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Inside: Looking for some summer fun at home? Create a backyard summer camp and get inspired by these fun printables!

Looking for some summer fun at home? Create a summer camp in your backyard and get inspired by these fun printables!

Today’s guest post is brought to you by Bestow. We love these fun ideas to bring the feeling of summer camp into your own home!

These summer fun ideas are perfect for family fun on a budget. You don’t always need to spend a ton of cash to create memories. Try out one of these backyard summer camp ideas with your kids this year!


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Summer camps have many benefits. They help kids develop independence, survival and social skills, physical fitness and critical thinking all while nurturing a love for the outdoors. Because of this, camps have been a popular summer attraction for many families for decades. 

However, summer camps aren’t accessible to all families, whether because of time commitment or budget constraints. And this year, there’s added pressure with the COVID-19 pandemic enforcing social distancing guidelines throughout the globe. 

Luckily, for the thrifty and creative family, there are many ways to bring the joy of summer camp to your home! 

Read on for tips about how to create your own DIY summer camp, including themes, games and printables to get started. 

Create Your Own Backyard Summer Camp

Step 1: Decide on a Theme

Summer camps can be tailored to your child’s interests — you can go traditional or branch out into alternative themes such as pirates, princesses, robots, or animals. 

Looking for some summer fun at home? Create a summer camp in your backyard and get inspired by these fun printables!

Traditional 

For most, summer camp means log cabins and campfires. The traditional theme is all about recreating a classic American summer camp in your backyard. 

Activities for this theme include: tag, tug-of-war, swimming, building a campfire, climbing trees and birdwatching. 

Download this welcome sign and coloring page activity to help create the ambiance of the outdoors in your very own home. 

Looking for some summer fun at home? Create a summer camp in your backyard and get inspired by these fun printables!

Jungle

For kids who love the outdoors and animals, a jungle-themed camp is the way to go. Create the feeling of a fun safari with animal-themed decor and games. 

Activities for this theme include: pin the tail on the donkey, animal walk races, tag and scavenger hunts. 

Download this welcome sign and scavenger hunt activity to get yourself in the wild mindset. 

Looking for some summer fun at home? Create a summer camp in your backyard and get inspired by these fun printables!

Pirates

Kids can dream of life on the Seven Seas with a pirate-themed summer camp experience. Consider making eyepatches and tying on bandanas to make it more authentic. 

Activities for this theme include: crab walk races, foam sword fights, water balloon fights and a hunt for hidden treasure. 

Download this welcome sign and maze activity to help get the ideas flowing. 

Looking for some summer fun at home? Create a summer camp in your backyard and get inspired by these fun printables!

Fairytale

Bring a Disney movie to life with this magical summer camp theme that retells the classic story of a fair maiden and brave knight. 

Activities for this theme include: dress up, a royal relay race, a dragon’s egg scavenger hunt and face painting. 

Download this welcome sign and fill-in-the-blank word game to give your house and DIY camp the royal treatment. 

Step 2: Keep Track of Your Spending

Once you have the theme, decorations, and activities decided, it’s time to monitor your budget and keep your spending on track.

You can use this downloadable budget tracker to keep track of your spending and make sure you’re building your dream summer camp without breaking the bank. 

Step 3: Have Fun!

The most important thing to remember during your DIY summer camp is to enjoy yourself and let your imagination run wild.

There are endless possibilities for activities, games, and decor — so don’t feel limited! The main aspect of a summer camp is togetherness and fun. 

Your Turn

What are your favorite ways to create summer fun on a budget? Share your ideas with us!

Be sure to grab the free downloads to get started with your own backyard summer camp!

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