PacSci Summer Camps for Outdoor Enthusiasts

Girl in a pink hat looking straight at the camera

Experience the Beauty of Mercer Slough  

Are you seeking an unforgettable outdoor experience for your children?

Located in the heart of Bellevue, the Mercer Slough Environmental Education Center captivates with its natural beauty and abundance of wildlife. Spanning over 320 acres of wetlands, forests, and meadows, this haven offers a prime opportunity for your young adventurers to immerse themselves in the wonders of nature.

Traverse tranquil boardwalks amidst verdant marshlands and follow shaded trails winding beneath majestic trees. Mercer Slough sets the stage for a perfect outdoor adventure, inviting exploration and discovery at every turn.

Engage in Hands-On Learning

Our summer outdoor camps are more than just a chance to play outside – they’re a unique opportunity for hands-on learning and discovery.

Led by experienced educators, campers will engage in interactive activities designed to deepen their understanding of ecology, wildlife biology, and environmental science.

From pond dipping and birdwatching to plant identification and habitat exploration, every day brings new opportunities for learning and exploration.

Three kids wearing vest and holding paddles

Outdoor Activities

All campers will have the opportunity to participate in a variety of outdoor activities, which may include:

  • Canoeing: Experience the thrill of paddling through the serene waters of Mercer Slough. Canoeing is a unique opportunity offered at this camp location, providing campers with an unforgettable experience on the water.
  • Pond Dips: Dive into the fascinating world beneath the surface as campers explore the biodiversity of the slough through pond dipping activities.
  • Water Quality Testing: Learn about the health of our waterways as campers conduct water quality testing, gaining valuable insights into environmental stewardship.
  • Nature Walks: Embark on guided nature walks to observe the ever-changing ecosystem of the slough, discovering the wonders of the natural world firsthand.
Campers hiking in Mercer Slough

Connect with Peers and Make Memories

One of the highlights of our summer camps is the opportunity to connect with peers, make new friends, and create lasting memories together.

Through collaborative group activities, team-building challenges, and shared outdoor adventures, campers will forge meaningful connections and develop lifelong friendships. Whether it’s working together to solve a problem, cheering each other on during a hike, or sharing stories in a canoe, the bonds formed at Camp for Curious Minds last long after the summer ends.

Health Benefits of Outdoor Education

The health benefits of outdoor education extend far beyond physical activity. Spending time outdoors can have significant positive effects on both children and adults.

Exposure to natural light influences Vitamin D levels crucial for bone health and cognitive function. Additionally, natural light regulates sleep patterns, enhancing sleep quality and reducing stress.

Research indicates outdoor time improves attention span, lowers blood pressure, increases endorphins, and promotes overall well-being.

Outdoor Camp Options

At our Mercer Slough location, all campers will have the opportunity to explore the outdoors, but we also offer specialized camps that immerse participants in nature for most of their activities.

For the adventurous spirit seeking an immersive outdoor experience, our fully outdoor camps offer the ultimate opportunity to connect with nature and hone outdoor skills!

  • Eco-Exploration: Calling all junior ecologists! Get ready to become one with nature during this camp without a roof. Explore the diverse ecosystems of Puget Sound through plant identification, water quality testing, animal tracking, and what it’s like to work with the elements!
  • Living Laboratory: Come explore the fun of field ecology as we take science outside! Record it all in your trusty field journal as you choose between topics like wildlife monitoring, watershed health, or plant abundance and distribution.
  • Outdoor Survival School: Find out what it takes to survive in the wild in this all-outdoor camp. Learn how to navigate with a compass, practice first aid, filter water, study the cosmos, and put your skills to the test for an end of the week survival challenge.

Check out our 2024 Summer Camp Guide for more information on our various camp sessions!

Scholarship Opportunities

PacSci is committed to ensuring that all children have the opportunity to experience the wonders of our outdoor summer camps, regardless of financial circumstances. We are pleased to offer full scholarships to prospective campers who meet our qualifications.

For families with multiple children, please submit a separate application for each prospective camper.

Learn more and apply on our website.

Join Us for an Unforgettable Summer

Don’t let your child miss out on the adventure of a lifetime – sign up for Camp for Curious Minds summer camps today! With expert guidance, hands-on learning, and plenty of outdoor fun, this summer promises to be one they’ll never forget.

Spaces are limited, so don’t wait – reserve your spot now and get ready to discover, explore, and thrive at camps. We can’t wait to see you there!

Camps for Curious Minds is presented by Bristol Myers Squibb and First Tech Federal Credit Union with additional generous support provided by Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center.

Thank you to our generous supporters, including more than 1,500 individuals, companies, and foundations, as well as more than 13,000 member households. Your support brings to life PacSci’s mission to ignite curiosity in every corner of Washington State and beyond.