We had around 85 homeschoolers join us for our first journey to Space Camp. This was an amazing trip, with great reviews from our travelers. Many families said they want to return, so I'm already planning a trip for next year.
We participated in a weekend program that condenses their regular week-long space camp program into three days and allows all family members to attend (parents, aunts, uncles, family friends, and others).
We found the age/grade guidelines to be accurate (at least nine years old, and in 4th grade). Younger children wouldn't have been able to handle the complexity of the material, or maintain the energy level needed for the camp. We had students from 4th grade through college-age, and found that the teens and adults loved it as much as, if not more than, the younger children. There was something for everyone, with a good mix of hands-on learning, simulators, and informative talks and presentations.
One mother remarked that even if you or your children aren't particularly interested in space, you'd still have fun at this camp. I definitely agree. The material and activities were great. The children and parents learned a lot and were rarely (if ever) bored during our stay.
About half our group slept in the camp's dorm (aka "habitat"), and the other half stayed at a hotel located on Space Camp property. Both enjoyed their stay - the habitat folks enjoyed the camp experience, while the hotel folks enjoyed the comfort of the hotel and the pool (of course!).
The food was typical of camps around the country - adequate, for the most part, but nothing to write home about. Breakfast was rated best, with lunch coming in second, and dinner last. If you're planning to go with us next year, don't go for the food.
We found the counselors (aka crew trainers) to be (for the most part) knowledgeable, engaged, and able to interact equally well with the children and adults. They promoted a team atmosphere, with teams competing against each other (our group was divided into six teams) in various areas: a simulated space mission (surprisingly realistic and fun), mission patch (we had some amazing artists!), Space Bowl (a Jeopardy-style game that was not only fun, but displayed how much everyone really learned during the weekend), and more. It was more light-hearted and fun than it was competitive, and the parents got into it as much as the children.
The weather was much hotter than we would have liked (in the upper 90's, with high humidity and a tropical storm trying to make its way toward us), but most activities were inside, so it didn't hamper us too much.
We're already planning a trip back next year, but with a few tweaks and additions to make it an even better experience for our group.
Thanks to everyone who camped with us this year. I enjoyed meeting you and watching our children have so much fun together! I look forward to seeing you again next year, or on a future trip.