Adler Planetarium

Summer Camps

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Do Science this Summer with Adler Summer Camps! 

Visit other worlds, do out of this world science and play next to Lake Michigan this summer! The Adler Planetarium offers a variety of unique summer day camp experiences for children ages 3 through 14. Young space and technology enthusiasts alike will have the opportunity to spend part of their summer exploring space, using telescopes, building rockets, seeing immersive sky shows, programming robots, exploring exhibits, launching high altitude balloons, and much, much more.

New for Adler Camps in 2015 - in partnership with the Chicago Public Library, campers will participate as a group in this summer's learning challenge as part of their camp experience.

Adler's summer camps introduce kids, teens, and tweens to doing science while engaging their creativity. Have your child participate in these unique, memorable experiences during one or more summer camps at the Adler.

Please be aware that except for PreK Camp, summer camp programming is repeated for each session. Registering for more than one session of these camps is not recommended.

Support for Adler Summer Camps is provided by the Motorola Solutions Foundation, The Cashel Foundation, and the Adler's Women's Board.   

Featured Camps for Young Scientists & Near-Space Explorers

Young Scientist Summer Program

Preschool: 3 & 4 Year Olds

Preschool age children learn about the skills of science exploration through participation in this fun, engaging summer camp designed to spark scientific curiosity.  Activities during the week-long sessions integrate circle time, hands-on investigations, free exploration, snack, art and literacy connections while introducing young children to learning in a museum. Parents can sign their child up for one session or multiple sessions; camp topics stand alone.

Monday - Friday,  9 am – 11:30 am 
Walk-in your camper 8:45 am and walk out your camper 11:30 am
1 week session - $175 / $150 for Adler members
Session 1: June 1-5, 9-11:30 am Blast Into Our Solar System
Session 2: June 8-12, 9-11:30 am The Earth Is Where I Live
Session 3: June 15-19, 9-11:30 am We're Off to the Moon
Session 4: June 22-26, 9-11:30 am The Sun and Me

For more information download our Young Scientist Summer Program FAQ.

Registration Closed

MISSION NEAR-SPACE: A Team Experience to the Edge of Space

If you choose to accept this mission, you will become part of a unique team of engineers and astronomers whose goal is to gather scientific data from near-space, 100,000 feet above the surface of the Earth.   

The week ends with a culminating event in which participants present the results of their exploration to family members.  With only 16 registrants accepted per camp, you can be sure that you will play a significant part as we explore near-space together – in an experience like no other!

Monday – Friday, 9 am - 3 pm with one extended day trip
Sign in at 8:30 am and sign out at 3 pm.
1 week session - $495/ $465 for Adler members

Learn more about MISSION NEAR SPACE

Astro Juniors, Explorers, and Investigators Camps

Survival in Space!

Do you have what it takes to survive in space? Join us for a two-day adventure as we explore the challenges humans must face when traveling, working and living in space. What do our bodies need to live? How do we protect ourselves from the dangers of space? How do we communicate? Do hands-on experiments and activities from the perspective of an astronaut, experience Planet Explorers and other exhibits, see an immersive sky show, and much more! 

Monday/Tuesday or Wednesday/Thursday,  9 am - 3 pm 
Sign in at 8:30 am and sign out at 3 pm
Two day session $155 / $130 for Adler members


Must be at least 5 years old AND entering Kindergarten by Sept 2015
Please choose one session per camper:
June 17-18
June 22-23

Registration Closed



Must be entering 1st or 2nd grade Fall 2015
Please choose one session per camper:
June 15-16
June 17-18
June 22-23
June 24-25

Registration Closed



Must be entering 3rd or 4th grade Fall 2015
Please choose one session per camper:
June 15-16
June 24-25

Registration Closed

Technology Camps

A Week of Geek!

Challenge yourself this summer!  Telescope viewing, lunch by Lake Michigan and cutting edge Sky Shows – all unique to the Adler – are the perfect setting for Tech Camp. Based on age and ability, campers will be exposed the process of designing, building, testing and redesigning as they use Lego Robotics to overcome escalating challenges. Campers will also be exposed to creative design, documentation and presentation skills through the use of Sketch-Up 3D Modeling and video recording and editing. With only 16 registrants accepted per camp, campers have the opportunity to push their science and engineering  skills to the limit as they overcome engineering and design challenges.

Much of this camp takes place in a classroom setting, so please let us know during the registration process if your camper needs any special adaptation in a classroom setting.

Monday – Friday,  9 am - 3 pm 
Sign in at 8:30 am and sign out at 3 pm
1 week session - $325 / $295 for Adler members 

Boys & Girls Tech Camp

Girls Only Tech Camp



Technology Camp 2.0


Summer Worlds Tour

Summer Camp on Chicago's Museum Campus

Summer Worlds Tour offers a week of adventures in Chicago's premier museums for children entering kindergarten through fifth grade in the fall of 2015.  Campers will explore human space survival at the Adler Planetarium, discover the power of Viking mythology, culture, and games at The Field Museum, and investigate underwater environments at the Shedd Aquarium.  Activities include investigating exhibits, hands-on activities, creating original art projects, playing learning games, and having lunch along the shore of Lake Michigan. Learn more from last year's Tour Guide.

Monday – Friday,  9 am - 3 pm 
Sign in at 8:30 am and sign out at 3 pm at the Field Museum
1 week session - $305 / $275 for Adler, Field, or Shedd members 


General Information


For additional questions, visit our Summer Camps FAQ page or email . You can also call our information only phone line for updates at 312.322.0329. For additional information, download our Summer Camps FAQ (PDF).

Camp Release Forms

Adler Camp Allergy Policy (PDF)
Adler Camp Terms and Conditions (PDF)
Adler Camp Waiver (PDF) 
Summer World Tour Allergy Policy (PDF)
Summer World Tour Terms and Conditions (PDF) 
Summer World Tour Waiver (PDF)


Registration and changes to registration can be made using our online registration software – make sure you save your email confirmation which includes a link back to your account!   

Cancellation Fees and Refunds

Cancellations made until and including May 1 will incur a 10% cancellation fee.  There will be no refund for cancellations made after May 1.

In the case of low enrollment, we may cancel a camp up to 72 hours before it is scheduled to meet.


Scholarship applications are no longer being accepted for Summer Camps 2015. We will make every effort to notify scholarship recipients by May 1st, 2015