I don't like spiders or snakes

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but I likely would, after attending College of the Atlantic’s Family Nature Camp.

Instead of simply packing the kids off to camp, join them on Mt. Desert Island, home to Acadia National Park. The policy, no child left inside, helps cure nature-deficit disorder, delivering memorable family moments in the process. See whales in the Gulf of Maine, explore tidal pools, go on a beaver watch, learn geology in sea caves, see what Diver Ed brings up from the sea, identify animal tracks and more.

Bar Harbor’s College of the Atlantic opens its doors to families each summer, offering a B.A. in Family Fun. This hands-on, participatory, naturalist-led program provides plenty of fodder for those “What I Did On My Summer Vacation” essays.

Minimum age is five; extended family is welcome. Four sessions are offered, with both half-and full-week options. Camp runs Sunday afternoon through Saturday morning and fees include campus lodging (bring your own sheets and towels), meals, field trips, and three boat tours; optional kayak and bike trips are additional.