Summer Camp

Frequently Asked Questions


My camper is 5, and during the school year attended full-day programs. Which camp should he/she attend, the full-day preschool program or the explorer camp program?

Summer CampWe currently accept 5-year-olds in both our preschool program as well as our explorer camp program, however, there are some key differences in the structure of these programs that may make one program more suitable than the other to your campers individual needs. Currently, our preschool program maintains a staff to camper ratio of 1:6 so our educators can give ample attention to campers who may still rely heavily on adult assistance for their everyday needs. In addition, a rest and quiet time is offered each afternoon and the pace of its programs is considerate of campers still transitioning to a full-day of activity, (frequent bathroom breaks included). In contrast, the explorer program is perhaps better suited to 5-year-olds that are more active and are becoming more independent in managing their daily needs. Our staff to camper ratio in the explorer program is 1:8 and campers in the explorer program also travel off-site to Taughannock Park twice a week for our swim program, where 5-year-olds may enjoy the shallow area of the swim beach under supervision of park lifeguards. The excitement of park visits, in addition to a full schedule of programs without rest time, make explorer camp a great option for energetic campers ready to tackle the full summer camp experience.

Can my child take the bus to camp?

Yes! TCAT bus service is FREE to campers. A staff member will meet your camper at Boynton Middle School (drop off at 8:20am, pick up at 4:55pm). All campers must be signed in and out every day. TCAT bus schedules are subject to change and will not run on July 4th or during the last two weeks in August. Parents intending to use this service must sign up for the bus option online at the time of registration as space is limited. Please note that the Nature Center is not responsible for delays in the bus schedule. However, we will keep you informed of any expected delays using your primary contact phone number.

Can I request my camper to be grouped with another camper?

Campers are grouped by age and maturity level. Parents may request their child be placed in the same group with a maximum of two other campers during registration. We prefer that both campers request to be grouped together and are the same age. Our staff will do its best to accommodate these group requests, however, we cannot guarantee that all requests can be honored.

Will there be food served during the day?

Campers in all programs should pack a lunch every day. We do serve an afternoon snack for all programs except in our half day Preschool Naturalists program. Daily snacks are vegetarian, gluten free and nut free. Campers with dietary restrictions are welcome to bring their own snacks.

What if my child has medical concerns or food allergies?

Our Health Director reviews all medical forms and notifies the appropriate staff of any concerns. Any daily medications must be taken at home, or self-administered by the camper under staff supervision. For nut allergies, we maintain a peanut free table in our common area and campers are not allowed to share food.

What if I need to change the week my camper is registered for?

For registration changes, please email your request to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will be happy to modify your registration, provided that the week you wish to switch into is not sold out.

What is the refund policy if I have to cancel?

If you must cancel enrollment, our refund policy is as follows:

  • If you cancel over 22 days prior to the start date of the week you are canceling enrollment for, you are entitled to a full refund.
  • If you cancel 8-22 days prior to the start date of the week you are canceling enrollment for, the Nature Center will retain half the full payment for the program.
  • If you cancel within 8 days of the start date of the week you are canceling enrollment for, or after the program has begun, there will be no refunds.

I can’t log into my online user account.

Please note that since our registration software is hosted by the ACTIVE Network, the Cayuga Nature staff cannot assist with user name or password retrieval for your account. For account help, please contact the ACTIVE Help & Support staff.

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For general questions about our camp programs, please contact our camp office
at (607) 273-6260 or email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..