Adventure Guides

adventure guides

What is YMCA Adventure Guides?
YMCA Adventure Guides is a program offered in YMCAs across the country designed to strengthen the relationship between a parent and a child through their journey of discovery. While activities with the whole family are important, we see tremendous value in supporting and strengthening the ability of a parent and his or her child to communicate at an early age in ways that are caring, honest, respectful and responsible. We seek to encourage parents to “get to know your kid while your kid is still a kid.”


Who participates in YMCA Adventure Guides?
YMCA Adventure Guides is designed for parents (or other significant adults in children’s lives) and their children ages 5 through 9. An adult and child must attend program activities together. In YMCA Adventure Guides, the parent is the Guide, and the child is the Explorer. Our YMCA Adventure Guides program consists of fathers and sons and fathers and daughters.


What do YMCA Adventure Guide participants do?
The father-child pairs are grouped into “Circles” that meet on a monthly basis in each others’ homes. Twice a year our Circles come together to participate in an Expedition (a campout). The first is in September to start our year and the second is in May to say farewell to our program graduates and catch up before the summer starts. The core of the YMCA Adventure Guides program is these Circle and Expedition meetings and adventures from September-June. Typical activities include ceremonies, games, crafts, songs, stories, skits and outdoor pursuits such as camping, hiking and swimming.


YMCA Adventure Guides Compass Points
The program focus is on the adventures of a father and child and of their Circles and Expeditions. At the forefront of the program are the Compass Points, which give members a sense of direction and an inspiration for activities. These points are broad enough in scope to allow for variety and creativity in designing activities.

The four main direction points on the compass are the essential components of the program.

  • The Family is True North—the focal point of the program.
  • Nature and the camping experience are integral parts of the program.
  • The spirit of the program is experienced through belonging to a small Community, the Circle.
  • Fun is the magic of the program.

The YMCA core values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility make up the other directional points. Along the journey, adults should teach and demonstrate these values as well as give children many opportunities to practice and celebrate them. Adults should also point out and discuss with children any behavior that is inconsistent with these values. Initially, these four values provide guidance in helping children select activities, make decisions and choose appropriate courses of action—both in the program and in their lives. As children grow, these values become their own internal compass.


Facility Members: $30/yr.; $10/yr. add. child
Program Members: $40/yr.; $10/yr. add. child

2016-2017 Events

Fall Picnic for Sunday, August 28th – Both Groups

  • This is a family event, so brothers and moms are welcome. We use this event as recruitment tool, so please encourage your daughters to invite their friends & friend’s families.

Fall Feast is scheduled for November TBA- Both Groups

Father/Son Group

September 25 – Recruitment day – bring a friend and his dad to Skyzone 3pm
October – Fall Campout is scheduled for Oct. 14th – 16th @ Camp Thompson
November – Fall Feast & Mountoursville Cabin Trip
December – Bowling
February – Snow Tubing
Early Spring – Laser Tag & Sky Zone

Father/Daughter Group

September – Trail Hike
October – Fall Campout is scheduled for Oct. 22nd – 23rd @ Doubling Gap/Camp Yolijwa
November – Fall Feast
December – Elks Club (Christmas Card making for vets)
January – Bowling
February – Snow Tubing
March – TBA
April – Go Carts

Registration accepted all year
Contact to get connected with a Circle or to start your own Circle.