Summer Camps @ Fort Mason

Our summer camps band curriculum was designed by renowned educator and artist Bonnie Hayes – expect an intense week of learning and fun!  A high teacher-to-student ratio means every camper receives individualized attention.  Also available – electronic music camps, guitar camps, songwriting camps, and a DJ camp!  2021 summer camp information coming soon.

Summer 2021 Schedule coming soon.

Our band camps offer young musicians an opportunity to play the music they like with their peers. Repertoire is selected by the group. Emphasis is on learning songs together, instrument-specific instruction, and working on an online group recording project

Get Ready to Rock – Suggested minimum of six months of lessons for all instruments; grades 4-7 in Fall.

Girls Rock! – Previous music instruction is helpful, but not required; grades 4-7 in Fall.

Rock U 1Suggested minimum of one year of lessons for all instruments; grades 6-8 in Fall.

  • Drummers should be able to play a simple, steady rock beat for an entire song.
  • Bassists should know names of notes and be able to play one song through to the end.
  • Guitarists should know open position chords and E form barre chords.
  • Keyboardists should know major triads in root position.
  • Singers should be able to sing in tune.


Rock U 2Suggested minimum of two years of lessons for all instruments; grades 7-10 in Fall.

  • Drummers should be able to fill without losing time, and be able to hold three minutes of a simple rock beat. Drummers must audition for this camp.
  • Bassists should know names of notes and how to read chord charts, and be able to play 1/8th notes through changes. Bassists must audition for this camp.
  • Guitarists should know open chords and E and A form barre chords, and know minor pentatonic scales. Guitarists don’t need to audition for this camp.
  • Keyboardists should know major and minor triads, and know the blues scale. Keyboardists don’t need to audition for this camp.
  • Singers should be able to sing in tune and have a strong enough sense of time so that song entry points and phrasing can be consistently executed.


Rock U 3 – Suggested minimum of three years of lessons for all instruments; grades 8-12 in Fall.

  • Drummers should know syncopated kick drum patterns, shuffle and 6/8 beats. Drummers are required to audition for this camp.
  • Bassists should know syncopated bass lines. Drummers are required to audition for this camp.
  • Guitarists should know syncopated guitar rhythms (i.e., AC/DC) and riff songs (i.e., Led Zeppelin). Guitarists are required to audition for this camp.
  • Keyboardists should know 7th chords and inversions, be able to play syncopated rhythms and to play melodies and improvise. Keyboardists are required to audition for this camp.
  • Singers should be able to sing in tune and have a strong enough sense of time so that song entry points and phrasing can be consistently executed.

What is your drop policy?

If you need to drop a Camp for any reason, we will give refunds based on the following schedule:

  • 90% refund with at least three months notice
  • 70% refund with two-three months notice
  • 50% refund with six-eight weeks notice

No refunds are available if less than six weeks notice is given unless we are able to fill your child’s spot with another full-paying camper, in which case a 50% refund will be given.

Can I sign my child up for a camp he or she is too young for?

We hold fairly strictly to our age ranges. It’s not so much about skill level – the social aspect of our camps is best when there isn’t too big a gap in the ages of the campers. We sometimes let younger campers in when enrollment is skewed to the young side in a given camp.

What do campers need to bring with them?

  • Guitarists and bassists should bring your instrument, a patch cord, a tuner, and a strap, with all items labeled with your name. We have amps.
  • Drummers should bring sticks.
  • Keyboard players do not need to bring anything (unless you have a really cool keyboard you like playing).
  • Singers don’t need to bring any equipment.

All students should bring:

  • Earplugs (if you have them). If you don’t, we’ll provide them! We strongly suggest that campers wear earplugs for the band sections of the camp.
  • A song you’d like to do in camp on your phone or music player.
  • A lunch, or money to purchase takeout food from a cafe nearby in Fort Mason. There is a microwave on the premises.


What songs do the campers perform?

Campers pick the songs! For the camps that perform cover songs, each camper has the opportunity to bring one song with them they’d like to perform. Our expert camp instructors are there to guide students on their musical journeys as they learn the music they love most. This makes each camp a unique, personalized and engaging experience for the campers.

What time do I drop my camper off or pick them up?

Most camps start at 10 am. You may drop off your camper anytime from 9:45-10 am. On the first morning of camp, please accompany him or her to sign in to confirm your emergency contact information and specify who will be picking him or her up.

Please be on time to pick up your camper at the end of the day at 3 pm. You will need to come into the school to sign him/her out. We do not release kids to wait for you in front of the building unless you’ve specifically authorized us to do so on the first day of camp. We do not have adequate staffing to watch over your child immediately following the camp.

What time is the Friday performance?

For band camps, the Friday show will usually take place at around 4-4:30 pm, and will last about an hour depending on the number of students. That time will be confirmed by the lead teacher on Wednesday of camp week. Students will stay at Blue Bear for the entire day. Invite friends and families so we can have a crowd! (Note – recording/composing and guitar camps do not have a show.)

Can I arrange to pick up my child later than 3 pm?

For families that need later pick-up and for kids who just want more music, inquire about the possibility of private lessons following the camp Monday-Thursday for a special camp rate of $50/hour, based on availability.

How many teachers are there per student?

A defining characteristic of Blue Bear’s summer camps that sets our camps apart from others is our high teacher to student ratio, with instructors on each instrument group. While the ratio varies slightly for each camp type, we very effectively provide personalized instruction for all students, beginner to advanced, engaging them in the learning process from square one.

Blue Bear’s camp instructors are some of the most experienced musicians and teachers in the Bay Area. While many of them have performed around the globe with the best, they are all professional teachers, highly skilled and able to impart real-world knowledge in a helpful and accessible way.

More questions?

Speak with our Program Director.