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Accreditations

We are proud to be accredited by the ACA. Find out what that means for you, click here.

Discover More

Birmingham Magazine 2012/2013 Parent's Choice Awards: Best Overnight Camp. Click here to read!

Open House dates: Come tour camp!

Sunday, April 2nd

Sunday, May 7th

Photo Tour: Take a scenic tour around camp.

FAQ: Some of the most frequent questions about summer camp.

Forms: Need the camper check out form or supplemental food form?

Our Heritage

 Interesting infomation for alumni, parents and campers. Discover Winnataska's 96 year history, and learn how to volunteer. Click here.

Advice for parents of first-time campers

The first summer camp experience can be a very exciting, but also an anxiety-producing event for campers.  And just like on the first day of kindergarten, parents are bittersweet about sending their children to a summer camp as well.  

Most importantly, preparing for a successful camp experience begins well in advance of the actual check-in day. The months before summer rolls around, begin to prepare your camper:

  • Have your child help you choose which camp to attend. Go through the website together and look at the videos.  Talk about when they would like to attend and if they wish to ask a buddy.

  • Make sure that your child does not feel forced to attend.  If they are a little bit anxious and seem to go back and forth, you can probably steer them on the right track.  But if they are adamant about not going, perhaps it is better to wait until the next summer.

  • Realize that talking about homesickness does not make homesickness occur with more frequency or intensity.  Read advice from homesickness experts at www.campparents.org. Here's another great article, entitled, "Homesick Campers."

  • Make sure your child has previous experience away from home.  Weekends and vacations over the winter holidays are a great time to practice!

As camp gets closer:

  • Find out as much as you can about camp so that you can discuss what a day will be like for your child.  While talking about it, you can find out what is worrying them the most, and come up with effective strategies, like, "We'll make sure to buy a really good flashlight so that you can use it at night to go to the bathhouse." 

  • Be careful not to show high levels of parental anxiety. Avoid statements like, "I am going to miss you so much!"

  • Don't make "pick-up deals."  A pick-up deal is when the parent promises to pick up the child if they are homesick. Camp experts know that children are more likely to call parents for a rescue with a pick-up de al. 
  • Make sure your child knows homesickness is normal.  In fact, 90% of campers say they experience some degree of homesickness.  
  • If your child is coming to camp without a buddy, reassure them they will make many new friends and there will also be plenty of other campers without buddies. 
  • Come to an Open House at camp. Click here for dates and times.

During camp:

  • Pack favorites from home that will help campers cope - stuffed animals, pictures, pillows, and blankets do help!
  • Send a letter a day or two before camp starts with lots of positive comments!
  • If you get a homesick letter, look at when it was written. Many campers will send home a letter the first day - before they have even started having fun!
  • Talk to the camp director if you receive more than one homesick letter and you are concerned about your child.  We will check in with them to see how they are doing.