MSU Tollgate Farm Summer Camp Interest Application

Hi Camp Families!

We are currently dreaming of hot summer days filled with kids exploring and learning outside at our farm. However, due to the pandemic and with still so much uncertainty, it is impossible for us to provide a plan of what 2021 summer programs will look like at our farm. 

Despite this uncertainty, we want to offer this interest application as a way to gauge interest in our hopeful summer schedule. If summer camp programs are able to move to forward, pending a return to in-person programming, we will give those who fill out this application early bird access to our registration.

As always, the health and safety of our community and staying true to our mission are our highest priority. We will continue to update our website as we learn more and have a clearer vision of what 2021 summer programs will look like for us. 

Thank you for being a part of our farm community! We look forward to the day we can have you and your family back on the farm! 

Review below, the list of potential 2021 summer camp dates and programs we would like to offer, pending a return to in-person programming.
*No payment is required to submit an interest application.
*Submitting an interest application does not guarantee placement of your camper in our summer camp program(s) but will grant you early-bird access to our summer camp registration, should a return to in-person programming occur. 

Camp Location:
MSU Tollgate Farm and Education Center
28115 Meadowbrook Rd.
Novi, MI 48377

 Day Camps are Monday through Friday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. (Pending a return to in-person programming)

2021 Summer Camp Themes

Link to begin application at bottom of page
July 5-9 Green Science Adventure Farm Camp ($350)
Ages 6 - 12

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to spend a week on the farm? Our flagship farm camp offers a great taste of farm life. Campers gain a deeper sense of environmental stewardship as they spend their days feeding critters in the barnyard, tracking animals in the forest, playing cooperative games, designing and building STEM projects, and preparing garden fresh snacks they help grow.

July 12-16 Animal Camp ($350)

Ages 6 - 12

During this camp week our adventures will take us to the barnyard and beyond as we investigate animals and their behaviors. Throughout the week we will visit and interact with our animals on the farm as well as the animals and critters we find as we explore the diverse habitats found within the pond, forest, and fields. Discoveries, collaboration, and play are in store for this fun-filled animal-focused week!

July 12-16 Tollgate KBS Winged Wonders Traveling Camp ($375)
Ages 10-14

Tollgate has banded together with Kellogg Biological Station in Hickory Corners, Michigan to offer this exploration of wild and domestic birds through interactive, hands-on science learning. Become an ornithologist and study birds and their amazing feats as we hike the fields and forests of MSU Tollgate Farm and Kellogg Bird Sanctuary. Meet at Tollgate for farm-based birding adventures Monday and Friday 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. As field scientists, travel by bus and camp out under the stars at KBS Tuesday through Thursday to interact with research scientists, meet raptors up close and personal, make new friends, and have lots of fun! Transportation and tents provided.

July 19-23 Earth Explorers Camp ($350)
Ages 6 - 12

During this week of camp we will use our curiosity and imagination to explore nature and the world around us. From studying the soil composition in the forest to the water quality of the pond the campers will learn the importance of environmental diversity and the inter-connectivity of humans and nature. Throughout the week campers will be immersed in interactive and environmentally focused activities that promote sustainability, including a week long STEAM project turning 'trash' into a new invention.

July 26-30 Horse Camp 1: Equine Science ($375)

Ages 9 - 14

Geared toward the scientist, this version of Horse Camp will explore the wonders of the equine body! Campers will dive into the anatomy and physiology of horses, explore specimens under a microscope, learn about veterinary procedures, and much more! Campers will also work on basic horsemanship skills, acquire horse husbandry knowledge, and experience the day-to-day operations of a working farm! You do not need a horse to participate.

July 26-30 Tollgate Vet Science Camp ($375)
Ages 12 - 14

Explore the Tollgate barn and pastures as you investigate veterinary science and animal medicine. Collaborate in teams as you participate in various hands-on learning adventures related to the world of farm animals. Travel by bus one day to visit campus farms and explore veterinary science as a career choice. Participants will gain animal handling experience, learn how to use veterinary tools & technology, practice physical exams, and have the opportunity to explore various animal-related career fields with visiting vets and animal care specialists.

August 2-6 Nature's Engineers Camp ($350)
Ages 6 - 12

Calling all nature engineers! Professions such as architects, engineers, and scientists often look to nature to inspire and answer questions. Organisms all around us are using engineering principles to build structures and/or modify the environment for their benefit. During this week of camp we will investigate various nature engineers on our property and become one ourselves through participation in various outdoor packed activities and our week long STEAM project.

August 9-13 Survival Camp ($350)

Ages 6 - 12

Let your child's adventurous spirits run free as they learn about the natural environment and the important tools of survival during this week of summer camp. Survival Camp is the perfect camp for those who want to get down and dirty and put their survival skills to the test. This camp week will be filled with exciting skill building experiences like fire building, forest exploration and navigational tools, and a week-long STEM project focusing on shelter building.

August 16-20 Horse Camp 2: Equine Industry ($375)
Ages 9 -14

Imagine yourself learning all about the equine industry. Horse behavior and training, horse care management and career opportunities are just some of the interesting topics at Tollgate Horse Camp 2. Of course, you will be able to enjoy the horses up close and personal as you gain knowledge and hands on experience during your equine adventure on the farm! Campers will expand their horsemanship skills and experience the day-to-day operations of a working farm! You do not need a horse to participate. 

August 16-20 Outdoor Adventure Camp ($375)
Ages 12 - 14

Take survival camp to a whole new level and challenge yourself with exciting wilderness skill-building experiences. Test your limits and develop a survival mindset with map reading and orienteering, fire-building, outdoor cooking, shelter-building, climbing, and team-building trust initiatives. Travel by bus to a high ropes course and giant's ladder. Add an optional Thursday camp out under the stars for new outdoor adventure at MSU Tollgate.

August 23-27 Splish Splash Water Camp ($350)

Ages 6 - 12

Dive into the world of the pond to investigate the animals, bugs, and plants that call it home. This week is perfect for the camper who is interested in fishing, canoeing, and pond dipping for macroinvertebrates. Learn about water conservation and water ecology. What happens to the rain that falls on MSU Tollgate Farm? How do the plants and animals impact our water? We will close our week with the return of our famous water slide for a splish-splashing good time!

Steward and Steward in Training Leadership Program ($180)
Ages 13-19

The Steward and Steward-in-Training (SIT) Program is a progressive Tollgate youth development experience for teens ages 13-19 who are interested in gaining experience working with campers in agriculture and the natural sciences. Stewards-in-Training are 13-14 years of age, serve as role models for campers during activities, and commit to at least one full week of camp. Stewards are 15-19 years of age and serve as assistants to the educational leaders and mentors for both SITs and campers. Stewards must commit to at least two full weeks of camp. For more information on this program email or visit the separate application found here.
Please click here if you would like to fill out an interest application for a camper(s) in your family.

Application for MSU Tollgate Farm Summer Camp Interest Application is open.

Application closes at 11:59 p.m. on July 1, 2021.


Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

Contact Information

For information or questions contact MSU Extension Tollgate Programs contact Camp Coordinator, Sara Mund, at