rivercampgirlsRiver Camp

River Camp, hosted by the San Joaquin River Parkway and Conservation Trust, provides a fun and safe place for campers of all ages to spend time at the river exploring, playing, making friends, and learning about nature. The San Joaquin River is one of the most beautiful and important natural resources in our area-our water source, home to fish and wildlife, and some of our last undeveloped open space. At River Camp, children have the opportunity to experience this treasure right in their own backyard.

River Camp 2021 and COVID-19

The River Parkway Trust is happy to announce we will once again run River Camp and Young Explorers programs this summer!

After a safe and successful 2020 season, we are ready to run River Camp 2021 and have taken the time to make further modifications to our activities, daily schedules, and camp traditions to ensure your campers have an amazing experience. 

Our top priority is protecting the health and safety of our campers, Junior Leaders, and staff.  As camp programs take place entirely outdoors, kids will have plenty of space to spread out and lots of fresh air to breathe.  We will monitor current requirements and guidance documents and implement best practices to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

Safety measures will include:

  • Daily health screenings
  • Reduced group sizes and camp capacity
  • Physical distancing in daily games and activities
  • Frequent hand washing or use of hand sanitizer
  • Increased sanitization of camp facilities and activity materials
  • Use of masks indoors and any time participants might not be able to maintain 6 feet of distance

We will also have an extra staff member on-site at each camp to help with transitions and material sanitization.

For over 25 years, River Camp has provided youth with the opportunity to spend meaningful time outdoors, create new friendships, and learn about the local ecosystem. We look forward to continuing these traditions in 2021.  

Please note: River Camp 2021 program offerings are subject to change based on current conditions and public health requirements; please visit www.riverparkway.org for the most current information on River Camp 2021.  Click here for COVID-19 specific information.

River Camp Mission and Values

The mission of River Camp is to foster memorable experiences that connect youth to the San Joaquin River through fun and engaging educational activities. River Camp runs on the following core values:

  • River Camp is a safe and fun environment for self-expression and personal growth.
  • River Camp is an inclusive community.
  • River Camp is environmentally friendly and promotes stewardship.
  • River Camp is mutually influential; campers learn from counselors, and counselors learn from campers.

New! Young Explorers Enrichment Program 

Young Explorers Enrichment Program - The Young Explorers Enrichment Program is an extension of our pre-K and K summer camp program, designed to supplement your child’s regular pre-school or classroom learning through nature-based experiences. Our focus is on learning through play, exploration, and hands-on experiences using nature as the classroom; children are outside for the duration of each program day, and the environment is our teacher. The Young Explorers Enrichment Program is open to youth ages 3.5 through those currently enrolled in Kindergarten as of the session start date.  Each session lasts six weeks, and participants meet Tuesday and Thursday afternoons from 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm during that session (a total of 12 dates).

2021 River Camp Programs

In 2021, River Camp consists of 6 programs.  Click on the program name below for more information.  Members-only registration begins on February 1st, general registration begins on March 1st.

Meet the 2021 River Camp Staff!

River Camp at Owl Hollow - Environmental education based day camp held along the San Joaquin River for 1st-8th grade campers.

River Camp Rangers at Owl Hollow - Leadership, teambuilding, and science day camp held along the San Joaquin for 6th-8th grade campers.

River Camp at the River Center - Environmental education based day camp held at the River Center for 1st-4th grade campers (note: no swim). Weeks 7 & 8 are open to 1st-5th graders.

Young Explorers Camp - Pre-K and Kindergarten mini-camp program offering Tu-Th half-day sessions for campers ages 3.5-entering Kindergarten (note: no swim).  All campers must be potty trained.

Junior Leaders Program (High School Students) - High school volunteer program for all River Camp programs.

River Camp at Firebaugh - Our rural camp held in Firebaugh, serving local 1st-8th grade youth with 5 one-week sessions each summer.

Contact: Molly Schnur-Salimbene, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


Surprise the special child in your life by sending them to camp.  Click here for more information on purchasing a River Camp gift certificate.


Young Explorers program takes place at a new site nearby the River Center (location to be announced in 2021), where participants will explore trails, create arts and crafts, engage in dramatic play, and more. (Note: there is no swim at Young Explorers; water-based games and activities are built into each program day.)

River Camp at Owl Hollow and River Camp Rangers at Owl Hollow take place at Owl Hollow, a riverfront property owned and operated by the River Parkway Trust located near the River Center.

River Camp at the River Center takes place at the River Center, a facility owned and operated by the River Parkway Trust, where participants will explore the Hidden Homes trail, create arts and crafts, engage in dramatic play, and more. (Note: there is no swim at River Camp at the River Center; water-based games and activities are built into each program day).

River Camp at Firebaugh takes place at the Andrew Firebaugh Community Center and Park in Firebaugh, where participants learn about the local history of the town, play environmental education games, and take part in traditional camp activities each day.

The Junior Leader program allows high school participants to participate at any of the River Camp programs in which they are interested.


Benefits include early access to registration beginning on February 1st and reduced fees for River Parkway Trust members at the $100 membership level or higher. You can become a member online. If you're a member and haven't received your code, please e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  DISCOUNT CODE MUST BE ENTERED DURING REGISTRATION; DISCOUNTS WILL NOT BE RETROACTIVELY APPLIED.


Sponsor River Camp: Contact Bryna De Fede, Development Associate 559-248-8480x216 or bdefede@riverparkway,org.  

CLICK HERE for the River Camp in Fresno 2021 Sponsorship Packet. 

CLICK HERE for the River Camp in Firebaugh 2021 Sponsorship Packet.