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There is no better (and fun) time to learn about your culture and identity than in summer. Culture camps offer an encouraging environment to learn about the beauty and worldviews embedded within Indigenous languages, culture, values and traditional teachings. Camps can be a place where Elders and youth build relationships and enjoy cultural activities and learn together. MUSKRAT Magazine presents the following list to inspire summer adventures across Turtle Island:

1. Centre For Indigenous Theatre Summer Intensive Program, July 6-26

(Peterborough, ON) CIT offers a 3 week intensive theatre training program at Trent University. The days are long at 11 hours and so are the weeks at 6 days. The program is for anyone of Aboriginal descent ages 18-29. You can get more information by emailing

CIT Brochure
Centre for Indigenous Theatre Brochure


2. Nehiyawak Language Camp/ Workshop, July 26-30

(Wanuskewin Heritage Park, Sk) Presented by Little Pine First Nation this year, you can partake in dancing,singing, sweat ceremonies, storytelling and much more. To register email

Nehiyawak Language Camp Brochure
Nehiyawak Language Camp Brochure

3. Great Lakes Cultural Camp, Ongoing

(Manitoulin Islands, ON) GLCC is an adventure based experience that promotes awareness of First Nations lifestyle and history of the land through a cultural interpreter. Be prepared to go on half day trips walking, hiking, canoeing surrounded by the breathtaking scenery of the northern Great Lakes. For more information on how to organize your own experience email

Great Lakes Cultural Camp Logo

4. Kaha:Wi Dance Theatre Summer Intensive, August 3-28

(Toronto, ON) This is the only month long training program, that is offered by an Indigenous performing arts company. Kaha:Wi offers exciting opportunities to learn from world renown senior artists, exposing students to founder, Santee Smith’s, hybrid dance method which is best described as a cross between Indigenous and modern dance. You can register by following this link: and emailing your application to

5. Ghost River Rediscovery Summer Camp, Various Dates

(Calgary AB) Located between the Ghost River Wilderness and Banff National Park in the Nakota (Stoney) Nation, Ghost River offers coming of age teachings in the Aboriginal way of life and survival skills. Camps range from 5- 9 days in length at various times throughout the summer. The age ranges are from 8-12, 13-15, 16-19 and adults. Check the website for specific dates and pricing for each age group and to register.

Ghost River Rediscovery Logo

6. Tipi Camp Nature Retreat for Young Adults, TBA

(Kootenay Lake BC) This 11 day mountain adventure offers supportive mentoring from Elders and staff who teach Indigenous perspectives and ceremonies. Each year there are only 10 available spots. Keep your eye open for tentative dates which have yet to be announced for 2015. For any questions contact Jonathan Taylor at


Tipi Camp
Mountain view from Tipi Camp

7. Me to We Presents Sacred Circle, Ongoing

(Nation-wide) Me to We offers 3 day long workshops that can be organized by local communities across the Canada to foster leadership skills in Indigenous youth. A survey conducted in 2012 indicates that 80% of students do better in school and 94% feel more proud of their heritage after taking this program. To organize a workshop in your community call: 1.877.638.6931 ext. 717

Leadership Camps
Students Taking Part in Sacred Circle Program

8. Tundra Science and Culture Camp, July 25-August 3

(Yellowknife, NWT) For highschool students and staff, this camp takes place on Daring Lake, 300 km north of Yellowknife. Here students will learn traditional ways from Dene Elders and get hands-on experience with field techniques in wildlife research, archaeological surveys, botanical sampling, environmental monitoring, aquatic studies and geology. To qualify you must have already finished grade 10 science. Email: for more information and to receive an application form that students and teachers must fill out.

Great Lakes Cultural Camps
The Tundra
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About The Author

Erica Commanda

Born in Toronto, Erica Commanda (Algonquin/Ojibwe) grew up in the small community of Pikwakanagan. From there she moved across Canada living in Ottawa, Vancouver and now Toronto, working in the bar/hospitality industry, mastering the art of listening to stories from her regulars while slinging and spilling drinks (at them or to them). And now through a series of random decisions and events in life she is on a journey discovering and mastering her own knack for storytelling as Associate Editor for MUSKRAT Magazine.

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1 Comment

  1. Jessica

    Hi Erica,

    Great article. I have shared it on our Eagle Spirit Academy Facebook page. Please take a look at our initiative – we are expanding from our camp to offer targeted programming for Indigenous youth aged 13-18 to pursue post-secondary education.

    Thank you for your consideration,



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