Camp is more than a place… it’s a feeling!
Summer Camp Camp is a wonderful place for campers to grow physically, mentally, and emotionally. Our staff are carefully screened and selected to ensure your camper will build self-esteem, character, and leadership qualities through fun activities. Held right here at the Valley Shore YMCA, Camp Shore helps children learn about who they are and help them become who they want to be. It’s about developing new skills, healthy habits, reaching goals, and building relationships. Activities include swimming, archery, field games, crafts, specialty camps, and countless social activities.
CAMP SHORE CONTACT INFORMATION
Camp Director, Tony Sharillo, (860) 399-9622 x 107
Camp Registrar, Susan Hall, 860.399.9622 ext. 106
YMCA Camp Shore
201 Spencer Plains Road
PO Box 694
Westbrook, CT 06498
Frequently Asked Questions
How does Drop-Off and Pick-Up Work?
Drop-Off begins at 8:45 AM. Please pull into the gravel driveway near the YMCA’s community garden, there are signs that say YMCA Camp Shore Pick Up Here at the proper entrance. Please stay to the right as you pull around the soccer field on the gravel track. We are implementing a contactless drop off procedure.
A Camp Shore Staff Member will greet you as you pull around. Parents/Guardians please stay in the car. The staff will ask how your camper is feeling, sign them in, and direct them to exit the car on their own. Your child will then be directed to greet their counselor at the designated area near the drop off location.
Pick-Up begins at 3:45 PM. At the end of the day, you will pull into the same driveway, pull around the soccer (staying to the right), and will be greeted once again by a Camp Staff Member for contactless pick up. Please stay in the car and please be sure to have an ID with you. Once your identity has been verified, your child will come to your vehicle and the camp staff will sign them out.
What should my camper bring each day?
Each child should bring a lunch, water bottle, towel, swimsuit, and sunscreen to camp. (Due to the restrictions by the State of CT on Day Camps, we will not refrigerate lunches this summer. Please pack your lunch in a cooler bag). It is also recommended that our younger campers bring an extra change of clothes. All items should be labeled. *Campers are asked NOT to bring personal toys, cell phones, personal electronics, trading cards, etc. from home. We have plenty of equipment and activities to keep them busy here at camp.
How can I be assured that my child is safe in the pool?
We have a dedicated Waterfront Director in the pool area each and every swim time. There is always at least one other lifeguard stationed at the pool as well. Your child is swim tested at the beginning of each session and assigned to a swim area that is safe for them to swim in. The lifeguards do a “buddy check” (take attendance) every 10 minutes to ensure that all children are accounted for.
Can I pick my child up early?
Campers can be picked up early from camp if parents send a note or call the office at 860-399-9622 ext. 106 to make prior arrangements. If you are picking your child up early, please pick them up BEFORE 3:30 or wait until 3:45. Children will only be released to individuals that are listed on the camp registration form and can produce a valid photo ID.
What is the camper to counselor ratios?
Explorers are 1 counselor to 6 campers, Travelers is 1 counselor to 10 campers. Rangers and Trailblazers may have a ratio of 1 to 12.
What if my camper needs to take medication?
Each camper must have a medical form on file in order to attend camp. If your child takes medication they must have an “authorization to administer medication” form and an Individual Care Plan form completed and on file with us at camp. The medication must be brought to camp in its original, labeled container.
Do you apply sunscreen to my child at camp?
Sunscreen should be applied by parents in the morning, and the counselor will reapply it throughout the day.
Helpful Hints for a Successful Summer!
This guide was created with lots of input from parents and campers
Camp is a wonderful, enriching experience for children. In order to help prepare you camper (and yourself) for this summer, we have put together some of the top suggestions from parents and campers.
- Check Paperwork– Carefully look through your statement to make sure that the sessions, and program info are all correct. Take a few minutes to read through the Parent Handbook to familiarize yourself with our camp’s policies and procedures.
- Share Camp Memories – In the weeks leading up to camp, tell your camper(s) about your own summer camp memories to help get them excited about their adventure. If possible, show them your old camp photos or scrapbook.
- Don’t Buy a Whole New Wardrobe- Clothes will get dirty at camp, especially towels, so be sure to send only things that you don’t mind getting dirty or lost. One family shared their pre-camp ritual of going to a local thrift store and loading up on towels and t-shirts. What a cool way to get a camper excited for their summer and ensure you won’t have your best towels ruined too!
- Label Everything- There are a lot of Red Sox and Yankee caps in our lost & found each summer. The only chance we have of getting these prized possessions back to their owner is if they are labeled with first and last names.
- Ask Lots of Questions- Asking a camper, “What did you do today?” will often result in the classic response, “Nothin’”. We can assure you that each campers’ day is filled with activities and experiences. They are certainly not doing nothin’! Try asking specific questions such as, “What special activity did you have today? What are the names of the new friends you are making in your group? Tell me about your counselor.” These specific questions will help spark a discussion and you’ll learn much more about your child’s day, and hopefully maybe something about your child too!
- Call us- One mother called to tell us that her child wasn’t having any fun and wasn’t enjoying camp. We went to investigate and found that camper smiling, laughing, and having a great time. Her counselor reported that she was always smiling and getting along well with the other campers. Campers often feel very tired from a long day at camp and can feel a little homesick when thinking of going back. If your camper is experiencing homesickness, please call and we will look into it and help!
- Breakfast and Lunch– Camp is active and campers need lots of energy. Please make sure your camper has a nutritious breakfast each morning. Also, we recommend packing a healthy well-balanced lunch to help them feel energized all day.
- Keep in Touch with Friends- We know that your child will make new friends. Due to the shared experiences, summer camp friends often form a very close relationship. We encourage you to have your camper try to stay in touch with their summer friends throughout the school year.
- Evaluations and Comments- We strive to improve our camp and our program each and every day. We rely on your input and suggestions. This very tip sheet came from a suggestion from a parent, so please complete the summer evaluation!
COVID-19 Plan: Keeping our Campers Safe
Keeping our campers safe remain the number one priority. At Camp Shore, we will follow all guidelines from the CT Office of Early Childhood, as well as continue monitoring CDC, American Camp Association, Y-USA, and other sources to ensure our policies and procedures are aligned to keep campers are safe as possible.
Already, we have made several decisions that will make camp 2020 a safe experience for all. So far, these include:
- With regard to health screening:
The State of Connecticut is no longer requiring children to be screened to confirm temperature below 100 degrees Fahrenheit each day on arrival. However, we ask that families please keep your camper at home if they are not feeling well! Camp staff are still screened daily to ensure temperatures are below 100 degrees. Counselors will monitor their campers and will use a touchless thermometer if they believe their camper is not feeling well.
- Staff or children who have a temperature greater than 100 degrees are not permitted into the program and are required to be unmedicated fever-free for at least 48 hours.
- All groups will have a limited size of no more than 13 children. Each group will be isolated from all other groups.
- Any staff or child that develops an elevated temperature or who may be ill will be put into an isolated area until they can be picked up.
- All staff and adults will wear face coverings at camp.
- Campers are NOT required to wear a face-covering at camp, but it is encouraged.
- Hand hygiene:
- Regular handwashing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds will be done:
- Before coming in contact with any child;
- Before and after eating;
- After sneezing, coughing or nose blowing;
- After using the restroom;
- Before handling food;
- After touching or cleaning surfaces that may be contaminated; and
- After using any shared equipment like toys, computer keyboards, mouse.
- If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. The use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers should always be supervised by adults.
- New cleaning policies will be put into place to ensure surfaces and areas are sanitized between usages, per guidelines put forth by the OEC.
- If a child or staff member who has been present in the program is diagnosed with COVID-19, camp will notify families and staff of the program about the exposure.
- Full refunds will be given to all camp families in the event of their registered programs being canceled during the summer.
Thank you for your patience and support as we continue to work through all of these restrictions and guidelines. We look forward to serving your family at camp this summer.
Stay Strong, Stay Kind and Stay Healthy,
Director of Operations
Valley Shore YMCA
Camp Echo Rock
CAMP ECHO ROCK ANNOUNCEMENT
After many long days and sleepless nights, we have concluded that with the guidelines published by the State of CT in early June, along with the challenges the physical property at Camp Echo Rock present, that we would not be able to run camp at that site this summer. Read more…