Camp RIO Summer Day Camp 2018

Dynamic, five-day outdoor adventures full of fun activities and learning!

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Sibling and Multi-Week Discounts Available!

About Summer Camp

Summer Day Camp at Camp RIO is a dynamic, five-day outdoor adventure experience with activities such as paddling, archery, slingshot shooting, geocaching, yoga, fishing, and sports. Each day campers participate in activities throughout the 85-acre camp property. Campers are assigned to their own tribes, which are made up of 8 to 10 campers each. Tribe leaders, also known as Chiefs, are trained and mentored by our full-time camp leadership Guides, which are experienced naturalist and outdoor educators.

Summer Campers will come back home nightly having learned new songs, built new friendships and experienced new adventures. Camp RIO summer staff strive to provide a physically and emotionally safe environment where campers experience an emerging sense of self and wholesome community. Each session is Monday through Friday, and camp runs from 8:30am to 3:30pm each day. 


Canoeing • Geocaching •  Photography • Survival Skills • Archery • Tomahawks • Slingshots • Team Building • Animal Encounters • Riflery • Hiking • Yoga • Orienteering • Camping • Waterslides • Friends • Games • Songs• Swimming

Did someone say FUN? 

We have lots of fun at summer camp driven by the FUN people we have working here. Join us for songs, games, competitions, giggles, water slides, and much, MUCH, MORE

What Will We Eat?

Camp RIO will provide Breakfast and Lunch to students who attend Summer Camp. We are excited to announce that we will again be having meals catered this Summer! Be on the lookout for a menu that will be posted here.  If you would like to pack a lunch for your child, you are welcome to do so.

How Will We Get There?

Transportation to Summer Day Camps will be provided by IDEA Public Schools school buses.  Pick Up and Drop Off locations are available below, and will be at IDEA Campuses around the valley. 

How old does my child need to be to go to camp?
We accept campers who are CURRENTLY in grade 1-7 or ages 6-13 (must be at least 6 years old and not older than 13 at the time of camp.)

Is this an overnight camp?
No.  Campers will come in the morning and go home in the afternoon.  Although we will likely offer one overnight option to our oldest campers each week like we did last Summer.

Who will take care of my child while they attend camp? 
We have a permanent staff of 14 adults who will be at camp every day. These are the teachers for our annual programs and administrators of camp. An additional 15 young adults (college students) will be at camp helping with transitions and activity supervision. The ratio of adults to campers is 1 to 4.

Do you provide transportation? Yes. We will have school buses stop at various locations throughout the valley to pick up campers and bring them to camp every day.  Bus stops are published below.

Will the bus pick up my child from home? 
No. The bus will not pick anyone up at their home.

What does my child need to take to camp every day?
We have a packing list in our Documents section and you can also download it here.

What if my child takes medications?
Medications will need to be sent with you camper on the first day. You will need to hand them to the bus monitor or Camp Staff along with the medication form. They will be checked in with our camp heath aid upon arrival. A medication form must accompany the medication, you can download it here or in the Documents section above. They will be returned through the bus driver on the last day of camp.

Will you host a meeting or open-house for parents to learn more about Camp RIO?
We will have at least one open house event scheduled this Spring. 

How will you keep my child safe?
We prioritize your child’s safety. Our staff is trained and certified in every activity we offer as well as First Aid and CPR. We have a Camp Health Aid who will attend to any medical needs that arise as well as administer medications that you send. We will ensure that your child gets plenty of water while they are here, and will encourage them to eat so they have the energy they will need. In addition, we have a child protection plan in place to ensure that Camp RIO is a healthy, safe place for your child to thrive!

Are you feeding my child?
Yes! We will feed them breakfast and lunch while they are here. We will also give them a snack in the afternoon.

How long will my child be at camp every day?
Camp will run from 8:30am to 3:30pm daily. They will be with us longer if you consider the bus ride. 

Will you refund the money if my child can’t attend?
We understand that life can be unpredictable. If you cannot attend the dates you are registered for, we would be happy to find another session. Cancellations made 15 days or more from the start date of the session will receive a refund less the $50 deposit OR receive a full camp credit, which can be used for another summer session within the season depending on availability. Cancellations made within 14 days of the start date of the session with not receive a refund. You will receive a full camp credit, which can be used for another summer session within the season depending on availability.

What activities will my child do?
We are offering the following activities:

Archery, Canoeing, Geocaching, Yoga, Basketball, Volleyball, GaGa Ball, Marksmanship, Waterslides, Arts and Crafts, Wildlife Photography.

Your child will get to choose which activities they participate in each day. For example, if they want to do Archery every day, they can do that. Or if they want to do something different every day, they can do that. It’s up to them!

From The Director...

Thank you so much for considering Summer Camp for your child.  The week they spend with us will be a time they remember for the rest of their lives.  Summer Camp is a special place filled with new friends, new memories, new skills, and most importantly- new growth.  

Every summer I have been involved with camp I have seen kids step out of their comfort zones and walk away from the experience with new-found confidence.  It looks a little different for every camper, but for them- mountains have been conquered!  

I take very seriously my responsibility to care for your child.  I want them to have a positive experience in a safe and wholesome environment. I work hard to find the very best leaders to interact with our campers and only hire those who demonstrate a true love and passion for working with these precious youngsters. 

There is a great article written to parents answering the question "Why the World Needs Summer Camp"

 I encourage you to read it by clicking on the title.  Thank you again for considering Camp RIO at Historic Lula Sams as an option for your child's time this Summer.  We look forward to getting to know each and every one of them!


Nancy Mance


Nancy is the Program Director at Camp RIO. She graduated from St.Joseph's Academy in Brownsville, TX then earned her bachelor's degree at Texas A&M University in College Station. She spent many Summers during college working at various camps including TBarM Sports Camp, YMCA Camp Grady Spruce, and A&M Camp Adventure. After graduation, Nancy spent a year at TBarM working as an outdoor educator and ropes course facilitator. She moved to Colorado and spent 10 years pursuing her love of the outdoors. This is also where she met her husband and had two children. Her family moved back to Brownsville in 2008 and she started teaching at IDEA Public Schools in 2012. When she is not at Camp RIO, she loves going to the beach and spending time with her family.