Family Camp and Rites of Passage

Steve Sachs, Kelly Lindsey, Nicole Wolf and Rachel Steele

July 27–August 3, 2019

7 nights
Adult Tuition $200, Child Tuition (1 year and up) $285
Steve Sachs

Steve Sachs

Kelly Lindsey

Kelly Lindsey

Nicole Wolf

Nicole Wolf

Rachel Steele

Rachel Steele

Nurture family connections while rejuvenating your spirit in the beautiful terrain of Shambhala Mountain Center. Family Camp is a creative and contemplative retreat the whole family can enjoy. Take time for yourself in the mornings to practice meditation or yoga while your children participate in enriching group activities. The afternoons and evenings offer fun family activities like hiking, family yoga, dance, contemplative arts and crafts, games, storytelling, song night, and a talent show.

Children participate in a morning program from 9:15-12:00, grouped by age: Tiger Cubs (1-3), Tigers (3-5), Lions (6-7), Garudas (8-10), Rights of Passage (9-10), Dragons (11-12), Dharmic Warriors for ages 13-18. Experiential activities include craft projects, time outdoors, stories, songs, hikes in the woods, and group games. Children are introduced to sitting meditation and meditative arts as ways to work with their hearts and minds. They are also introduced to the notion of basic goodness as a way to instill confidence, bravery, and compassion— all while having fun and developing friendships!

Stay in comfortable, platform tents among the fresh pine and fragrant summer breezes or enjoy indoor lodging with views of the unspoiled wilderness.


Rites of Passage (for children ages 9-10)

This special program marks the transition children begin to make from being dependent on their parents to take on greater responsibility within the family and the community. Through sitting meditation, kyudo (Zen archery), ikebana (flower arranging), haiku, calligraphy, and other meditative arts, Rites of Passage gives children powerful tools to help them care for their own mind and emotions. These tools also empower them to relate to their internal and external worlds with confidence and gentleness. At the week’s end, this transformative program is sealed with a powerful ceremony in which the children take a vow of kindness towards themselves and others.



Housing rates are discounted. Adult meals and lodging, as well as the first adult’s tuition, are included in housing cost. Tuition for the 2nd Adult and Child(ren) are added to the total as each individual is added to the registration. Children’s meals and lodging are included in their tuition cost.  Click “Register Now” for housing options and pricing.


Adults $200

Children (1 year and up) $285

Rites of Passage (additional fee) $95



For several years, many of the Family Camp teachers and program staff have been volunteering their expertise to create the magical container and experience of Family Camp.  This year, we want to be able to show our deep appreciation for all their hard work and dedication by instituting a HEART fee. This fee will be now be collected at the time of registration, prior to arrival at SMC, and will take the place of the heart gift, which was previously collected during the retreat.  One hundred percent of this fee will go towards both teaching and non-teaching program staff honorariums. We are dedicated to creating a supportable family camp, and this is our path towards reaching a sustainable program.

Each family will make two separate payments.

When you register here, you are paying the Program Tuition and Lodging fees:

This fee covers Shambhala Mountain Centers operational costs of facilities, lodging, food, supplies, SMC support staff, and direct program expenses, including a base honorarium for the Family Camp Directors.

In addition, each family will pay a Family Camp Heart fee:

This fee covers the costs of developing and running the Family Camp program itself, including teaching and non-teaching staff honorariums.

This is paid directly to Shambhala Families & Children (a 501c3 legal entity of Shambhala) and can be paid via PayPal at

Choose ONE payment (per family) at one of the three levels, you will need to type in the $ amount:

1) $100 – Jade

2) $150 – Gold

3) $200+ – Diamond

4) Other – you may also choose an amount that works for your family.  Please offer from a place of generosity regardless of the amount.

If you do not have a PayPal account, please contact Nicole Wolf at to make payment arrangements. This MUST be done before June 25th or your family’s position at the camp will be given to the next person on the waiting list. Thank you.

PLEASE NOTE that Shambhala Mountain Center does not process this fee. It must be paid directly to Shambhala Families & Children.


Attendance Requirements

All children and at least one adult must attend at least 5 days of the 6-day program. Additional adults may attend less than the required 6 days. Full attendance helps support the community building of Family Camp, and allows participants to experience the beginning-middle-end journey of the camp— which is part of its magic! Rites of Passage children and their families need to stay through the conclusion of the program to participate in the Rites of Passage Ceremony. If you need to attend only a portion of the retreat, please call the Front Desk to register (970-881-2184).


Please see this article about Family Camp on our blog:

Family Camp at Shambhala Mountain


Click here to learn more about Financial Assistance and Scholarships.


Steve Sachs

Steve Sachs has been an educator for the past 35 years. He taught in Montessori schools for 22 years before co-founding Eastern Sun Academy, a private school in contemplative education. Steve currently is the co-director of Alaya Preschool, and teaches at both Alaya and Naropa University. Steve has been a member of the Shambhala-Buddhist community since 1982.

Kelly Lindsey

Kelly Lindsey is a meditation teacher, mind-body therapist, co-founder of Dakini Meditative, and mother of three. She is passionate about serving children and families in the Shambhala Community of which she has been a part for over 20 years.

Nicole Wolf

Nicole Pressly Wolf is currently a freelance editor in Boulder, after selling her NY publishing company in 2014. As a practicing Buddhist since the early 90s, Nicole is a graduate of the University of Colorado, where she discovered the profound affects of nature and the dharma. After two decades in New York City, where Nicole coordinated and substitute taught Shambhala NYC’s children’s program while her two boys were in the Tigers and Lions, the family decided to make a more permanent camp in Boulder. She is currently director of Family & Children Programming at the Boulder Shambhala Center, and on the council of the newly created Shambhala Office of Family and Children. Her oldest son is a Sun Camper and her youngest just graduated ROP. Nicole is thrilled to return for her 4th year as co-director and assistant teacher for Rites of Passage at Shambhala Mountain Center’s Family Camp. She is deeply grateful for her husband Ben Wolf’s support and confidence.

Rachel Steele

Rachel Steele holds an MA in Contemplative Education from Naropa University and taught at Alaya Preschool for over 15 years. Supporting opportunities for children and families to connect with the Shambhala teachings is a passion for her and she has been involved in family programing in Shambhala since 2002. She lives in Boulder Co with her husband Brian and daughter Wini and is currently teaching at Alaya Preschool.

Program Details