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  • How do I register for summer camp?
    Summer Camp registration is all online. Each family will be asked to create an account online through the link attached: Here you can login to register for camp, check your balance, add additional weeks or campers, complete forms, or make a payment. If you are a returning camper, simply log into your account and complete your registration. If you are new, you must create a new account with your name, email, and create a password. Online registration will gather a lot of important information such as your child's health history. Please note, all required fields must be filled out in order to complete your online registration. A $50 non-refundable deposit per camper is required to register for camp.
  • What happens if I need to cancel?
    If you cancel your registration, refunds of any amount paid beyond the registration non-refundable deposit fee will be issued from the camp office. A full refund of any paid fees will be granted if Shepherd’s Spring cancels a camp session. Please know that any possible cancellations will occur on or before June 1st . We ask that you must notify us in writing (email preferred) at least 48 hours in advance of summer camp start date.
  • Is Financial Aid available?
    Many congregations provide financial support for campers or have provided us with funds to assist those in need. If you are receiving congregational support, you need to have the signature of your pastor or Shepherd’s Spring Ambassador and the scholarship amount on your registration form prior to check-in. To receive scholarship assistance please contact us. We want as many as possible to enjoy the camp experience, so please contact us if you need assistance! Some additional scholarship programs are available from Shepherd’s Spring, these include: Sibling Scholarship; a $25 discount for campers who have a sibling attending one of our camp sessions. Early Bird Discount; if you register for camp BEFORE February 1st, you will receive $40 off per week of camp per camper.
  • If I have multiple children, do I need to sign them all up for the same week of camp?
  • Do we have to give information concerning vaccinations/ shot records every year we register for camp? Can't medical information be stored in a database from one year to the next?
    When you fill out the online registration form, a large portion is the medical history section. This needs to be filled out every year. We understand that this is lengthy but at this time we do not have a way to carry the information forward to another registration year. This also ensures that important medical information is up-to-date for our Camp Nurse staff.
  • Where do the campers stay?
    Campers stay in our Poplar Village Cabins. You can view a virtual tour video here!
  • Are the Cabins air-conditioned?
    Cabins are not air-conditioned at this time. We provide a couple box fans and a ceiling fan. A window at each bunk opens as well, so there is plenty of nice air flow. You can consider packing a small personal fan for campers to have at their bunk as well.
  • How are campers grouped together for their assigned cabins?
    Campers are grouped depending on their age and gender. We also take into consideration cabin mate requests made during camp registration. There will be as many as 10 campers and 2 staff members per cabin.
  • What if my camper has a dietary restriction or food allergy?
    Our kitchen staff can accommodate dietary restrictions and food allergies. Our professional and trained chef is notified of all dietary restrictions and food allergies prior to the week of camp as long as it is indicated on camp registration. Plenty of food options and substitutes will be provided for each meal.
  • How’s the food?
    We work very hard to ensure that all meals are nutritionally balanced as well as delicious. We also try to take into account the fact that some campers will not like every meal, so we offer options at each meal. Three-well balanced meals plus a snack are served each full day. Dietary restrictions will be honored if noted on the Health Information & History Form during online registration. Most camps will have at least one meal that the campers cook over a campfire; Other camps may have several meals that they cook over a campfire. Some camp activities will take campers off site during lunch time and will thus require that campers take a bag lunch that we provide. Generally, all meals will be served in the lodge. Meals served in the pavilion will be consistent with those served in the dining room, with the exception that the cutlery used in the pavilion will be mess kits provided by each individual camper. We do have a few extra, please contact us if you would like to use a mess kit during your stay at camp.
  • I noticed you are a Christian summer camp. Does this mean you are going to push your religion on my camper? Which camps are faith-based?
    Shepherd’s Spring is a faith-based non-profit organization affiliated with the Church of the Brethren. The traditional weeks of overnight and day camps (classic, headwaters, and camp around the world) are faith based where campers will have a time of worship, bible studies, gospel conversations, and learn Christian values. The Global Citizen camps are purely educational with no scheduled times of worship or bible studies. The same staff operate both camp options, so campers that come with faith-based backgrounds should feel free to have conversations about their faith with staff members regardless of the camp theme that week.
  • Do campers need to know how to swim/Is there a swimming test campers must pass to be in the pool?
    Yes, to swim in the deep end of the pool. Campers must complete a basic swim test by swimming across the deep end of the pool with no assistance from the lifeguard. If a camper does not want to take the swim test or does not pass the swim test, they will wear a wrist band and must stay in the shallow end by not passing the pool divider.
  • What does the camp schedule look like?
    For safety reasons, we cannot give out the camp schedule. Please refer to our Activities page to see the types of exciting activities that take place during camp!
  • What are Shepherd’s Spring COVID-19 precautions/are vaccines required?
    Vaccines are not required for campers to attend camp. Shepherd’s Spring adheres to the current Maryland State COVID mandates. As this is an ongoing, shifting topic, we will provide regular updates on our website regarding mask use, social distancing, etc.
  • What is Shepherd’s Spring policy on head lice?
    Campers will be checked for head lice at check-in, prior to admission to camp. If live head lice or nits are found on a participant's head, the parent/guardian will be notified immediately and the participant must leave camp for treatment at home, or by a professional head lice removal company. This is for the safety and consideration of all campers and staff at Shepherd’s Spring.Refer to the CDC website for further information regarding head lice and its treatment.
  • What do you sell in the camp store?
    We sell snacks, bug spray, sunscreen, t-shirts, travel-sized toiletries, water bottles, bandanas, drawstring bags, and other goodies. You can leave cash with your camper to purchase items during their week at camp, or you can purchase items for your camper during camp check-in and pick-up. The camp does not assume responsibility for campers’ funds at this time.
  • What if my camper is homesick?
    Ways to prep your child for summer camp for success: Communicate confidently to your camper that they will have a great week. Help them get excited about what they can look forward to at camp. Please make sure your child is properly packed and prepared to enjoy the camp experience. Consider packing your child’s favorite stuffed animal or family photo to provide comfort. Encourage your camper to embrace the camp experience and feel comfortable with being away from home. Encourage them to make new friends and try new things. Let your camper know they can go to their counselor with any problems or questions. If your child is not used to being away from you, give them some practice overnight stays with family or friends prior to camp. Shepherd’s Spring staff are trained to help campers navigate homesickness. If homesickness gets severe, Shepherd’s Spring staff may contact parents (see “In what circumstances will the camp contact me?” question for more information).
  • How do you go about hiring counselors?
    Counselors must be 18+ years old; Counselors in training must be at least 16 years old. Interested hirees are required to fill out an application found on our website that includes three references all of which we follow up on. Our staff interviews a number of applicants and narrows the search from there. As a final precautionary measure, all staff we hire are fingerprinted and are required to undergo extensive background checks by local and federal police departments. After they are hired, we have 10 days of training including certification in first aid and CPR.
  • How does the camp handle medications or other health needs?
    Our Health Services staff will collect and dispense the medications your child brings to camp as directed. It is very important that you follow these basic healthcare guidelines: Be sure to bring your child’s completed Medication Administration Authorization form (LINK) to camp check-in. Please send all medication in the pharmacy labeled bottles. DO NOT USE DAILY PILL BOXES. Be sure there is only enough medication for the week your child is at camp. All prescription and over the counter medications must have a Medication Authorization form filled out by your doctor. Scheduled medication administration times are typically after breakfast, after lunch, after dinner, and before bed, unless a different specific time is required. All medications must be turned into the nurse with the exception of fast-acting inhalers and epi-pens. Over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol, Ibuprofen or Benadryl are supplied by the health center. Please do not send extras to camp. We do not stock aspirin or aspirin containing products.
  • How do I get to camp?
    The best way to get to SS is to follow our directions posted on our website here.
  • How and when do I check in? (overnight camps)
    You will receive an email one week prior to your check-in date assigning you a check-in appointment time, along with instructions. The camp check-in process is receiving a major update for 2023! Stand by for upcoming details! However, you will need to bring in all your forms, waivers, and all over the counter and prescription medicines (along with their corresponding doctor’s order) to the check-in area. General check-in process: pay the balance, receive t-shirt, make sure all paperwork is completed and up-to-date, receive cabin assignment, visit camp store, see our camp nurse for a health screening (please bring all medications with the appropriate form, see “How does the camp handle medications or other health needs?” question below for more information). Then you will take your camper and their luggage to the “Shepherd’s Spring Express” (formally known as the People Mover) wagon to head back to the Poplar Village to get campers settled into their cabin. Parents will then say their goodbyes and take a ride back to the lodge.
  • When and where do I pick up my camper? (overnight camps)
    Campers are typically picked up at the Big Top Tent near the swimming pool at 3pm on Friday. Departure Authorization form must be completed during camp check-in if someone other than legal parent/guardian are picking them up.
  • Day Camp: What times and what location do I drop off my camper and pick up my camper for day camp?
    For select weeks day camp runs Monday – Friday. Drop Off Time: Between 8:45 & 9 AM at the Lodge Pick up Time: Between 4:45 & 5 PM at the Lodge All parents/guardians must sign campers in/out at the check-in station in the main lobby. Lunch can be provided for an additional $50 per week (you can add this option during registration). Otherwise, campers are required to pack their own lunch. Minimal snacks are available for purchase in the camp store. (Breakfast and dinner are not provided to day campers.) Shepherd’s Spring will NOT be responsible for picking up or dropping off campers.
  • What should my camper bring with them?
    Clothing: 6 changes of casual clothes, underwear, and socks Modest clothing – Please no spaghetti straps, or short shorts. Shirts must not be low cut or show the midriff. All undergarments, including sports bras must be covered. Bathing suit (Girls must wear a modest one-piece bathing suit). Set of old clothes for caving, including long pants Sweater or jacket Close toed/tennis shoes Old Shoes for caving/service project Water Shoes recommended (Chaco/Keen type sandals with a back strap) Rain gear (poncho or light raincoat) Linens/Toiletries: 2 Towels (pool and bathing) Toiletry articles (toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, deodorant, etc.) Sleeping gear - sleeping bag or blankets, Twin sheets, and a pillow Miscellaneous: Water Bottle Bible & Notebook and writing utensils *Mess kit* in a mesh bag (plate, bowl, cup, and silverware) Insect repellent and sunscreen Money for camp store Flashlight with working batteries Backpack or draw-string bag recommended Things to Leave at Home: If brought to camp, the following items may be confiscated and held for the camper until the end of the camp week: ALL edible items – treats, snacks, drinks, alcohol, drugs, etc. Treats attract insects and animals into our cabins. Smart phones, iPods, iPads, tablets, laptops, and similar electronic devices. Any type of weapon, firearm, or toy gun. Pets are not permitted with the exception of service animals. Inappropriate clothing Personal Sports equipment Day campers do not need to bring sleeping gear or toiletry articles (other than shower stuff for after the pool if desired). We recommend packing a change of clothes in case. All other suggested items apply to day campers.
  • Can I send letters to my child?
    Campers look forward to hearing from you, family, and friends. You can use the old-fashioned method of “snail” mail, however, due to the short time of camps, you are welcome to leave letters on the day of check in for delivery by our staff to the campers the next day. We ask that you label the envelope(s) with the campers first and last name and specify which day they are to open it. Stationery items are available for purchase in the camp store.
  • Can I call or visit my child at camp?
    Our goal is for campers to learn ways to develop independence. An integral part of that development is a period away from home. We therefore discourage you from calling or visiting during your camper’s session. You are encouraged to visit and spend time at camp with your camper on opening day. Visits at other times during the camp session are discouraged but, if necessary, must be arranged through the camp office. We strongly discourage phone calls to campers unless there is a family emergency. It is Shepherd’s Spring policy to not allow campers to call home, though in severe cases of homesickness, exceptions may be allowed at the discretion of the Camp Director – in such cases we will try to contact the parent first to discuss the situation prior to the camper calling directly.
  • Can I view camp photos while my child is at camp?
    Follow us on Facebook (Shepherd's Spring Camp & Retreat Center) and Instagram (@shephrdsspring)where we regularly post photos/videos of campers in the “stories” section.
  • In what circumstances will the camp contact me?
    Health Concerns: The Executive Director or Camp Nurse will notify parents or guardians in the event of serious illness, accident, or communicable disease. Prolonged or intense homesickness may also fall into this category. In the case of such an event the parents or guardians will be required to make immediate arrangements to pick up their camper. Inappropriate Behavior: The Executive Director of Shepherd’s Spring will notify and consult parents or guardians if their child has behaved in such a manner that the camp staff has determined to be detrimental to the overall health of the community camping experience and requires dismissal. Examples of behaviors include but are not limited to: violence by a camper directed at persons or property and some emotionally-based “acting-out” behaviors. In the case of such an event the parents or guardians will be required to make immediate arrangements to pick up their camper.
  • Oh, No, my child left something at camp!
    To prevent your camper from losing their belongings, please label all articles of clothing and other items brought to camp so that they can be easily identified. Shepherd’s Spring is not responsible for any item lost by your camper that goes unfound, regardless of value. Many items, with no identifying mark, are left at camp every summer. You may call the Shepherd’s Spring office and check to see if any lost items have been found. Postage/shipping charges will be your responsibility for any items found.
Have a question you don’t see listed here?
Send us an email at and we’ll do our best to answer your question.
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