Preparing for Camp

 

Arriving at Camp

For all of our week-long camps:
Please arrive between 3 and 5 PM on Sunday to register your camper. Please do not bring your pets.

For Adventure Camp half-week sessions:
Session A registration is Sunday 3 to 5 pm

Session B registration is Wednesday 3 to 5 pm

Friendship Camp:
Please arrive Monday, July 3rd from 10 am to 12 pm.

When You Arrive

  1. You will be directed to a parking area. 
  2. Drop luggage at the spot designated for your camp in the parking area.
  3. Remove all medications from luggage and bring them to the check-in line
  4. Have any changes to emergency contact or health insurance information ready.
  5. Be ready to answer a few simple health questions and receive a lice check. (Campers with lice will be sent home with care instructions, and camp attendance rescheduled)
  6. You will meet the camp leaders and be shown your sleeping area.  Parents are welcome to meet the camp counselor and see the sleeping arrangements for the camper.

Packing List  -  Please label every item! 

(Click here for a printable checklist)

  • Clothes for camping and hiking, including a jacket or hoodie, long-sleeve shirt, and lots of socks.
  • 2 pairs of closed toed shoes, including an old pair of tennis shoes for water activities. For safety purposes, we do not allow any open toed shoes for camp activities.  One pair of sandals is appropriate when going to the pool or shower.
  • Sleeping bag, extra blanket and pillow.
  • Sleeping pad (for Adventure and Buccaneer)
  • Toiletries including soap, shampoo and toothbrush/toothpaste
  • Towel
  • Insect repellent
  • Refillable water bottle for hiking
  • Swimsuit and sunscreen
  • Bible, pencil, flashlight, and postage stamps
  • Prescription medications in their original containers (see Medication Policy)

Specialized packing lists - In addition to the above, please pack:

For High School Camp:  optional items:  musical instruments, nice outfit for the banquet, something to wear for the country hoe-down.

Dress Code:  Please bring clothing that is appropriate for a Christian camp.  Do not bring clothing which advertises alcohol, contain profanity or gang related tags, or promotes illegal activities. String bikini bathing suits and thongs are not allowed (or campers will be asked to wear a t-shirt over their bathing suit during pool times).  Immodest clothing is discouraged such as short shorts or skirts, overly revealing tops, and sagging pants or pants that do not cover underwear completely.

Do not bring - Alcohol, illegal drugs, cigarettes, knives, weapons of any kind, cell phones, iPods, pagers, two-way radios, portable audio/video equipment, portable gaming devices, electronic games, valuables or money.

Mail and Care Packages

The policy for care packages is as follows:

  • Care packages will only be delivered on Tuesdays and Thursdays. ( Adventure A packages will be delivered on Monday and Tuesday and Adventure B on Thursday and Friday)
  • Each camper can receive a maximum of 2 packages each week.
  • Packages can be no larger than 12” x 12” x 12” or 1 square foot.
  • Please do not send liquids, sodas, caffeinated beverages.
  • Please do not send candy. We provide yummy snacks, and candy wrappers litter camp. 
  • Excess packages will be retained and can be picked up from the office on Saturday morning.
  • Letters will be delivered daily. Monday through Friday.

As in the past, you will be able to drop off packages in front of the office specifying which day to deliver them. There will be two bins for packages and smaller boxes for letters.  Large envelopes containing more than paper will be considered a package.

 

Rest assured that your camper is fed well, including a fair number of treats. I encourage you to send notes of encouragement and affirmation. You can also use Bunk1 to send emails. Bunk1 is not used by Westminster Woods for photos so do not buy a large package with them. Emails are one dollar each.

 

Thank you for your compliance with this new policy and please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

In our outdoor camps, we collect all the care-package edibles and place them in a raccoon-proof box. 

You can also mail, UPS, or Fed Ex packages to:

Camper Name,  Camp Session (i.e. Forest 3)

Westminster Woods Camp

6510 Bohemian Hwy.

Occidental, CA  95465

Email

Our email service allows you to send e-mails to your camper.  Your camper is busy with lots of outdoor activities and does not have access to a computer and will not be able to e-mail you back.  They are welcome to write a letter or postcard and mail it from camp. We use a third party provider, Bunk 1, for e-mails. Each e-mail costs $1 to send. Please note, Bunk 1 has a photo service that we do not use, so only purchase enough credit for e-mails. 

Bunk1! Email Service

Photos

We have amateur photographers on summer staff out and about every day, taking pictures of campers for your viewing pleasure and purchase. We regularly upload these pictures to our photo site.  When you drop off your camper you will receive information  which includes a password for the photo album of that camp week in compliance with our camper privacy guidelines. If you have lost the password, please email info@westminsterwoods.org. Links to photos can be found on our home webpage. 

T-Shirt

Your camper will be given their Summer Camp t-shirt during registration on arrival day. Please note that we only order enough t-shirts for registered campers, and lost t-shirts cannot be replaced.

Phone Calls During Camp 

We understand that you are concerned about your camper while they are away from home.  We do not have cell phone coverage at the camp, and we ask campers to leave their cell phones at home.  If your child is homesick or struggling at camp, we will call the parents.  Otherwise, you can assume that your camper is fine and continue to send them mail and/or email.  We find that campers experience the full benefits of overnight camps when they are allowed to participate fully.

Westminster Woods Medication Policy

For the personal safety of all campers, medications are not allowed in the cabin with the exception of inhalers.  Medications must be checked in by the nurse at registration.

All camper prescription medications must be brought to camp in the original containers with a current Rx label.  Medications will be dispensed as the doctor ordered it to be given. Medication will not be dispensed to a child if his/her name is not on the label.  If you request your child’s medicine to be dispensed other than as prescribed on the label, you must have your doctor fax us an order indicating such change.  Unlabeled medication will be held (not given) until we receive a doctor’s faxed order.

 

The 5 medication rights will be as follows:

1) Right Person     

2) Right Drug     

3) Right Dose     

4) Right Route     

5) Right Time

 

Over the counter medications may be given with parental/guardian instructions.  Medications must be in the original container to be administered to your child.

We have standing orders from Dr. Trina Bowen at the Occidental  Area Health Center to dispense over the counter medications such as Ibuprofen, Tylenol, Benadryl, Robitussin, etc., if a camper needs and requests them.

Rx medications will be dosed by an MD, RN, or a pharmacist.  After medications are dosed, they may be administered by a First Aider.  Over the counter medications may be dosed and administered by an MD, RN, pharmacist, or First Aider.

Payment and Cancellation Policy

If you are only paying the deposit, please be aware that the balance is due in full 30 days prior to arrival at camp. Your card will be charged for the remaining balance unless prior arrangements are made with the registrar.

If your church is contributing to your camper’s balance, please be in communication with your church. We have asked the church to pay their portion of the balance 45 days prior to camp. We will run the remaining balance according to our payment policy.  Please call the registrar at 707-874-2426 ext. 612 if you have any questions.

A service charge of $15 will be added for returned checks. For a refund of all except the deposit, cancellation notices must be received in writing 14 days prior to the first day of camp.  Late notifications, no-shows, and/or early departures are NOT eligible for a refund.  After your application has been submitted, your registration is “on hold” until the registrar has reviewed the application to ensure all the information is complete.  If your application is missing information, the camp registrar will call and assist you in completing the registration process.  Once approved, you will be sent a confirmation e-mail. Please be sure your e-mail account is set up to receive mail from Westminster Woods.  Please include your camper’s name and session on any correspondence or payments.

It is the Woods’ intention to make camping available to those who are interested, but unable to attend due to extreme financial constraints. However, since our funds are limited and dispersed on a first come, first served basis we look to share the financial commitment. We encourage the family to tap into local churches, agencies, non-profit civic organizations, family, friends, etc., so that we may help as many campers as possible. To apply for a campership, complete the Campership Request Form -- if you have questions, please call 707-874-2426 ext. 612. 

Tips for helping your camper have a positive camping experience

In our experience, visits and phone calls can distract campers from the relationships they are building at camp. Campers receive the greatest benefit when allowed to have a focused, uninterrupted session.  Therefore, we encourage you not to remove campers early, bring them late, or call them at camp.  Please send them good news and fun stories through mail or e-mail.

Our counselors work closely with homesick campers, loving them and encouraging them to have fun at camp. For younger and first-time campers, we find it helpful if you are available for phone consultations about homesickness and are prepared to pick them up mid-session if their homesickness becomes severe.

Prevent sickness by encouraging your camper to get plenty of rest and exercise prior to camp. Occasionally our nurses may need to call parents to pick up campers who have become ill. You will be called if your child needs more medical attention, your child’s illness persists for more than 24 hours or it precludes him/her from participating in camp. Please make sure someone is available if this is necessary.

If you have an unexpected emergency and need to pick up your camper early, or talk to them personally, please call the office at 707-874-2426 ext. 0 (zero) to make arrangements in advance.  For safety reasons, we will document the early release from camp and will request to see identification of the person picking up the camper.

Communication is the key to our being of service. Please encourage your camper to talk to their camp counselor if any problems occur (e.g. bullying).

All-Camp Closure & Pick-up Times and Information

You are invited to All Camp Closure on Saturdays. Catch a glimpse of what the week was all about. Begins at 9:00 AM Saturday at the camp field and ends by 9:30 AM. Please do not arrive before 8:30AM.

   

A1A & A4A – pick up is on Wednesday 9:00-9:30am (no all camp closure on Wednesdays but you can come early to watch the Adv. camp closure. We cannot accommodate campers after 9:30am 

Lost and Found

Please check your camper’s luggage to be sure nothing is left behind or that you haven’t grabbed someone else’s luggage by mistake. If something appears to be missing, you can fill out a Lost & Found Report in the Office. We do not take responsibility for lost items, however we do try to locate your things and hold them for you to pick up when possible. Please report missing items right away; we donate unclaimed items after two weeks.

We do not ship any items bigger than what can fit in a 8 x 11 envelope but may be able to box something up for you to arrange a UPS pick-up at your expense.

Share with Us

Encourage your camper to share his/her camp experiences and let us in on their stories. Send a note, email, or give us a call!

Our counselors are instructed that any post-camp contact with campers is not authorized or endorsed by Westminster Woods or its staff. These relationships can be positive, but we ask that staff seek the camper’s parental permission for any post-camp contact, including any online contact, social networking, and/or email.

Celebration

The last Saturday of the summer we invite our campers, parents, and friends to celebrate with us.  Check our website or facebook page for details.