Most Asked Questions

What is the camp’s history?
Camp Thorpe was founded in 1927 by Reverend Walter Thorpe as the Vermont Camp for Crippled Children. They were aware that summer camp was an option only for the privileged few; for the most part, summer camps in Vermont were attended by well-to-do children from other states. There were no summer camps for underprivileged or handicapped children.

Thorpe’s concept involved providing a positive camping experience for children challenged with handicapping conditions. The camp’s original philosophy created a support system to offer partial or full ‘camperships’ for families needing financial assistance.

Camp Thorpe’s tradition, created in the natural elements of the Vermont Green Mountains, intends to provide children and adults with fun, adventurous camping experiences regardless of special need or financial status.

Who do you serve?
Camp Thorpe is a summer camp for children and adults with moderate special needs. We offer experiences for individuals with developmental, intellectual and physical disabilities. Our campers range in age from 12 through older adults.

Our typical camper thrives in a 3-camper-to-one-counselor ratio for a 6 or a 12-day session of camp. Campers should be able to thrive in a rustic camp environment, traverse uneven and hilly grounds (with assistance), and able to participate in adapted summer camp activities.

In order to see if your camper is able to be a successful Camp Thorpe camper, please contact [email protected] or register by clicking the link on our main page once registration is open on January 6th and apply.

What is the Ratio of staff to campers?
The ratio of campers to counselors is three campers to one counselor. If campers are not able to thrive in that ratio, we do an option for a limited number of campers each session to attend with a camp-provided 1:1 aide, or to attend with a person 1:1 aide for an extra charge.

Is there One to One Assistance?
Camp Thorpe accepts campers with a wide variety of special needs who fit into our ratio of 1 counselor to 3 campers. This means campers must be able to function within that ratio medically, physically, emotionally, behaviorally, and dietarily. 

Camp Thorpe does have up to four spaces per session for campers who have needs that exceed our standard ratios. For an additional cost, a camper can attend a session with a camp-trained and provided aide who will provide 1:1 support.  Campers who request this level of support must apply for an aide before being accepted to camp. 

Rare exceptions may be made for campers who wish to attend camp with a private aide. Please contact [email protected] for more information.

What are the costs?
Session 1-3, 2 week sessions: $1200 for campers of all ages.

Session 4 1-week session: $600.

*The tuition includes program, lodging, meals, special events, and snacks for camp programs.

Those who cannot meet the tuition costs may consider a ‘campership’. Full or partial camperships are available to qualifying campers.

What are the Session Dates?
For the 2022 season, the session dates are as follows:

Session 1 – June 26, 2022 – July 8, 2022: $1200
Session 2 – July 10, 2022 – July 22, 2022: $1200
Session 3 – July 24, 2022 – August 5, 2022: $1200
Session 4 – August 7, 2022 – August 13, 2022: $600

What are the activities?
Campers enjoy a variety of activities including cookouts, singing around the campfire, hiking, boating, swimming, fishing, summer “olympics”, the camaraderie of new friends, and acting in a skit night. We have a large facility with a pool, tennis court, cabins, wooded trails, large dining hall, multi-purpose room, pond, craft cabin, pavilion, and more!

What types of items should campers pack?
A suggested clothing list will be mailed with the acceptance letter. All clothing and other personal items must be labeled with the camper’s name. Laundry will be done following the first week of the camping session. Clothing inventories are completed at check-in. Campers are asked to either bring a sleeping bag or one set of sheets, a blanket and pillow.

What are the medical facilities?
Camp Thorpe has a full-time nurse. A fully stocked health center serves the daily needs of each camper. The nurse provides each camper will one-to-one attention in regards to medications and daily monitoring for health concerns. Our staff are CPR/AED certified

Where is the camp located?
Both campuses of Camp Thorpe are located at 680 Capen Hill Road, Goshen, Vermont on 171 acres in the Green Mountains.

What are the camping facilities?
Camp Thorpe is fortunate to have a large dining hall that includes an auditorium and stage in the lower level. Our large outdoor “Ralph and Norma Hathaway Pavilion” allows for cool evening dances and rainy day activities. In addition, campers enjoy a recreation court, a pool, a large playground, pond for fishing and boating, a nature lodge, an arts and crafts building, a health center, and cabins that accommodate three campers and one staff member.Trails through the surrounding woods create opportunities for hiking. 

What is the staff certification?
Counselors are teachers, college students, and other qualified individuals who are carefully chosen because of their understanding of the physical and emotional needs of our campers. Counselors are also recruited through a foreign exchange program adding cultural experience for the campers to enjoy. All full-time counselors must be at least at least 18 years of age to apply. 

All counselors and CITs must be CPR/First Aid/AED certified or will become certified during orientation week.