Family camp model creates new opportunities for family togetherness, fun

Monticello, Ill. – Families will have the chance to create new memories as they experience 4-H Memorial Camp together this summer as 4-H unveils a new Family Camp model for 2021.  Families will have the opportunity to stay together in cabins while experiencing outdoor adventures and activities throughout their stay.

“While safety is our first priority, we knew we wanted the camp to be used in some capacity this summer,” says Andy Davis, University of Illinois Extension 4-H Memorial Camp director.  “All of the things that make camp great like outdoor adventures, hiking, boating, and swimming are just as fun socially distanced once we flipped to a family camp model.”

Family campers will get their own cabin for a three-day, two-night retreat with planned activities geared for campers 8 and older, although younger family members will be welcome. “We hope families will find this creates a valuable bonding experience and that it’s a unique getaway without having to leave Illinois,” says Davis.

Camp and activity size will be closely monitored with meals served family style at designated indoor or outdoor family dining spaces. COVID antigen testing will be required of all participants and administered by 4-H Camp employees prior to entry for each session.  All Illinois Department of Public Health COVID-19 protocols will be enforced: masks must be worn by all participants and staff when indoors or around others outdoors; 6-foot social distancing will be encouraged; hand sanitizer will also be available throughout the camp.

Available Family Camp dates are June 6-8, June 18-20, and July 9-11.  Due to the nature of Family Camp, a parent or guardian must stay with their campers for the duration of their camp session.

“We can’t wait to show families the family camp experience this summer,” Davis says.  “It’s normally something that kids go home and tell their parents about, but this time their parents will be experiencing the fun right along with the kids!”

Those interested can sign up here

About Illinois 4-H: Illinois 4-H is the flagship youth development program of University of Illinois Extension and administered through the College of Agriculture, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences.4-H grows true leaders, youth who are empowered for life today and prepared for a career tomorrow. The hands-on approach in 4-H gives young people guidance, tools and encouragement, and then puts them in the driver’s seat to make great things happen. Independent research confirms the unparalleled impact of the 4-H experience, demonstrating that young people are four times more likely to contribute to their communities; two times more likely to make healthier choices; two times more likely to be civically active; and two times more likely to participate in STEM programs. 

About Extension:  Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities. 

For Further Information Contact:

Source: Andy Davis, 4-H Memorial Camp Director,

News Writer: Carissa Nelson, 4-H Media Communications Manager, University of Illinois Extension,