The Parent Handbook provides resources for families - rules, policies, best practices, tips and information about camp!
It's time to get ready for camp! Please use the links below to make sure your camper is ready for camp. We have created a printable check-list with everything that you'll need to complete for your camper prior to their arrival. Please note the change in our health forms for 2018.
Health Forms & Parent Confidential:
Use this form if your child does NOT need to take any medications while at camp (this includes vitamins). The LAST page of this form is the parent confidential, and is also a required form.
Use this form if your child WILL need to take medications while at camp (this includes vitamins). The LAST page of this form is the parent confidential, and is also a required form.
Camper Release Form:
This online form will authorize people besides yourself to pick-up your child from camp.
Trading Post and Trips:
Use this link to update your child's trading post account (at any time!) and to sign them up for awesome off camp trips!
Please remember to label your child's belongings! Packing with your child will help them recognize their stuff - especially new towels!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
At Fairview Lake YMCA Camps, we recognize that sending your child to camp can be a daunting and sometimes a little scary proposition for parents, especially if this is the first time your child is participating in an overnight camp. On this page, you will find Frequently Asked Questions and answers that will help guide you throughout the entirety of your camp experience. This includes information about the registration process, preparing for camp, and while your child is at camp.
We would love to hear from you, so please contact us if you have additional questions.
While Your Camper is at Camp
What time is Sunday check-in?
Check-in takes place on Sundays between 1pm-3pm. Upon arrival, you will be given instructions and direction of the check-in process. CITs check in between 8-9 AM.
What time do I pick-up my camper on Saturday?
Pick-up takes place between 9am and 11am on Saturday. Campers can be picked up at their cabin.
Can I call my camper while they are at camp?
Campers cannot receive or make phone calls while at camp, unless authorized by the Director of Summer Programs (i.e. emergencies). If you wish to learn how your camper is doing, you will need to call and ask for the Unit Leader. If a camper insists on calling their parents, the Unit Leader will contact the parent to inform them and make arrangements, if necessary.
What if I need to pick-up/drop off my camper up early/late?
If you need to pick-up/drop off your camper on a day/time different than what is scheduled, you must notify the office and the Unit Leader in advance.
What if someone else is picking up my child?
Each family will be required to complete a release form, which is a list of individuals who you authorize with whom your child may leave camp. Any changes to this form must be made in writing. The release form is also used to list individuals with whom your camper MAY NOT leave camp.
Can I send a cell phone with my camper?
No. Fairview Lake YMCA is a cell phone free facility. Cell phones are expressly prohibited and will be confiscated and held in the administration office until departure. For the complete cell phone policy, please refer to our Parent Handbook.
So, how do I stay connected with my camper while they are at camp?
We encourage our families and campers to use traditional mail to stay connected. Campers and staff love getting mail - from cards to care packages. Send a few pre-addressed stamped envelopes along with your camper to encourage communication. To send mail or packages to your child, please use this address:
Child's First and Last Name, Cabin #
Fairview Lake YMCA
1035 Fairview Lake Road
Newton, NJ 07860
If your child is participating in an ETC or Ranch program, please write in the program name instead of cabin number. If your child is experiencing problems with homesickness, we will call you. Chances are that by the time a “homesick letter” has reached you, the problem will be over.
In addition, we will have staff photographers out taking photos and videos of campers playing, laughing and learning all over camp! We will post photos and videos on Facebook and Instagram (@FVLYMCACamps) on a daily basis.
Can I visit my camper while they are at camp?
Yes! For campers staying longer than one consecutive week, we offer Visiting Day, a day for parents and campers to get together to enjoy camp, or for a quick trip to town for a milkshake and an adventure! This takes place twice a summer. If you are unable to come up on visiting day or need to visit at another day/time, please contact camp to arrange a special visit.
What if my camper takes medications or gets sick?
The Fairview Lake Health Center is centrally located in the main area of camp and is stocked with first aid and emergency medical equipment. A licensed medical professional with advanced medical training is on site 24 hours a day. If your child takes medication, our Camp Nurse will supervise the administration of all medications. Your family doctor must include specific instructions on the health form and they need to indicate specific instructions for over-the-counter medications we provide at camp. All medications must be in original containers and must be under the supervision of the Camp Nurse. Please do not pack any medications in camper bags, as they are prohibited in the cabins.
Camp personnel will contact you or other designated emergency contact if your camper requires the services of a physician. It is your responsibility to schedule an appointment and transport your child to a physician of your choice. If a camper requires hospital emergency room treatment, camp personnel will contact you or other designated emergency contact immediately. If your camper becomes sick during their stay, you will be contacted and updated immediately.
What will my camper eat?
Fairview Lake YMCA Camps has a 3-week meal rotation during the summer. More specifically, every meal will be completely different during a 3-week session. Each breakfast consists of the breakfast bar (yogurt, fruit, and granola), cold and hot cereal, juice and water, and a main course (i.e pancakes and sausage). Each lunch and dinner consists of a salad bar, milk and water, and a main course. There will be a vegetarian option at each meal. Families who have campers with food allergies or with special food requests will be directed to the Food Service Director to make arrangements.
Preparing for Camp
What should my camper bring to camp?
Knowing what to pack for your camper can be a bit overwhelming! Keep in mind that we will do laundry for any camper staying for two or three weeks, so please include a laundry bag. We cannot stress enough the importance of labeling your child's belongings.
How does the Trading Post account work?
Each child has an account through our registration system (OnlineEdge), which can be set up before camp begins. Each day, children will be given a snack, however, they will also have the option of purchasing a drink and a snack, or a drink and an icecream bar with their account. Children will be limited to one food/drink purchase per day at the trading post. Drinks, candy and chips are $1 each, and ice-cream is $1 or $2 each. The amount you put into the Trading Post account will depend on how long your camper will be staying. For example, it is recommended that $45 is placed in the Trading Post account for a 1-week program. Campers have the opportunity to visit the Trading Post twice a day.
How does Fairview Lake handle food allergies?
Fairview Lake YMCA Camps does not serve nut-based food in our dining hall and Trading Post. However, food allergies should still be listed on your camper’s health form and discussed with your camper’s counselor upon arrival. Families who have campers with food allergies with special food requests will be directed to the Food Service Director to make arrangements.
Can I find out what cabin my camper is in prior to arrival and will I be with my friends?
Cabin assignments will be given upon your child’s arrival, no sooner. Placement within a cabin group depends on school grade, age and interests. We will attempt to honor all bunk requests. Placing too many friends in the same cabin can oftentimes disrupt the social interaction of the group and leaves those who do not already know others at a real disadvantage.
How does Fairview Lake YMCA Camps deal with homesickness?
Occasionally, children do feel homesick, particularly if it is their first time away from home. You can be helpful in preventing homesickness in the following ways:
- Talk about the forthcoming stay at camp with enthusiasm. Share pictures and your own positive camp experiences and have them help plan for their trip.
- Practice! A weekend trip at a cousin’s house, a camping trip with a friend or even a series of sleep-overs will help your child get used to the idea of being away from home.
- Let your child know your confidence in him/her! Do not encourage problems by talking about how he/she will be missed. Camp is a happy experience - a part of growing up -for which you feel he/she is ready.
- Do not promise to come for him/her if they experience homesickness, or bribe a child to go to camp. Their reward for camp should be the awesome experience they have!
- Send them an encouraging letter, and treats for them and their cabin-mates! Remember to be positive and supportive.
If your child is experiencing problems with homesickness, we will call you. Chances are that by the time a “homesick letter” has reached you, the problem will be over. The American Camp Association has great resources for dealing with homesickness.
Does Fairview Lake YMCA Camps participate in an accreditation process?
Fairview Lake YMCA Camps is proud to be accredited by the American Camp Association. This accreditation goes above and beyond the NJ requirements for summer camps.
How do I register for summer camp?
Registrations are accepted through mail, email, or an online form. A $250 deposit is required for our 1-week sessions, and a $500 deposit is required for our 2 and 3-week sessions. When the completed registration form and deposit are received, you will be sent a confirmation email with information about additional paperwork and balance payment.
Do you provide Financial Assistance?
Yes! No camper or family will be turned away because of their inability to pay. Financial assistance is available through our Y for ALL program for families who are unable to pay the entire camp tuition and qualify for assistance.
Who will be supervising my camper?
Our staff is like family at Fairview Lake YMCA Camps, and we strive to find the best people to work with your child. Each staff member goes through an extensive background check, reference check and interview process before being hired. All staff are trained in child abuse and bullying prevention, as well as how to work with campers from different backgrounds and are supervised by experienced Unit Leaders. Each cabin has staff members who will build community and foster friendships among campers, and each unit will build a cohesive, fun and exciting environment in which your child will thrive. While many of our staff are FVL alumni themselves, we also hire international staff to bring diversity to camp and to help campers expand their worldview. Find out how Fairview Lake YMCA Camps is Keeping Kids Safe in our community.
Where will my camper be staying?
Traditional Camp, Specialty Camps and Ranch Camps are housed in our cabin units. These include the Birch Unit, Laurel Ridge Unit, Lakeside Unit and Wickapeck Lodge. Each cabin has ten or twelve built-in bunks, an indoor bathroom with flush toilets and hot showers. Due to the design of the buildings, coed groups can be easily accommodated. The cabins have thermostatically controlled gas furnaces, a central cooling fan, electric lights and outlets plus smoke/carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers. Wickapeck Lodge is one of the original farmhouses on the property, and has three bedrooms and a bathroom upstairs; two bedrooms, a bathroom and a large living room with a fireplace downstairs plus a dormitory wing with 20 beds and two bathrooms.
E.T.C. Camps and the C.I.T. Program are based on the seasonal side of camp in the Delaware and Warrior Units. Cabins are fully enclosed with built-in bunk beds. There are no other amenities. Each unit has its own centrally located bathhouse with flush toilets, private showers, sinks, and electricity.
Depending on enrollment and popularity of a program, Fairview Lake YMCA Camps cannot guarantee a placement in a particular cabin or unit.