Ø Where is Puget Sound Camp? We are hosted by Black Diamond Camp near Auburn, WA See http://www.blackdiamond.org/
Ø What is the age/grade requirement for camp? JH/Middle school campers must be upcoming 6th graders and at least 10 years of age by the first day of camp. HS grade campers must be 13 years old by the first day of camp.
Ø What other requirements do I need to complete (and by when) to come to camp? Prior to arriving at camp, first time campers must have completed any one 3rd-6th grade T&T handbook or 6th-12th grade manual requirements (Trek/Journey). Returning campers must complete an additional handbook/manual requirement(s) for their current year progress. This is annotated on the registration form.
Ø What are the HS requirements for attendance at camp? Basically, the same requirements for receiving the Citation Award are those to attend camp. HS campers must complete the main study and one of the electives each year. Faith Foundations should have been completed as well.
Ø When is it too late to register and/or pay? It’s never too late. However, to lock in the 2018 rate of $615, registration MUST be made by midnight, Dec. 31st, 2018. January through May 2018 , the cost is $640. June and July the cost increases to $665 and a team shirt in camper size cannot be guaranteed.
Ø Are there any discounts to the registration fees? Yes, a $50 discount is available multiple children from the same family and for those serving in full time ministry. Please see the online application for details. PSSM also offers an additional $100 scholarship to eligible campers while funds last - please ask your commander to contact PSSM for details.
Ø What options to I have for registration and payment? Both online registration and online credit card payment (including installment payments) are available in addition to previous methods of payment (mail, money grams, checks, etc.).
Ø How and when will I receive confirmation of my registration? Camper confirmation information and instructions will be sent to the email address provided on your application. It will be sent as soon as your registration is received and processed.
Ø Who do I make any “offline” registration payments/fees to? “PSSM - Puget Sound Camp”
Ø Who do I mail my application or checks to? Puget Sound Camp Registrar, PO Box 301, Burley, WA 98322
Ø Who do I contact for registration or payment related questions? Registrar: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ø What is the pre-registration date for? The pre-registration application date is there for three reasons. First, it secures a spot at camp in the event the camp fills up. Second, it helps us to know how many volunteer staff we’re going to need. Since these volunteers give up vacations, etc. to serve at camp, it’s helpful for them to know if they’re needed. Third, there are up-front costs (printing, shirt & award purchases, etc.) that require payment long before camp starts. Early registration fees are used for those purposes.
Ø How does the roommate preference request work? You and your roommate preference must request each other. Campers must be in the same grade. Roommate request cannot be assured; we'll do our best, but we cannot guarantee it. If we can’t accommodate a roommate preference, we will try to pair them on the same team.
Ø Can I preference a team color or counselor on my application? No. We do not accept preferences for team colors or counselors for a variety of reasons.
Ø Will there be pictures or videos available from camp? Yes. We make arrangements to take a lot of pictures and video during the week. Campers can expect to receive a USB drive at the end of camp that includes these. Some examples can be viewed on our Facebook page and/or at www.pugetsoundcamp.org
Ø Can I raise money or solicit scholarships to attend camp? Yes! For nearly 25 years, this camp included the word “scholarship” in its title. The idea behind that is the camper has earned their admittance to camp by completing the requirements. So families, churches, and clubs are encouraged to sponsor or scholarship them (partially or fully) for their achievement. Many already do this. Other clubs hold fundraisers for their campers to help offset the cost of camp. See the “Fundraiser Ideas” attachment or on the camp website. The possibilities are endless and too many to list here, but it will take initiative on the part of the camper, family, club, and/or church. Some campers actually earn their own money specifically to attend camp by working odd jobs or offering services to those in their family or church. Again, it takes some creative planning and initiative, but it is an achievable goal!
Ø I have a summer conflict. Can I arrive late to or leave early from camp? Yes, with permission from and coordination with the camp director. Although this is strongly discouraged for a number of different reasons, we realize there are unique circumstances that can make arriving on schedule unavoidable. We do not, however, pro-rate the fees accordingly, and arriving more than 24hrs late is generally discouraged. Leaving early is discouraged for many of the same reasons, and we are reluctant to allow this any earlier than the last evening of camp (Friday). Late arrivals should plan to check in at the Medical Station. If unattended, please ask any camp staff member to immediately notify the camp director or medical staff for camper in-processing. Early departures must be coordinated with both their cabin counselor and camp director by email, or phone (253-245-3035).
Ø I have a conflict with the camp dates and cannot attend. Are there other camp options? We are sorry that you can’t attend Puget Sound Camp this year! But because there are two similar camps offered in our ministry area, perhaps you can attend the other camp. Pacific NW Camp, held at Cedar Springs Camp, Lake Stevens, WA. is very similar to ours and also staffed by Awana leaders that love the Lord and love your kids, just like our staff. In fact, several of us serve together at Awana events in our area throughout the year. Please visit the PNWC website for more information: www.pacificnwcamp.org.
Ø Can my camper call home? No, not normally. You can imagine what it would be like if we allowed 200+ teenagers to keep their cell phones with them during the week of camp. In order to keep camp free of distractions and to minimize the chance for lost, damaged, or stolen phones, they are not permitted at camp (unless left off/locked in the camper’s vehicle). Of course, making/receiving phone calls is allowed if there is a camper/family emergency. In case of emergency, text or call the camp director (253-245-3035).
Ø Will I get to talk to my child during the week? We strongly encourage sending mail, but we discourage phone calls in order to keep the camp free of distractions so we can maximize the Lord’s ministry to your child at camp. Unless there is a family emergency, please refrain from contacting your child by phone. Instructions and the address for mailing your child are included in the information you will be sent upon registration.
Ø Can my child write home/church from camp? Certainly! Especially to thank those who may have helped sponsor them to camp. However, the camp does not have stamps, so they will need to bring them from home. Also, all outgoing mail must be taken to the Black Diamond Camp office.
Ø What is the camp theme? Each year a fun theme is chosen for camp. The theme is carried out in both activities and decorations. We encourage staff/campers to decorate their cabins to the theme. We also encourage them to bring some fun, appropriate clothing to celebrate the theme. On Friday evening, all the camp is encouraged to dress for dinner in their theme attire or in nice, casual clothing. Our theme for each year can be found on our Facebook page and website, and in other registration documents.
Ø What is the High School ministry outing? During the week, HS students are teamed up and receive training in various evangelistic tools for outreach ministry (puppets, face painting, etc.). On Thursday, the students are bused in teams to different nearby locations (parks, nursing homes, etc.) where they conduct supervised outreach ministry. The locations, planning, and logistics are all coordinated and approved well in advance of camp by our HS ministry coordinators, Rick and Raeann Velasquez. After the ministry completion, they spend time in fellowship and recreation, returning to camp for their cabin devotions and bed. Once registered, an informational letter is included as part of the HS camper’s acceptance information email package.
Ø My child is a little timid and may get homesick. Should I be concerned? Not at all. After many years of camp ministry, we are well acquainted with this and it comes as no surprise. We realize this is the first camp experience for many of the children. Our staff does receive training on dealing with homesickness; but more important, we strive to provide an atmosphere of genuine care. We also enlist our older (HS) campers and pair them up as mentors to new campers (see the camp application). This has proven a successful approach at helping many children adjust to the camp experience who are a little timid, get homesick, or are just new to the camp experience. Many of them chose to serve as mentors themselves when they reach HS.
Ø Is there someone to help my child if they get hurt or sick? We always plan to have at least one registered nurse and one EMT on site at camp and all staff receive basic instructional training in the event of an emergency. Our host camp also has a medical team available for our use if needed. Be assured we will contact you if we believe your child should visit a doctor or hospital.
Ø Can I start helping my child memorize the verses for camp? Please do! They will be available with your registration or can be found on our Facebook page.
Ø What kind of clothes and bedding will they need to bring? Our activities keep your child very busy, so pack clothes appropriate for outdoor activity in NW WA. Details are given upon your registration on the “What to Bring/Leave behind” page as well as our Clothing and Behavior Code. Extra shirts in their team color are recommended but not required (team colors will be assigned and emailed one week prior to camp). Each camper will need to bring their own pillow and bedding. Twin mattresses are provided. A sleeping bag works best.
Ø How does the camp address food allergies or special dietary needs? Since we are “guests” of Black Diamond Camp and they provide all our meals, we abide by their policies and procedures. Those can be found on their website (http://www.blackdiamond.org/ ) and a copy is included in our registration information. In general, they strive to be a peanut free dining facility serving family style meals with a salad bar and limited selections of certain dietary needs. However, they will accommodate those who wish to bring special foods with them and keep them refrigerated or frozen. Please feel free to contact Black Diamond directly with any questions or concerns you might have regarding their food service and be sure to adhere by their notification policy if it applies to your child. If your child has severe food allergies (e.g. nuts) they must also be noted in their registration medical information in order for us to take preventative measures within their cabin, etc.
Ø When time should my child arrive at camp? If your child is a new camper, please plan to have them in the camp chapel no later than 2:25pm. After the camp orientation, they will be dismissed to check into camp with the other campers. If your child is returning to camp, please plan to have them at camp no later than 3:45pm so they have time to complete the check-in process and get their belongings to their room before. Camp starts at 4:30pm.
Ø What time should I pick up my child from camp? You should plan to arrive at camp between 10-1030am. Your child will be in the chapel until around 10am, then will be dismissed to the field next to the parking lot (below the chapel). Once you have located your child, they can direct you to their belongings.