Tumalo Day Camp campers being silly Top Tips for Parents and Kids to Prep for Our Awesome Camps 

Summer camps are just about to kick off, and we couldn’t be more excited! Whether you’re joining us for one fantastic program or a whole bunch of camps and sessions, your experience can be camp-tastic with just a little bit of prep and by keeping some simple, smart tips in mind. Here’s what Melanie Feltmate—known as “Bubbles” by campers—suggests: 

For Kids

Pack your PMA, or Positive Mental Attitude. Having a PMA can really help in making friends and trying new things! For instance, be open to new games, crafts, activities and even just ways of doing stuff. Camp is a great place to discover fresh interests and even your “spark”—those cool skills and talents that excite and motivate you! As for making friends? Tap that PMA to introduce yourself to other campers and include others in your activities.

Drink honey lemon tea for breakfast. Or whatever else helps you to jump in to our opening circle and sing our favorite, fun camp songs.

Don’t toss that winter scarf you were going to donate! Cut it into smaller pieces, bring a piece to camp, dip it in cold water, and lay it on your neck for those super-hot summer days. Keeping cool helps the fun continue!

Kid holding rethink waste signScan the recycling trash can at home. One of Camp Fire Central Oregon’s values is taking care of the environment, so we often ask for recycled goods from home. With an egg carton, some dryer lint, and old candle wax, we can create durable fire-starters, and you should see the sets and costumes our SummerKids campers can make with a bunch of cardboard boxes!

Say goodbye to your electronics. At summer camp, we are firm believers in less screen, more green, PLUS, more and more surveys of our youth are showing a trend that young people don't even want technology at camp. Make it a tech-free experience and come to camp to connect and explore all it has to offer in our screen-free setting!

For Parents

Pack Smart. Think: close-toed shoes, a water bottle, sunscreen, layers, a healthy lunch and/or snacks (depending on the length of camp)—these are important camp essentials! Details are emailed on what to pack before camp, so check your SPAM folder if you don’t see an email before each camp’s start date. Keep in mind, encouraging kids to lend a hand in packing those items in ONE bag is a great skill to develop and helps them know what they’ve got and how to find it in a flash! And don’t forget to label everything. Stay Informed. Familiarize yourself with the daily schedule and any special events or activities taking place during the camp experience.

Communicate. Got questions or concerns? Let us know…our staff is here for you, and communication between parents and our Camp Fire team is gold. Need help specific to a reservation? The best way to reach us is by contacting our office at 541-382-4682 or info@campfireco.org. And one more note on important communication: Come the end of summer camp season, you’ll get a short summer camp survey via email. Thanks in advance for taking a few minutes to complete it. We take feedback to heart, using it to make changes and ensure amazing camp experiences going forward! 

girls under octopus umbrellaPrepare for the unexpected. Check the weather forecast and, pack a raincoat or extra layers if needed. Also, review basic safety rules with your kiddo, things like staying with the group and not wandering off without explicit permission from a counselor (e.g., bathroom break).

Encourage independence. Camp Fire is all about helping kids thrive. Everything from encouraging your youth to pack their own bag to practicing basic self-care (e.g., how to apply sunscreen or bug spray, staying hydrated, keeping track of personal stuff in their bag, etc.) can go a long way toward making this summer a success! 

By following these tips, both parents and kids can ensure a smooth and enjoyable summer camp experience!