Parks & Rec Dept.
200 South Hamilton
Gahanna, OH 43230

(614) 342-4250
(614) 342-4100 Fax

Hours of Operation
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM M-F



The CORE program just finished up its sixth season, and it was a blast - thank you for another wonderful summer, and we can't wait to see you next year! Check back in November for information about CORE 2015.

CORE is a highly participant driven leadership and service day camp program for teens ages 12 -14. Due to the small size of the program (only 12 participants each week), the CORE experience is very flexible and mobile. Each week, the CORE experience includes a field trip, pool/swimming day, teambuilding activities, the Counselors in Training (CIT) program at Camp Friendship, outdoor skills and education programming, and service learning.

Truly, the most significant part of the CORE program consists of service learning. Each week, campers plan or participate in 2 service experiences. Feedback from both campers and parents has told us that this is often their favorite of the entire summer - even over field trips to places like King's Island and Zoombezi Bay! These volunteer experiences are extremely diverse and include:

  • Assisting children with disabilities at Recreation Unlimited
  • Bird banding with the Audubon Society
  • Painting at COSI
  • Sorting canned goods with Gahanna Residents in Need and the Faith Mission Food Pantry
  • Serving as Reading Buddies to younger readers at the Gahanna Branch of the Columbus Metropolitan Library each Monday

The season culminates in an overnight camping trip to celebrate the group’s accomplishments and put their new outdoor skills to the test. Camping trips in the past have included Hocking Hills State Park, Mohican State Park, John Bryan State Park, and Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

CORE Goals & Outcomes
1. Challenge participants to develop independence, self-confidence, and resilience
Campers are encouraged not only to express their opinion, but to shape their camp experience in this highly participant-driven program. Campers gain new skills by planning and participating in field trips, pool day, and a wide variety of other programs.

2. Encourage participants to model teamwork, responsibility and other leadership qualities
CORE campers participate in weekly teambuilding activities and take on additional responsibility as Counselors-In-Training (CITs) at both Camp Friendship locations. As CITs, they serve as role models to younger Camp Friendship campers and assist counselors in delivering programming.

3. Develop a sense of community and a belief in the importance of community service
Throughout the summer, the group plans and partakes in extremely diverse and varied service learning opportunities. By designing and creating these experiences themselves, they take ownership of each project and discover not only a multitude of ways to give back, but also the power and importance of service to others.

4. Instill an appreciation of the outdoors and an awareness of environmental stewardship
The CORE program takes full advantage of natural areas throughout Gahanna as well as central Ohio. Each week, they participate in outdoor education programming to increase outdoor skills and their comfort and confidence in spending time outdoors.

Looking for more?  See other programs, classes and facilities offering fun for teens!

Aquatics Facilities - Hunters Ridge Pool and Gahanna Swimming Pool
Youth & Family Programs
Gahanna Municipal Golf Course

Outside Gahanna:
Forestry & Wildlife Conservation Camp - Ohio Forestry Association, Inc