Our daily activity periods are know as ‘Festivals’ here at Pioneer Village. They are an integral part of the PV experience. Campers will still have access to classic camp activities like archery, swimming, and boating, however, they can also participate in festivals that have been created by counselors, their peers, or themselves!
Every day the staff offer all sorts of different activities. We have seen hair salons pop up in the amphitheater, rubber duck race tracks at the loading dock, and even boat making using only recycled materials. The possibilities are unlimited! Campers choose their festivals after breakfast and lunch every day, so they never have to repeat the same festival twice if they don’t want to, and they are given the freedom to pick what interests them. Creativity is the key, and that is encouraged daily!
Cook site is one of most unique parts of the Pioneer Village program. Campers cook breakfast and dinner every day, over an open fire (lunch is provided by our PV kitchen staff). With the supervision of staff, campers learn food prep, knife safety, cooking skills, how to properly clean dishes and how to sanitize the cook site at the end of the meal. All cook site meals are served family style, and groups are co-ed.
Some examples of food we cook over fire are: french toast, eggs, sausages, oatmeal, chicken wings, pasta and meatballs, pork chops, and a variety of stir-fry dishes. There are also options for special dietary needs.
Many campers say that cooksite was one of the most important parts of their summer. They’re given opportunities to learn real life skills that they can bring home, and to bond with other campers in a way that is largely impossible during the school year. Former campers have also noted that this often puts them way ahead of their peers when it is time to go to college, when most people are learning to cook for themselves for the first time.
Hiking trips at PV are a great introduction to the world of backpacking. We provide everything but the shoes! We are in a great location within driving distance to some of the most beautiful sections of the Appalachian Trail, as well as the blue blazed Connecticut trail system.
The PV canoe trip is a five day journey down the Connecticut River. The river serves as the border between Vermont and New Hampshire, and we camp out at both established and rustic sites in both states throughout the trip.
Highlights include camping at Wilgus State Park, a portage over Bellows Falls, and the chance to visit the riverside shops in Brattleboro, VT. While paddling campers can expect to see river wildlife, but especially a variety of birds, including osprey and bald eagles. The trip wraps up in Massachusetts, with campers having paddled about 50 miles!
The bike trip is extremely popular at PV! Campers learn road safety and basic bike maintenance before packing up and riding their bikes right out the front gate and into coastal Connecticut and Rhode Island.
Campers learn how to treat drinking water, how to cook on a backpacking stove, and enjoy the breathtaking views only a long hike can offer. Campers go in small groups of 12 with 3 staff members, for a ratio of 4:1. This trip is a great bonding experience, where campers learn to overcome challenging terrain and learn important survival skills
We have a selection of camp bikes and helmets, but you’re also welcome to bring your own. This trip differs from the others in that we partner with Episcopal churches which allow us to sleep inside with access to kitchens and bathrooms. This allows us to pack very light, without the need for tents and cooking gear! Some trip highlights include visiting Mystic, CT, stopping at the many beaches on the shoreline, and sometimes even riding the ferry!