All Zoo programs are designed for children who can remain in a group setting without parental assistance. In addition to age requirements, children must be:
able to use public restrooms without assistance
able to spend up to 5 hours of the day outside, walking around the Zoo
able to spend up to 5 hours of the day in a classroom setting
The Fort Worth Zoo is an equal opportunity organization that welcomes children of all ages, genders, ethnicities, national origins, disabilities, religions, sexual orientations and/or relationships with veterans into its Zoo Camps. If you have any questions, concerns or your child needs an accommodation for a disability, please contact the Zoo's offices to discuss. If your child has an Individual Education Plan (IEP) at his/her school during the school year, you must provide the Zoo with a copy of his/her IEP so that the Zoo can understand your child's individual needs and assist your child where possible.
On both the main page and in your confirmation email, you will find the link to our buddy request form. If you would like to group campers together, please make sure this form is filled out by each parent/guardian.
- Buddy requests must be completed at least two weeks prior to the start date of your camp. Late requests will not be honored.
- Half-day campers cannot be buddied with full-day campers.Campers who are more than 1 year apart will not be buddied together.
- Only one buddy request per camper will be honored if reciprocated by the buddy.
- Siblings or relatives who are not the same age,and who do not share the same last name are not guaranteed to be placed in the same group.
A $15 convenience fee will be charged per buddy request.
We are breaking down our camps by ages. We recommend that you register your camper accordingly. Only 3- and 4-year-old campers can attend the half-day camp from 9:00 a.m. until noon. Only campers in Kindergarten through fifth grade can attend the full day camp from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Only campers who are 5 through 10 years old can attend the full day camp from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. All campers attend camp Monday through Friday, with the exception of middle and high school camps.
*Campers who will enter the sixth grade in the upcoming school year are eligible for our Middle School camps. Please visit the Middle School Camp page for more information.
All camp curriculums are planned with a certain age and grade levels in mind.
Please note: Waitlists are also age- and grade-specific. Please ensure that your camper is registered for the waitlist that corresponds to the appropriate age or grade level.
Camp curriculums are planned with age and grade levels in mind. Please register your camper for the appropriate age divisions. We cannot buddy campers who are registered for 2 different age divisions.
If you experience registration issues while using the browser Safari or are attempting to register on your phone or tablet, please try another browser (Firefox, Internet Explorer, Google Chrome) on a desktop or laptop computer.
If your preferred week is full, you may register for a waitlist. There is a $5, non-refundable waitlist fee. Campers are placed on a first come, first served waitlists for your selected camp and age group. Please ensure that your camper is registered for the appropriate age or grade level waitlist.
If you need to update any registration information (approved pick-up lists, extended care, etc.) just log into your account or email details to email@example.com.
We do not provide any food for campers. 3- and 4 year-old campers should bring one snack. 5- through 10 -year-old campers should bring a non-refrigerated lunch and two small snacks. Lunches will be stored in our classrooms, but morning and afternoon snacks are collected and carried into the Zoo with the class. It is helpful if snacks are labeled with your camper's name. Camp has a strict no food sharing policy.
It is extremely important for each camper to bring a reusable water bottle every day! For the safety of your camper, if a water bottle is not brought to camp, we will provide them with a Fort Worth Zoo water bottle and the price of $3 per bottle will be charged to the credit card on your account.
Cell phones and other electronic devices are NOT PERMITTED for the duration of camp. The Fort Worth Zoo Education Department believes in creating an environment that encourages community building, bonding and the forging of friendships. We are confident that “unplugging” will result in more time learning together, enhanced interaction between campers and overall, more fun. When campers bring electronic devices to camp, not only does it remove them from the camp experience, but those devices always seem to have a way of getting lost, broken, or sometimes even stolen. The Education Department cannot take responsibility for their loss or damage, nor does our insurance policy cover their replacement.
In the event of an emergency, you may call the Education Department's front desk, 817-759-7200.
Please note: Your camper will be responsible for all items brought to Summer Zoo Camp. Please ensure that all items are marked with your camper’s first and last name.
Campers should not bring any personal items such as toys, blankets, or unnecessary items that would cause distraction or possibly get lost. Campers do not need to bring money, as all camp activities are included in the total price. Visits to any food service areas or to any gift shops are prohibited during the camp day, though we invite you to visit these locations at other times. NO electronic devices (phones, iPads, gaming devices, etc.). The Zoo is not responsible for any lost, stolen, or damaged items. If any of these items are sent with your camper they will be taken up by Zoo staff.
Campers should dress in sturdy clothing that is appropriate for the weather. We strongly recommend that campers wear clothing that can get wet or dirty. Campers should also wear closed-toe shoes that are comfortable for walking. We ask that all campers come to camp with sunscreen and bug spray already applied.
Campers MUST wear their Summer Zoo Camp shirt each day. One camp T-shirt is included in the cost of camp and we require each camper to wear the shirt as it assists our staff with safety and security. Additional shirts may be pre-purchased for $10 per shirt. Additional shirts may also be purchased during the camp week, while supplies last.
If your camper arrives at Summer Zoo Camp without their camp shirt, we will give them another and the T-shirt price of $10 will be charged to the credit card on your account.
An email containing procedural information will be sent out one week prior to the start date of your camp. Please take note of this information as it will help ensure an efficient and enjoyable week of camp. Camp T-shirts and carpool passes will be distributed on the Monday of your camp.
Per the policies you agree to when registering for camp "Zoo Camp is a program designed for children who can remain in a group setting without adult involvement. In addition to age requirements, campers must be: toilet trained, able to use public restrooms without assistance, able to spend up to 5 hours of the day outside, walking around the Zoo and able to spend 5 hours of the day in a classroom setting."
All Zoo Camp staff are selected based ontheir experience working with children (most are certified teachers, or going to school to become a teacher), leadership skills and/or are passionate about conservation and education. All employees undergo a rigorous application process, including a criminal background check, online and in-person training prior to working at camp.
Each week of summer in Texas is generally very hot; consequently, we are used to working with children in this extreme weather. All camp staff is trained to make sure campers are drinking water throughout the day. Please make sure your child brings a filled, reusable water bottle every day of the week.
Additionally, campers spend time both indoors and outdoors. Zoo grounds are well-shaded and misters are located throughout the property.
Because classes are formed with the maximum number of campers, switching your camper on Monday morning is not possible. Class rosters are put together prior to the camp start date. If you would like to make a buddy request, please do so ahead of time by filling out the Buddy Request form found on the bottom of the camp webpage, or in your confirmation email.
If you need to contact the Education Department for any reason, please call 817-759-7200 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Our office staff communicates directly with our classroom staff and will address any questions or concerns. Those who routinely drop off or pick up outside of regular times will be charged for Extended Care. Parents who do not pick up their campers by the end of Extended Care will be charged a fee. If you are up to 15 minutes late, you will be charged $10. After that, an additional $1 per minute applies.
Each camp takes place Monday through Friday with different activities each day. Although your camper is not required to attend each day, missing a day may mean missing activities. There will be no discounts off the weekly fee if your camper misses one or more days.
Medications must be in the original prescription container with the dosage, the child's name and the prescribing physician's name clearly marked on the container and dropped off at the front desk where it will be kept all week. Medications will only be given as directed on the prescription and if required paperwork is completed. Medication will be given by the camp health officer.
Camp activities include, but are not limited to, feeding giraffes, riding the Yellow Rose Express train, feeding the birds at Parrot Paradise, visiting the Toyota Children's Ranch, visiting Stingray Cove (5 to 10-year-olds only) and watching a stage show. Please keep in mind that each group follows a different schedule, and all animal encounters are dependent on animal behavior.
All 5 to 10-year-old campers will visit Safari Splash on scheduled days (you will be provided with that information on Monday at Check-In). This activity is contingent upon the opening of the splash park based on weather and maintenance. Full-time staff, as well as camp staff, will be in attendance during this activity. Campers will always be monitored. The public will not be in the splash park during this time, only Zoo employees and campers. You are responsible for sending your camper with the appropriate attire including a towel and a change of clothes.
The Zoo occasionally provides frozen icy pops (if you have any objections to this, notify your teacher at drop-off). Otherwise, we do not provide any food for campers. Half-day campers should bring one snack. Full-day campers should bring a nonrefrigerated lunch and two snacks.
Due to allergy and dietary restrictions, we cannot allow birthday treats to be provided for any camp class.
Some weeks campers will work on art projects. The size and number of crafts may vary, depending on the week of the camp. Regardless of the number of crafts, campers will bring all projects home on Friday unless other arrangements are made.
The Fort Worth Zoo Education Department utilizes the photo website SmugMug. Your weekly camp newsletter will contain a link and password for each individual week of camp. Pictures are uploaded to the appropriate album of each week. Albums for each week of camp will remain active through the end of August, at which point access to the photos will be closed.
Campers are not allowed to attend camp until they have been fever-free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medication. Campers who are sent home during the camp week will not be prorated or refunded for any missed days of camp.