Whether you are planning ahead for summer or just looking for some fun themes for horse camp, this list is sure to help! Take a look at these weekly theme ideas and use them to build your camp schedule!
My kids have enjoyed horse camp every summer for more than a decade at this point. They love spending long days at the farm and get so much riding time in during the week. Typically each summer, the farm where they take riding lessons offers several weeks of day camp. The weeks are broken down into different themes. Some cater to a younger, preschool crowd while others can be enjoyed by any age camper and any level rider. Some weeks might be better suited for advanced riders, while others would be perfect for beginners.
As a parent, I love sending them off for a day in the great outdoors! Pony camp gets them off of their electronic devices and they get to enjoy the outside, learn about animals, practice their horseback riding skills, and hang out with their friends (and make some new friends).
The other day I was going through pictures from a camp week a few years ago and the kids were having a great time reminiscing about their favorite camp activities. We tried remembering as many of the weekly themes as we could. Then we thought it would be fun to put them on the blog and add some new theme ideas to the list.
Check out our list for some great weekly theme ideas for horse camp! I will add some activity ideas to each theme!
Weekly Theme Ideas for Horse Camp
As you plan out a summer of camp weeks, it can be helpful to break the weeks up into themes.
Here is our list of themes, in no particular order:
This is a great week to coincide with the 4th of July!
- Red/White/Blue theme
- American flag crafts
- BBQ lunch
- Pony parade
July 25th is “Christmas in July.” This week of camp would be a great time to offer a Christmas themed week.
- Green/Red theme
- Make cards to deliver to a local hospital or nursing home
- Make candy cane horse treats
- Dress the ponies up like reindeer
- Make Christmas ornaments
Horse Care Week
This week is a wonderful time to include your campers in the various horse care routines that happen regularly at the barn.
- Watch a veterinarian’s visit
- Watch a farrier’s visit
- Learn how to give a horse a bath
- Watch an equine dentist’s visit
- Practice grooming and tack cleaning
- Learn different braiding techniques and put braids in the horse’s mane and tail
This is always one of my kids’ FAVORITE weeks of camp! There are so many great activities you can add to this week’s theme.
- Ride in a western saddle
- Take a trail ride
- Learn about the rodeo
- Barrel racing
- Cook lunch over a campfire
Unicorn and Rainbows Week
This one is a huge hit with the younger kid crowd!
- Dress ponies up like unicorns
- Rainbow sidewalk chalk pictures
- Rainbow themed crafts
- Color scavenger hunt
Princess and Pirates Week
Another great choice for the preschool crowd!
- Dress up and go on a parade around the farm
- Treasure hunt for gold
- Gold panning
- Crafts: pirate hats, princess/prince crowns, telescopes, princess wands (Tape the hats and crowns to riders’ helmets!)
- Wear bathing suits and have water games
- Build sand castles in a sand box or using kinetic sand
- Learn about the wild ponies of Assateague
- Beach themed snacks including Goldfish, Blue Jell-O with gummy sharks, Sand Cake, Beach Bear Pudding Cups.
- Parade of ponies
- Torch relay
- Olympics themed snacks
Mounted Games Week
Learn about some of the many mounted games played on horseback!
- Visit a local games competition if there is one nearby
- Invite a local games expert to come talk to campers and demonstrate some games
- Try some mounted games (popular games include egg and spoon, mounted archery, and dollar bareback)
- Offer games at all skill levels so that everyone can participate
Horse Show Week
- Learn the basics of riding in a horse show
- Visit a local horse show
- Get horses cleaned up and looking nice for a show
- Clean tack for show
- Practice changing gaits: walk, trot, canter just like in a real show.
- Hold a real or mock show at the end of the week
- Make slime!
- Mud run
- Color run
- Messy relay races
- Water play
- Learn about horseback riding through the decades and how it has changed
- Learn about famous horses from history
- Spirit Week – dress up days correlating to different decades
- Learn different dances and slang terms from various decades
Go arts and crafts crazy this week!
- Paint pony portraits
- Make pony sculptures
- Dress like a famous artist
- Try various forms of art – painting, sketching, clay, etc.
- Have an art show and hang camper-created artwork around the barn.
- Spirit Week – dress up as different characters from Broadway shows
- Play showtunes during rides
- Act out various play scenes – on horseback!
- Write skits including the ponies and perform them for fellow campers
Host an out-of-this world themed week of camp!
- Space races (on horseback!)
- Space themed crafts (paint rocks to look like planets! Make galaxy slime!)
- Space themed snacks (Learn moon phases with OREO cookies! Make fruit and marshmallow rockets!)
Water week is PERFECT for those hot and steamy summer camp weeks!
- Water relays
- Water play
- Bathing ponies
- Shaved ice treats
- Mud run
- Dress like a superhero
- Superhero themed crafts
- Superhero themed snacks
- Relay races in costume
- Costume parade with ponies
I know, I know, it’s PONY CAMP. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun with OTHER sports!
- Sports sampler – use down time to have a soccer scrimmage, toss a football and play catch with baseballs.
- Make up horseback versions of sports
- Sports themed snacks and crafts
- Make some desserts or sweet snacks
- Make pony treats
- Decorate cupcakes or cookies
Use this week to enjoy some great nature themed activities with your campers!
- Take a nature walk
- Do some nature rubbings
- Do some bird watching
- Learn about wild plants that are dangerous for horses
Pony Spa Week
This week is all about pampering your ponies!
- Make pony treats
- Learn equine massage techniques
- Bath ponies
- Trim and clip the ponies’ whiskers, bridle path and feathers/fetlocks
Creepy Crawly Week
Bugs and other creepy crawlies are the focus of this week!
- Learn about bugs and insects that pose a danger to horses
- Make dirt cup snacks
- Look for different bugs around the farm
This is a great week for solving farm mysteries and playing sleuths!
- Make a “Clue” themed mystery for campers to solve. Use farm ponies and barn objects as the characters and objects.
- Scavenger hunts
- “Escape Room” type activities
We hope that this list gives you a great head start as you plan out your summer camp for the upcoming year.
Is there a favorite pony camp theme that you love that is not on our list? Drop us a comment and tell us about it. We would love to hear from you!
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