School is out, the summer sun is shining strong, and it’s time to send your child off to overnight camp. Although you have a suggested list of what to pack, it can be tricky to choose exactly the right items for your young camper. Where do you begin?
These basic guidelines will help you to choose the best camp clothing and personal items to pack with confidence.
Your first call to action is to get organized. Everyone, parents and kids, buzzes with nervous energy before traveling to summer camp. Don’t let excitement get in the way of rational thought. No camper wants to arrive at their bunk to discover a long list of missing or inappropriate items. Make a list and check everything off as you pack it. Keep in mind that storage in camp is usually sparse, so it’s wise to streamline your list as much as possible.
Practical and durable are the most significant qualities in camp clothing. Kids need clothes that will withstand rocky climbs and muddy hikes, which makes denim ideal. The fashion of choice for regular days spent on the campgrounds is T-shirts and comfortable shorts. Only bring T-shirts with appropriate logos or images, and shorts with pockets are great for carrying useful gear.
Evenings can get chilly (especially if the camp is located on high ground), so pack some long-sleeved shirts and a cotton sweater or sweatshirt. Your camper will also appreciate a pair of warm pajamas or sweatpants, and an insulating robe if there is a trek to reach the showers.
Campers can’t pack too many swimsuits. Bring at least one racing suit, as it is most suitable for many water sports or activities. Other recommended water accessories include goggles, sun hats, sunglasses, and swim shirts with UV protection.
A quality pair of sneakers are imperative. If your child has a favorite sport, such as field sports or basketball, then cleats or specialty sneakers are worthwhile. If the camp program includes many challenging journeys over various wet and dry terrain, consider packing waterproof hiking boots.
Will there be any formal banquets or dances at this camp? If so, dress clothes and matching shoes are also required. Another reason to include dress wear is religious services, if applicable.
If the camp doesn’t supply linens, then pack easy-care summer bedding (not a premium set of silk sheets) and absorbent towels. Outdoor camping may require a compact sleeping bag and/or bedroll.
At camp, the pile of laundered clothing needs to last longer than it does at home. Pack enough underwear, bras, and socks for a minimum of 1.5 times the days between laundry pickup.
Read the information you receive from camp. Many overnight camps provide detailed guidelines about what they provide and what necessities must be brought from home. This is the first step you need to take to prepare your camper perfectly for all the fabulous fun of overnight camp.