by Laurie, the Campcierge™
Finding the right camp for your children is very important. You want a place where they’ll feel comfortable and happy, and have the opportunity to learn and grow – and when you’re entrusting the care and development of your child to a camp director, it’s important to be confident in the camp environment you choose. Here are 20 questions Maine Camp Experience recommends asking camp directors to help determine which camp will be the best fit.
1. What is/are your session length(s) and dates? Is it one, seven-week full session or multiple shorter and longer session options? (Some camps will allow shorter in the first year and then longer thereafter.) It’s important to think about your child’s first summer, AND what you’ll want for the ensuing summers.
2. What type of programming do you offer for daily scheduling – Structured? Elective? Combination? How frequently does the daily schedule rotate? How/Does the schedule change as campers get older? Does the group travel together as a bunk or mixed age based on individual elective choices?
3. What are some of your best special events, longstanding camp traditions, and out-of-camp trips?
4. Activities – what do you offer and how often will my child get to do xx (whatever it is that you/your child wants to pursue).
5. Sports – what’s offered? How competitive? Are there leagues within camp? Are there intercamp games against other camps? Information about specialty clinics or private instruction or specialization?
6. Medical care – what is the health center like? Are doctors and nurses onsite? How far and what are the nearest doctor offices and hospital?
7. Food – What kind of food is served at meals? Snacks? Do campers eat with their cabin or rotate? Can camp accommodate special needs such as allergies (nuts, gluten), Kosher, vegetarian, etc.
8. Where do the campers come from? Counselors? And what is the camper and counselor retention from year to year?
9. How does your camp interact with other camps for games/tournaments, brother/sister events, socials?
10. Do campers wear a uniform?
11. What’s the size of your camp? How many campers? Staff?
12. How do campers get to/from camp (Bus, plane, car)?
13. Cabins – How are cabin assignments made? Same or different each year? What are the cabins like (electricity? toilets & showers in or out of cabins?)
14. How do you integrate new campers? Do you assign a “big brother” or “big sister” to younger campers?
15. How is staff hired? What qualities/certifications do you look for? How are staff trained?
16. What is the background and experience of the owners/directors?
17. How do you handle homesickness?
18. Parent/camper interaction – How, how often, and when can I communicate with my child (letters, emails, phone, packages)? When is Visiting Day?
19. Can you provide me with reference families?
20. Cost? What is the cost of the camp? What about additional costs including transportation, trips, laundry, etc.?
Maine Camp Experience Resources & Tools
Looking for the perfect Maine camp for your child? Try out our helpful tool where you can select a camp by choosing: type of camp (girls, boys or coed) and session length (1-8 weeks). It helps to narrow down a few camps to a manageable list that includes rates. Then you can research these camps in more depth.
Next, be sure to contact our Maine Camp Guide, Laurie to discuss these camps as well as for free, year-round advice and assistance on choosing a great Maine summer camp for your child.
Talk to Laurie, our Maine Campcierge™, about choosing the right camp for your child and what to do in Maine.