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How to Register

Part 1 - Prepare in Advance for Registration Day!

Review Smithsonian Policies and Our Camp Guides

Review our Terms of Use, Privacy Statement, and the Smithsonian Kids Online Privacy Statement.

After reviewing the Smithsonian policies, review our camp guides!

Verify Your Login & Account Information

To ensure you have the smoothest registration experience and pay the correct rate, verify your login information and membership status prior to registration day.

Individual program information will be sent to the email address listed on your profile one week prior to your first day of individual sessions. Check that your email address and domestic (US) phone number are correct and if not, update them as necessary.

Verify Your Membership

Become a member at any level and save money on your Summer Camp tickets! Support Smithsonian Associates at the donor Contributor Level ($300) and higher and register even earlier for Smithsonian Summer Camp!

Find out more about becoming a donor or call one of our Donor Services representatives.

Pre-register Your Campers

Save your child's grade level, parent/guardian contact information, photo permissions, ad other pertinent information ahead of time*. This information is required to purchase Smithsonian Summer Camps, and having it completed in advance will help get you through the checkout process much quicker.

Pre-register your campers

Your child's information is disposed of at the end of each season. If your child has attended in previous seasons, you may need to re-enter this information.

In order for a minor to participate in Online Smithsonian Summer Camps, a parent or legal guardian must complete and sign a waiver for each child they are registering during the checkout process.

Part 2 - Know Your Camps in Advance!

Planning to Purchase In-Person or Online Camps as a Gift?

Purchase a gift certificate for the child's parent or legal guardian, who can then use it when they register online for the Summer Camp of their choice. Gift certificates can be applied during checkout.

This keeps the registration under the adult’s account, which will ensure they receive the receipt for tax purposes, welcome letter, and other relevant information. The adult will also be able to log into their online portal and access their child’s welcome letter information from anywhere. Please note: Smithsonian Associates memberships are not transferable. If the gift certificate recipient is not a member, they will not have access to the member prices or early registration.

Consider adding the Smithsonian Associates Associate $50 introductory membership to the gift certificate to allow access to the member prices and early registration.

Browse Our Selection of camps

Be prepared and plan which camps you want to purchase in advance by browsing our 2022 offerings. Have a second choice in mind when registering as programs can sell out quickly. Consider filling your camper’s summer with a mix of in-person and online camps!

While browsing our camps you will be able to flag the ones you and your campers are interested in attending, or you may download our handy Camp Registration Organizer if you prefer to keep track of this offline.

Part 3 - Registration Day!

Registration Sales Schedule

Registration is online only

Session Registration

In order for a minor to participate in Online Smithsonian Summer Camps, a parent or legal guardian must complete and sign a waiver for each child they are registering during the checkout process.

Registration Confirmation

When you receive your email confirmation, please make sure that all the information about your child has been recorded accurately. Please print and save your e-mail confirmation, as no ticket will be mailed.

If you do not receive an e-mail confirmation, you can attempt to resend your order email confirmation to yourself from your order history. You can also call our Customer Service team to confirm that you have reserved a place in your camps.

Important: If your payment cannot be immediately processed, keep the items in your cart and remain active on the site until your order goes through.

The Waitlist

If the program you would like to purchase is already sold out, you can add yourself to the waitlist online. Additional sessions may be created to accommodate large waitlists depending on teacher, staff, and resource availability. Families on the waitlist will be contacted directly if new sessions are created. We may also call you if space becomes available during the summer. Camp Staff constantly goes through registration numbers and waitlists to bring as many children off the waitlist and into camps as possible.

Other Important Information

Cancellation Policy

Refund and cancellation policies differ based on formats.

View In-Person Summer Camp cancellation policy
View Online Summer Camp cancellation policy

Dependent Care Tax Credit / FSA Expense

Per IRS guidelines, the cost of a day of camp may count as an expense toward child and dependent care credit. For those who qualify, a receipt can be issued in the name of the person who paid for the summer camp program. For more information on the IRS rules, visit the IRS web site.