I’ve always had such fond memories of the summer season and because of that, I look forward to Memorial Day weekend as the official kick-off to the lazy days.
I was especially looking forward to it this year because I got a ticket to Camp Toast — an adult summer camp in the Poconos with my favorite podcast hosts of “The Morning Toast” and hundreds of my fellow Toasty listeners from around the world… but then Coronatimes hit.
While we are all still planning to hit the cabins and float on the lake in September (fingers crossed), I am still a bit sad that this weekend isn’t the way we planned. I know that everyone has been mourning various losses and schedule changes, and we’re all trying to make the most of it.
It’s supposed to rain in Austin all weekend and my apartment still has the pool closed. But, I still got veggie burgers and fries to make at home and will sit on my patio with my spiked lemonade, dammit! I figured a movie binge wouldn’t be a bad idea either. So, I put together a list of 15 summer camp movies to watch, wherever you are!
The Parent Trap | 1961, 1998
No matter which version you choose, this movie is a fun classic that makes me want to pack for camp immediately. In the version staring Lindsay Lohan, I always thought it was so cool when she pulls out the deck of cards and schools everyone.
Camp Rock | 2008
Okay, I’m embarrassed that I haven’t seen this one! It looks so fun staring Demi Lovato and Joe Jonas — I mean, this just screams Disney Classic! Speaking of Disney and camp… did you ever watch “Bug Juice”? Man, I loved that show.
Camp Nowhere | 1994
This is where I discovered Andrew Keegan and he’s been on my mind ever since. In this movie, a group of middle school kids decide they don’t want to go to the summer camps chosen by their parents, so they devise a plan to create their own summer camp. When I was in fourth grade, this sounded so cool, but thinking back — wow, what a bunch of bad asses.
Moonrise Kingdom | 2012
This was my introduction to Wes Anderson movies. I loved it so much, a friend of mine came over and we had a Wes Anderson marathon. While all of his movies have unique charm, this one is particularly fun. All of the Boy Scout skills come in handy when this young couple runs away into the wilderness (complete with slow-mo wedding scenes) and sends their New England town into a tizzy.
Babysitter’s Club | 1995
It’s been SO long since I’ve seen this, that I definitely forgot the plot centered around a day camp… because of COURSE! It should come as no surprise that Kristy Thomas is the one who decides to run the whole thing. I’m much less of a Kristy and more of a Claudia 🙂
Heavyweights | 1995
Another one I should have seen by now… but I’ve heard it’s hilarious. It’s basically fat camp gone wrong, complete with psycho fitness trainer running the joint. Sounds like my worst nightmare on any day!
Meatballs | 1979
A classic staring Bill Murray that focuses more on the pranks and games camp counselors and campers play — isn’t that the best part?!
Troop Beverly Hills | 1989
I just recently watching this movie for the first time and could not get over how many great actors and actresses are in it! It certainly takes a different take on camping — choosing room service at the Beverly Hills Hotel over pitching a tent — but they learn some valuable life lessons along the way.
Summer Camp | 1979
I haven’t seen this one, but I feel like I can’t have a legit list of summer camp movies without this one present. It focuses on a failing summer camp and it’s director, who tries to trick previous campers into coming back and saving the place.
Camp Cucamonga | 1990
Add a little romance into this summer-camp-themed movie staring Jennifer Anniston — what?!
Wet Hot American Summer | 2001
This focuses on the last day of camp in the 80s… I actually performed a musical dance piece with this movie as the inspiration and it was pretty much the best time of my life.
It Takes Two | 1995
So this one is kinda like “The Parent Trap”, but forever we Stan the Olsen Twins, and there’s a camping scene so, there’s that. I watched this movie so much as a kid!
The Great Outdoors | 1988
Who doesn’t love a John Candy movie? This one focuses more on legit camping than a summer camp, but there’s still plenty of laughs along the way.
Poison Ivy | 1985
Not to be confused with the red and green comic book character, this movie stars Michael J. Fox and focuses more on the camp counselor drama than the campers.
Daddy Day Camp | 2007
This movie is NOT Toaster approved as it stars Cuba Gooding Jr. If you know, you know, and that’s all I’m going to say about that.
Other camp-themed movies: “Girls Rock”, “Addams Family Values”, “Little Darlings”, “Ernest Goes to Camp”, “Without a Paddle”, and “Fired Up,” if you have more camp-themed movies for this list, please let me know in the comments so I can add them to my movie-fest.
You can’t have a great movie binge without some food to get you through, and personally, I stocked up on all kinds of candy, peanut butter and Oreos (name that movie) and wine, because Walgreen’s is literally the only place I’ve been to in the last three weeks.
But, if you’re down for some glamp-worthy food options, I’ve got you covered:
- Smore’s Campfire Cones – Add strawberries, peanut butter, whatever your heart desires and stuff it in a cone. You can’t go wrong.
- Campfire Brie – I love a good baked brie and this will make you feel like you’re in a posh wine bar… only in your pajamas.
- Texas Toast Pizza – Pizza is my favorite food group and I live in Texas, so we slap everything on that thick, buttery bread.
- Frito Pies – Chrissy Tiegen forever. Periodt.
- Ginger & Grapefruit Shrubs – I saw this recipe in the latest issue of “Real Simple” and thought it would be perfect for summer. Just add vodka.
Thank you to all of the fabulous Toasters who helped me compile this list. I cannot wait to meet you all in September and have a TOAST to the wild ones, a TOAST to the good life!