we will be doing what we can to maintain physical distancing. 

Activities, games, and crafts will be developed with physical distancing in mind. 

Face masks: Child(ren) are required to have a face mask and encouraged to wear it as much as possible, especially at drop-off, pick-up, and group focused activities etc. Masks must be washed or replaced daily. 

If you do not see your questions answered on this page, feel free to call us at (949) 496-2274 and ask for the Summer Camp Team Leader.

Summer Camp payments are non-refundable. Refunds will only be given if Ocean Institute cancels the program. 

To register for summer camps, click on the name of the camp you would like to register for on the left side of this page!

• Extended care is available for most week-long camps!

* Only Sea Star, Mariner, Sealife Sponsor and Ocean Advocate membership levels are eligible for the Summer Camp Member Discount.

For additional questions, please see our Summer Camp FAQs link on the right side of this page.

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Sea Squirts

This camp brings to life some of the largest and tiniest animals in the sea! Each day a song introduces the theme for the day’s activities with highlights including daily crafts, exploring Ocean Institute’s many animals., and a hunt for treasure!

Sea Squirts is for campers age 5-6 years old (Must be 5 by Sept. 1, 2020)

This is a half-day camp from 9am – 12pm. ONLY before care is available for the half-day option.

NEW !

Sea Squirts Full Day add on option!

Pick up at 4:00 pm

BEFORE and AFTER CARE available

Ocean Institute is offering a full day add on for our most popular camp, Sea Squirts!  

After lunch, there will be rest and relaxation time to prepare for the fun-filled afternoon. Campers will participate in STEAM activities/crafts, storytelling, and campus adventures will take place based on the animals they are learning about each day. ”

To select this option click “FULL DAY ADD ON” during check out. 

To add before and aftercare please select as an “add-on” during check out

COVID-19 Summer Camp Policies

Sessions

Session 1 (June 22-26)
Session 2 (July 6-10)
Session 3 (July 13-17)
Session 4 (July 20-25)
Session 5 (July 27-31)
Session 6 (August 3-7)
Session 7 (August 10-14)

Please ensure your browser is Chrome, FireFox, or Safari, with popup blocker turned off. Internet Explore does not work for registration.

Summer Camp payments are non-refundable. Refunds will only be given if camp is canceled. 

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Neptune’s Mysteries

Become a scientific investigator to unravel the mysteries of the ecosystems right here in Dana Point! Using scientific tools and techniques, you will study a new case each day: Why is Becky the Blue Whale so far from home? Who tried to eat Marcus Mackerel? How will we find Kelsey Crab’s home? To more closely examine our clues, we will embark on a marine mammal cruise aboard the RVSE and hike through the Dana Point MPA. Come join us for a fun-filled week of puzzles, ocean-themed crafts, and learning about our local marine plants and animals! 

Neptune’s Mysteries is a full-day camp for campers age 6-7 years old (Must be 6 by Sept. 1, 2020).

COVID-19 Summer Camp Policies

Sessions

This camp is currently at capacity. Waitlist option is available. 
Session 1 (June 22-26)
Session 2 (July 6-10)
Session 3 (July 13-17)
Session 4 (July 20-25)
Session 5 (July 27-31)
Session 6 (August 3-7)
Session 7 (August 10-14)

Please ensure your browser is Chrome, FireFox, or Safari, with popup blocker turned off. Internet Explore does not work for registration.

Summer Camp payments are non-refundable. Refunds will only be given if camp is canceled. 

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Buccaneer Adventure Camp

Set a course for adventure to discover the life of pirates! Learn hte ropes to survive at sea with dockside activities on our historic tall ship, The Spirit of Dana Point, before venturing out on the open ocean aboard the R/V Sea Explorer in search of sea creatures. Program highlights include learning lost mariner arts like sail handling, rowing, storytelling, and a ‘Dress like a Pirate Day” complete with a visit from Captain Greybeard.  

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Ocean Discovery

What adaptations help animals survive in their habitats? What does it take to care for sea creatures? What does the inside of a squid look like? Find out the answers to these questions and more in a summer camp all about the ocean. Help take care of our aquariums by designing an aquarium tool. Dissect a squid to discover adaptations and anatomy. Pilot a Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV) to search the deep ocean. Explore animal habitats and ecosystems through hands-on science labs, a two-hour whale watch aboard the R/V Sea Explorer, a tidepooling exploration in the Dana Point Marine Protected Area, and a sailing trip aboard the historic Spirit of Dana Point.

Ocean Discovery is a full-day camp for campers age 8-9 years old (Must be 8 by Sept. 1, 2020).

COVID-19 Summer Camp Policies

Sessions

This camp is currently at capacity. Waitlist option is available. 
Session 1 (June 22-26)
Session 2 (July 6-10)
Session 3 (July 13-17)
Session 4 (July 20-25)
Session 5 (July 27-31)
Session 7 (August 10-14)

Please ensure your browser is Chrome, FireFox, or Safari, with popup blocker turned off. Internet Explore does not work for registration.

Summer Camp payments are non-refundable. Refunds will only be given if camp is canceled. 

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Coastal Explorers

Discover the unique coastline of Dana Point in this activity-packed camp! Study the science of the surf zone and coast in our hands-on labs and aboard the R/V Sea Explorer. We will investigate human impacts on the ocean and environment. This camp includes a day cruising along the coastline searching for Blue whales and collecting samples, catch and release fishing, kayaking in Dana Point Harbor, and exploring the tide pools in the Marine Conservation Area.

Coastal Explorers is a full-day camp for campers age 10-12 years old (Must be 10 by Sept. 1, 2020). 

COVID-19 Summer Camp Policies

Sessions

This camp is currently at capacity. Waitlist option is available. 
Session 2 (July 6-10)
Session 4 (July 20-25)
Session 5 (July 27-31)
Session 6 (August 3-7)
Session 7 (August 10-14)

Please ensure your browser is Chrome, FireFox, or Safari, with popup blocker turned off. Internet Explore does not work for registration.

Summer Camp payments are non-refundable. Refunds will only be given if camp is canceled. 

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Marine Science Careers + Internship Academy

This week-long program introduces you to intertidal ecology, animal husbandry, labratory investigations, and shipboard research to spark interest in a career in marine science. Program highlights include a sail on the Spirit of Dana Point, 4-hour research cruise aboard the R/V Sea Explorer, creating and conducting a research project in the Dana Point Marine Conservation Area, and leadership and team building activities. 

Successful program graduates may apply to intern at Ocean Institute.

You MUST apply for admission to this program and provide two letters of recommendation. 

Marine Science Careers + Internship Academy (MSCIA) is a full-day camp for campers age 14-17 years old (Must be 14 by Sept. 1, 2020).

You MUST submit an application for this program and provide two letters of recommendation to be considered.

COVID-19 Summer Camp Policies

Session

This camp is currently at capacity. Waitlist option is available. 
Session 3 (July 13-17)

Please ensure your browser is Chrome, FireFox, or Safari, with popup blocker turned off. Internet Explore does not work for registration.

Summer Camp payments are non-refundable. Refunds will only be given if camp is canceled.