About MCA

For over 45 years, the Massachusetts Camping Association has been the leading professional voice for the Massachusetts’ camping industry, consisting of hundreds of resident and day camps. MCA, in conjunction with the American Camping Association of New England, retains the services of a well established lobbying firm to move forward the major effort of implementing legislative changes. The organization is led by a volunteer Board of Directors of experienced camp professionals who are dedicated to doing what is best for the summer camp industry.

Our primary goal is to support our member camps, and the entire camping industry across Massachusetts. Over our almost 50 years of existence, we have made many measurable gains for camps, and been an influencing force in shaping how camp regulation changes in the state. Each year, we work with the Massachusetts Department of Health on regulatory changes, along with lobbying at the state and federal level to represent the interests of summer camps.

Membership in MCA provides access to the most up-to-date information around regulation, industry challenges, and upcoming changes. Our members receive monthly communication, along with opportunities for learning and networking with fellow camp directors to move the industry forward. Our believe is that the Massachusetts summer camp community is “STRONGER TOGETHER!”

Our History

The Massachusetts Camping Association (MCA) was organized on January 10th, 1975, in partnership with the Western Massachusetts Camp Directors Association and the New England Camp Association. The organization was started to provide a “leading voice” for all Massachusetts Licensed Recreational Children’s Camps in providing education to legislators that would have a positive impact on legislation in the best interest of campers, camp staff and the camp industry. Their first action to influence was the Youth Camp Safety Bill and to educate legislators around the specific needs for camps in relation to labor laws.

Today, the Massachusetts Camping Association continues to be a “LEADING VOICE” for camps by their organization and opportunity to influence today’s legislators on the important needs and concerns of camps in regards to camp safety and sustainability. We continue to maintain a strong relationship with the Western Massachusetts Camping Association and the New England American Camp Association.

Since 1975, we have grown to represent over 1200 camps around the Commonwealth.

Our Goals

The Massachusetts Camps Association (MCA) is THE LEADING VOICE for organized recreational children’s camps in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

We proactively provide advocacy and education around legislation that impacts the camping industry.  Working closely with our lobbyist to monitor bills and take action to protect the integrity of quality camp programs including child safety, property management, employment regulations, land stewardship, taxes and insurance.

MCA also serves as an educational and collaborative resource for camp professionals throughout the state hosting regional meetings, workshops and networking opportunities annually.

Membership includes:

  1. Monthly Electronic Newsletters include Legislative Alerts, Hot Topics for Camps, Professional Development Opportunities, Upcoming Events, and links to our Business Partners.
  2. CALL TO ACTION notices when we need the voice of camp professionals to correspond with their local representatives on critical issues.
  3. October Fall Workshop – A chance for camp directors to debrief their summer with colleagues, legislative update from our lobbyist, national trends and hot topics, and a networking lunch provided.
  4. Camp Director Drop-ins – Informal opportunities for member camps to get together, share ideas, and discuss pressing issues or challenges specific to an individual camp or season.
  5. Gathering at ACA New England Conference – an opportunity to connect informally with MCA Board Members and other member camp staff at the ACANE Conference in Manchester, NH.
  6. Annual Meeting for all member camps. Hot topics, voting on our volunteer Board of Directors, and Getting Ready For Camp resources provided.
  7. April Spring Workshop – The Department of Public Health presents what to expect in preparing your camp for licensing this upcoming summer, the MA Cori Board provides CORI Certification Training, and typically a presentation geared to helping camps with their readiness for camp, ie. Risk Management Plans. All followed with a nice lunch provided by one of our Business Partners.
  8. Ongoing Support for Member Camps – Have a question? Reach out to MCA and get an answer. We’re here for you, to help your camp season run as smoothly as possible. Let us know how we can help!