Agassiz Village is a beautiful 330-acre woodland camp in Poland, Maine on the shore of Thompson Lake, in the traditional lands of the Wabanaki people. The waterfront has a shallow sandy beach, large dock, and opportunities for swimming and canoeing. The Dining Hall is one of the world’s largest free-standing log buildings and there are large dance spaces for us to enjoy, an open-air amphitheater, and a gazebo that was once a carousel. Agassiz also has a large central field for playing games, basketball courts, and hiking paths.

The camp is about 40 minutes north of Portland, about a three hour drive from Boston, and six hours from New York City.

How to Get There

Agassiz Village is located in Poland, ME, north and west of Portland. The camp address is 71 Agassiz Village Lane, Poland, ME 04274. 

Phone contacts:
Agassiz Village office: 207-998-4340 

Camp is open from 4pm on the first day of the session, and dinner is served at 6pm. Departure time is by 10am on the last day. 

Unfortunately, there is no public transportation to Agassiz Village, but if you need help getting there, you may be able to coordinate ride-sharing with other campers by posting a message on the CDSS Family Week at Agassiz Village Facebook page.


The majority of housing at Agassiz Village is in large bunkhouse cabins with electricity and two small lavatories. Shower facilities are in separate buildings nearby.

Families will be housed together and grouped according to the age of the youngest children. For smaller family groups, two families might share a bunk house and each take a side of the room. There are four sets (top and bottom) of bunk beds on each side. A Pied Piper will lead the young children back to their cabins at bedtime, and roving monitors will be on duty after that so parents are free to enjoy the evening dancing. You may wish to bring a small headlight or reading lamp for wind-down at bedtime.

There are a limited number of dorm-style double occupancy rooms in larger buildings with shared bathrooms down the hall. Campers can bring trailers or small RVs, but no electric hookups or sewer connections are available. Tent camping is also available.

You will get your housing assignment when you arrive at camp. If you have requests for particular cabins or types of housing, please list them when you register for camp. You can also log into CDSS Commons after registration to update your information at any time. Housing choices are limited! We do our best to fulfill requests but can’t promise that you will get your first choice.

 If you need disability/medical/access accommodations, please list this clearly on your housing preferences, and email if you have any questions.

Camper Jobs

In the cooperative spirit of camp life, all campers have a daily job to help make camp run smoothly.  

  • Jobs are usually 30 minutes or less per day, every day, and the same job all week. 
  • You will get your job assignment when you arrive at camp.

If you have any preferences or limitations (e.g. getting up early or staying up late, dust allergy, unable to lift heavy objects), please list them when you register for camp. You can also log into CDSS Commons after registration to update your information at any time. We can’t guarantee that all specific job requests will be filled.

At Family Weeks, children ages 6-12 may be given a job to share with an adult family member. Children under 6 are not assigned jobs.

Types of Camper Jobs

Dining Hall and Kitchen
  • Campers help with setting and clearing tables for breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • Other kitchen jobs can include serving food, making tea and coffee, and washing dishes after meals
  • The dance pavilions and other camp spaces need regular sweeping to keep them clean and ready for dancing
Snacks and tea
  • Some of our camp weeks have a snack or teatime scheduled in addition to the main meals
  • Campers help with setup and tidying up afterwards, food preparation, and making teas
Parties and events
  • Some campers will be asked to help out with setting up and tidying away for parties, auctions, and other camp events
  • Helping with the late-night parties can be a great job for people who like to stay up late, but there are also daytime events that need help
  • The CDSS office staff sometimes need help with clerical work, which can include folding or stapling papers, helping with paperwork at fundraising auctions, or working in the CDSS Bookstore
  • Some sessions will have a camper job to coordinate mealtime announcements, or to help update schedules with any changes during the week
Greeters and tour guides
  • We’ll ask a few campers to arrive early to be ready to welcome everyone else and give directions to new people


Meals: The camp serves three meals a day, from dinner on the day of arrival through to breakfast on the day of departure.

Please let us know your dietary needs when you register for camp, and you can also log into CDSS Commons after registration to update your information at any time.

Agassiz Village can easily cater for vegetarians and will try to meet other dietary needs, but the camp has a very small kitchen staff and cannot cater to every special diet. If you have very restrictive or severe food intolerances, you may need to bring some of your own food to supplement the camp food. Refrigerator space is available for campers to use for this purpose. Please email in advance if you have any questions or concerns.

In addition to the main meals, an alternatives cart and refrigerator are stocked with most of the following (available to all at each meal): hard boiled eggs, yogurt, peanut butter and jelly, carrot and celery sticks, bread, cheese, and hummus. These can be used both by people on restrictive diets or for children who might be fussy eaters.

Snacks and refreshments: A mid-morning and a mid-afternoon snack are served daily. Some after-dance parties are scheduled with food supplied by CDSS, but campers are encouraged to bring their own snacks and party food to share and to host parties.

What to Pack

Here are a few suggestions for what you might want to bring with you to camp, and what you might want to leave at home.

Camp Essentials

  • Clothing
    • Bring enough clothes for the whole week; there are no laundry facilities at camp
    • Bring dance clothes, but make sure you’re prepared for colder weather or rain as well
  • Shoes
    • Dance shoes
    • Trail or hiking shoes are a good idea for the paths around camp
  • Towels
    • Bring more than one!
  • Flashlight & spare batteries
  • Swimwear
  • Toiletries, sunscreen
  • Water Bottle
  • Bedding
    • Sheets, sleeping bag or blankets, pillow
You may wish to bring:
  • Fan
  • Musical Instruments
    • Tunes, songs, dances, and stories to share
  • Snacks and food to share for parties
    • Icebox/cooler
  • Auction donations and ideas for services
  • Food (if on a special diet)
  • Fancy dress or costumes
  • Bug spray
  • Tent/sleeping bag/mattress pad for camping
Please leave at home:
  • Computers (if you must bring electronics, please keep them in your cabin and away from camp social life)
  • Electronic games
  • Recorded music
  • Scented products (deodorant, shampoo, etc.)
    • In order to make camp safe and accessible for people with chemical/fragrance sensitivities, we ask that you refrain from bringing scented products to camp where possible
  • All the cares and worries of home and work

More Information

CDSS Bookstore 

The CDSS Bookstore offers dance and song recordings and books, postcards, T-shirts and more. This includes recordings, publications from the talented staff. It is open for browsing from Sunday lunch until Thursday afternoon. Items may be taken only after they are checked out during posted staffed hours. Bills can be paid near the end of the week. You can pay by cash, check, or card (Visa & Mastercard accepted).

First Aid 

A resident first aider is in attendance at camp and available at all times for basic first aid. We are unable to dispense any medicine or medical advice; if there is an emergency or medical question we will direct you to the nearest hospital. There is a first aid station stocked with band-aids, ice packs and basic supplies. You should bring any specific first aid supplies or medication that you think you may need in the course of the week. CDSS and Agassiz Village assume no liability for accidents or illness or for their treatment. 

Illegal use and sale of alcohol and drugs is prohibited at Agassiz Village. The legal drinking age in Maine is 21. While recreational use of marijuana is illegal in New Hampshire, all campers must follow the camp smoking guidelines. Parents and guardians are responsible for making sure that their children do not use alcohol or drugs at Agassiz Village. 

All the normal outdoor dangers: raccoons, ticks, poison ivy, etc. come with camp life. Do not approach or handle wild or tame animals and let us know if any contact has occurred. Standard precautions will be explained at camp. 

Water Safety 

The lake is visible from most of camp and is fun for everyone. It is a walk to the swimming area – bring a beach bag for towels and a change. For your water safety, lifeguards are on duty at the lake for specific periods each day. The lake is out of bounds when the lifeguard is not on duty. 

Minors (those under age 18) may only swim or boat under the supervision of the lifeguards.

  • Campers 9 & under must be accompanied by their parent or guardian. 
  • Campers 17 and under wishing to swim beyond the roped off shallow end of the lake or to use a boat must pass a swimming test. 

Canoes are available during swim times for use by people who have passed the swim test. By state law, all boaters must wear a life jacket. 

CDSS and Agassiz Village assume no responsibility for campers swimming or using boats. 

Lifeguard equipment is for use only by the lifeguard or in the case of a swimming emergency. If you swim when or where the lifeguard is not on duty, please swim with a friend. Do not swim if you have been drinking alcohol.