Don't Forget These Summer Camp Essentials

7 items to make sure they have with them before heading off for a summer adventure

By Macaroni KID March 25, 2024

Swimming, fun, sun... summer camp has it all. But to make sure your kids are truly happy campers when they head off for their summer adventures, you'd better make a list and check it twice. You've got the usual suspects covered (underwear, bug spray), but these often overlooked summer camp essentials can make the difference between the best summer ever and Camp Wannagohome. 

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Looking for the perfect camp for your kid this summer? We've got you covered. Check out your Macaroni KID summer camp guide for ideas on STEAM camps, overnight camps, sports camps, and more! Because camp life = best life.

1. Plastic zipper storage bags

A secret stash of sealable bags can keep their tiny treasures safe and dry. They worked so hard on the macaroni necklace, it would be a shame if every last noodle didn't make it home right? Bags are also useful for organizing toiletries and keeping ants out of the candy stash.

2. A flashlight

Nighttime trips to the bathroom call for a flashlight. Plus you've got to have one for making those scary faces around the campfire. And don't forget the extra batteries, because they'll forget to turn it off before falling asleep.

3. Labels, for everything

Kids lose stuff. Literally. So much stuff. But these Label Daddy labels are ultra-durable and waterproof so you can label everything. Water bottle? Label it. Swimsuit? Label it. Even better, they're peel-and-stick, so drop the sewing kit and start labeling. Plus, right now, buy from our partner site, CertifiKID, and save $20 on any order of $40 or more. 

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4. Pre-prepped postcards

Hopefully they'll be having so much fun they won't be thinking much about home. But if you send them with some pre-addressed, pre-stamped postcards, they might be able to spare two minutes to say hi. Probably not, but we can dream.

5. Shower shoes

Avoid bringing home unwanted guests in the form of athlete's foot or other unsavory characters by sending your kid with a pair of shower shoes. Shower shoes are also helpful for the kid who hates the feel of algae underfoot during lake swims because, ew.

6. Duct tape

With thousands of uses, duct tape can be a camp lifesaver. From fixing ripped sleeping bags to aiding in inappropriate practical jokes, duct tape never disappoints.

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7. Games

Stash a deck of cards, some dice, or an UNO game in their bag. If your kid is feeling lonely, finding someone to play cards with will definitely help. And the memories made around a crazy game of UNO at camp will last a lifetime.