That’s a wrap on Summer Camp 2023!

September 1, 2023

What a fantastic summer it was! This summer was one for the books at Camp Fire Heart of Iowa. This year, Camp Fire offered 11 weeks of summer day camp across four different sites in Ames, Boone and Des Moines, 9 weeks of overnight camp at Camp Hantesa in Boone, five unique teen leadership programs, two weeks of staff training, and created an infinite amount of memories with our campers and staff!

Let’s take a closer look at what happened here at Camp Fire this summer…

  • 2,484 total campers served across all programs!
    • 958 unique campers served & lives changed!
    • 1,526 campers who attended multiple weeks and/or programs!
  • 457 campers were entering grades 1 – 5
  • 400 campers were entering grades 6 – 8
  • 51 campers were entering grades 9 – 12

Here’s a quick breakdown of all the programs offered this year:

  • 11 weeks of day camp
    • Three camps serving those entering grades 1 – 5
    • Three camps serving those entering grades 6 – 8
    • One camp serving those entering grades 9 – 12
    • Two camps located in Des Moines, serving those entering grades 1 – 8
    • Two camps located in Ames, serving those entering grades 1 – 8
    • Three camps located in Boone, serving those entering grades 1 – 12
  • 9 weeks of Overnight Camp
    • One “mini-week” camp to give younger campers a taste of overnight camp.
    • One week of “Camp Brave” designed specifically for those impacted by crime, in partnership with the Department of Justice
    • 50+ refugee campers from Des Moines Refugee Support attended a week of overnight camp! We love having them and welcoming them into the Camp Hantesa & Camp Fire family.
  • 5 Teen Leadership Programs
    • One day camp, “Youth Service Coalition,” focused on community service and service learning
    • Four overnight teen leadership programs:
      • First & Second Year Apprentice Program: learn what it takes to be a counselor at Camp Fire!
      • Leadership Challenge: a two week program for 9th & 10th graders to grow in their leadership skills.
      • Outpost Camp: a two week outpost canoeing adventure!
    • Eight weeks of traditional overnight camp at Camp Hantesa

It was a special summer and one we will remember forever! Everyone is welcome and belongs at Camp Hantesa. We hope all our campers and staff felt safe, heard, and had a fun, meaningful summer.

School has started and the summer fun has come and gone, but Camp Fire is excited to launch another round of school year programming! Camp Fire Iowa hosts many different programs throughout the school year to keep the magic of camp all year round and keep “lighting the fire within!” Join us this year and explore all our program offerings here.