Camp schedules are divided into morning and afternoon activities. We have one set of activities in the mornings, and an entirely different group in the afternoons. Throughout every day, our campers participate in programs ranging from Arts and Crafts to Zip Lines! At Camp Mac, campers have nearly a hundred different activities they can choose from!
At Camp Mac, every experience is an opportunity to grow – in confidence, in maturity, in courage, and in joy. We call the process passing off. Here’s how it works. Let’s say your child has never water skied before. The first things they will learn are the Water Skier’s Safety Code, the signals used between skier and boat operator, how to put on skis, how to make an unassisted start and ride for a minute without falling, how to cross the boat wake, and that sort of thing. Once they’ve mastered all of these steps, they earn the distinction of Water Skier 3rd Class. From there, if they so choose, they can continue to “pass off,” eventually rising to the level of Expert. We use this same approach to teach everything from jumping on a trampoline, to horsemanship, to surviving in the woods. It’s how we’ve done it since 1948.
With over 40 horses, two open riding arenas, one covered arena, and ten miles of trails winding through the Talladega National Forest, our Western Riding Program is one of the largest in the South.
Campers who have ridden all their lives, and campers who have never been on the same side of the fence with a horse, learn new skills, face new challenges, and gain the confidence that comes with working hard to learn to do things they didn’t think possible.
Since our first summer in 1948, Horseback has been a vital part of our camp program. Camp Mac has always owned its horses – they aren’t leased. It costs more that way, but our horses are key members of our Horseback Crew, and we like to know our crew!
Our program and instructors are certified by the Dude Rancher’s Association (DRA), which certifies over 100 premiere Dude Ranches all across the West. In fact, Camp Mac’s riding program was the first program ever certified by the DRA.
Eisenhower was president, and Camp Mac was one of the first camps in the nation to offer the American Water Ski Association Camp Ski Program in the early 1960s.
Today, the Camp Mac Watersports Program offers a specialized program with 3rd Class through Expert levels in three different tracks – Skiing, Kneeboard and Wakeboard. Distinguished Expert is awarded to those campers who are able to pass Expert in each track. Campers must first pass a swimming test in the pool in order to take Watersports.
With 11 instructors and 3 ski boats on 2 private lakes, each boy and girl gets out on the water every other morning throughout the entire term. Over the course of the summer, over 100 campers learn to ski for the first time here “Among the Pines”!
Watersports are an exciting challenge for young and old campers alike! Who will ever forget that first ride on the kneeboard? That first time across the wake on the wakeboard? That first 360 on the trick skis? Or that first bust trying to dock-start on one?!
for both boys and girls. Consequently, our rifle range with nine firing stations and target returns sees more than its fair share of activity. In fact, over the course of a summer, Camp Mac campers fire more than 60,000 target rounds downrange.
Camp Mac is affiliated with the Civilian Marksmanship Program. Qualified Instructors teach the courses with an overarching emphasis on the safe and proper handling of firearms. Starting out with air rifles, campers must show that they are qualified before they move up to .22 caliber target rifles. As they progress, campers earn certificates for each marksmanship level. And a free rifle is given to any camper who shoots a perfect score of 50!
so water safety is an important part of every camper’s training. Camp Mac swimming instruction is conducted in our large Junior Olympic 75’ x 35’ pool. Certified Lifeguards instruct campers in proper kick and stroke technique and breath control. For our older campers we also offer advanced courses in Basic Rescue and Survival Swimming.
It’s not all about instruction, though. There’s also time for fun. Underwater swimming with the “air buoy,” Sharks and Minnows, water basketball, our 52-foot-long waterslide, and preliminary competitions in diving and racing for the Camp Mac Swim Meet make for a summer full of swimming pool fun!
How about your set in volleyball? Or maybe you’d be set if you just had a few pointers on pitching a softball or catching a football! These are a few of the things you might do in Team Sports, along with games like Team Handball or Ultimate Frisbee! You’ll experience the “Thrill of Victory” or the “Agony of Defeat” once you’ve experienced Bombardment and Capture The Flag at Camp Mac!
Fun and Games is exactly what it sounds like: having fun and playing games.You’ll have fun playing games like Beege Ball (GaGa Ball), Putt-Putt and Steal the Chicken! And you’ll have fun doing stuff like riding the Bucking Bull, going on a camp-wide scavenger hunt – and throwing the perfect pitch to dunk your friend (or your counselor) in the Dunk Tank! Our 60-foot-long, inflatable “Slip and Slide” always makes a big splash!
At Wilderness Skills, we learn about our home!
Rather than sitting at home with smart phones connecting them to the outside world, Camp Mac campers connect directly with the world outside!
Boys and girls learn to pitch a tent and tie the right knot for the job. They learn how to tell the difference between a Sourwood and a Dogwood (by it’s bark!) And how to tell a Coral Snake from a Scarlet King Snake (Red touches yellow, kill a fellow. Red touches black, friend of Camp Mac!)
Campers go on hikes to High Falls and Salt Creek Falls. They learn about the “bugs and the bees” (insect identification). And how to start a campfire – with or without a match! You hear people talk about living in the “real world’. At Wilderness Skills, we take a break from the world that man made, and spend time learning how to live in and enjoy the real world. The world that was here long before we were!
in sports like Tetherball, Frisbee Golf, Wallball, Pickle Ball and Table Tennis! We play Cornhole at Tailgate Day, and everyone will go for the record at the Camp Mac Obstacle Course!
Lucky Camp Mac Horseshoe Frames, carpenter bee catchers, stools, makeup boxes, tie-dyed T-shirts, lapboards, decorative flower pots, picture frames, and mug racks are just a few of the many things campers may create. With all this and more to choose from, each camper is sure to bring home an objet d’art that no home should be without!
and what better place to work on your tennis game than Camp Mac?! With three regulation Plexi-Pave courts and a ball machine to throw balls for you, we can’t think of a better place to work on your tennis game than Camp Mac!
We have plenty of room to practice, and Instructors standing by to help you dial in your serve, crank up your forehand, and master that two-fisted backhand! Our “passing off” advancement program offers ratings and awards from Beginner to Advanced and Camp Mac tennis tournaments provide all the competition and excitement you could hope for!
A good lunch is followed by "Mail Call" and an hour-long rest period. This quiet time may be used for writing letters, listening to music, reading, or maybe a little “catnap.” At the bell, boys and girls enjoy “Free Swim” and then that highly popular afternoon activity, Canteen, for a cold drink and a snack! There is an Elective period, then Cabin Time or League Games. On the occasional rainy afternoon campers settle into the cabins for a world famous WMAC Wacky Macky Radio Show – with lots of juicy camp gossip and always one song in a row! After supper and a few minutes of free time, the whole camp gathers on the rock steps in front of the Rec Hall for the “Six O’Clock News” (around 7:15), with live reports on Camp News, Sports, and Weather! Awards are presented and accomplishments of the day are recognized – like who caught the biggest fish, shot the highest score, or won the Barrel Race at Horseback! Afterwards, everyone attends a short Vesper Service at twilight in the amphitheater.
How about a lot of adventure in your life?! Then grab your gear and sign up for Camp Mac’s Adventure Elective! 8th grade boys and girls spend each afternoon doing a variety of our most fun and exciting activities – like the Sky Ryder, Rappelling, Airsoft Wars, Zip Line “Balls of Glory”, Ultimate Kayaking and the Mental Adventure! Taking Adventure might not make you the next Indiana Jones, but you’ll for sure be able to keep up with his cousin, Alabama Jones!
Air Hockey, Skee Ball, Pac-Man, Tetris and Frogger! You’ll find those classic coin-op games and more in the Camp Mac Arcade! But leave your money and your credit cards at home. The machines are set on Free Play – they don’t take coins and they don’t take American Express!
Camp Mac offers an advancement program to campers of all ages. Starting at 15 yards and going all the way to 50 yards, it takes a lot of practice to become an American Archer…but kids learn fast, and they take home awards and diplomas to prove it! Do you think Robin Hood ever brought home a diploma to his mama?!
Baseball is America's Pastime - and if you're into baseball it's way past time you signed up for Camp Mac's Baseball elective! We've got a 1,500 square foot batting cage with 2 motorized pitching machines to help you work on your swing! And we'll run some drills and play some games to keep you sharp – just in case the Braves call you up for the playoffs!
Have you got game? Or are you looking for a game? Either way, you can lace ‘em up and bring it on to our Basketball Elective! You can work on your jump shot, your reverse layup or your ankle-breaking crossover! Hit the hardwood with your friends – and then hit the game-winning three!
Girls just wanna have fun! And what’s more fun than learning a dance routine with your friends, getting everybody up on the stage, and showing off your moves to the whole camp on Talent Night?! You'll work on your air kick and show off your head toss! At Dance, you're not dancing with the stars - you are the star!
We’ll grab our fishing poles, bait our hooks, hold our mouths just right, and get ready for the Big One to bite! And if we don’t catch a big enough string off the Fishing Pier, we’ll load up into the pontoon boat and head out to the honey hole on the other side of the lake!
Mountain Biking is one of the most popular outdoor activities in the country — and there are few better places to ride a mountain bike than right here in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains!
Each summer 7th, 8th, and 9th grade boys and girls improve their skills as they experience the thrills of riding the hills here “Among the Pines”!
Using Camp Mac’s well-maintained mountain bikes, campers learn to do safety checks and routine maintenance — as well as how to safely enjoy this exciting sport!
Can you canoe? You can if you’ve taken Paddlesports at Camp Mac! In addition to canoes, we have kayaks and we have paddleboards! (Did you know “Camp Mac Kayak” spelled backwards is “Kayak Camp Mac”?!) Campers learn safety and fundamentals, and enjoy relays, bucket-dipping races, and a trip to Lower Lake Falls! Plus, we’ll do a little waterbiking – and add a pedalsport to the paddlesports!
Tired of paddling? Then sign up for Camp Mac’s Power Boating Elective! Available to boys and girls in the 7th and 8th grades, the Alabama Marine Police "Boating Basics" course is conducted in cooperation with the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
Successful completion of this course is required by law in Alabama to obtain a license to operate a powerboat on public waters. In addition to becoming familiar with the “Rules of the Road”, each young skipper learns to safely handle his or her own boat. Official certificates are awarded to those campers who successfully pass the written and practical tests.
Advanced Power Boating emphasizes boating skills and safety. Campers in this elective also learn ski signals and how to pull a skier. This course is available to 8th graders who have passed the basic course.
Meet your friends at the Camp Mac Country Club for a round of golf – Putt-Putt Golf, that is! We’ll have Hole-in-One Contests, the Green and White Tourney, and the Horseshoe Tournament! Then we’ll end the week with the Camp Mac Masters for the coveted Green T-Shirt! See you at the Clubhouse!
Soccer is the most popular sport in the world! Many of our campers take Soccer, just for kicks - and each summer more and more of them achieve their goals here at camp! They'll compete for the Camp Mac Cup today and (maybe) they'll compete for the World Cup tomorrow!
8th grade boys and girls learn the fundamentals of Skeet Shooting and Shotgun Safety. Campers learn how to safely handle and fire shotguns at the clay targets flying out of the radio-controlled throwers at the Skeet Range!
We’ll have practice rounds and we’ll have tournaments – and at the end of the week the Championship and the braggin’ rights will go to the camper who busts the most clays!
Many of our campers participate in sports at home. Although each sport requires different skills, they all demand speed, quickness and strength – especially explosive strength for jumping and running. And by learning proper stretching and flexibility techniques, many sports injuries can be avoided.
Working with high school and college coaches and sports medicine experts, Camp Mac has developed a Strength and Conditioning program that improves our older campers’ natural abilities via cross-training — a combination of running, strength work, stretching and plyometrics (explosiveness training) – each day of the term.
Camp Mac’s Strength and Conditioning program is guaranteed to turn the aspiring athlete into a perspiring athlete!
8th grade campers first learn how to conduct safety checks and perform basic maintenance on our Polaris Trail Carts.
Then, after practicing in the arena and demonstrating their driving skills, the intrepid drivers hit the trails and explore the backcountry on a network of mountain trails surrounded by the Talladega National Forest!
Start out with the basics – Seat Drops, Knee Drops, Back Drops. Move up into Combinations, Swivel Hips and Turntables. Then it’s time for Rolls, Flips and some Mirror Combinations. But you can’t pass off Expert Trampoline until you master the infamous Cody Routine!
Have you ever roped a cow? No? Then you haven’t taken Team Roping at Camp Mac! We start by learning how to coil the rope, build a loop, and throw the rope on foot. Next, we learn how to rope a dummy from the back of a barrel. Then it’s time to mount up and rope Sparky – the mechanical roping steer! Some people have trouble patting their head and rubbing their stomach – that’s nothing compared to riding a horse, chasing a cow, spinning a loop, and catching a steer! But if it was easy, it wouldn’t be nearly as much fun!
A picture is worth a thousand words – and scrapbooks from camp are worth thousands of memories! Girls who have finished the 7th grade can use one of the Camp Mac cameras to take pictures of all their fun friends doing all the cool things around camp! We’ll print them out, and help put together a book of memories they’ll show off and enjoy for years to come!
Campers who have completed the 5th grade can sign up for the Wet ‘n Wild elective at the Camp Mac Waterpark! We’ll test our skills on the floating Obstacle Course, spin on the Saturns, fall off the Rolling Log and get launched off the famous Blob and splash down in the lake! We’ll climb up the back of a giant 15-foot tall iceberg and slide down the other side! Walk on water with the help of the Magic Carpet – and slide 165 feet down the ginormous Wet Willie Waterslide!
With all the new things we’ve added over the years, an old fashioned Beanbag Battle is still a lotta fun! Beanbags are flying everywhere, and if you get hit with one you’re out! The rules are pretty simple – the last cabin to have a man (or woman) standing, wins!
You jump off the platform and you hit that big pillow and you sink in and that’s fun, but then you crawl out to the end and sit there and wait…. Your buddy jumps off the platform, onto the Blob, and BOOM! The air pressure catapults you up in the air and into the water! After that, you can fly through the air on the rope swing – just like the ones Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn used on the creek bank! But Tom and Huck probably couldn’t do a flip off the end of the rope – can you?!
Just like in the rodeo, climb on, give the nod, and say “Let’s go, boys!” 8 seconds seems like forever when you're on the back of a bull!
Climbing and rappelling are not just exciting activities – they’re true confidence builders! Thinking you can do something scary or difficult is really just a thought – working hard and actually doing something scary or difficult stays with you the rest of your life.
8th grade boys and girls begin to realize what they are capable of when they face their apprehensions and “learn the ropes”!
The instruction begins on our 20-foot and 40-foot walls where campers learn basic rappelling and climbing techniques. At the end of the term, those campers with the skill and the desire go on a field trip to Alabama’s highest peak, Cheaha Mountain, where they rappel down a 100-foot tall granite cliff!
The Iceberg is 14 feet tall and floats in the middle of the lake. Three sides are for climbing up – and one side is for sliding down! Global warming is a good thing for this Iceberg! And while your friends are climbing up and sliding down, you can swim over and ride the ring around the Saturn!
The Sky Ryder is not just a zip line, it’s two zip lines – over 1000 feet combined length. You’ll strap yourself in your harness and clip on to the cable on the platform at the Campfire area and head down the hill through the trees to the lake! As you pick up speed you’ll leave the woods and burst into the open air above the lake - a hundred feet up, flying through the sky, looking down at your friends on the Summit and the Blob!
As you sail over the lake, you look ahead and see the trees on the other shore are fast approaching, and you wonder if you’ll fit through the green tunnel of leaves ahead. You almost want to close your eyes and brace for impact – but as you soar gracefully through the canopy and onto the landing platform, you realize there’s no need to. You made it!
But you can’t relax too much – it’s time to walk up the hill and get strapped in to catch the next zip line back to camp – and do it all over again!
How about a water balloon battle on a hot summer day!? We’ll fill the water balloons with cold well water, load up the slingshots, and war has been declared! You’re throwing water balloons at people and people are throwing water balloons at you and everybody’s getting wet! Water balloons are flying all over the place and sling shots are going crazy and the balloons hit the fort and they splatter and the water comes on through! The winners are wet, the losers are wet – and everybody is ready to load up and play another round!
Buckle up your lifejacket and get ready for the slide of your life! Start out at the top of the hill and begin the 165 foot ride down the ginormous Wet Willie Waterslide! When you hit the jump in the middle, you’ll go airborne and fly into the bottom section of the slide! By the time you can catch your breath you’ll be flying again – right into Lower Lake! After that, if you’re up to it, you can head across the Rope Bridge, take a ride down the Zip Line, and drop off into the water!
League games bring the fun and excitement of team competition to camp! Players are drafted, schedules are posted, and the league teams play each other in sports such as Volleyball, Softball, Newcomb, Soccer, Bombardment, Ultimate Frisbee, and Kickball!
The winners in the Senior Terms will celebrate at the Camp Director’s home with a “charcoal-steak” dinner, and the Junior Term winners will enjoy a scrumptious ice cream party!
League Games are about competing. We keep score. We have winners and losers every day. And every night the winners and the losers sit down and eat supper together. Because, mainly, League games are about playing.
When asked his advice for young athletes, Michael Jordan replied, "Just play, have fun! Enjoy the game." That's exactly what our campers have been doing in League Games since 1948.
A varied evening recreation program provides a perfect end to each fun-filled day at camp! Boys and girls participate together in most of the Night Rec programs. Activities such as Camp Fires, Talent Night, Swim Meet, Cookouts, Overnight Campouts, Night Swims, 4th of July Fireworks, Movie Night, Popcorn and Coke Night, Tacky Night, College Night, Lazy Day Rockin’ Eve, Party Night, and Awards Night find a lasting place in the memories of campers! The Pool and Sports Area are both lighted for night use, and the Gym and Little Theater are great, rain or moon! The Rec Hall with its huge stone fireplace and hardwood dance floor, is always a popular spot for campers to gather in the evenings for special events, movies, dancing, “Hokey-Pokey” and “Scram”!
During a Senior Term, our campers receive over 2000 awards. And every one is earned. Nobody at camp gets an award just for showing up or for being in a cabin.
Campers compete primarily against themselves – and they try to do better than they did last summer or last week. Better than when they fell trying to do a dock start on one ski, or better than their best barrel race time on their horse. When they reach the goal that they set for themselves, they “win” without their friends having to lose – and vice-versa.
So children at camp tend to build supportive relationships rather than competitive ones. We all sit side-by-side at "6:00 News" and cheer for each other's accomplishments, and when we have the inevitable setback, we encourage each other to try again.
Awards are presented throughout the term, and major awards are presented on the last night of camp at Awards Night. The final ceremony in every Senior Term is a candlelight service under the shelter of the pines accompanied by the notes of the Lord's Prayer.
The counselors put on Campfire. The campers play games and perform skits! Sometimes Indians show up. Sometimes Pirates, or Time Travelers, or Harry Potter, or Super Heroes – even NASCAR fans! You never know what’s going to happen at Campfire! But you do know that, in the Senior Terms, we’ll all hear the story of Old Man Taylor’s Eyes!
In the Junior Term on Carnival Night, we play games of skill, we play games of not much skill, and we win prizes for both! We get our faces painted to the sounds of circus music and we get our pictures made in the photo booth and we eat fresh-popped popcorn!
Ringling Brothers may be gone, but Carnival Night lives on!
Get out your Game Day gear and head to the Rec Hall! It’s College Night! We put up the banners, we play the fight songs, and everybody who pulls for your team joins you out in the middle of the dance floor and rocks the house with your team’s cheer! The season starts in a few weeks, and right now we’re all undefeated!
We cook our hot dogs and beans and marshmallows over the fire, we tell stories, we make our s’more – and then we tell stories s’more! In the Junior Term we go back to our cabin and we go to bed – but in the Senior Term, we hang up our hammocks or roll out our sleeping bags under the stars, and we spend the night out in the National Forest!
The 4th of July has always been a special day at camp!
We start the day off with a bang. Everybody wears Red, White and Blue, and we get the old 1923 T-Model out to lead the big parade! The parade ends in the Quadrangle, and we send 1,000 firecrackers up the flagpole! The Safari Crew is on duty standing by to make sure everything is under control - but having things under control isn't really their thing....
The festivities end with a big fireworks show over the lake! Don't worry - we celebrate the 4th of July in the 3 Week Term, too - so nobody misses out on a minute of the fun!
You never know when Lazy Day might be. But one night, in the Senior Terms, at 6:00 News, the announcement is made:
“Oh, by the way, the day after tomorrow is Lazy Day!”
The next night, we all go to the tennis courts for a Country and Western Party with a live band! We have cokes and cookies and a camp-wide Scram! The 8th grade campers stay up late and watch a movie outside under the stars.
We sleep as late as we want the next morning, have a special morning Canteen and a Lazy Day Movie. The Pool is open for swimming or just laying out, and the Sports Area is open just for fun!
And while all that is going on, the oldest campers have a private Ski Party at the lake with a Picnic Lunch out on the deck!
Sunday Night is Movie Night!! When you hear “Mooovie Call!” sifting through the pine needles, it’s time to head to the Rec Hall or the Little Theater and get ready to lay back and watch one of your favorite movies on the 12-foot HD screens in Dolby Surround Sound!
Party Night is a camp-wide Rec Hall where everybody dresses nice, we introduce the Party Night Court, we crown Camp Mac’s King and Queen, and we dance to the songs in the Camp Mac Top 20 Countdown! But the best part is going up to the front of the Dining Hall and getting refreshments! You can’t go wrong with chocolate chip cookies and Hawaiian Punch!
Saturday night. Boys vs. Girls. Winner take all – all the Country Cones at the Canteen, that is! We open up for a special Canteen on Sunday morning! Winners will rule, losers will drool – but that’s cool, ‘cause we’re all in the pool!
In the Junior Term, we get out our tackiest clothes and we mix ’em and match ‘em and make ‘em even more tacky!
Then we go to the Rec Hall – and we sing like nobody’s listening and we dance like nobody’s watching!
At Talent Night, the campers are the stars of the show! If you sing, dance, play an instrument, tell jokes, put on a skit with your friends, or anything else you can think of – you can show whatcha got to the whole camp! Every cabin will have an act in Talent Night – bring your stuff and be ready to perform!