We hope you had a great week! We are excited to see you back for closing. Upon arrival, we know you will be looking forward to seeing your camper and hearing about their experience.
Closing celebration will look different this year as we observe CDC and governmental guidelines for health and safety. It’ll look different enough that we’re actually not calling it “closing celebration,” but “camper pick-up” instead. However, we left “closing celebration” in the article title to avoid confusion for returning families. We’ll call it camper pick-up from here on out.
Rolling Pick Up Times
- Silverado: walk in pick-up from 9:30-11am, express pick-up from 11-11:30am
- Outback: walk in pick-up from 9:30-11:30am (express pick-up always available)
- Ridge: 9am-10:30am (express pick-up always available)
- Towers: walk in pick-up from 9-10:30am, express pick-up from 10:30-11am
- Ranch: walk in pick-up from 10-11:30am, express pick-up from 11:30-12pm
- Timbers: walk in pick-up from 9-10:30am, express pick-up from 10:30-11am
- Shores: 10-11:30am (express pick-up always available)
Unlike in the past, closing will be more like this summer’s drop-off. Instead of everyone being there at one set time, parents can come and go within the pick-up hour. If you have more than one camper at camps with the same closing time, you can either divide and conquer with another adult, or go to one and then the other.
As with drop-off, we encourage you to limit the number of people coming in the car for pick-up. Our normal activities will not be open, so there’s less to do while on property.
If you did express drop-off you were already asked if you wanted to do express pick up. Express pick up gives you an option of driving through camp and picking up your camper without needing to get out of your car. If you’re interested in doing express pick up for your camper, email us at email@example.com right away with the name of your camper(s) and we’ll get that info passed on to the correct camp(s).
Picking Up On Property
If you are parking, you’ll be directed to your meeting place once you park. We’re dividing people into small groups for their CQ ceremonies and closing information – no large group indoor group gathering. CQ time is a time where counselors talk about character qualities they’ve seen in their campers during the week and don’t worry, CQs aren’t going away. They will be done as parents arrive and pick up, rather than everyone all together watching the presentations as in the past. For those choosing express camper pick-up, you won’t miss a thing! There will be a digital copy in the app as well!
There will be a place to pick up meds (Please take them back! We don’t need them.) and to get luggage. Check lost and found in case your camper’s crocks somehow didn’t make it back. The camp store will be open with reduced numbers of people allowed inside, and some camps will have outdoor kiosk store options as well.
POST-CAMP CONVERSATION GUIDE
We also thought you might enjoy this Post-Camp Conversation Guide from our friends over at the ReThink Group. They produce the amazing Orange church curriculum for parents and children and run a great blog with more articles for parents at theparentcue.org. Check them out!
There’s a good chance your camper had a lot of fun this week. They probably stayed up late, had great conversations, did something that made them nervous, made some major life decisions, and logged some lifelong memories—and that was just the first day. So where do you start? What do you ask? And how do you talk about this oh-so-packed week with them in a way they don’t just stare at you blankly and fall asleep?
WHAT TO SAY NOW
The truth is, your camper may not be ready to talk a lot the first day home from camp. Maybe they’ll want to tell you all about their week, but for most campers, the first day home is about one thing—sleep. If you’d love a recap before they pass out, do your best to keep it simple.
- What was one fun thing you did?
- What was the best part of your week?
- Who is one person you got to know better?
WHAT TO SAY LATER
When your student has slept for a day or two, they may feel a little more ready to chat, but there’s also a good chance they may have trouble finding the right words for what they experienced. They’re still processing. They’re still figuring out how to bring what they learned at camp into their normal, everyday life. So instead of asking broad questions like, “What did you learn at camp?” help them find the right words by asking something more specific. For example, you can ask questions like:
- What is one word or phrase that sticks out in your mind from this week?
- What is one thing about the week that surprised you?
- What is one thing you learned about God, yourself or others this week?
- Is there anything you’ve decided to do differently because of what you experienced at camp?
- Is there anyone you’ve decided to spend more/less time around after camp?
WHAT NOT TO SAY
Camp is one of the few places that feels sacred to a student. It can be because they felt closer to God or made major life decisions. Or, it can be because they simply became closer to friends and felt more accepted than they do at school. Either way, your camper will be far less likely to talk about that experience if they feel you don’t understand or don’t approve. So when you ask questions, do your best to keep the tone positive. Avoid phrases like:
- Did you learn anything this week?
- It sounds like all you guys did was goof off.
- It doesn’t sound like much fun to me.
- You’re sure not acting like you learned anything.
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