Optimist Children's Camp

Legendary Camp - August 1 - 7, 2020

We provide children with special needs a legendary summer camp with quality care, meaningful fellowship, and maximum fun!

COVID-19 Statement

Sadly, the 2020 Optimist Children’s Camp scheduled for July 26th – August 1st, 2020 has been canceled due to the Covid 19 pandemic. The Optimist Children’s Camp has operated since 1967 and this is only the 2nd time in our 53 year history that we’ve been unable to provide the camp for children with special needs.

The sponsoring Billings Optimist Clubs met and there are several organizational issues that can’t be overcome in order to safely hold camp this year. Since there currently is no time table for when things might improve the very difficult decision was made to cancel the camp now so everyone could plan their summer accordingly. The Optimist Clubs of Billings are committed to serving the youth of our communities safely. Again, this was a very difficult decision to make, but the safety, health and wellbeing of our campers, volunteers and staff must come first.

Even though this year’s camp has been canceled, mark your calendars for the 2021 Optimist Children’s Camp August 1st – 7th, 2021! We look forward to having a great camp next year!

Go to Fundraising


Annually, Optimist clubs in the Billings area raise funds to contribute towards the cost of camp.

Go to Volunteer


We rely on the hard work of our volunteers to make the camp successful. Please contact us if you would like to be on the camp committee or camp volunteer. Counselor applications are available in the spring of each year.

About Us

Optimist Camp is jointly operated by 4 Billings area Optimist Clubs
Legendary Camp for Legendary Kids!

The Optimist Children’s Camp was started in 1967 as a joint project of the Billings area Optimist Clubs. The weeklong camp is held annually outside of Red Lodge, Montana for approximately 50 children with special needs. Volunteer counselors and staff make sure the camp is safe and enjoyable for campers that look forward to attending this camp year after year. During camp, kids have the opportunity to experience activities such as fishing, hiking, swimming and camping in the mountains while giving their families a week long respite from their normal everyday activities.

Camp Team

We couldn't do it without you!

Alan Niven

President – Optimist Children’s Camp Club
Alan has been involved in the Optimist Camp Club since 2001, and President of the official Optimist Children’s Camp Club since its inception in 2013. Responsible for calling and running club meetings monthly, he is determined to ensure the camp is successful year after year.

Kaylee Bradley

Camp Director
Kaylee has been involved in camp for over a decade! In 2019, she took over as Camp Director. At camp, you’ll often see her surrounded by campers interacting and socializing with her!

Jay Strever

Charter Camp Club Member
Jay has been involved in the camp from 2003 – 2017 as club treasurer/secretary, Jay continues to be influential in camp operations by providing his talent to the club and the kids it serves. At camp, you might see him playing golf or bowling with the kids on carnival night!

Brett Schneider

Brett got involved in camp the day he went up to see what it was all about. You can usually catch him on carnival night helping with the football toss or at the photo booth. Involved since 2008 after becoming an Optimist member, he continues to be active in the club.

Travis Heckel

Recreation Leader
Travis has been active in camp for many years and has recently taken the position of “Recreation Coordinator”. He has a passion creating enjoyable experiences in the outdoors for our campers!

Shawn Ashcraft

Past Camp Director
Shawn was camp director from 2008-2018. He is a natural leader with an educational background to meet the needs of youth at camp. In 2019, his family grew and he’s a new Dad! He’ll be actively working with our new director in the background to provide support with future camps.

Many Others!

This is a placeholder for EVERY PERSON who makes this camp a success. Countless volunteers work tirelessly making camp a success. Send us a bio and why you’ve been involved in camp – we’ll post it here!

Latest News

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