YMCA Camp Gorham

Camp Gorham Waterfront
The Wilderness Lakes Lodge
Showing Their Spirit!
The Classic Campfire
The Local Wildlife
Lifeguard Training

Your Adirondack Adventure Awaits!

At YMCA Camp Gorham, our goal is to provide a positive and exciting summer camp experience for children aged 7-16. Our summer camp program immerses campers in the beautiful Adirondack park while providing an opportunity to try something new and exciting. With so many opportunities for fun, Camp Gorham is a unique experience that will stay with you long after you leave.

YMCA Camp Gorham is located in Eagle Bay, NY which is situated in the heart of the Adirondack State Park near Old Forge, NY. Our 1500 acre facility includes access to the beautiful Darts Lake.

About YMCA Camp Gorham

Camp Gorham has a rich history dating back to the early 1900s' when the property was first used as a resort for people looking to escape the bustle of the city and enjoy the fresh air of the outdoors. The property was purchased in the late 1950s' by Jack and Irene Gorham who very generously donated the land to the YMCA of Greater Rochester. Jack and Irene believed that it was a necessity for all young children to experience the outdoors. Since 1961, when Camp Gorham ran its first summer camp program, the YMCA has continued to uphold Jack and Irene's belief that children should be given the opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors.

Spending the summer at Camp Gorham means that you will wake up every morning on our 1500 acre property situated in the middle of the Adirondack State Park, the largest state park in the US. Campers and staff will also enjoy time boating on the beautiful, 400 acre Darts Lake. Our summer camp program gives campers the ability to choose what activities they will be participating in each day. Campers are able to choose from activities such as archery, canoeing and kayaking, rock climbing, swimming, mountain biking, hiking, horseback riding, water skiing and so much more.

Our campers are given many opportunities to meet new friends and build their connections with staff through camp-wide games such as 4-way Capture the Flag, Gold Rush and Ham Jam just to name a few. Each two week session also includes an overnight campout at one of our many camp sites on our property. Campers and staff will spend the night in a lean-to while hanging out by the fire and learning basic wilderness skills.

We are looking for motivated staff that want to share in this experience and make a difference in the lives of so many campers. For more information or questions, please reach out to our camp office at 315-357-6401. Your Adirondack adventure is waiting so come and join the experience!

The Employee Experience

Working at Camp Gorham is more than just a summer job.  Being a part of our staff team means that you will join the Gorham family, a wide network of staff, campers, parents, volunteers and alumni that also have love for Camp Gorham. Throughout the summer, staff spend their days building leadership skills, confidence and work experience by leading camper groups in daily activities and programs.

A Typical Day at Work

Each day starts bright and early with a Polar Bear swim where everyone is given the opportunity to jump in the lake for a refreshing wakeup call. Throughout the day staff leads and supervise campers in elected activities, cabin activities, and camp wide evening programs with scheduled meal times in between. Depending on skill, experience, and certifications, staff may be assigned to a specific activity such as archery or rock climbing on a daily basis.

Cabin life is the other main component of a typical workday at camp. Staff lead campers in ensuring cabin cleanliness, help make sure campers are maintaining hygienic practices and promote positive interactions and relationships within the cabin. Playing games and doing activities is also encouraged while spending time in the cabin.

Staff can expect to find support from a dedicated leadership team that will be available for assistance with situations that may come up. An on site nurse is also available 24/7 for any medical needs.

What You'll Take Away From Gorham

Staff who spend their summer at Gorham leave here with more than just something to add to their resume. Working at camp gives staff the chance to build their confidence and really come out of their shell. Camp is a place where being unique, creative, out of the ordinary or quirky is encouraged on a daily basis.

Many of our staff also leave with new friendships that last way beyond camp. You will get to meet people from all over New York State, the US and even the world. Our international staff and camper programs bring people in from different parts of the world and provide a chance to learn about different cultures. Every year, staff stay connected after the summer and share in other experiences.

Working at Gorham will also give you the opportunity to learn something new. Aside from shooting a bow and arrow for the first time or learning how to string a fishing pole, staff can gain knowledge that can be applied in other professional settings outside of camp. Here are some of the certifications and trainings that you can receive while working at camp.

  • CPR
  • First Aid
  • Lifeguard Certification with Waterfront
  • Archery Instructor Training and Certification
  • Rockwall / High Ropes belay training
  • Boater Safety Certification
  • Public Vessel Operator License (PVO)

Ideal Candidate

Our ideal staff member has a few qualities that will help them to have a successful summer here at Gorham. Here are some of the characteristics we look for in our staff.

Energetic - It is always great too see someone who is excited and has good energy. We want campers to be having fun throughout the day and sometimes we need our staff to bring the energy to an activity that may not be as exciting as others. A little bit of spirit and effort can go a long way at camp.

Dedicated - Camp Gorham aims to provide an amazing summer experience for children and we want our staff to feel the same way. The ideal candidate is invested in providing a fun and safe experience for our campers.

Flexible / Adaptable - Even though we try to plan for a perfect world, we all know that it doesn't always turn out that way. We look for staff who are willing to adapt to changing situations.

Creative - Camp is about having fun and there are a million ways to make that happen. We love to see the ideas of our staff come to life and we will always support new ideas that will help us reach our goals.

Punctual - Being on time is very important for our camp program. Showing up late to an activity means that campers lose out on their time with that activity. A great staff member is always on time!

Works Well With Others - Making camp happen is a team effort and no single person is responsible for the success. Being able to work with other is important for us and being able to rely on the people around you makes the staff experience even better.

Professional - While we love to see goofy moments and crazy outfits, it is also important to be professional. Staff will interact with parents on pickup and drop-off days and  looking professional and behaving professionally is especially important.

Room and Board

Living Arrangements

Camp staff live on site for the summer in one of our beautiful, rustic cabins. While staff and campers share a cabin, staff sleep in a separate room that can provide privacy if need be. All cabins have bathroom amenities inside the cabin and showers can be located in either the cabin or in a shared shower house. Laundry facilities are provided on site with staff being responsible for providing their own laundry soap. A staff lounge with WiFi access is available for staff on their time off. Each staff member is also given a secure locker for storing any personal belongings that may be important or fragile. Housing is provided at no extra cost.

Food and Meals

Staff join campers for three meals a day in our beautiful dining hall. Meals are also available for staff while on time off. Camp Gorham strives to provide a number of food options at each meal to make sure everyone is eating something they enjoy. Along with a main dish, a fruit and cereal bar is provided at breakfast with a full salad bar available at lunch and dinner. Coffee is also available for staff at each meal. Dietary restrictions and needs can also be accommodated by our kitchen staff. Meals are provided at no extra cost.

Getting Here and Getting Around

Getting to Camp - Initial Travel

Because of our location, there is no means of public transportation that staff can use to get directly to camp. The best option for public transportation is to travel to Utica, NY via train or bus. Syracuse, NY is has closest major airport that staff can fly into without high prices. If you are able to make it to one of these locations, we will coordinate with you to pick you up from one of these locations and bring you to camp

Traveling After Arrival

While it is not mandatory, it is highly recommended that you bring a personal vehicle if you have one. Staff are able to leave camp and explore the surrounding areas while on their time off. Staff can leave their personal vehicles in the staff parking lot while they are here.

For Fun

Explore the ADK Park

The Adirondack Park is filled with trails to hike, lakes to paddle and many sights to see. There is no shortage of exploration to be done around here. If you love hiking, biking, paddling and even just relaxing, there is a place to do just that. You cant drive five minutes outside of camp without hitting a hiking trail or lake with public access.

Explore the Local Towns

Old Forge, NY is a great little tourist town with plenty to do. There are many shops to check out and plenty of restaurant options to try. Old Forge is home to Enchanted Forest Water Safari, a family-friendly waterpark that also has an arcade and go-kart track just next door. You can also find mini-golf, a movie theatre, and a small public beach in this town. Old Forge is about a 20-minute drive from Camp.

How to Apply


Contact YMCA Camp Gorham