Programs and Camps


Registration is now open for our Outdoor Education Camp Series

As part of Lake Paran’s mission to provide outdoor recreation and education to Bennington area families, we are planning for a summer-long camp series in partnership with the Fund for North Bennington and Friends of Hiland Hall Gardens. We will offer week-long day camp sessions pertaining to the ecosystems, history, and natural resources surrounding your community-run non-profit, Lake Paran and North Bennington beyond. Each afternoon, we will walk over to the Hiland Hall Gardens to learn about local food and gardening! While each week is targeted for specific school-age ranges, if childcare is needed for a child whose age does not align with that week’s specification, we can accommodate your family’s needs on an individual basis. We can also offer before and aftercare as needed.
For questions or accommodations please email: lakeparanvista@gmail.com

COVID-19 Update:  We are following protocols from the Governor’s Office and the Vermont Department of Health to ensure the health and safety of your children and are updating you on those exact measures before the summer programs begin.  
Given the small group sizes of 12 and under, vast 4+ acres of play, and as much outdoor time as possible, we are confident that the summer will be a safe and wonderful experience for your children!


Pricing is as follows: 
$200 for the week
We strive to host inclusive, accessible events that enable all individuals to attend our programs. If you would like to enroll but cannot afford registration costs, sliding scale scholarships are available.  Please check the box at the time of registration and we will contact you for assistance.

Summer Recreation in the Great Outdoors: June 21-25, 9am-3pm
    Ages: 8-12
Get outside and break free of school-blues by engaging in the great outdoors at Lake Paran. Join us for a general recreation camp where we will hike the trails around the Lake, swim, fish and boat, and play games on our volleyball court. It will be a fun-filled camp to begin the summer being active outside. A live animal demonstration featuring the Southern Vermont Natural History Museum will take place.

Into the Woods: I June 28-July 2, 9am-3pm
Ages: 5-7
    Grab your nature journals, butterfly nets, and magnifying glasses, we will be exploring the forests, meadows, and marshes surrounding Lake Paran. Participants will transform into nature explorers while enjoying trail adventures and detecting native animals and plants who make their homes at Lake Paran. While this is a terrestrial exploration camp, plenty of swimming will be taking place as well.A live animal demonstration featuring the Southern Vermont Natural History Museum will take place.

Into the Woods: II July 5-9, 9am-3pm
Ages: 8-12
    Grab your nature journals, dip nets, and magnifying glasses, we will be exploring the forests, meadows, and marshes surrounding Lake Paran. Participants will transform into nature explorers while enjoying trail adventures and identifying native animals and plants whose habitat is Lake Paran. While this is a terrestrial exploration camp, plenty of swimming will be taking place as well.A live animal demonstration featuring the Southern Vermont Natural History Museum will take place.

FULL Water Exploration: I July 19-23rd, 9am-3pm
        Ages 5-7
    Get to know the waters that make up the lake we love, Lake Paran. From looking for creatures underneath rocks, using nets to catch minnows, to exploring the streams that lead into the lake, our feet will constantly be wet this week as we take a dive into the hidden wonders of life beneath the water’s surface.

Water Exploration: II July 26-30th, 9am-3pm
        Ages 8-12
    Get to know the waters that make up the lake we love, Lake Paran. From fishing, to dip netting for creatures, and the occasional canoe ride, our feet will constantly be wet this week as we take a deep dive into the hidden wonders of life beneath the water’s surface. A live animal demonstration featuring Vermont Institute of Natural Science will take place.

FULL Fun with Farm to Table: August 2-6th, 9am-3pm 
Ages 6-12
Where does our food come from, how do we make delicious salsa from the tomatoes that we harvested over the summer? Get up close and personal with fresh fruits and vegetables grown locally from community gardens and our own pollinator pots. Learn simple recipes like turning basil into yummy pesto, and raw berries into delicious jam while learning about the in’s and out’s of the local food system and helping grow a pollinator garden! And while we will not encourage swimming directly after eating the foods we prepare, there will be time to swim as well!

7. Sustainability Stewards: August 9th-13th, 9am-3pm,
Ages 5-12
How is climate change affecting North Bennington, how can we learn to be caretakers of our local environment? From sustainability practices, to learning to be advocates for the environment, campers will gain literacy in climate education along with swimming, camp games, and gardening!

8. Deep Dive into Lake Paran and Beyond: August 16th-20th, 9am-3pm Ages 5-12
What plants, animals, and aquatic species make up our neighbors at Lake Paran and North Bennington beyond? Besides ecological resources, campers will dive into Lake Paran and North Bennington sites from Hiland Hall Gardens, to the Robert Frost Trail, and the new North Bennington pollinator trail that make our community so unique! Get ready to dive deep into our community and the lake during this camp.

For all of our programs and camps our mission is to immerse participants in:

  • Paran’s natural environment from the lake ecosystem to the plants and animals who make their habitat at Lake Paran
  • Lessons in conservation management techniques
  • Food system education that will teach children how to cook, process & store foods grown from local community gardens.
  • Knowledge of the Wabenaki indigenous peoples who used this land and their cultural heritage especially as it relates to food.

Win a free summer membership by taking our survey.

We want to hear your input into how our programs should be shaped for the best interest of our community members and youth by responding to this 10 minute survey below:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeLm5899S9GCFhI9q35z5tpmno67_4T2LY6MWJY8iPGruZC3A/viewform?usp=pp_url

Thank you to our Partners!

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