About Stony Brook Nature Camp
Stony Brook Nature Camp is an exciting outdoor adventure for children. We strive to educate children about ecology so that they will be motivated and empowered to maintain a healthy environment for generations to come. Activities are carefully planned to meet these goals and, at the same time, create fun and memorable experiences.
Campers are encouraged to explore and appreciate the miracles and mysteries of our natural world. Through hands-on learning, they come to understand their place in nature as well as the importance of preserving it.
Our Commitment to Diversity & Inclusion
At Mass Audubon Camps, we strive to create a safe, inclusive, and caring camp environment where each person is respected and supported in their learning and growth. We believe that diversity—both in nature and in our human communities—is essential to strength, resilience, and innovation, and we are committed to recognizing the unique contributions of each community member.
To learn more about how Mass Audubon respects and embraces our campers’ and staff’s unique identities and needs, please review our Gender Inclusion at Camp policies and procedures.
Mass Audubon is committed to fostering an environment that embraces diversity and inclusion to ensure that everyone can participate fully in the magic of our nature programs. As an outdoor, nature-based program, it is important that families of children who have disabilities understand Mass Audubon’s expectations, programs, and terrain prior to enrolling.
If your child requires accommodations, please contact the camp director as soon as possible; a delay in request could have the unintended consequence of disrupting your child’s Mass Audubon camp experience.
Due to the outdoor and exploratory nature of our camp program, campers will be moving on uneven terrain throughout the day. The terrain at our sites varies from hard-packed, gently sloped paths to steeper, uneven trails that may have exposed rocks, tree roots, and other obstacles. Additionally, weather conditions could affect our trails’ conditions.
We encourage all families to visit the sanctuary prior to enrolling to understand its unique terrain.
A Day at Camp
No two days at Stony Brook Nature Camp are alike! However, this sample schedule gives you an overview of daily activities and flow.
Before Camp Program (optional)
Camper Drop-off & Games
Counselors welcome their campers, remind them of where to put their backpacks and lunchboxes, and help them to decide which activity to try during this supervised, free-choice time. Campers can choose from active games, coloring or drawing, playing in Stony Brook’s Nature Play Area, or simply hanging out with friends.
Opening Circle & Songs
The whole camp joins together to learn about what special activities await them and sing silly camp songs. The first clues to the day’s Nature Riddle are given, and the Mystery Object of the Day is unveiled.
Activities, Exploration, & Hikes
Campers explore the sanctuary’s trails and habitats as they learn more about the week’s theme. Activities that engage and deepen learning may include catching insects in the pond, looking for frogs and turtles, building a model of a stream, and arts and crafts projects. We even find time to include camper favorites such as making prehistoric dragonflies and playing the game Camouflage.
Lunch & Free Play
Campers enjoy lunch and participate in unstructured activities such as visiting the sanctuary’s butterfly garden, playing table games, and/or participating in a game of tag!
|Afternoon Explorations, Hikes, & Games
|3:15 pm–3:30 pm
Closing Circle & Songs
The whole camp joins together and the final clue to the day’s Nature Riddle is given. Campers take turns making guesses before the answer is revealed. They also find out what the day’s Mystery Object is. We then pass around the camp mascot, Boris the Bullfrog, and learn about each camper’s favorite part of the day before ending with a silly camp song!
|3:30 pm–5:00 pm
After Camp Program (optional)
Stony Brook's camp staff are passionate about sharing the joy and excitement of the outdoors with campers. Year after year, we receive exceptional feedback about our counselors’ creativity and enthusiasm. Staff members are carefully selected for their maturity, caring attitude towards children, and outdoor education and leadership experience. All staff undergo background checks, are certified in CPR and first aid, and receive training in health and safety procedures, child development, natural history, and environmental education best practices.
Marla Cohen (she/her/hers) joined the Mass Audubon family in 1997 and became Stony Brook’s Camp Director and Education Coordinator in 2001. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Zoology from Ohio University. Outside of camp, Marla spends her time developing and teaching nature programming for local schools, scouts, and families.
The Camp Handbook packet contains important information for families, including drop-off and pick-up instructions, health and safety procedures, packing lists, and more. Please be sure to read this prior to the start of your camper’s first session.
The 2024 camp handbook will be available soon.
Our camp complies with the regulations of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (105 CMR 430) and is licensed by the Norfolk Board of Health.
We are proud to be accredited by the American Camp Association, a nationally recognized program focused on program quality, safety, and management.
Camp Policy Requests
You may request copies of our background check, health care, discipline, bullying, and grievance policies at any time.