Frequently Asked Questions
Everyone should have the opportunity to make
endless summer camp memories.
Frequently Asked Questions – Day Camp
Our regular camp day runs from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm at all locations. Extended care is available at most locations and begins at 6:30 am, 7:00 am or 7:30 am, depending on the location. Extended care in the morning goes until 9:00 am, and in the afternoon, from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm, at an additional cost.
Click here to see if your location offers extended care and for the hours.
All camper registrations and registration changes, excluding cancellations, must be made by 5:00 pm on the Wednesday prior to the week commencing. If you need to make any changes to your camper’s registration or update their medical information, please contact the camp office by phone or by email.
Cancellation and refund requests must be made at least 14 days prior to the camp week commencing in order for a refund to be processed. Cancellation requests made less than 14 days prior to the camp week must have an attached medical note in order for a refund to be considered.
YMCA Day Camps offer a positive and inclusive experience for children and youth ages 6 to 12. Age is determined by year of birth, rather than the camper’s age at the beginning of the camp session. For our younger campers (ages 4 & 5) we offer Summer Kids Club at our licensed child care locations.
The YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka is committed to working with families to support campers with special needs, whether developmental, physical, cognitive, emotional or behavioural. Inclusion support is facilitated by our inclusion counsellors who are youth with at least 1 year of experience working with children. They receive YMCA training and are not licensed professionals. Please note we do not offer personal care and campers should be able to use the toilet by themselves and dress and change themselves independently.
When submitting your camp registration, please register for ‘Inclusion Support’ for the session and location desired and a member of the YMCA staff team will connect with you this spring to discuss inclusion supports and confirm your spot.
Preparing for Camp
Your camper should bring all of the following items to camp: hat, sunscreen, bug spray, reusable water bottle, closed toe shoes, bathing suit and towel, nutritious litterless lunch and snacks, and a supportive backpack capable of holding all items.
Additional items may be required for specialty camp programs. Please refer to page 5 of the Day Camp Family Handbook for more information.
Please do not send your camper to camp with any valuables (iPods, MP3 players, tablets, DSIs, toys, jewelry, etc.). These items are not a part of our camp program and do not fit into our daily plans.
Please do not send money to camp. Campers will not be permitted to make purchases from vending machines or during out trips. This allows us to ensure that all campers are provided with equal opportunities during their camp experience and prevents the possibility of allergic/medical reactions.
Most camp activities will continue rain or shine so it is very important that all campers are dressed appropriately for the weather. We recommend that your camper wear easy to remove layers suitable for outdoor play. Remember that campers may get dirty while participating in camp activities – please do not send your camper in their “good” clothes. Closed toe shoes or athletic sandals should be worn at all times.
Each day campers will sit down with their group for two fifteen minute snack breaks (one in the morning and one in the afternoon) and one half hour lunch break around midday. To ensure your camper has what they need, please refer to the following list of do’s and don’ts when preparing lunch and snacks:
- Do pack a nutritious, litterless lunch complete with several ready to go snacks.
- Do consider that campers will be physically active throughout the day and may require more food than they typically eat at school.
- Do send extra snacks if your camper is participating in extended care.
- Don’t pack heat sensitive food items. Campers will not be able to refrigerate or reheat their meals at camp.
- Don’t include snacks or meals that contain nuts or nut products.
Medications required by your camper during the camp day should be noted on their online registration form. When sent to camp all medication must be in its original packaging, stored in a plastic baggie, and clearly labeled with your camper’s name and dosage instructions.
Medications must be turned in to the camp staff who will store them in a locked location and assist your camper with administration at the required time(s). Emergency medications will be worn by the camper or the staff as per the instructions parents provide. We ask that you communicate any specific instructions to the On Site Coordinator during sign in.
The following schedule represents a sample day at one of our centre based camps. Exact schedules and activities will vary by camp location.
Our day camps offer a wide variety or programming from sports and games to arts and crafts. While we encourage campers to participate in all programs in order to make the most of their camp experience we understand that campers may not want to partake in every activity. In these cases alternate programming will be offered in the form of joining another group’s activity, taking on a different role within the program, or participating in a different activity alongside the group.
All swimming and boating sessions will be supervised by certified lifeguards. Prior to swimming in deep water or entering a boat, all campers will be required to complete a basic swim test. Life jackets will be available for campers that do not complete the swim test. All campers must wear a life jacket while boating.
All lost and found items will be held at camp until the end of each month. Where possible, found items will be displayed at sign out for parents and guardians to see. If your camper is picked up at a bus stop, please provide the bus counsellor with a detailed list of any items you believe may be in the lost and found.
In order to reduce lost and found we ask that you label all of your camper’s items. Custom labels can be ordered from: camps.mabelslabels.com. If you type ‘YMCA Simcoe/Muskoka Day Camp’ in the search bar before shopping a small portion of the cost will be donated to our campership fund.
Only those listed under the parent/guardian and alternate pick up sections of your camper’s registration will be allowed to sign your camper out. If someone else will be picking up your camper, please ensure you provide a signed written note to your camper’s bus monitor, counsellor or On Site Coordinator. Photo identification will be required at every sign out. Please ensure that everyone authorized to pick up your camper is aware of the need to present photo identification.
Please notify your camper’s bus monitor, counsellor, or On Site Coordinator that you will need to pick up your camper early. The day camp staff will arrange for a convenient place to meet and sign out your camper.
Please call the camp office or On Site Coordinator if you will be late picking up your camper. Until you arrive your camper will join the extended care program and participate in supervised drop in activities. If you are late arriving to a bus stop, your camper will remain on the bus and be transported to the next stop while the camp staff attempt to contact you.
Additional charges may be applied for late pick-ups.
All bus times are approximate. We will make every effort to keep our busses running on schedule throughout the summer. If a camp bus is running more than 10 minutes behind schedule the camp office will attempt to contact impacted families by email as soon as possible.