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Summer camp visiting day primer

Jill Tipograph is the only independent summer planning expert, founder of EverythingSummer.comand the author of Your Everything Summer Guide. She is passionate about identifying and designing the right summer experiences for kids, teens,...

Camp chatter: Visiting day

Visiting Day at summer camp is a day eagerly awaited by both parent and child. The date is foremost in your mind, yet it signifies that camp is halfway over(boo hoo!), in most cases. You are looking forward with great anticipation, but are you ready to make this day a success?

Visiting day

Make sure you dress comfortably -- including your shoes! It's a day of fun, but no air conditioning and plenty of outside activities. Protect yourself with sun block and a hat, and bring rain gear and a light jacket for changing climates.





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More tips for a fun visiting day:
  • Carry bottled water and snacks for younger siblings; camps offer beverages at lunch.
  • Be on time! Nothing disappoints a child more than for his/her parents to arrive late.
  • Let your child know he/she has been missed; but you can't wait to meet his/her friends and counselors, and see all the new activities he/she has learned.
  • Be encouraging of your child's acquired independence.
  • Don't overwhelm your child with reports from home.
  • Prepare your questions ahead of time. Parents tend to start talking to counselors and directors, asking questions here and there, then leave and realize they neglected to discuss items of concern. The directors and staff are very busy visiting day; organize a list of questions when not rushed, even type it up with your contact information, so that if you cannot get through them all, you can leave the list with the office for director follow up.
  • If you feel you need private time during visiting day with a director or counselor, forewarn the camp and ask how best to handle this.

Preventing homesickness

If your child is remaining in camp after visiting day, don't show your sadness in leaving him/her behind for the rest of the session. Remind them of all of the fun they are having, how boring and hot it is at home, and how busy you are (i.e. not able to spend dedicated alone time with them).

Do not give in to visiting day 'pick-up' deals. If homesickness arises, include the camp director and head counselor. Once a parent leaves, the camp is deliberate in keeping the kids busy and their potential sadness with you is often short-lived and forgotten quickly.

And most importantly, bring a fully charged video, digital and/or flip cam camera to record and document your child's - and your - memories. Bring swimming attire too. I still reminisce and savor all of my kids' camp visiting days!

Do you have a question for our camp expert?

Do you have a question for our summer camp expert, Jill Tipograph? Go to our camp message boards here and post your question.

For more tips from Jill, check out her site and read her Everything Summer blog here. You can also connect with her on Twitter or Facebook.

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