About the Vineyard
Unforgettable Summer Experiences
For more than 45 years, Martha’s Vineyard has been home to FOCUS Summer Programs. Countless students and leaders have come to programs and had life-changing experiences and friendships. Our 30-acre Study Center, Lambert’s Cove Beach, Uncle Seth’s Pond, and all the Vineyard has to offer are waiting for you. We hope to see you next summer!
Why the Vineyard?
With award winning sunsets and refreshing ocean water, the Vineyard offers students a place to explore the island, enjoy great meals, and meet new people, while exploring questions of faith in a relevant way.
Each summer, nearly 600 students visit the property for a weekend, a week, or sometimes even longer. Each program takes full advantage of all of the unique opportunities and adventures that the island of Martha’s Vineyard has to offer. Relax on the beaches of Katama, enjoy the local towns, or explore the trails of Cedar Neck. Younger students spend a day sailing on a famous topsail schooner, and older students have opportunities to explore the cliffs of Aquinnah.
All programs listed below take place on Martha’s Vineyard. We also offer several Service and Specialty Programs. All grades are based on the grade the student is currently in (2022-2023 school year).
Students should plan on arriving between 2:00 pm & 5:00 pm on the day the program begins (arrival day), and departing between 9:00 am & 12:00 pm on the day the program ends (departure day). FOCUS is able to pick up students at the Martha’s Vineyard Airport and the Oak Bluffs and Vineyard Haven ferry docks. Below are four different ways for students to get to the FOCUS property.
Please do not make any travel plans until you have received the acceptance email (not just the submission confirmation email).
Your local FOCUS staff may organize group transportation. Even if group travel plans are not being arranged, your local FOCUS staff is an excellent resource, as they know the best travel routes from your area.
We recommend the following ferry options:
Arrival Day: embarking from Woods Hole, MA at 3:45 pm
Departure Day: embarking from Martha’s Vineyard at 9:30 am (arriving into Woods Hole at 10:15 am)
Seastreak (also called New England Fast Ferry)
Arrival Day: embarking from New Bedford, MA at 2:00 pm
Departure Day: embarking from Martha’s Vineyard at 10:15 am (arriving into New Bedford at 11:15 am)
We can also pick up at other ferry docks and times. Other ferry options include:
Departs from Woods Hole, MA and Hyannis, MA and arrives at Vineyard Haven or Oak Bluffs ferry docks depending on what time of day you depart. Bus service to the Steamship Authority ferry dock in Wood’s Hole, MA is available from New York City and Boston. Please go directly to the Peter Pan website to see the exact times of their bus schedules. Steamship Authority does not require that tickets be purchased in advance for walk-on passengers. Reservations are required for bringing a vehicle over.
Seastreak (also called New England Fast Ferry)
Departs from New Bedford, MA and arrives at either Vineyard Haven or Oak Bluffs ferry docks depending on the time of day you depart. Tickets are available for purchase online, but Seastreak does not take reservations. Boarding is first come, first served.
Departs from Hyannis, MA and arrives at Oak Bluffs ferry dock. Hy-Line Cruises requires that tickets be purchased online in advance.
Departs from Falmouth, MA and arrives at Oak Bluffs ferry dock. Island Queen does not accept reservations in advance, but recommends that passengers arrive at least 45-minutes prior to your departure to ensure space.
Martha’s Vineyard Fast Ferry
Departs from Quonset Point, RI and arrives at Oak Bluffs ferry dock. Martha’s Vineyard Fast Ferry offers a shuttle from the Providence Airport and from the Providence Amtrak Station. More information can be found on their website. Tickets are available for purchase online.
Students can fly into the Martha’s Vineyard Airport via JetBlue, Cape Air, Delta, and American Airlines. Changing planes may be required at Logan International Airport in Boston or John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York.
If your child will be traveling as an unaccompanied minor, please contact the FOCUS Study Center (508-693-1359 or [email protected]) the day before your child’s flight to discuss who will pick up your child from the airport.
Students can be dropped off at the FOCUS property. The address is 450 Lamberts Cove Road, West Tisbury, MA. If your child will be arriving by car, please let us know who will be dropping them off and when they will arrive at the property.
For additional transportation information, please visit the Martha’s Vineyard Chamber of Commerce or this Massachusetts Vacation Guide.
Martha's Vineyard FAQs
Below are a few of our frequently asked Vineyard questions. For a full list of questions, check out our FAQ page.
What is the FOCUS Study Center?
The FOCUS Study Center is located on 30 acres in West Tisbury, MA on Martha’s Vineyard. Our property is situated on Lambert’s Cove Road, 10 minutes from Vineyard Haven, MA and 15 minutes from Edgartown, MA. The Study Center offers 10 buildings designed for housing, dining, and gathering. Also onsite are the tennis courts, basketball court, sand volleyball, and the ever popular Seth’s Pond.
What does a typical day at the Vineyard look like?
FOCUS is dedicated to making a student’s time with us unforgettable. While every program is slightly different, a typical day may look like the following. Our mornings start each day at 8:30am with breakfast, followed by a time for personal reflection, free time, a morning meeting, small group discussions, and a camp wide game or activity. Lunch is followed by afternoon activities which take advantage of all the island has to offer. Afternoon activities can include anything from swimming in the pond, going to Lambert’s Cove Beach, a bike ride to Edgartown, playing famous FOCUS games, sailing off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard, going on a hike, seeing the cliffs at Aquinnah, or having a foosball tournament. This is a time for students to choose what they want to do from each days’ offerings. Everyone meets back at the property by 4pm for “tea time” – a delicious snack. Students then have free time or can attend optional special sessions about culturally relevant topics. Another camp wide activity will follow dinner, then evening meeting, “coffee house” (another snack and hang out time), and back to the cabins for cabin time before a 10:30pm lights out. Morning and evening meetings are for the whole program and include a variety of elements including a fun game or icebreaker, music and singing (both familiar and new songs), a personal story from a leader, and a brief time of teaching on the Christian faith.
Where do the students stay?
Housing is provided in two dormitories located on opposite sides of the property. Our girls stay in “The Palace,” while boys are in the upper and lower “Bunk Houses.” The Palace has six cabins that open both into a central hallway and out onto the porch. Bathrooms are accessed through the central hall. Each room houses 4-6 students and 1-2 leaders. There are four cabins in each of the bunk houses. (The upper and lower bunk houses are adjacent.) Each cabin opens to both the front and rear side of the porch. Each room houses 3-6 students and 1-2 leaders. The “Barn-Ex” is a separate cabin that is used for additional housing at larger programs. It is located near the middle of campus and is a favorite among those who have had the privilege of staying there. In the spirit of the Vineyard, all housing has both indoor and outdoor private showers, fans, and screened doors.