Last week we highlighted a few amazing summer day camps that are located west of Yonge Street. This week it’s all about the camps found on the east side of Toronto’s most famous street. All of these places have availability as of mid-March but we make no promises on how long those spots will last so if any of these options catch your little one’s interest, book it ASAP.
And just a reminder that there are some great camps that operate all across the city. They include those run by the City of Toronto and the YMCA, which offer dozens of different themes, as well as those that are narrower in their programming, such as Rooks to Cooks, Pedalheads and Toronto Athletic Camps.
Summer Day Camps in the East End of Toronto
Banbury Kids Camp | banburykids.com
North York parents love this non-profit camp for its community feel and its outdoor setting at the Banbury Community Centre. Here kids will go on day trips, play a wide variety of sports and games and be involved with everything from drum circles to a weekly pizza lunch. The camp also features a swim component that combines rec swim alongside formal lessons. Camp fees start at $260 and there is the option to enrol your children for the bulk of July or August or even both months.
Age Range: 4-8
Where: 120 Banbury Road
Bond Academy | bondacademy.ca
Worried about your child losing some of their hard-earned academic skills over the summer? Then Bond Academy’s approach to summer day camp might be your solution. Mornings are focused on academics and involve such tasks as spelling lists and math exercises. Then the afternoons are all about fun and feature everything from sports to cooking. Throughout the day there is also an emphasis on building “positive character traits and values.” Camp runs $250 a week and includes free extended care.
Age Range: 4-13
Where: 1500 Birchmount Rd
Branksome Camps | branksomecamps.ca
Branksome Hall’s gorgeous 13-acres are the setting for its day camp program, which offers such themes as dance, photography and Wonder Camp, which includes a little of everything. There’s also a special camp just for four-and-five-year-olds. All camps include a recreational swim in one of the school’s two saltwater pools and for an additional fee, Red Cross swimming lessons can be added to your child’s day. Weekly camp fees start at $368 and include a hot lunch and two daily snacks. For an additional fee, extended care is available.
Age Range: 4-12
Where: 6 Elm Ave
Bricks4kidz | bricks4kidz.com
Let your kid’s imagination run wild at this LEGO-centric day camp where they will also learn foundational skills in engineering, architecture and even physics. Each week will see participants build a cool new creation that they can take home. There’s also plenty of free playtime and opportunities for kids to practice their collaboration skills. Weekly fees start at $250.
Age Range: 6-10
Where: 2215 Queen St. E. (though some camps are also offered at other locations)
Buds and Blossoms | budsandblossoms.ca
This Cabbagetown kids activity centre is beloved by both parents and kids for its warm nature and fun-filled programs. During the summer it offers a day camp that each week focuses on a different theme, such as robotics, cooking or exploring the city. Each week also includes plenty of opportunities for crafts, stories and new friendships. Pricing starts at $305 a week though a daily option is available, as is extended care.
Age Range: 4-9 with a special week in late August for kids 9-13
Where: #2-517 Parliament St
Camp U of T Scarborough | utsc.utoronto.ca
At U of T’s Scarborough location, campers sign up for either tennis or a themed camp in the morning and then spend their afternoon getting a “mini-university experience” with classes in everything from computers to science to art. Morning themes include cooking, urban planning (with LEGO) and urban farm adventure. Register before March 31 for an early bird rate that starts at $196. Meal plan and extended care are available for additional fees.
Age Range: 6-16
Where: University of Toronto’s Scarborough campus
The Chef Upstairs Summer Cooking Camp | thechefupstairs.com
This is literally one of the most delicious camp options out there. Each day starts with your child learning how to make their own breakfast, then it’s on to creating such tasty dishes as fresh baked bread, tacos or even sushi. And while cooking and baking are the core of this camp, other activities include playing at a local park, stopping by the local library to flop through cookbooks and of course shopping for ingredients. A four-day camp runs $525 while a full week costs $625.
Age Range: 7-17
Where: 516 Mt. Pleasant Rd.
Children’s Arts Theatre School | catsdrama.com
Considered to be the camp for theatre, CATS will teach your kids the foundation for drama, dance, vocals and visual arts as well as introduce them to theatre tech, including set design and costuming. Camp is offered in two-week chunks, which cumulates on the last day with a full-on theatrical performance mounted by the campers. Full-day fees start at $810 and include free extended care and two snacks a day; half-time days are also available.
Age Range: 4-15
Where: 958 Broadview Ave and 349 Kenneth Ave (some spaces are also still available for kids under 10 and over 13 at the 4 Morningside Ave location)
Ontario Science Centre Camp | ontariosciencecentre.ca
Looking for a camp that delivers a big dose of education alongside the fun? Then the Science Centre might be what you’re looking for. Everything from biology to engineering to chemistry is covered and kids get to put what they’ve learned into action by doing hands-on experiments. Full-day camps for kids age six and up start at $230 for members while half-day camps are available for four- and five-year-olds. Extended care and lunch programs are all available for additional costs and there is also a half-day option. Just be sure to book before April 28, when rates go up.
Age Range: 4-14
Where: 770 Don Mills Rd
Pawsitively Pets Kids Camp | pawsitivelypetskidscamp.com
Animal loving kids will love this terrific camp that revolves around our four-legged friends (there’s even a mini-vet camp for kids 10 and up). Other activities include science experiments, arts and crafts and field trips. The Leaside location also offers a special program with a registered psychotherapist/MSW aimed at children who are dealing with anxiety and self-esteem issues. Got a kid who wants to learn to ride horses? Pawsitively runs a horse camp in Newmarket with bussing available from its Leaside and Swansea locations. Prices start at $325, with bussing and extended care available.
Age Range: 4-14
Where: Pawsitively has locations in Leaside, Beaches and even one west of Yonge, in Swansea. Click here for exact addresses.
Ryerson Summer Day Camps | ryersonsummerdaycamps.com
In addition to sport camps that feature members of the university’s varsity sports team, Ryerson also offers camps that are more academic and/or creative in nature. They include programs that explore such subjects as architecture, business and science. There are also a number of camps that focus on filmmaking, including one that’s all about how to make a music video. Fees vary by theme but start at around $330, with extended care and lunch services available for additional fees.
Age Range: 6-17
Where: Ryerson University
STEM Camp | stemcamp.ca
As its name suggests, STEM Camp is focused on science, technology, engineering and mathematics, but in a way that is both practical and a ton of fun. Available themes include Transformers, super heroes and of course Minecraft and all programs feature ample exercise breaks. Camps prices start as low as $210 a week.
Age Range: 5-13
Where: 140 Wineva Ave (they also have a location in Etobicoke)
Zoo Camp | torontozoo.com
Summer day camp doesn’t get more awesome than at the Toronto Zoo. In addition to tons of games, crafts and a weekly pizza lunch, each week of camp includes, “At least one unique behind the scenes touch and/or special animal encounter.” And yes, campers also get to take a spin on the Zoomobile. Each week of Zoo Camp runs $280 for zoo members.
Age Range: 4-16
Where: 361A Old Finch Ave