YMCA Camp Collins

Summer Camp FAQs
What does my child need to bring to camp?
Can my child and their best friend be put in the same cabin?
What are the sleeping arrangements at Camp?
Is there transportation to and from camp?
What is your cancellation policy?
Will my camper have a chance to do laundry?
What kind of experience does the summer staff have working with children?
Is Camp Collins prepared to give attention to my child who has special needs?
How do I know if my child is ready to stay overnight?
What is the ratio of staff to campers?
What if my child is taking prescription medicine?
How long does my child stay at camp?
When does summer camp begin and end?
What time do I drop off and pick up my child from Resident Camp?
What time do I drop off and pick up my child from Day Camp?
How old does my child need to be to attend camp?
May I tour the site before sending my child to summer camp?
What are Questor Specialties?
What are the specifics of the CIT sessions?
Do YMCA members get a discount?

What does my child need to bring to camp?
Once your child is registered for camp, your family will receive a link to our Parent Handbook. It includes ideas of how to help them be successful, what to pack, and other useful information.
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Can my child and their best friend be put in the same cabin?
Yes, as long as your child’s friend is of the same gender, within one year of age and in the same unit (Pioneer, Explorer, or Questor). Please request only one cabin mate for your child. Camp is the perfect place to meet new friends! Questor cabin mate requests are not guaranteed due to specialty assignments. We do our best to honor cabin mate requests, however, they are not guaranteed.
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What are the sleeping arrangements at Camp?
We do our best to honor “cabin mate requests” however, they are not guaranteed. We have learned from experience that placing three or more requested campers together tends to negatively impact cabin dynamics. Therefore, campers may mutually request one person only, within one year of the camper’s age, on their registration forms. Questor cabins are assigned by specialty in addition to cabin mate requests. Due to the schedule of running the specific programs campers in morning specialties follow a different schedule than those in an afternoon specialty. For example, if Aquatics meets in the morning and Wilderness Living Skills meets in the afternoon these campers will not be placed in the same cabin. Camp will work to have sleeping arraignment assigned by the Thursday before the start of the session.

Morning Specialties
Aquatics
Horses
Challenge Course

Afternoon Specialties
Horses
Challenge Course
Mountain Biking (Sessions: 1, 3, 5, 7)
Performing Arts (Sessions: 1, 3, 5, 7)
Archery (Sessions: 2, 4, 6, 8)
Wilderness Living Skills (Sessions: 2, 4, 6, 8)

Units have a capacity for 60 campers (30 male / 30 female) in their respective cabins. To make camp accessible to more campers we are able to utilize yurts, which are round canvas living spaces that exist in Rotary Village (Explorers) and Treetops Village (Questors) that extend each unit’s capacity to 70-80 campers when needed. Cabin placement is on a first come first serve basis and placement in a cabin in not guaranteed. The only exceptions exist when trying to honor cabin mate requests and/or Questor specialty requests.
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Is there transportation to and from camp?
Every morning and evening, Day Campers will be transported in and out of camp from predetermined sites in Gresham, Clackamas, and NE Portland. This service is included in the Day Camp fee. There is no transportation provided for Resident Camp.
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What is your cancellation policy?
A required nonrefundable $50 deposit is required per camper/per session at the time of registration. The remaining balance of the camp fee is due in full no later than June 1. A space will not be held past June 1 without full payment. If registered after June 1, full payment is required to complete my camper’s registration. After June 1, 50% of the total camp fee is refundable 3 weeks prior to the start of my child’s session. Transferring my child to another session of camp is allowed provided space is available and a written request is received at least 3 weeks prior to the start of their original session. No refunds are given if a child leaves camp early for any reason, drops within 3 weeks of their session start date, or does not show up on the first day of camp.
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Will my camper have a chance to do laundry?
Only campers participating in our multi-week programs such as Teen Camp and CITs will have an opportunity to do laundry at camp.
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What kind of experience does the summer staff have working with children?
Many of Camp Collins’ staff members return for multiple summers and our new staff members have experience working at outdoor school programs, other camps, or childcare sites. At the beginning of each summer, staff members attend a weeklong intensive training and orientation that helps prepare them to work with your child and his or her cabin group. All of our staff members go through a comprehensive hiring process that includes a multi-state background check.
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Is Camp Collins prepared to give attention to my child who has special needs?
We strive to be inclusive; however, our program may not be right for all campers. To speak in depth about whether our summer programs will be a good fit for your child’s specific needs, please call 503.663.3190 and speak to our Summer Program Director.
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How do I know if my child is ready to stay overnight?
Children are ready to attend resident camp at different ages. A great resource for parents is the American Camp Association website www.campparents.org. Our Summer Program Director will be happy to speak with you about whether YMCA Camp Collins’ summer programs will be a good fit for your child. To discuss this further, Contact Us at 503.663.3190.
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What is the ratio of staff to campers?
In the cabins there are ten campers and two staff (a 5:1 ratio). During the day, cabin groups travel together to activity areas during the day with their cabin counselor where one or more program staff will also be present.
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What if my child is taking prescription medicine?
YMCA Camp Collins has a Health Officer in residence that administers medications and provides limited health care to our campers. All of our summer camp staff are also First Aid and CPR certified.
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How long does my child stay at camp?
Resident campers arrive on Sunday afternoon and leave on Saturday morning. There are half-week overnight sessions, Sunday-Wednesday or Wednesday-Saturday, available for campers entering 2nd – 4th grade during Session 3 and 6. Day campers arrive at camp each morning and leave each afternoon, Monday through Friday.
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When does summer camp begin and end?
We offer eight one-week sessions of Day and Resident Camp in July and August. We also offer one, two and three week programs for Teens in July and August. In addition, we offer Family Camps over Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends.
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What time do I drop off and pick up my child from Resident Camp?
Check-in on Sunday* is staggered because of limited parking. Please follow this schedule based on the camper's last name. Camp is not ready to accept campers earlier than 2:00 PM.

Sunday
2:00 PM A – F
2:20 PM G – L
2:40 PM M – R
3:00 PM S – Z
*For Pioneer Mini campers starting a session on Wednesday (3b and 6b), check in is from 2 PM–2:30 PM.

Check out on Saturday* is also staggered according to the camper's last name.
Saturday
9:30 AM A – H
9:45 AM I – R
10:00 AM S – Z
Pioneer Mini campers end a session on Wednesday (3a and 6a), check out is from 10 AM.

Check out for all camps is closed at 10:30 AM.
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What time do I drop off and pick up my child from Day Camp?
When bringing your Day Camper directly to Camp Collins check in will begin at 8:30 AM and activities will start at 9 AM. Check out from Camp Collins will start at 4:30 PM and supervision at camp will end at 5 PM. When using one of the three transportation sites follow this schedule:

NE Portland – Alameda Elementary
7:30 AM – Supervision begins
8 AM – Departs for camp
5:45 PM – Returns to site
6 PM – Supervision ends

Gresham – East Hill Family Church
7:30 AM – Supervision begins
8:30 AM – Departs for camp
5 PM – Returns to site
6 PM – Supervision ends

Clackamas – Sunnyside Elementary School
7:30 AM – Supervision begins
8 AM – Departs for camp
5 PM – Returns to site
6 PM – Supervision ends
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How old does my child need to be to attend camp?
Day Campers must be entering grade 1 to participate. Resident Campers must be entering grade 2.
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May I tour the site before sending my child to summer camp?
We strongly encourage your family to visit our site before your child’s camp session. We host two Spring Open Houses for families to meet camp staff and take a tour. Checkout our Facebook Page for event details. We are able to give tours during office hours on the weekdays, please call ahead at 503.663.5813 to make tour arrangements.
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What are Questor Specialties?
Questors are the oldest of the resident campers, focusing on skills such as role modeling, making positive choices and taking personal responsibility. Questors choose a program area of focus for the week called "specialty". Questor spend 2–3 hours a day in their specialty and the remainder of the week enjoy traditional camp activities. We do our best to assign each Questor their first or second choice specialty.

Aquatics—Campers learn basic lifeguard skills, raft down the Sandy River and enjoy a variety of pool activities. Aquatic specialty campers should have basic swimming skills and feel comfortable in the water (offered all sessions).

Challenge Course—Campers expand their knowledge of challenge course elements through learning basic knot tying, facilitation and belaying from certified staff. Team building, creativity, confidence and adaptability are among the skills practiced. (offered all sessions)

Horseback Riding—Campers learn basic Western riding skills, tack, grooming and other related equestrian skills. Horse specialty campers explore a variety of trails on camp. (offered all sessions)

Archery—Campers learn the basics in range safety as well as parts of the bow and arrow. They will participate in our new archery challenge course trail and work towards becoming a proficient archer. Campers will learn to make their very own arrow and bow string. (offered sessions 2,4,6 & 8)

Wilderness Living Skills—Campers will learn fire-building, orienteering and shelter building using the natural environment of Camp Collins. Other practices that may be explored include Leave No Trace wilderness ethics, horticulture and sustainable living. (offered sessions 2,4,6 & 8)

Performing Arts—Campers will be introduced to the performing arts through acting techniques, improvisation games and other skills all culminating in a short performance at our Friday night campfire. (offered sessions 1,3,5 & 7)

Mountain Biking—Campers learn basic riding skills, maintenance and bike safety. Led by qualified staff, biking specialty campers explore the trails of Oxbow Regional Park and enjoy a long trail ride off camp. Bikes and helmets are provided. (offered sessions 1,3,5 & 7)
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What are the specifics of the CIT sessions?
Three week session specifics
CIT's will spend the first two weeks of camp building a team and working together with experienced camp staff to learn the necessary aspects of camp counseling and youth development. During this time they will take field trips to other camps in the region to gain a broader perspective of camping programs. The three week session also includes an American Red Cross Adult and Child CPR and First Aid course for which CITs will have the chance to receive this 2 year certification. This is a valuable certification that is required of employees within most youth serving organizations. The three week session will also feature a lesson planning workshop where CITs will learn how to create camp activity lesson plans to include safety considerations, equipment and age appropriateness. CITs will then practice the art of facilitation and giving clear instructions as they implement their activities with campers.

During the CIT's third week, they have the opportunity practice their skills in a cabin as an assistant counselor. Side by side a senior staff member, CIT's will help lead younger campers through exciting camp activities. They will receive support, coaching and verbal and written feedback through evaluations from camp staff and the CIT Coordinators.

Two week session specifics
CIT's will spend the first week of camp building a team and working together with experienced camp staff to learn the necessary aspects of camp counseling and youth development. During the CIT's second week, they have the opportunity practice their skills in a cabin as an assistant counselor. Side by side a senior staff member, CIT's will help lead younger campers through exciting camp activities. They will receive support, coaching and verbal and written feedback through evaluations from camp staff and the CIT Coordinators.
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Do YMCA members get a discount?
No, we try to keep our prices affordable for both members and non-members by offering a three-tier rate structure. This option allows families to choose the rate that best fits into their budget.
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