Camp Watermelon

  • Camp Watermelon 2023 is full for this summer. Feel free to put yourself on our interest list at the bottom of this page to receive info about registration for next summer’s sessions.

Summer Camp Sessions for rising Kindergarten through 8th grade 

But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard. Galatians 5:22 (MSG)

What is Camp Watermelon? 

Camp Watermelon seeks to teach kids about Jesus and loving others while having fun in a community of new friends. We make crafts, play games, practice encouraging and serving each other, and learn Scripture in tangible, applicable ways that encourage team building. Campers will have time in the day for free-choice activities as well as rotate through several activity stations on campus. Campers are placed in groups of 10–12 children led by 3–4 wonderful teenage counselors who have growing relationships with the Lord. 

Why does FPC host a summer camp program? 

The good news of the Gospel often begins to grow roots in the lives of young children when they know they are loved and enjoyed.  It is our calling at Camp Watermelon to know and enjoy the uniquely wonderful things about each camper. Counselors are trained and encouraged to relate to the kids as incarnation witnesses, reminding campers of their status as children of God.  We seek to love our campers because Jesus first loved us.  We also want to love campers so that they might be swept into the beauty of Christian community.  Most importantly, we want to love campers well so that they might be drawn closer to God’s heart. 

Another reason we do what we do is because play is so important in all of our lives.  Play is vulnerable, fun, messy, creative, delightful, risky, natural, and good. Kids play intuitively, but busy-ness and technology become limitations to creative, life-giving play. Sessions at Camp Watermelon are a place where campers and counselors are blessed by the joy of playing together and connecting in a uniquely wonderful way.  

About the Staff 

Erika Shapiro, Director of Church Recreation and Fellowship 

Camp Watermelon is the vision of Erika Shapiro, Director of Church Recreation and Fellowship. Originally from Memphis, Tennessee, Erika moved to Nashville after graduating from Rhodes College and began working as a middle school youth director at FPC where she served for eight years. During that time, Erika married Jeremy and started their own family. While she was home with their three small children, she longed to be able to do youth ministry in a way that integrated her own family into the joy of being involved in youth ministry. God used that longing to grow Camp Watermelon, which began with 12 campers and four counselors in 2013.  FPC is blessed to welcome Erika back on staff to continue the legacy of OHDC as leader of Camp Watermelon. 

About the Counselors 

We host Camp Watermelon not only so that kids will taste the goodness of the Gospel, but also so that youth have a place to practice leadership and service to younger kids. Camp counselors are youth that we have pre-existing relationships with from church, school, or friendship within the community.  Many of them have been part of Camp Watermelon since it started and all of them are people that we trust in the presence of our own young children.  In fact, we hope our children are watching these youth closely because they have a beautiful impact on our kids (and on us!).  They are young men and women who are passionate, fun, playful, kind, and wise. They stir our expectation and excitement about what is possible when we gather our hearts and energy around a God-honoring mission. Serving alongside them is a blessing, and we trust your kids will be blessed by them too!   

Registration Information 

If Camp Watermelon sounds like a good fit for your child, here is what you need to know to register: 

  • Camp Watermelon 2023 is full for this summer. Feel free to put yourself on our interest list at the bottom of this page to receive info about registration for next summer’s sessions.
  • Each camp session is Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  • We are asking for full payment at the time of registration. The camp fee is $245 plus fees so please be prepared with credit card info when registering.
  • We do not want the cost of camp to prevent children from coming, so PLEASE communicate BEFORE REGISTRATION if your circumstances are such that your camper needs a scholarship. We would love to help make camp available for everyone who may want the chance to participate.

Camp Watermelon Middle School Camp for Girls | rising 5th-8th grades

June 19-June 22 (M-Th)
9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Camp Watermelon for Rising Kindergarten through Rising 4th Grade Girls and Boys

June 26-June 29 (M-Th)
9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

July 10-July 13 (M-Th)
9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

July 17-July 20 (M-Th)
9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Man Camp
As a ministry of First Presbyterian Church,  From Within  Counseling will host “Man Camp” for Middle School boys (rising 5th–7th grade) June 19-June 22, from 9:00 a.m. –2:00 p.m. For Man Camp registration information, email [email protected].

Interest Form

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