The Dudley Program
Our program is designed to create an environment rich with leadership and character development opportunities, which are enhanced by our emphasis on single sex camping. Because the boys are located at Camp Dudley’s campus in Westport, NY and the girls at Camp Kiniya in Colchester, VT each group is freed from the pressures that may typically accompany co-ed camping.
The Dudley program is organized around four pillars…athletics, the arts, the outdoors, and spirituality…and each program area is of the highest quality led by an experienced Leader or Staff member, many of whom are full-time educators.
Click here for an example of Camp Dudley’s Daily Schedule.
For team programming, each camper is assigned to a team in their division, separate from their cabin group. Teams compete according to age groups in lacrosse, soccer, basketball, baseball, flag football, ultimate frisbee, and water polo. The teams also compete in swim meets and track meets.
Each camper also chooses a Team Major in which they receive specialized and higher level instruction in one team sport. Team Majors are often led by High School and College level varsity coaches or by Leaders currently playing that sport at the collegiate level. Team Major sports are:
- Flag Football
- Ultimate Frisbee
- Water polo
Campers also choose an Individual Major in which they receive specialized instruction. Individual Major choices are:
- Rock Climbing
- Skin Diving
- Riflery (for Seniors and Juniors only)
- Fitness / Weight Lifting
Dudley has a long tradition of encouraging and supporting the artistic side of every camper. The center piece of which is Witherbee Hall, our 400 seat theater that hosts at least two distinct shows a week.
The Arts is often a critical component of a camper’s experience. They not only have the opportunity to watch performances, but every camper will have some type of on-stage experience at some point during the summer.
Each camper receives specialized instruction in the arts through our Arts Majors, which include:
- Stage Managing
- Music – Instrumental
- Music – Vocal
- Video and Photography
- Silk Screening
- Drawing and Painting
During the course of the week there are two regularly scheduled performances:
- Wednesdays feature the “Wednesday Night Show,”…a long-time Dudley tradition…with skits and performances put on by campers, Leaders, and Staff.
- Every Saturday features the “Saturday Night Show”…an evening of dramatic productions which can be plays, musicals, or a review of several acts called the “Evening of the Arts.” Saturday’s show always includes a performance by the world famous “Rhythm Ramblers,” Camp Dudley’s long running jazz band.
Since our founding in 1885, a wilderness experience has been at the heart of the Dudley program. Over the course of the summer every camper will have the opportunity to experience an adventure in The Adirondacks through at least one but more likely a few of the following experiences:
- An overnight at a private camp site in the over 300 acres of wilderness area that Dudley owns
- A hiking trip in the Adirondack High Peaks region
- A canoe or kayak trip in the Adirondack Lakes Region
- A rock climbing trip to one of the area’s world famous crags
- An experience on the Camp Dudley Challenge Course, including both a high-rope and low elements, which focuses on team building, leadership and fun
- Wilderness leadership group activities, the Senior Night Experience and the Aides Experience
- A western wilderness experience through a new partnership with the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS), which is available to those in the Aide, JL, and AL years.
- Our new Farm to Table program, which utilizes the expanded Dudley Garden and trips to local farms that supply us with a portion of our food.
The outdoor experiences increase in challenge level as a camper progresses through each year of the program. Our youngest campers will do a day hike and each year takes on a progressively more challenging experience, which culminates with the Aides Experience, one of the first steps in our Leadership Development Program.
From the beginning, spirituality has been a central component of the Dudley experience. Everyday, except Sunday, starts with a Chapel Talk…an inspirational or thoughtful message delivered by a Leader or Staff member. And each day, except Sunday, ends with a cabin vesper…a discussion on an important topic….led by a camper or Leader. These moments reinforce Dudley’s emphasis on character and leadership and give campers time to reflect on the myriad lessons they learn throughout the summer.
On Sundays, a service is held in the outdoor chapel and a sermon is given by an invited guest. Click here for a list of last year’s speakers along with the text of some of the delivered remarks.
Sundays are often considered the highlight of the week as it’s a day that allows for reflection and rest. There are no team activities or majors on Sundays so campers only have choice time. This allows them to take time to do the activities that they most enjoy or they can just spend quality time with their buddies.
Sundays also include cabin meetings. A time when campers meet with their cabin’s Leader to discuss their progress throughout the summer.
Sundays end with one of our most revered traditions…Hymn Sing. It’s hard to describe so here’s a video: