top of page
LJMA logo circleplus guitar.png

Songwriting and Ukulele Music Retreat



Dates: Sunday 23rd June - Sunday 30th June 2024


Ages: 11-18


Camping Locations:

  • El Capitan State Park, Santa Barbara (3 nights)

  • Calaveras Big Tree State Park, Arnold (4 nights)


Activities include:

  • Daily songwriting and ukulele group classes,

  • White water rafting day adventure,

  • Day trips to Solvang, Santa Barbara, Ojai, Carmel, and Yosemite,

  • Hiking,

  • Swimming,

  • Beach days,

  • Long walks,

  • Games,

  • Music trivia nights,

  • S'mores by the campfire,

  • Incredible home-cooked food by a private cook and tons of FUN!


In our attempt to reduce the anxiety, stress, and pressure that have affected so many kids these days, this camp is designed to take them back to basics, relax, disconnect from devices, and be a kid again while being surrounded by what they love the most - music and friends. 

Nature is a huge healer. It calms the mind, resets your soul, and brings you back to a neutral mentality. We have a strict no-device policy where devices are only allowed for 1 hour each day before being locked up so that campers can fully disconnect. Parents will be given counselors' phone numbers in the event contact is necessary due to an emergency. Join us as we explore contrasting yet beautiful locations up the coast of California.

A minibus will be provided to transport all campers to and from locations as well as home-cooked meals every night from our very own private cook. No tin can food and scraps, campers will get three healthy homemade meals a day including a packed lunch as well as snacks and drinks to keep them energized and ready to go. This is the perfect getaway for the music-loving camper.

Camper character requirements:


Anyone wanting to attend camp must be:

  • Able to take direction and follow camp rules

  • Open-minded

  • Respectful of others and the environment

  • Willing to share

  • Able to sleep through the night

LJMA Teen Songwriting Music Retreat California


  • Campsite reservations at hard-to-come-by gorgeous California State Parks.

  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (hot meal), snacks, and water all day.

  • All meals are prepared and cooked by our very own personal cook

  • Nightly smores around the campfire, hot chamomile teas, or cocoa to help you snuggle into bed for a peaceful night’s sleep.

  • Two campsite locations - 

    • El Capitan Beach State Park,  Santa Barbara 

    • Calaveras Big Trees State Park, Arnold

  • 15-seater tall Minibus transportation to and from each site. 

  • Pick up / Drop off from Laura Jean Music Academy 

  • 24-hour adult supervision - 4 adults/12 campers 1:3 ratio.

  • White Water Rafting Trip (Medium Level) 

  • Day trips to: Solvang, Santa Barbara, Carmel, Ojai, Yosemite

  • Activities: 

    • Morning jogs (optional but highly recommended for getting the blood flowing) 

    • Hiking 

    • Beach days

    • Daily Board / Card games

    • Inclusive interactive evening group games/music trivia tournaments, teams competitions.

    • Exploring local towns including tasting local cuisines and stopping into local shops.

    • Group ukulele and songwriting lessons - many times on the beach, in groves, or with a beautiful view of nature.

    • Relaxing down time

    • Dinner and breakfast are always eaten together


South Fork American River 

Lower ‘Gorge’ Itinerary:


  • Meet mid-morning to late morning in Lotus

  • Sign-in, instruction

  • Class II warm-up rapids (Medium level of difficulty)

  • Riverside lunch

  • Class III rapids, the "Gorge"

  • Take-out in Folsom Lake, shuttle

  • The trip ends mid-afternoon to late afternoon

On the Lower "Gorge", our trip begins with easy Class II rapids, the perfect warm-up for the Class III whitewater that waits downstream. Before we get to the big stuff, we break for a delicious riverside lunch. After lunch, we're back in the rafts, paddling the Class III whitewater of the "Gorge". Our Class III challenge begins with Fowler's Rock Rapid and culminates with rapids like the Hospital Bar and Recovery Room. Any trip through the rapid-filled "Gorge" is an eventful one! Reaching Folsom Lake in the late afternoon, we float to our take-out.

For more information visit All Outdoors California Rafting.    


 Rated 5* on YELP

We experienced this trip last time and the rapids are challenging but extremely manageable. For those that are nervous, they allow you to sit in the middle of the boat so that you are safe throughout the adventure and don’t need to fall into the water if you don’t want to, however, if it is warm it is incredibly refreshing! Campers are allowed to sit out of the white water rafting, however, it does not affect the price of the camp. That being said, we highly encourage every camper to participate.


  • Classes are optional. Students can pick either or both classes to partake in. 

  • Students who do not opt for additional classes will partake in extra board games and chill time.

  • Each class is 45 mins - 1 hour each

  • Class teachers currently teach their respective subjects privately at the Laura Jean Music Academy, have vast experience working with small groups, and are trained specifically to work with kids. They are passionate musicians and dedicated educators. 



Learn all the main chords throughout the week as well as a new song every day to be played in a group around the campfire each night. 

For those taking the Ukulele Class, they will be required to bring their own Ukulele. If you need to purchase one here are a couple of links to Teacher Alyce’s recommended Ukuleles: Option 1 and Option 2.



Analyze and tear apart the songs you learn in Ukulele class and learn to write your own. Strip them down and learn how each songwriter created the song you are studying. Learn how to add these techniques to your songwriting ability. 

Time in the day will be given for students to practice and write in a relaxing and chilled atmosphere surrounded by nature. 

This is a songwriter’s DREAM.

LJMA Teen Songwriting Music Retreat California

  • 07:30                Morning Roll Call

  • 07:30 - 08:15    Morning run, swim, walk

  • 08:15 - 09:15.   Breakfast

  • 09:15 - 10:00    Shower/wash up

  • 10:00 - 10.30    Make lunches

  • 10.30                Leave for a day trip.

  • 10:30 - 11:00   Travel to town in minibus/ snack time

  • 11:00 - 01:00    Explore the local town looking at bookshops, antique shops, thrift shops, record stores, cafes, and patisseries.

  • 01:00 - 02:30    Sit in the park and eat our lunch together, play group card games, and find a little local cafe for a treat.

  • 02:30 - 03:00    Travel back to camp

  • 03:00 - 05:30    Ukulele class on the beach + beach game time.

  • 05:30 - 06:30    Phone time/Downtime

  • 06:30 - 07:30    Shower/Change into PJs/comfy sleep clothes

  • 07:30 - 08:30    Dinner/Group card game

  • 08:30 - 09:15    Songwriting Class round campfire

  • 09:15 - 10:00    S'mores and Music Trivia

  • 10:00 - 10:30    Wash up/Brush teeth/etc

  • 10:30                Lights out



June 23rd  - Travel to El Capitan Beach State Park

June 24th - Morning trip to Solvang​
June 25th - Day trip to Ojai​
June 26th - Day trip to Carmel then on to Calaveras Big Tree State Park
June 27th - Chill Day ​
June 28th - White water rafting ​adventure day
June 29th - Day trip to Yosemite​
June 30th - Drive Home​

Check out our photos from our 2022 Retreat: 

bottom of page