Summer Zoo Camp 2020

June 15, 2020 - 08:30am to August 28, 2020 - 03:30pm

Oregon Zoo Camps offer unique and engaging experiences to connect kids with nature. Campers explore little known areas of the zoo, meet animals face to face and leave inspired to care for the natural world.

There are two week-long camp options for each age group plus five single day Discovery Day camps. Select both week-long options plus a few Discovery Days to give your camper an even more exciting summer! Please note that camps with the same name do not change throughout the summer.

Scroll to see options for week-long camps, click for Discovery Day camp information or click for camp FAQs.

Registration for summer camp 2020 will open in mid April.


I Like to Move It, Move It

(4 years- entering kindergarten)

Monday through Friday 8:30-11:30 a.m.
Weekly sessions  June 15- July 17

Dive deeply into the different ways animals move and how they do it. Through daily zoo tours, art activities and interactive play, campers will investigate animal movement and body shapes. Up close animal experiences and visits to animal areas will help uncover movement mysteries — like how some snakes can climb trees (with no hands!) and what is up (or down) for penguins when they’re underwater. Campers will also see a special enrichment as the monkeys play with their food and toys.

$170/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Stripes, Spots, Shapes and Sizes
(4 years- entering kindergarten)

Monday through Friday 8:30-11:30 a.m.
Weekly sessions  July 27- August 28

Discover the secrets behind animals’ colors and patterns. Campers develop observation skills by looking at animals from top to bottom. Through daily zoo tours, art activities and interactive play, campers will investigate how animals’ body shapes and colors help them survive, from long-necked giraffes to torpedo-shaped harbor seals. Daily animal visits will demonstrate why it’s helpful for some animals to have bright colors and for some to be hidden from sight. As a special treat, campers will see elephants play with their enrichment toys.

$170/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Register for 4 yrs- kindergarten camps in mid April


Animal Playdate
(entering kindergarten)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.- 3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions June 15- July 17

Discover how the zoo keeps animals healthy through play with a purpose and find out why it’s important for all animals (including humans) to play. Campers will go on an adventure around the zoo to find the treats and toys that animals love and discover which animal prefers which treat or toy. Campers will also make a treat or toy to take home, go behind the scenes at the Animal Nutrition Center, feed goats in the Family Farm and watch a special primate enrichment!  

$325/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Feathers, Fur and Scales
(entering kindergarten)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions July 27- Aug 28

Take a closer look at animals with feathers, fur and scales. Games, art explorations and interactive play throughout the day will help campers develop an understanding of how an animal’s body coverings help them survive. Campers will enjoy special animal visits each day, feed chickens at the Family Farm and have fun building their own touch-and-feel book to take home.   

$325/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Register for kindergarten camps in mid April


Animal Tales
(entering 1st grade)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.- 3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions June 15- Aug 28

Animals have been part of myths, stories and art throughout human history. Campers will learn about animal legends and art from around the world through daily animal visits, games, activities and interactive play. Each day will explore the geography and habitats of different continents and seek inspiration from animals around the zoo to create new stories and art. Campers will make a special visit to the harbor seals and imagine themselves as seals in their own wildlife story.

$325/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

My Big Backyard
(entering 1st grade)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions June 15- Aug 28

Experience the habitats of the world and learn what animals need to survive. Through interactive play, art exploration and daily animal visitors, campers will explore nature and build observation skills. With a science explorer’s eye and a paintbrush in hand, campers will get outdoors and practice actions to help local wildlife. Campers will observe black bears and learn how their special treats and toys help these amazing animals stay healthy in mind and body.

$325/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Register for 1st grade camps in mid April


Wild Creature Features
(entering 2nd grade)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.- 3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions June 15- July 17

Animals have many adaptations that help them survive and thrive. Through animal observations, zoo tours and interactive play, campers will learn about adaptations from how elephants communicate to why chameleons change color. Then they’ll use what they’ve learned to create a unique animal mask with their own artistic adaptations. For a special experience, campers will watch black bears use their wild creature features as they play with their enrichment toys.

$325/ week (10% discount for zoo members)


Conservation Comics
(entering 2nd grade)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions July 27- August 28

Your mission, should you choose to accept it: become a superhero for wildlife! Explore how actions can have a big impact in protecting animals from danger. Campers will create their own superhero identity, design their super suit and star in their own conservation comic book. This camp includes observing native and invasive species around the zoo and learning firsthand how the zoo cares for endangered butterflies by visiting the secret butterfly lab. Nature is waiting...suit up!

$325/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Register for 2nd grade camps in mid April


Home Sweet Habitat
(entering 3rd grade)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.- 3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions June 15- July 17

From dripping rainforests to golden grasslands, the habitats of the world have unique characteristics that are important to the animals that live there. Campers will explore habitats to discover how different animals survive in the place they call home. Daily zoo tours, a Washington Park hike, interactive play and art projects will help develop observation skills and an understanding of the natural world. As a special experience, campers will see black bears play with enrichment toys in their habitat.

$325/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Creature Care
(entering 3rd grade)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions July 27- August 28

Everyone has a role in animal care. Campers explore how the zoo cares for animals and discover how they can care for animals, too! Daily animal visits, games and tours will teach campers about animal training, diets, medical care and good pet choices. A special visit from a veterinarian from Banfield Pet Hospital and a behind the scenes tour of the zoo’s Animal Nutrition Center round out the week.

$325/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Register for 3rd grade camps in mid April

Extreme Animals
(entering 4th grade)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.- 3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions June 15- July 17

Animals take life to the extreme, from subzero habitats to thousand-mile migrations. Campers explore animals’ extreme survival strategies, learn about remarkable animal bodies and uncover the reasons behind animal behaviors. Using inquiry-based observation techniques, campers will develop naturalist skills and go behind the scenes at the Family Farm House to learn how the zoo cares for some animals from extreme environments.

$325/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Plants vs Animals
(entering 4th grade)

Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions July 27- August 28

The world is full of unusual plants that have unexpected parallels to the animal kingdom. Using microscopes and other scientific tools, campers will get an extra-close look at the tiny structures that make these organisms unique. Activities include touring behind the scenes in the zoo’s greenhouse, learning which plants are used for animal enrichment, and watching as the zoo’s predators of the Serengeti play with their enrichment toys.

$325/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Register for 4th grade camps in mid April


Eco Exploration
(entering 5th grade)

Monday through Wednesday, Friday 8:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m.
Thursday 8:30 a.m.–8:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions June 15- July 17

Animals compete for resources and every part of an ecosystem plays a role. Campers will learn about the human impact on ecosystems by exploring habitats inside and outside the zoo, and explore how we can all work to reduce our impact. Campers will also go backstage to meet the animal stars of Wildlife Live including a prehensile-tailed porcupine. Camp stays late on Thursday to discover the nocturnal animals of the zoo and play a special night hunt game.

$355/ week (10% discount for zoo members)


Journey to the Edge and Back
(entering 5th grade)

Monday through Wednesday, Friday 8:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m.
Thursday 8:30 a.m.–8:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions July 27- August 28

Many animal species have made it back from the brink of extinction and they have some amazing stories! Campers will visit the labs where endangered butterflies are raised for release back into the wild and where native turtles get a head start against invasive species. The week includes a macaw encounter, a field trip to the zoo’s off-site condor breeding facility and a zoo-wide challenge game after hours on Thursday.

$355/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Register for 5th grade camps in mid April


Wildlife Careers
(entering 6th grade)

Monday through Wednesday 8:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m.
Thursday to Friday overnight, Thursday 8:30 a.m.– Friday 3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions June 15- July 17

A future career in wildlife could take many forms — this camp will help kids investigate animal-related careers at the zoo and beyond. Campers will take a field trip to Oxbow Park, go behind the scenes at the zoo’s Veterinary Medical Center and tour the zoo’s horticulture department. Guest speakers from Banfield Pet Hospital and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will also present a range of career options. The week includes visits to multiple behind the scenes areas including the black bear exhibit and an overnight at the zoo on Thursday.

$410/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Conservation Science Investigators
(entering 6th grade)

Monday through Wednesday 8:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m.
Thursday to Friday overnight, Thursday 8:30 a.m.– Friday 3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions July 27- August 28

Detectives from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service solve conservation mysteries and wildlife crimes. Campers will use technology and skills gained throughout the week to piece together the clues, step into the role of a Wildlife CSI agent, and investigate and solve an illegal wildlife traffic crime. A field trip to Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge highlights what USFW officers do in the field; and a sloth encounter and interviews with special California condor experts highlight conservation challenges. Thursday night features a sleepover in Steller Cove right next to the harbor seals.   

$410/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Register for 6th grade camps in mid April


Animal-Inspired Inventions
(entering 7-8th grade)

Monday through Wednesday 8:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m.
Thursday to Friday overnight, Thursday 8:30 a.m.– Friday 3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions June 15- July 17

Plants and animals have inspired many human innovations. Using technology, campers will hone observation and investigation skills while learning about bio-mimicry, and choose a real-world problem to tackle using their newfound knowledge. The week includes a trip to Portland State University to investigate how biologists use observations of animals and nature to solve human dilemmas. The week includes a special keeper talk about African painted dog puppies, a behind the scenes experience at the Elephant catwalk at Forest Hall and an overnight stay near the outdoor elephant habitat on Thursday night. 

$410/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Wild Design
(entering 7-8th grade)

Monday through Wednesday 8:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m.
Thursday to Friday overnight, Thursday 8:30 a.m.– Friday 3:30 p.m.
Weekly sessions July 27- August 28

Changes are on the horizon for the Oregon Zoo! With construction of the new polar bear, rhino and primate habitats underway, this camp will focus on how the zoo works to design exhibits that promote animal choice, social behavior and superior health care. Campers will use technology and creativity to design their own zoo exhibit while immersing themselves in the world of zoo design. Lessons will be reinforced through an exclusive giraffe feeding experience, behind the scenes tours and talks with keepers, plus a special field trip to further explore exhibit design. Thursday night includes a sleepover at the lion habitat allowing campers to learn about the nighttime behaviors of these incredible cats.

$410/ week (10% discount for zoo members)

Register for 7-8th grade camps in mid April

Lunch and snacks

Snacks are included in all camps. Lunch menus change daily. Vegetarian options are included but we are unable to accommodate other dietary restrictions. Possible entrée items include: hot dogs, corndogs, pizza and chicken nuggets. All meals include fruit, carrot sticks and a dessert. The Oregon Zoo cannot guarantee allergen-free food. If your child has any food allergies or dietary restrictions, please pack your own snacks and lunches.

Lunch is not available for half-day camps (children four years through entering kindergarten) and must be registered for in advance. Lunch is not available to add on at camp and is available only for the full week.

Dinner is included for camps that stay late or overnight on Thursday. For the camps that stay overnight on Thursday, breakfast and lunch for the Friday are also included. The Oregon Zoo cannot guarantee allergen-free food. If your child has any food allergies or dietary restrictions, please pack your own meals. Refrigeration and microwave use will be available to campers with special dietary needs.

Weekly lunch fees
Kindergarten through fifth grade: $TBD
Sixth through eighth grade: $TBD (lunch is included on Friday following the overnight)


Early and late care

Children are supervised in a classroom with a variety of animal-themed, free-choice learning activities. Pre-registration is required. Capacity for Early and Late Care is limited so please note that it may not be possible to add extended care after your initial registration.

Late care is not available for half-day camps. Early and Late Care are only available for the full week for week long camps.

Early Care: Monday–Friday, 7:30 a.m.–8:10 a.m.
$25 per full week

Late Care: Monday–Friday, 3:30 p.m.–6:00 p.m.
$60 per full week


Cancellation policy

Refunds, minus a 10% administrative fee, will be made only if your cancellation is received before June 1, 2020. After June 1, 75% refunds will be given if cancellation is made at least ten business days before the start of the camp session. No partial refunds will be given for missed camp days.

Waiting lists are compiled for all full camps. Please contact the zoo's Education Office to be placed on a waitlist.


Questions? Contact the Education Office.