Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get to camp?

Campers must provide their own transporation to and from camp.  West River Center is located in southern Anne Arundel County.

For GPS directions please use the following address:

5100 Chalk Point Road, West River, MD 20778

Can I send my camper a package?

Campers may receive packages / letters from home, that is part of the fun while they are here at camp.  Please know a few things before ordering or packing that care package:

  1. West River is a NUT FREE facility!  We prefer no outside food/candy be sent in order to eliminate unwanted allergy exposure when a guest is in our care.    Candy can also be a pest-attraction if it is in the cabins, so we strongly encourage other items in a care package like puzzles, games, books, jokes, cards, small toys, etc.
  2. West River staff will check the mail on a daily basis, letters/packages are delivered to campers at meal times.  With nearly 200 people on site each week it is possible that a package may get misplaced or delivered incorrectly, therefore we ask that you do not send anything of special value.  West River staff cannot be held responsible for items misplaced or missing/late deliveries of packages.
  3. Make sure you have the correct address!
    1. Mail going through the USPS system should be address to:  Camper FULL Name, Grade Level, West River Center, P.O. Box 429, Churchton, MD 20733
    2. Mail going through Amazon/UPS/FedEx/other deliver should be address to:  Camper FULL Name, Grade Level, West River Center, 5100 Chalk Point Road, West River, MD 20778.

4. Parents are able to send one-way emails to campers. These emails are printed out and handed to campers daily. Please email to westrivercamper@gmail.com, put Camper’s FULL Name and Grade Level in the Subject line.  Please do not send pictures or attachments, limit the email to 1 page.

 

Do you offer before/after care for Day Campers?

We do not offer before/after care for day camps. Please adhere to the drop off and pick up times.

How can I register my child for camp?

Registrations must be completed by parent or legal guardian.

All registrations require a non-refundable deposit – $100/per session.

 

What is the difference between “not confirmed” and “registered”?

In our online registration system Campwise – Please be sure you choose your camper, select the session they want (enrolled/not confirmed status), then pay the required deposit (Registered status).  A space for your camper will not be guaranteed until deposit/payment is made.

Enrolled status or “Not Confirmed” allows parents with more than one child to “add the item to the shopping cart” add each child’s selected session to their dashboard.

Registered status is basically “checking out of your shopping cart”. This is making the required deposit or full payment for each of your campers. A space for your camper will not be guaranteed until deposit/payment is made.

Please log into your camper’s dashboard and be sure their status is “registered”.

 

Can I request a roommate or camp buddy?

Yes, there is a space to do this in the online registration where  you can request a roommate/camp buddy.  Roommates must be registered for the same program/same site to be considered.  For the West River Ultimate Middle School Camp, each camper must list the other in order for roommate requests to be complete (i.e. Johnny requests to room with Brandon and Brandon requests to room with Johnny).

 

What is the program/camp is full – is there a waitlist?

We can “waitlist” campers for the choice of camp if that program has filled.  This is first-come, first-served basis and you can elect to be waitlisted for a program in the registration system.  We do not guarantee any available spaces and your credit card will not be charged if you are not moved into a program.

 

My child is registered but I keep getting weekly emails, what did I miss?

Upon registering, you will receive a confirmation email from our registration system.  You will then receive weekly emails concerning your account balance and Camper Forms.

Once your balance is paid in full, balance emails will stop.

Once your Camper forms are completed, those emails will also stop.

My child is registered but we need to switch dates, is this possible?

All transfer requests must be in writing/email and must contain camper name, date of birth, original program/date and new program/date requested.  Transfer emails can be sent to: admin@bwccampsandretreats.com

If you have already registered your child and need to change your child’s camp date or program, please contact our office; if spaces are available you may transfer your child to a different program or different week at the same camp location without any financial loss.

If you need to transfer your child to a different site (i.e. West River to Manidokan), please contact our office. If spaces are available you may transfer your child to a different location with a $20 transfer fee/per camper/per transfer. This fee is separate from the cost of the camp program. Transfer fees are non-refundable and non-transferable.

 

What if I need to cancel my camper’s registration?

All cancellations and refund requests MUST be made in writing/email form. We will not take cancellations over the phone.

  • 100% refund (minus $25 processing fee and $100 non-refundable deposit) if the cancelation is more than one month before the start of camp OR if we can fill the camper’s space with someone from the waiting list.
  • 50% refund (minus $25 processing fee and $100 non-refundable deposit) if the cancelation is within a month and more than two weeks from the start date.
  • No refund if the cancelation is within 2 weeks of the start date with the exception for documented medical/family crisis. These will be considered on an individual basis by site directors.

COVID-19 Related Cancelations

  • If a camper cannot attend due to being COVID-19 positive and the quarantine period overlaps part/all of the camp session) we will first attempt to reschedule the camper for another program later in the summer.  If rescheduling is not possible, the site directors will make a decision about refunding.
  • If we cancel any camp session, we will first attempt to reschedule the impacted campers to another program later in the summer.  If rescheduling is not possible, we will process a full refund.
  • If a camper is sent home early or a program is ended early due to COVID-19 precautions there are no refunds.

Why did CampWise lock me out, I can’t change information on my camper’s account?

As each week of camp approaches our staff and nurses need to review all incoming camper records knowing the information is final and will not be changed.  The lock out date is set for seven days prior to the start of each program.

If your Camper Health form is completed and at 100% then you can make changes (if needed) UNTIL the lock-out date. After the lock-out date you will not be able to make changes upon login.  If changes are needed you may contact our offices and request the camper record to be changed.

What if my camper has food allergy/dietary issues?

Here at West River we take dietary needs and allergies very serious.  We are a nut-free facility and always have different food options for those camper with allergy/dietary needs listed in advance.  We take all the standard food service precautions to prevent cross contamination in our food service spaces. We tell summer campers not to bring in outside food items in order to eliminate unwanted allergy exposure when a guest is in our care.   We ask that we are made aware of those specific needs at least 1 week prior to arrival so that we have time to plan and source the appropriate items. If we find out about a dietary need during an event, we will do our best to accommodate that guest for the remainder of their visit.

Please note that if your child has an anaphylaxis risk to any allergen, they must bring an epi-pen to camp. They will not be admitted without an epi-pen available. This is a new policy!

Emergency medications (Inhalers, Epipens, etc.) that need to be closer to camper may be kept by the immediate counselor. Two sets of medication must be brought to camp and the camper must be able to self-administer and parents AND physician given signed permission.

Parent/Guardians must also have Allergy Action Plan or Asthma Action Plan completed and turned in along with full medical form and authorized medication administration form.

 

What if my camper had medications?

REGULATIONS FOR MEDICATIONS (State Youth Camp Regulations Act)

All Prescription medication must be in original container labeled by the pharmacist or physician with:

    Name of camper       Name of medication      Dosage, route and time of administration

Name of physician        Prescription date and expiration date    Conditions for storage

All medications must have been administered at least once at home with no problems.  Expired medications will not be accepted.

A physician signature is required on this form for ALL medications.

Emergency medications (Inhalers, Epipens, etc.) that need to be closer to camper may be kept by the immediate counselor. Two sets of medication must be brought to camp and the camper must be able to self-administer and parents AND physician given permission as signed below.

For inhalers/epipens – you MUST bring the box with the prescription label on it!

SELF-ADMINISTRATION OF MEDICATIONS

According to the Youth Camp Regulations Act:  Self-Administration of medications means the act of a camper ingesting, injecting or applying the camper’s own nonprescription or prescription medicine when the individual identifies their own medicine and follows the directions for use including the correct route or dosage.

If campers are allowed to self-administer medications at summer camp:

  • All medications will be turned in to the camp nurse/health aide and kept securely,

At the prescribed time campers will be handed their medication bottle/container and dispense the medication from the containers themselves.  This is all done under the supervision of the camp medical staff or adult counselor. Permissio to self-administer must be signed by both doctor and parent on medication confirmation form

All Non-Prescription/Over-the-Counter (OTC) medication must be in the original sealed container with the label intact. Camper’s name will be put on the container in a position that does not obscure the label. Except for acetaminophen and topical medicines, only one dose of medication is given unless the child’s health practitioner approves an additional dose in writing. (If more than one dose will be given at camp, physician’s signature is required)

What if my camper has seasonal allergies or just takes vitamins?

We want our campers to feel comfortable the entire stay at camp. Both our locations are in forest/tree/pollen areas.  If you know your child will be more comfortable on their allergy medications, even over the counter meds, please read the above question and list those medications in the system, get the form signed by your doctor and follow all the medical protocols for those medications as well.

 

How do I get the form for my doctor to sign? (the Medical Administration Form)

Please log in to your camper’s account in CampWise, add in the medications that will be coming to camp with the camper. You will be asked to create a med schedule for each medication, check of the time of day that medication is given.  The system will then email the medical administration form to the main email on the account the next day. 

IF changes need to be made to the form after you have received one, please CALL our main offices  (410-867-0991) and they can help make those changes in order for an updated form to be emailed out again.

 

Why did CampWise lock me out, I can’t change information on my camper’s account?

As each week of camp approaches our staff and nurses need to review all incoming camper records knowing the information is final and will not be changed.  The lock out date is set for seven days prior to the start of each program.

If your Camper Health form is completed and at 100% then you can make changes (if needed) UNTIL the lock-out date. After the lock-out date you will not be able to make changes upon login.  If changes are needed you may contact our offices and request the camper record to be changed.

 

 

What should my camper pack?

OVERNIGHT Campers will need basic items such as comfortable clothing, swimsuit/beach towel, personal toiletries, linens/sleeping bag and pillow, close toed shoes for activities, flip flops for pool, bug spray, sunscreen, etc.  For a full suggested packing list for overnight programs click here.

DAY CAMPERS will need basic items such as water bottle, hat, bug spray, sunscreen, change of clothes, swimsuit and towel. We do expect campers to wear tennis shoes daily, they can bring sandals or flip flops for pool time. Day Camps must also PROVIDE THEIR OWN SACK LUNCH each day.

Please note we do not allow cell phones, tablets or devices that can connect to the internet.

We are still in the process of determining our COVID-19 protocols for 2023.  In 2022 protocols were to bring proof they are up to date on their COVID-19 vaccination OR a negative COVID-19 from within 3 days of the start of camp. We anticipate day campers will NOT need proof of vaccination or a negative test result.

We are still in the process of determining our COVID-19 protocols for 2023. 

The first day we will check in each camper, make sure all balances are paid, visit with the nurse/staff to be sure all health information is accurate and medications are turned in. 

Depending on the number of campers checking in, we can have some long lines.  To help move things along quickly please be sure to have the following information: 

  • Pay all balances prior to the start of camp.
  • Complete all health information in CampWise – this includes either scanning your health insurance card OR bring a copy of it front and back with camper’s name written on the copy.  We will not have access to a copy machine during check in.
  • Have all medications in original bottles with prescription labels or for over-the-counter medications, have campers name written on the bottle. Having all medications in a ziplock bag with camper’s name on it is very helpful to our staff.   ALL medications must be turned into the nurse, so please have these out of luggage and ready to be turned in. Medications must be accompanied by the Medication Authorization Form that is signed by both parent and physician and dosages and names of medications must MATCH EXACTLY on form and prescrition labels and Campwise system to be accepted.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic – Arrival  of overnight program campers will vary and may be in alternating timed-schedules based on program or alpha by last name.  Sunday arrival based on Last Name:    A-K at 3:00pm,    L-R at 3:45pm,  S-Z at 4:30pm

    General Check in times:

    West River Overnight Camps – Sundays at 3pm 

    West River Grandparents’ Camps – Mondays at 10am 

    West River Day Camps – Mondays at 8:50am

    For a suggested packing list for overnight programs click here.

    Pickup times:

    Day Camps 5pm Daily

    Mini Week pick up on WEDNESDAY at 6pm

    Overnight Camps 6pm Fridays

    Grandparents Camps 1pm Friday

    Young Adult Deaf Camp 2pm Friday