Summer Day Camp Themes: Blast from the Past with the 1960's

Tie-Dye is at the Center of These Blast from the Past Ideas

Summer day camps are fun for teenagers and each day can have its own theme filled with fun activities and crafts. 'Blast from the past' is a perfect theme and teens love it just a little more when it involves the 1960's.

Older kids are very creative and enjoy imagining what fun it was to live in another time. For many of them, the 1960’s was one big psychedelic party, filled with tie-dye, peace signs and hippies galore!

Below are a few 'blast from the past' ideas you can use to have a 60's-style blast at your summer day camp.


tie dye shirt making
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Tie-dye is the first craft that comes to mind when we think about the 1960's summer day camp theme. And, why not? It's perfect!

  • You are outside, so there is less mess to clean up.
  • Teens get a cool, new t-shirt, tank top or bandana to take home and wear.
  • The kids have the freedom of letting their creativity run wild!



Smilies were all over in the 60's. Happiness was a theme used to fight the Vietnam war and this simple symbol quickly became an icon of the decade.

This pealer bead pattern can be used to make a backpack zipper pull or bedroom coaster that teens can take home with them.



Hoop earrings were big in the 1960s and the bigger the better! 

Set up a quick craft table at the summer day camp and let teenage girls create their own hoop earrings in full hippie chick style!

This project is easy and are cheap to make. It uses colorful seed beads that can be purchased for just a few dollars and include thousands of beads.



The 60's was also a time when people started to think about saving the planet. All of the eco-friendly campaigns used today are rooted in this decade of change.

This simple braided bracelet is a great way to bring that idea to today's teens. It recycles old blue jeans and incorporates a few beads into a heavy duty boy cuff bracelet.



Love bead necklaces are far out! They were popular among the hippies of the 1960's and are simply a long strand of completely random beads.

This project is very simple to set up for large groups. Cord, beads and teens - that is pretty much all you need!



Summer day camp should include a fun relay race and this one is a ton of fun for teens.

To transform the wet t-shirt relay into the 60's theme, use a tie-dye t-shirt for each team. The group of teens will not stop laughing as they run this rainbow-colored relay!



Popcorn balls are easy to make and teenagers love this tasty little treat. You can give this teen favorite a tie-dye look with a little food coloring.

  1. Split the popcorn in this recipe into thirds, using three different bowls.
  2. Use food coloring to color each bowl of popcorn a different color. Red, blue and green are great choices.
  3. Wear gloves when forming the balls and take a bit of popcorn from each color.



When you decoupage with tissue paper, you give the item a tie-dyed look and that fits the 60's theme perfectly! These easy bookmarks are fun and the teens will love giving them their personal touch.

Use bright-colored tissue paper and let the teens cut them into shapes of their choice. Offer hippie-themed templates for the cutouts like peace signs, smiley faces and hearts.


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