Programs and Events
Arizona Camp Sunrise and Sidekicks offer a variety of programs and activities for all ages throughout the year.
Arizona Camp Sunrise and Sidekicks offer seven days of fun in the cool pines outside of Payson, Arizona. They are geared for children ages 8-16 who have or have had cancer (Sunrise) and their siblings (Sidekicks). The premise of Arizona Camp Sunrise is to provide a regular summer camp experience to kids who may not be able to attend other camps because of their special medical needs. The camp also gives children a chance to meet other children with the same experiences, where they build friendships that lend encouragement and strength throughout the year.
The children are divided into cabin groups based on gender and age. The campers only do a small number of activities in these groups. The rest of the time they are out having fun with campers of all ages.
When the campers arrive at camp, they sign up for classes that they will take for the week. The classes range from sports and outdoor games to dance and drama; from arts & crafts to cooking. Other activities are also planned for the campers such as horseback riding, a trip to a lake, a dance, and learning to make friendship bracelets and Monkey’s Fists. Sometimes special guests like the Phoenix Suns Gorilla or a comedy team come to camp to entertain!
Arizona Camp Sunrise offers two weekend retreats every year. The Winter Retreat, held in February, is for teens ages 13-16. The Spring Retreat, held in April, is for children ages 8-12. Both retreats are held at the camp outside of Payson, Arizona and both run from a Friday afternoon to Sunday afternoon. These retreats are a good way to introduce new campers and staff to the programs, and a wonderful get-away for returning campers and staff.
The retreats are run like mini camps. The kids can pick different classes to go to, and there is a wide variety of traditional and unique camp activities. But the schedule is not set in stone. If the kids are having fun playing in the snow, then we just let them have at it. We also sing songs, play games, cook, hike, do arts & crafts, make roller coasters, perform cool science experiments, put on skits, and participate in a myriad of other fun activities!
Arizona Camp Sunrise and Sidekicks would not be possible without the generous support of our staff, volunteers, families, and the general public. Exciting and unique fundraisers are planned throughout the year to help us continue to provide this summer camp experience to those kids who need it most. Check out our calendar for upcoming fundraising opportunities, or visit our donation page to learn how you can help now!