About Camp Horizons
Why Camp Horizons?
Established in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley of Virginia in 1983, Camp Horizons is a diverse community of campers and staff members from across the United States and around the world working, playing, and learning together. Since our founding, we have been fully accredited by the American Camp Association (ACA), an organization that has been ensuring that American summer camps provide only the safest and highest caliber of programming for almost a century. Offering a variety of activities that challenge our campers to reach their full potential as individuals and team players, we are dedicated to making sure that campers experience their best summer ever at Camp Horizons and come to see their new camp friends as their new camp family.
Thank you for visiting our website and learning more about Camp Horizons and all that we have to offer. We are very proud of our facilities, our programs, our staff, our history, and the thousands of campers we have served since 1983 here in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley. Since our inception, we have been committed to providing enriching, fun, and safe summer camp experiences for children.
We have an outstanding safety record and take pride in our American Camp Association (ACA) accreditation. If you’re not familiar with the ACA, I encourage you to learn more about them (www.acacamps.org) and the rigorous annual process through which we become accredited.
As a parent myself, I understand that your children are your lifeblood. It is my commitment to you that the Camp Horizons team will provide a safe, healthy environment for your child this summer.
I would encourage you to review our website, including our FAQ, and if you have any questions, concerns, or would just like to chat, please do not hesitate to contact me directly. You and your family are always welcome here.
We are many, we are one!
John W. Hall,
Health and Safety
Camp Horizons places the highest priority on the health and safety of our campers and staff. Our policies and procedures create a camp environment that protects both the physical and emotional safety of the children in our care. As an American Camp Association accredited camp, we voluntarily agree to be scored against approximately 300 industry standards to ensure that our camp programs, activities, and overall operations are safe and of the highest quality.
We recruit highly trained and qualified staff from our region and around the world. Staff applications are thoroughly screened, and selected candidates are invited to participate in an extensive interview to help us determine if they are a good fit for our team. All staff are required to participate in our mandatory, intensive, pre-camp staff training. It is a 7-day training, approximately 90-hours, covering a wide variety of topics and skills to ensure our staff are prepared to adequately serve, teach, guide, and care for each camper. Topics such as developmental characteristics of campers, risk management, bullying, and homesickness are covered, in addition to training topics specific to the policies and procedures for specific activities and programs.
We hire a minimum of two (2) medical staff (certified EMT, RN, etc.) to oversee the “Camper Care Center” and healthcare of our campers and staff. Our medical staff aims to prevent injuries and illnesses at camp before they happen, but are well prepared to deal with a variety of medical needs as they arise. Our Camper Care Center is a well-equipped health care center with air conditioning, beds for ill or injured children to rest away from other campers, and a telephone for communications with parents or outside medical professionals as needed. In the event of a camper (or staff member) requiring medical care beyond the scope of care that our medical staff can provide, Rockingham Memorial Hospital is approximately 20 minutes away.
John’s hearty laugh, constant smile, and boundless energy have become trademarks of Camp Horizons since its founding in 1983. His contagious enthusiasm serves as the foundation for Camp Horizons and its philosophy of blending challenging and fun activities with a supportive community to create a home away from home where campers can feel secure. John was an Eagle Scout, a camp counselor, and traveled with Up With People before settling in Harrisonburg to pursue his life-long dream of operating a summer camp. As a result of John’s business endeavors and achievements, he received the 2009 Entrepreneur of the Year Award from the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Chamber of Commerce.
Summer Camp Director
Hey y’all! My name is Liz and I am the Camp Director here at Horizons! I’m originally from Charlottesville, Virginia, but have been working at Camp Horizons for over ten years. I received my Masters in Counselor Education from the University of Virginia and have experience in K-12 education and counseling. I have been going to Camp Horizons since I was 7 years old and each summer is an exciting new experience! I love camp because it has given me the opportunity to meet people from all over the world and impact children in a fantastic outdoor program. I love camp and cannot wait to share the magic of Horizons with you all!
Outdoor Learning Center Director & Camp operations support
Howdy folks! My name is Trey and I am the Outdoor Learning Center Director here at Horizons. I’m originally from Virginia Beach, but moved to the Valley while attending James Madison University where I studied Organizational Communication and Environmental Studies. I first started working at Camp Horizons with the Outdoor Learning Center’s Fall and Spring programs and have been the OLC Director since 2016. I love working with children and being outside, and cannot wait to continue to spread the traditions of camp with new and returning campers and families! When I am not at camp you can find me around Harrisonburg with my wife, Erin, my dog Truman, and our new baby, George!
Activities & Leadership Camp Director
Hi, I’m Harriet and I am the Activities and Leadership Camp Director during the summers and am the OLC Associate Director at our Horizons campus during the school year. I began working at Camp Horizons in March of 2016 after earning my degree in Parks and Outdoor Recreation from George Mason University and working in the summer camp/outdoor recreation industry since 2009. I love working at camp the most when I get to see campers making life longs friends and trying new activities that push themselves outside of their comfort zone. My favorite parts of summer camp are all the bonds that are formed, random dance parties, and swimming in the lake! When I’m not working, you can find me exploring a cave or hanging out with my miniature goat named Sid!
Hi! I’m Jenny, and I’m the Equestrian Director here at Horizons. Born and raised in the Shenandoah Valley, I have been around horses in some capacity since I was 5. After spending a few summers as part of the Equestrian Staff, I became the Director in 2016 and have absolutely loved it! I have experience in several different disciplines such as hunter/jumpers, dressage, and hunter paces. I absolutely love the unique teaching experience that horseback riding instruction brings, and love coming up with creative ways to help campers learn how to ride and care for horses.
Assistant Activities Director
Hello! My name is Kara Grosbach, and I am the Assistant Activities Director for Camp Horizons and the Outdoor Learning Center. I am originally from Annapolis, Maryland, and I started at Camp Horizons as a camper in 2001. I graduated from Hood College with a degree in Environmental Science and Biology, and have been in Harrisonburg ever since. After being an instructor with OLC for four seasons, I made camp my permanent home as the Program and Activities Coordinator for Camp Horizons and OLC in 2019. I love working with kids, being outside, and hope to make a great experience for kids to make Camp Horizons their home away from home as well.
Camp Horizons has been accredited by the American Camp Association since our very first summer back in 1983. We are very proud of the distinction and our commitment to excellence through ACA accreditation. Many camps are not accredited because they are not able to meet the industry standards or because of the amount of work required to become accredited. ACA reports that there are approximately 2,400 camps in the United States that are accredited, yet there are approximately 12,000 camps.
To learn more about The American Camp Association and the accredidation standards, visit the ACA’s website, acacamps.org