We believe that kids should have independent experiences, away from home and family. We live in an age where kids are supervised and scheduled almost all the time. Not so long ago, kids were told to play outside and come home by dinner starting at an age of 8 to 10. They played outside, with each other, often in the outdoors, totally unsupervised, for hours. That’s not the reality for most kids today, and some of that is to the good. Kids are almost certainly safer than they were in those days.
But we’ve lost something too. Those formative experiences, playing unsupervised, were practice for the greater freedoms that come with car keys and college dorm rooms later in a young person’s life. Even though the days of unsupervised play are over for most kids, we believe parents need to seek out independent experiences to fill that void in today’s kids’ lives, and sleepaway camp can be that thing.
We believe in a four-week camp experience. Longer term camps are more common in other parts of the country, but on the West Coast, they’re rare. While shorter term camps can be great (after all, we offer one in our Junior Session), they tend to emphasize fun, activities, and having a successful experience away from home. The magic that you’ll read about all over this website, and that you’ll hear about if you talk with Four Winds campers, staff, or alumni, takes time to build. In four weeks, there is time for a slower pace, for ups and downs, to make a friend, have a fight, and make up again. Four weeks allows for a far greater impact, so we stick with it.