Discover Your Child’s Summer Adventure
Camps at the Virginia Discovery Museum embody all that summer should be: exploration and fun! Whether your child is brand new to the camp experience or already knows the ropes, our week-long, half-day summer camps for children 4 and older provide opportunities for kids to gain confidence, make friends, and explore a range of enrichment-focused topics through creative, engaging, and hands-on learning and play experiences. Plus, campers enjoy a special playtime in the galleries each morning before the Museum opens to the public.
Details | 2022 Camps | COVID Policies | FAQs | Contact
August Camps: The Virginia Discovery Museum will operate two summer camps in August 2022 at St. Anne's-Belfield School's Belfield Campus. Registration is $350/Child per camp, and each camp has space for 24 campers. Camp times will remain the same as camps hosted at the Museum, and specific drop-off and pick-up information, as well as suggested items to pack, will be provided in the camp confirmation email.
Due to space, please limit two camps per child. The two-camp limit does NOT apply to camps hosted at STAB.
Engineer It! - CAMP FULL
June 13-17 | 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. | Location: VDM | Spots Left: 0
Ages 4-8: Have you ever thought about how to make the best pillow fort? Find the fastest way to sled down a snowy hill? Build the tallest Lego tower? If so, you might already be an engineer! Concoct, create, and construct your way through a week of magnificently mechanical fun. Don't just think it – engineer it!
Clever Creatures - CAMP FULL
June 20-24 | 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. | Location: VDM | Spots Left: 0
Ages 4-8: Sneaky snakes, copy cats, sly foxes ... ever wonder how some critters are able to sneak up on prey, stay out of trouble, or communicate with each other without people ever knowing? Explore animal tricks like camouflage and mimicry and discover how they work.
Curtain Call - CAMP FULL
June 27-July 1 | 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. | Location: VDM | Spots Left: 0
Ages 4-8: Calling all dress-uppers, joke-tellers, song-singers, face-makers, and anyone with a flair for the dramatic! Join the VDM troupe for a week on the boards as we puppeteer, mime, sing, act, and design our way to opening night. Let’s break a leg!
Presto, Rainbow! - CAMP FULL
July 11-15 | 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. | Location: VDM | Spots Left: 0
Ages 4-8: Do different animals see different colors? Why did Picasso have a Blue Period? What makes a rainbow form anyway? From prisms to paintings, explore all things color as we discover the answers to these questions and more.
Age of Exploration - CAMP FULL
July 18-22 | 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. | Location: VDM | Spots Left: 0
Ages 4-8: Exploration, invention, painting, poetry…the Renaissance had it all! Embark on an exciting adventure through history as we voyage like Magellan, invent like Leonardo, paint like Raphael, and even search the stars like Galileo.
MythQuest - CAMP FULL
July 25-29 | 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. | Location: VDM | Spots Left: 0
Ages 4-8: All aboard! Travel the globe as we discover what myths around the world have in common and what sets them apart. Re-enact popular legends, learn about the cultures from which they come, and create your own myth along the way.
Naturalists in Action
Aug. 1-5 | 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. | Location: STAB | Spots Left: 12
Ages 4-8: Why read or write about nature when you can experience it firsthand? Join us at St. Anne's-Belfield School's Belfield Campus as we hone our naturalist skills by pressing plants, collecting rocks and minerals, searching for critter tracks and snake skins, watching birds, and more.
Aug. 8-12 | 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. | Location: STAB | Spots Left: 2
Ages 4-8: Join us at St. Anne's-Belfield School's Belfield Campus as we beam aboard the starship Discovery for a wild ride through the solar system! It's mission: To explore planets, stars, rocket ships, space stations, and more. To expand imaginations out of this world. To boldly go where no campers have gone before! Plus, campers will enjoy a trip through space in VDM's StarLab pop-up planetarium.
- Campers with any of these symptoms are asked to refrain from visiting the Museum.
- All campers must wear a mask. If a camper does not have a mask, one will be provided for them.
- All parents/guardians must Check-In at the front desk before dropping off campers with a staff member.
- Nut-free lunches and labeled water bottles must be packed and placed in designated cubbies in the Museum’s coat room.
- No food, gum, or drinks are allowed in the Museum galleries, except water bottles.
Check-In & Check-Out
- 9:00-9:30 a.m.: Arrival & Check-In
- Takes place in the Museum’s front lobby area.
- All parents/guardians must sign a waiver on the first day of camp before dropping off their child(ren) with a staff member.
- Playtime is limited to the front gallery until all campers have arrived.
- 9:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.: Camp Activities & Gallery Playtime Breaks
- 12:00-12:45 p.m.: Lunch
- Campers must pack a nut-free lunch and water bottle.
- Lunch will take place outside at a designated spot near the Museum.
- In the event of inclement weather, lunch will take place inside the Creation Station camp room.
- 12:45-1:00 p.m.: Pick-Up & Check-Out.
- Parents/Guardians are asked to wait in the lobby area, and the camper will be walked up by a staff member or volunteer.
- Campers and their families may stay and play in the Museum galleries as long as they wish following the camp day, but parents/guardians must first check-out their child at the front desk so that staff knows the camper has been picked up.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will VDM be open for general admission during camps?
Yes, VDM will be open for general admission visits at 65 percent of normal capacity during camp days, but the Creation Station camp room will only be open to campers.
Who else will be in the camp room during camps?
At least one VDM staff member and between two and three volunteers will be present during every camp. All staff members and any volunteers who will be in the building have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and will be wearing masks.
How often is the Museum cleaned?
A crew will be on site daily after the Museum closes to clean and sanitize.
Registration & Waitlists
What is required to be eligible for camp?
Children must be at least 4 years old and fully independent in the bathroom by the start of camp.
What if the camp I want to participate in has filled?
All 2022 Summer Camps have a maximum capacity of 16 children. If you have an interest in a camp that is full, please contact Director of Operations Lindsay Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org or (434) 977-1025 x102 to add your child’s name to the waitlist. In the event of a cancellation, those on the waitlist will be contacted in the order their requests were received.
Does VDM offer financial assistance for camps?
In accordance with the Museum’s mission, VDM does offer scholarships for educational programs, including Summer Camps, on a limited basis. For information about applying for a scholarship, contact Director of Operations Lindsay Jones at email@example.com or (434) 977-1025 x102.
How do I apply my 10% annual member discount?
To apply this discount to camp registrations made online, you must have an active annual membership and will need to create a Website User Account and link it to your membership record by following these instructions. If you have already created a Website User Account, click the registration link for the camp you wish to register for and sign in using the link at the top of the registration page. If you need help applying your 10% discount when using our online order forms, please contact Visitor Services Manager Matt Berman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How do I set up my Website User Account?
Did I successfully link my Website User Account and membership?
Contact Visitor Services Manager Matt Berman at email@example.com, and we’ll make sure everything is all set.
Cancellations & Refunds
What is VDM’s cancellation and refund policy for camps?
A minimum of 6 campers is required for a Summer Camp to run. If a camp is canceled by the Museum due to insufficient enrollment or other extenuating circumstances, the registration fee will be refunded to all registrants.
Individual cancellations must be made at least 2 weeks before the start of the camp to be eligible for a refund. If an individual cancellation causes the camp roster to fall below the required minimum, the refund will be contingent upon the vacancy being filled. If an individual cancellation is made within two weeks of the camp or a camper exhibits any of these symptoms and cannot attend camp, a deposit of $50 will be forfeited. No refunds will be issued after a camp begins.
Drop-Off & Pick-Up
Does VDM provide food or should I pack a lunch?
Due to ongoing COVID restrictions, the Museum does not provide any food or snacks. Families are asked to pack nut-free lunches each day to help us maintain a nut-free environment for our friends with food allergies and encouraged to pack a labeled water bottle for their child(ren).
Where can I park to drop off and pick up my child?
VDM validates parking for class registrants at the Market Street Garage and Water Street Garage. Both locations provide the first hour of parking for free, and event guests receive an additional hour of free parking – for a total of two hours – when they request a validation ticket at VDM’s front desk. The Museum is also located next to the Downtown Transit Station, and Charlottesville Area Transit offers a Free Trolley that stops at the station as it travels through Downtown and the University of Virginia. Click to learn more about parking downtown or more about public bus routes and fares.
Click the icon in the upper left corner for map legend and details.
To learn more about Summer Camps, visit Camps FAQs or contact Education Manager Lara Musser at firstname.lastname@example.org or (434) 977-1025 x106. For scholarship information, contact Director of Operations Lindsay Jones at email@example.com or (434) 977-1025 x102.