Rookie Camp

Looking to get a taste of what Kawaga is all about? Not sure if your son is ready for a four-week session? Rookie Camp allows first-time campers ages 10 and under to experience Kawaga without committing to a full session. Kawaga offers a uniquely immersive program that’s fully integrated into camp life. So, Rookies gain a real sense of what it would be like to be a full-session camper — and have enough time to become comfortable and immersed in camp life.

Rookie Camp 2018 is available during the first two weeks of BOTH first and second session. Rookie Campers spend one or two weeks “On the Shores,” participating in all aspects of camp life. We reserve a four-week bunk for all Rookies, as more than half ask to stay for the entire session. Therefore, space is limited to the first 20 enrolled Rookies for each session.

** NEW FOR 2018 — We provide transportation to camp with our buses and vans, and we will provide transportation home for 2 week campers. However, we will no longer provide transportation home for 1 week campers. Therefore, you must plan to pick up your son directly from camp if he participates in our 1 week Rookie Camp.


best friends

Rookie Campers are placed in our large cabins (10-12 campers with three or four counselors) with full-session campers and have the same counselors for their entire time at camp. Rookies experience everything our full-session campers do, including being assigned a “Big Brother,” participating fully in Clubs and Leagues, and experiencing Kawaga’s special powwows.

The Rookie program is a progressive system and is intended as a stepping stone to your son becoming a four- or eight-week camper. Boys who attend the one-week Rookie Camp may attend two weeks the following summer (if they are still under 11) or four or eight weeks. Once a camper comes for two weeks or reaches age 11, he’s no longer eligible for Rookie Camp.

2018 Rookie Camp

If you are not sure as to whether Rookie Camp or a full session is better for your son, please contact Director Ty Simpson at or 312.545.4231 to discuss.

Enrollment opens September 7, 2018. Rookie Camp pricing is $1,500 per week and includes ground transportation to and from the Chicago area or regional airports.

First Session Rookie Camp 

  • 2-Week Rookie Camp: June 18th – July 1st

Price: $1,500.00 per week