Located in Central Oregon near Sisters, our Arts Center sits on the shore of Blue Lake amid 116 acres of forest in the Cascade mountain range. Every summer, more than 150 youth from Portland and Central Oregon come to our Arts Center to experience a life-changing arts and nature camp. Here they develop their creative voices and deepen their appreciation for the environment.
Our camp and subsequent year-round programs are founded on research-based, positive youth-development values, which offer access to constructive and sustained relationships with adults; activities that build life skills; participation in a supportive, valued community; and culturally sensitive practices. Each day at camp, youth work with professional teaching artists, naturalists, and mentors. Arts courses vary and may include music/audio production, visual arts, photography, dance, theater, filmmaking, comics, drumming, and creative writing. Youth also participate in community circles, campfires, nature hikes, challenge courses, and other outdoor activities.
Each summer we have three eight- to ten-day camp sessions arranged by age group (see Youth Program Calendar here for dates), and together, we build a supportive and creative atmosphere that connects with the stunningly beautiful outdoor environment. Our programming is not currently open to public enrollment and preference for our summer programming is given to students that attend one of our twelve Portland or Central Oregon Arts Partner middle schools and currently attend weekly mentoring sessions.
When at the Arts Center, we all go by camp names and proudly display our names on hand-drawn wood cookie name tags. These names give us the opportunity to be the person or idea that may not feel possible in our home and school lives. At Caldera, everyone has the opportunity to be their best selves and camp names reflect that.