Helping Your Family Get Ready For Camp

Hello again! This is the second of four emails designed to share the key info needed to "Blaze the Trail" for a smooth and successful camp experience. This week's focus is check-in day. Please be sure to note significant updates to our camper mail process for 2019.

 


Check-In Day 

Prior To Arrival
We strive to make your check-in process as smooth as possible. For 2019, we switched to a new registration system that is more user-friendly and improves our overall efficiency and effectiveness in supporting you. We're particularly excited to be able to switch to paperless check-in on tablets, which will allow our staff access to real-time check-in info across camp and significantly reduce our paper use. Thanks in advance for your patience as we navigate any learning curves of this new system. Prior to arrival, here are three  key ways you can save time in line on check-in day: 
  1. Pay any balance due using My Account
  2. Load store account using My Account (itinerary → select child → store account)
  3. Print and fill out your Check-In Form (fill out on your actual check-in day)

Arrival Times & Check-In Process
Welcome to Glisson
On check-in day, arrival times are staggered to make the process as efficient as possible:
  • VILLAGE @ 3PM:    The camp gate opens at 3pm. Cars will be lined up on the road outside of camp, so please do not arrive before 3pm. Arriving around 3:45 will minimize the amount of time you'll wait in your car. Check-in will be done in your car as you drive into camp. Staff will then direct you to a parking area  as close to your camper's assigned lodging as possible for moving in. All Village campers should be finished moving in and parents on the road by 5pm, at which time camper living groups gather for their first activity together.
     
  • OUTPOST @ 4PM:   Outpost check-in begins at 4pm in your vehicle.  After completing the first stage of check-in at your car, we'll direct you to the Holland Building to finish checking in, collect any medications, and meet your camper's counselors and living group. Once everyone has arrived, the group will load their luggage in one of our buses and hike to Outpost together.
     
  • SPARROWWOOD @ 5PM:   Sparrowwood c heck-in begins at  5pm  in your vehicle at the Welcome Center. If you arrive earlier than  5pm,  we'll direct you to a waiting area in the Welcome Center parking lot. Arriving at or soon after  5pm  will minimize your wait time. After completing the first stage of check-in at your car, we'll direct you to Ivie Lodge to finish checking in and to collect any medications while counselors greet your camper and help him or her move in.
     
  • MINI CAMP & 10-DAY TRIPS:   For Mini Camp and 10-Day campers, check-in details can be a little different. You'll get a separate email with more details as your check-in date draws closer. In the meantime, here's the gist:
  • Mini Camp Sun-Tue:   Check-in is on Sun at  3pm for Village and 4pm for Outpost. 
  • Mini Camp Wed-Fri:   Check-in is on Wed at  4pm  for both Village and Outpost. 
  • 10-Day Trip:   Check-in is at 4pm on its arrival day (Sun or Wed).

Camper Health
The health and well-being of your camper is incredibly important to us . Knowing about your camper's health needs in advance is key to our preparing for the summer. Please know the following procedures to make check-in as smooth as possible:
  • TEMPERATURES :   We check the temperature of each camper as you enter camp. This will be done in your car and takes only a minute. Campers with elevated temperatures will be re-checked to verify. Any camper registering a high temperature will  not be permitted to enter camp on check-in day.
     
  • MEDICATIONS :   All medications must be given to a member of our healthcare team during check-in inside its original container. This includes all topical ointments, vitamins, etc. (over-the-counter medications are supplied by the camp in the health center). Exceptions such as emergency inhalers, epipens, etc. must be approved by our healthcare team. Medications must be  checked in with a completed Check-In Form. To save time, be sure to keep your camper's check-in form and any medications handy in the car rather than packed away in luggage. Prior to the gate raising at 3pm, we'll get a head start on collecting Village camper meds from 2-3pm while families are waiting in their cars. After 3pm, we'll direct you to the Moor Center porch to collect any meds there (Village) or we'll collect them once you arrive at the Holland Building (Outpost) or Ivie Lodge (Sparrowwood).
  • ALLERGIES :   Our program, kitchen, and medical staff are experienced at handling all types of allergies. Prior to the start of camp, our healthcare team reviews all camper health forms. Upon review, if an allergy is indicated that our team deems in need of further clarification, our healthcare team will call the camper's guardian/parent prior to arrival for more information.
     
Camper Mail (Significant Updates For 2019)
Mail is an important part of the camp experience. Letters can help campers feel connected to those they love while encouraging them to try new things, make new friends, and be the best version of themselves while away at camp. Mail also takes significant time and staff to sort, review, and deliver. Below are some helpful tips for a positive mail experience for you and your camper (and for efficient delivery and frustration avoidance).
  • MAIL DROP-OFF:  To make mail delivery as smooth as possible for all involved, we highly recommend dropping off camper mail on check-in day. As you exit, you'll pass a drive-thru collection station for you to deposit your camper's clearly labelled mail without leaving your vehicle. (Sparrowwood mail drop will be inside Ivie Lodge during check-in.) While  "Snail mail" can be fun, it can also be unpredictable and may miss campers during the week. If you choose traditional mail, please either send flat items like letters or send your package in a mailing envelope with a gallon-sized ziplock bag inside (see "New Package Requirements" below).
  • ADDRESSING: Address all mail with 1) your camper's first/last name; 2) desired delivery day; 3) cabin assignment or trip. Please note that you will learn your camper's cabin assignment during check-in and that  mail delivery occurs Mon-Thu. Mail is not delivered on Fridays. Due to the nature of the program, Outpost campers are out-and-about more often and will receive mail when they are on-site but not while they are away on trips.
  • NEW PACKAGE REQUIREMENTS We discourage packages -- especially those containing food. New for 2019: Any package must arrive in a gallon-sized ziplock bag and must be properly labeled. (To reduce smudging, we recommend using permanent marker on a sticker label.) We review every package that comes into camp to ensure it is safe for all campers and free of nut products. Thank you in advance for using gallon-sized ziplock bags, which will significantly reduce the hours summer team members spend sorting mail over the course of the summer.
     
  • NEW APPROVED SNACKS LIST:  Our Dining Hall truly has wonderful food. In fact, "The food!" shows up in our "What was one of the highlights of your week?" survey question with regularity every summer. That said, if your camper must have snacks, please only send snacks on the Approved Snacks List. Any other items may be removed and fed to Glisson staff over the weekend.
  • NUT-FREE: In an effort to keep all of our campers safe and healthy, Glisson is a nut-free camp. For the safety of our campers with nut allergies, we screen all packages for any food items with any trace of nuts and/or any homemade food items since we can't verify their ingredients.


Cell Phones
Campers are not permitted to have cell phones at Glisson. One of the unique strengths of camp is the opportunity for campers to collect experiences and memories that belong only to them. It's a key element of healthy developmental growth for our children, but one that's difficult for us as parents. Please honor our efforts to offer opportunities for your camper to grow and honor the restraint shown by your fellow parents who send their  campers without cell phones -- leave those cell phones at home.

 
What To Bring & Not Bring
Take time today to review your camper's  Packing List  and check for any items you'll need to find before camp.  Remember that camp, by nature, isn't friendly to clothes. Any clothes that can't get dirty should be left at home. Glisson cannot be responsible for lost or broken personal items. Be sure to bring two pairs of shoes including one closed-toe pair appropriate for creek hiking (not Crocs). Other key items to bring include water bottle, flashlight, and rain gear. You can pack for camp in a duffel bag, a trunk, or a large suitcase. Village campers should also bring a day pack or book bag for taking a few items to camp out. "What NOT to Bring" items are listed at the bottom of each list and are not intended to be exhaustive.  
  
  
New For 2019: Outpost Edition   
Living out the same core values practiced at Glisson since 1925, Outpost's unique setting gives campers a chance to step just outside of their comfort zone and realize they're capable of more than they thought -- and no prior outdoor experience is required. 

Thanks to ongoing expansion such as adding dedicated sites for Frontier (rising 7-9th) and Expedition (rising 10-12th), Outpost has more than doubled since 2010 (from 322 to 649). This year's Outpost improvements include an expanded chapel that can seat all of Outpost (sound familiar?) and an 11-day trip to the Boundary Waters of Minnesota

Outpost is on track for its 10th-consecutive record-breaking summer. And yet, thanks to all this expansion, we still have room for more Outpost campers. Make sure your friends and family know it's not too late to register for faith-forming fun this summer! Share Outpost Video On Facebook



Closing
Thanks for reading! We hope it was helpful.  In case you missed it, last week's email was "Between Now & Camp". Upcoming emails will focus on "During Camp" and "Checkout Day". If you have any Questions, contact our team at summer@glisson.org or 706-864-6181. We're praying for your camper while preparing for Glisson's 95th summer of ministry.  Summer staff begin arriving as early as tomorrow for training.  We simply cannot wait for summer camp. We hope you and your camper are getting excited too! 
 
Grace and Peace,
The Glisson Team

We know how to have fun - our passion is forming faith in the process.
 

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