Get To Know Our Team

World Class Facilities

Your camper will have a fun, safe, and memorable experience in our state-of-the-art facilities and our team of amazing staff.

Staff and Counselors

Our team is educated and trained in their field of expertise and love working with kids.

Inclusive

Your camper is welcome regardless of race, color, gender, national origin, sex, or disability.

Memorable

Your camper will have the best summer ever–and they’ll want to do it all over again next year.

Our Counselors

All cabin counselors are current university students with a background working with children. Applicants go through a rigorous hiring process including multiple interviews, a background check, and drug testing. Many cabin counselors were even campers themselves!

Counselors go through a rigorous 8-day training program prior to any campers arriving at camp. They are trained in team-building, group-leading, child development, safety, and being sensitive to individual campers needs and life experiences. Counselors complete training with the tools and knowledge to support campers through common camp challenges such as homesickness, trying new things, and friendship building.

Our Instructors

AstroCamp takes pride in hiring the highest quality staff. Most AstroCamp instructors have at least a Bachelors Degree in Physics or Astronomy, and it is not uncommon for our instructors to have a Masters Degree or PhD.

Our instructors come to AstroCamp from all over the United States and occasionally from overseas. Safety is one of our primary goals, therefore all instructors are required to go through our on-site First Aid/CPR-PR, and Lifeguard certification program as well as participate in our comprehensive training.

Our Team and History

Established in 1979, Guided Discoveries was the natural outgrowth of Ross and Kristi Turner’s experience as schoolteachers taking students on science-related field trips. During these excursions, they began to realize the power of a fun and immersive science-based program. In 1976, Ross and Kristi took the leap and moved their young family to Catalina Island, California to run Camp Cherry Valley for the Boy Scouts. By 1978, Ross and Kristi, along with long-time friends Steve Garrett (Board Chairperson) and Jerry Tambe, incorporated Guided Discoveries,  Inc. as a 501(c)(3) non-profit leading what would later become Catalina Island Marine Institute or CIMI (pronounced ‘see-me’). Then in 1979, we began our first summer camp program Catalina Sea Camp.

As CIMI and Sea Camp programs continued to prosper, Guided Discoveries began to consider expansion and conducted its first AstroCamp pilot program in 1988. Discovering the power of camp and hands-on adventure programs, GDI started a physical science program in beautiful Idyllwild, CA.   Almost 30 years later,  AstroCamp serves over 17,000 students each year! In 2015, Guided Discoveries acquired Camp Motorsport and expanded the Camp Motorsport program to include AstroCamp in California.

The Guided Discoveries’ vision continues to expand as it considers other exciting opportunities to make a positive difference in the lives of children.

 MEET

Our Directors
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Ross Turner

President & CEO Of
Guided Discoveries Inc.

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Andy Balendy

Site Director

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Diana Huff

Summer Camp Director

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Scott Alton

Program Director

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Doug Jann

AstroCamp Food Service Director

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Ross Turner

President & CEO Of
Guided Discoveries Inc.

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Andy Balendy

Site Director

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Diana Huff

Summer Camp Director

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Doug Jann

AstroCamp Food Service Director

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