A week-long adventure takes place in four great locations throughout Dubuque. Fun-filled activities include the Four Mounds Challenge Ropes Course, canoeing on Catfish Creek at Mines of Spain, ecosystem adventures at Swiss Valley Nature Center and the EB Lyons Interpretive Center. Campers will also enjoy swimming, creek-stomping, hiking, team building exercises, arts and crafts, and games.

Camp Details:

Camp runs Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., with an option of before- and after-care extending hours from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Children are required to bring a sack lunch. All other supplies and safety equipment are provided by the camp, including life vests. Convenient pick-up and drop-off locations at Fulton School and Allison-Henderson Park. We maintain a high staff to camper ratio of at least one staffer for every five campers.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does the camp cost?

$145 per camper

What if I can’t afford it?

If you are an income-qualifying family and live in Dubuque, it is free. To find out if you qualify, see the City of Dubuque Parks & Recreation Activities Brochure.

What ages can attend?

Children ages 7 through 13 can attend.

How many weeks can I sign my child up for?

Each child may only register for 1 week.

How many campers will be attending each week?

The camp is limited to 25 campers each week.

What if there is a rain date? Will it be made up?

We will offer a make-up day if we have to cancel one or more days in a week, but we’ve made lots of changes during the camp day and schedule to prevent cancellations.

When and how can I sign my camper up?


Pre-registration will take place in-person at the Comiskey building (255 E. 24th St.) on Wednesday, May 5 through Friday, May 7 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., and on Saturday, May 8, from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. This pre-registration is for income qualifying families looking to apply for scholarships and register for summer programs.


Register with a MasterCard or Visa at www.cityofdubuque.org/recreation. A small convenience fee is charged by the hosting company. This fee is non-refundable.


1) Mail to Leisure Services Department, 2200 Bunker Hill Rd., Dubuque, IA 52001-3010,

2) fill out the forms on pages 6 and 8 of the Leisure Services Summer Brochure and e-mail to [email protected],

3) fax to (563) 589-4391, or

4) drop-off in one of the drop-boxes located outside the MFC (1101 Central Ave.) and Bunker Hill (2200 Bunker Hill Rd.)

*If paying by check, please make checks payable to Leisure Services. To protect your personal information, if you choose to mail in, email, fax, or drop off forms and pay with a credit card, staff will call you at the contact number provided to process payment. Do not write your credit card information on forms.

Programs limited to a certain number of participants will be registered on a first-come, first-served basis. Any mail, fax, e-mail, or drop-box registrations received prior to the registration start date, will be input at random starting the next full business day following the registration start date. You will receive a confirmation receipt within two weeks via e-mail or postal mail. Fees may be paid by credit card, cash, or check; make checks payable to Leisure Services Department.

For more information on camp details, see the Leisure Services Summer Brochure.

What if I have additional questions? Who should I contact?

Please contact:
Becky Bodish
[email protected]

2021 Important Dates:

  • May 5, 2021: Pre-registration open to income-qualifying families living in the City of Dubuque
  • May 10, 2021: Online registration open: www.cityofdubuque.org/recreation
  • June 14 – 18, 2021: Week of camp for 11-13 years
  • June 21 – 25, 2021: Week of camp for 8-10 years
  • July 5 – 9, 2021: Week of camp for 7-9 years
  • July 12 – 16, 2021: Week of camp for 10-12 years
  • July 19 – 23, 2021: Week of camp for 9-11 years
  • July 26 – 30, 2021: Week of camp for 7-9 years
  • August 2 – 6, 2021: Week of camp for 11-13 years

Adventure Day Camp Itinerary

MONDAY: Plants Around Us

Campers begin their day with introductions, expectations, and an overview of the week. Campers will be active participants in identifying and outlining reasonable expectations for the week. Counselors and campers will discuss the two camp rules and what they look like in action. Camp rules are: 1. Have fun safely 2. Be kind.

On Monday, campers learn about plants around us, from the garden to the prairie, through hands-on activities. Campers will create their own nature weaving with plants from the prairie. Campers end the day by participating in a “Counselor’s Choice” activity or craft.

TUESDAY: Midwest Ecosystems

Campers spend the day at Swiss Valley Nature Center. While there, they hike the trails and participate in station activities to learn about macro-invertebrates (crawdads) water ecosystems, exploring nature through their five senses, and the art of cairn for communication (rock stacking). Campers end the day by participating in a “Counselor’s Choice” activity or craft.

WEDNESDAY: Mines of Spain

Campers participate in station activities to learn about animals in the creek, canoe safety & paddling strategy, and Mines of Spain history. After the lesson students spend the day canoeing on Catfish Creek. Campers end the day by participating in a “Counselor’s Choice” activity or craft.

THURSDAY: Pioneer Day and Pioneer Ways

Campers spend the day at the Mines of Spain. They hike and explore treasures of old along the trail such as the root cellar, the wine cellar, lead mines, and the Pine Chapel. They participate in station activities to learn about plants and animals of the area, how to navigate using a compass at the life size compass marker at the John and Alice Butler trailhead, how to make their own compass, make their own pioneer toys to take with them at the end of the day.

FRIDAY: Pushing Boundaries

Campers take part in team building activities on the high ropes course. For many this means overcoming personal limitations and fear of heights, and extreme trust building. Campers participate in parachute games and activities and make a camp memento to take home with them. At the end of the day students take some time to reflect on the week, their learning, and their favorite experiences.