Kids Summer Camps

A group of Adler summer campers playing in the "Planet Explorers" exhibition.

Do Science This Summer at Adler Summer Camps!

Your campers won’t ride any horses or capture any flags at the Adler, but they will have the whole Universe at their fingertips. With tools like telescopes, programmable robots, and high-altitude balloons—and new friends around every corner—Adler summer campers share adventures of cosmic proportions. Looking for camps for teens? Check out our Teen Summer Camp offerings!

The Adler Planetarium offers a variety of unique summer day-camp experiences for campers entering preschool through 9th grade. Young space and technology enthusiasts can use their imaginations, get creative, and explore their Universe together just like scientists do.

Registration is now open!

Register For Summer Camps

Astro Camps

Astro Half-Day Camps (Ages 3-5)

Preschool-aged children learn about the skills of scientific 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.

Is my child ready for camp? Reference this document to find out.

Camp Length

½ day, full week sessions
Monday–Friday, 9:00–11:30 am
Sign in begins at 8:45 am and sign out ends at 11:45 am.

2020 Dates

July 6-10
July 13-17
July 20-24
July 27-31

2020 Pricing

General Public: $185
Members (Family Plus or Above): $160

Astro Full-Day Camps (Entering Grades 1-4)

Do you have what it takes to travel through space? Join us as we explore the engineering 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 exhibitions, see an immersive skyshow, and much more!

Camp Length

Full week sessions
Monday-Friday, 9:00 am–3:00 pm
Sign in starts at 8:30 am and sign out is at 3:00 pm.

2020 Dates

June 22-26
June 29 – July 2* (Prorated 4-day session)
July 6-10
July 13-17
July 20-24
July 27-31
August 3-7

2020 Pricing

General Public: $335 per session / $268 prorated week
Members (Family & Friends and above): $310 per session / $243 prorated week

Full STEAM Ahead Camps

Astro-botics Camp (Entering Grades 4-5)

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 Astro-botics. Based on age and ability, campers will be exposed to the process of designing, building, testing and redesigning as they use multiple types of robotics to overcome escalating challenges. They’ll make connections between the robotic programming they’ve learned and the many types of robotics used in space exploration. Astro-botics is collaborative in nature; campers will work together in pairs or small groups to conquer each robotics challenge.

Camp Length

Full week sessions
Monday–Friday, 9:00 am–3:00 pm
Sign in starts at 8:30 am and sign out is at 3:00 pm.

2020 Dates

June 22-26 (4th & 5th) – SOLD OUT!
July 6-10 (4th & 5th) – SOLD OUT!
July 20-24 (4th & 5th)
August 3-7 (4th & 5th)

For 6th & 7th grade Astro-botics sessions, check out our teen Summer Camps.

2020 Pricing

$345 for Astro-botics / $276 prorated week

General Public: $345 per session / $276 prorated week
Members (Family Plus or Above): $320 per session / $251 prorated week

Skyshow Camp (Entering Grades 6)

You’ve seen the amazing sky shows the Adler has to offer, now you can make one! In the course of one week, campers will work in teams of four to create skyshows, from storyboarding through presenting on the dome of the Grainger Sky Theater. Campers will work with Adler’s visualization, show production, and theater experts throughout the week. The week will wrap with a showcase as campers present their shows to their families.

Camp Length

Full week sessions
Monday–Friday, 9:00 am–3:00 pm
Sign in starts at 8:30 am and sign out is at 3:00 pm.

2020 Dates

July 27-31*

*Note that Skyshow camp is for kids entering 6th-8th grade.

2020 Pricing

General Public: $345
Members (Family Plus or Above): $320

Mission Near Space Camp (Entering Grades 6)

If you choose to accept this mission, you will become part of a unique team of engineers and astronomers whose goal is to prepare, launch, track, and retrieve a scientific payload sent to the stratosphere aboard a high altitude balloon. The week ends with a showcase in which participants present their exploration results to family members.

Camp Length

Full week session including a balloon launch field experience
Monday–Friday, 9:00 am–3:00 pm with one extended day trip
Sign in starts at 8:30 am and sign out is at 3:00 pm.

2020 Dates

June 22-26
July 6-10

For 7th through 9th grade sessions, check out our teen Summer Camps.

2020 Pricing

General Public: $440
Members (Family Plus or Above): $415

Date and length of the extended day trip is determined by weather conditions. Details will be given by Tuesday morning of your camp week.

After Care - New For 2020!

After Care FAQ

We are delighted to announce that After Care will be available for full-day* campers, including Astro-Full Day, Astro-botics, Skyshow, and Mission Near Space. After Care campers will have the option to read, create artwork, play games, watch relevant and age-appropriate movies, explore the museum, or participate in other free-choice activities. After Care content will be connected to space science, but will be more relaxed in nature. After a busy day at camp, After Campers will need a chance to relax a bit!

After Care capacity is limited, available on a first-come, first-served basis, and is offered as a weekly, flat-rate session from 3:00 to 5:30 pm. (Note that we are not able to accommodate drop-in or daily rates.) Once you sign your child up for a camp session, you’ll have the option to select After Care before check out.

Pricing

$100/week per child
*June 28 – July 2: $80 per child (prorated week due to holiday)

Register For After Care

All campers must be signed out by 5:30 pm. There is a $5 charge for every five minutes after 5:30 pm, to be paid before the child is signed in the next day. Chronic lateness may result in the camper being dropped from the After Care program without a refund.

Forget to register your child for After Care? Please message us at sumercamp@adlerplanetarium.org and we would be happy to assist you.

*After Care is not available for Astro-Half Day camps.

Adler Summer Camp FAQS

Registration

Registration is now open.

Register For Summer Camps
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.

The Adler may cancel a camp due to low enrollment up to 72 hours before it is scheduled to meet. In these (rare) cases, full refunds will be issued to all registrants.

Scholarships

Thank you for your interest in summer camp scholarships. The 2020 application period ended at noon on February 28. Late applications cannot be accepted at this time.

Every effort will be made to notify applicants via email as to their status by March 16. We appreciate your patience as we give each application careful consideration.

Camp Programming

Please note that summer camp programming is repeated each session. Each type of camp will have the same curriculum each time it is offered. Registering for more than one session of the same camp program is not recommended. However, if your young child benefits from repetition, you are welcome to register for multiple sessions of the half-day Astro Camps.

For additional questions, check our 2020 Summer Camp FAQ, email us at summercamp@adlerplanetarium.org, or call 312.322.0329.

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