Frequently Asked Question's
We're committed to providing you with the information you need to make this important decision and prepare for your child's camp session. Can't find your answer here? Email us at [email protected]
Butler Camp did an amazing job with organizing fun and different activities for the kids! Our daughters had a blast and loved everything, including archery, mountain bike, zip lining. The counselors were super friendly and safety protocols were solid!
~ Carole W., 2020 Camp Parent
Please see our program pages (ie. Nature Navigators Ages 4.5–6) to find FAQs for each particular program and age group.
What are the financial terms and policies?
All fees may be paid in full upon registration or contact Scott Chidakel (s[email protected] or 301-977-6600) to set up a payment plan.
If you cancel between February 1 and March 31, 2023, you’ll receive a 50% refund. No camp fees will be refunded after April 1, 2023.
See the Payment Policies page for full details.
What time is Carpool?
- Camp Carpool runs from: 9:00 - 9:15 am AND 3:15 to 3:30 pm
- Please do not arrive before 3:15 pm as we have our Summer School Carpools in progress.
Do I need to fill out forms if I came to camp last year?
YES. Forms need to be filled out annually in compliance with Maryland laws. It only takes a few minutes! Forms must be filled out prior to your camper starting camp. Click here to access your Parent Portal account and find your forms.
What if I need to pick up my child early?
No problem! Please call the Camp Office in advance and we will coordinate with Counselors to have campers outside the Camp Office with their things. Early pick up must happen before 2:30 to ease any carpool calamity. Please park in the front of the camp office sign, then call the Camp Office to sign out your camper. For our safety and your camper’s, we will walk your camper out to you.
2023 Health and Safety Protocols
Camp Program Summary:
June 26 - August 18, 2023
Program Hours: 9:00 am - 3:15pm
Arrival: 9:00 - 9:15 am
Departure: 3:15 - 3:25 pm
There will be an extended day program for camp till 5:15 pm (limited capacity).
If a child is unwell they MUST NOT attend camp. Symptoms should be monitored and, should these symptoms be in line with COVID-19 indicators, the isolation periods should be adhered to. See details below in the illness policy section.
All adults on campus are responsible for following the rules and systems put in place as described through this document to support the safety of all.
Campers will be taught the rules and systems during their first day on campus and have time to practice.
Campers will be given age appropriate ways to help them remember those rules.
Campers will be reminded of the rules and systems at regular intervals to support them and the safety of all.
We recognize all these changes will impact campers and adults in different ways and we will strive to be understanding and compassionate in maintaining safety protocols.
All cleaning materials meet MDH/CDC and health regulations for camps.
All protocols will be reviewed and may be subject to change.
Our office will respond to emails within 24 hours during the week and we are available by phone during camp hours.
Time-sensitive contact with our office can be facilitated by calling the main office 301- 977-6600 and/or emailing [email protected]
Measures to support a healthy camp environment:
First aid: Should a child require first aid, we will provide the normal procedures, ensuring extra care to use appropriate PPE. We will avoid any form of contact beyond carrying out the first aid where necessary, e.g. cleaning, placement of band aids etc.
EpiPens, inhalers and other medications will remain in the camp office locked up for safety overnight.
Lead counselors will sign out any medications, EpiPens, inhalers, and other medications during the camp day should they be needed as per the medical protocol for that child/adult.
According to the CDC, washing hands with soap and drying with disposable paper towels is a much more effective method than hand sanitizer, so where this is possible it will take precedent.
Opportunities to wash hands will be maximized. Where hand washing is not an option hand sanitizer will be used.
Wash stations with soap and water will be available at each group camp site.
Campers will be reminded of how to wash their hands and hand sanitizer will be available for use as mentioned above.
Every indoor room/area will be cleaned on a regular basis throughout the day with a disinfectant spray as per guidelines. Indoor spaces will be available during inclement weather.
Hands will be washed before leaving camp activities to go to the bathroom area and washed after in the bathroom area sink.
General Illness Policy
In the interest of the health and well-being of our community, keep your child home if:
They have a fever of 100.0 degrees fahrenheit or greater or need medication to keep their temperature down. (Children must be fever-free for 24 hours without medication before returning to camp.)
In the last 24 hours prior to coming to camp they have had diarrhea, have vomited or have conjunctivitis (pink eye).
Parents will be called to pick up a child who appears ill or becomes ill at camp. If you are unable to pick your child up within 1 hour of notification, we will contact your child’s emergency contact so that they may pick your child up.
COVID-19 Illness Policy
If your child has been exposed to someone with COVID-19 or possibly with COVID-19, keep your child home for:
Symptoms of COVID-19:
Congestion or runny nose
Nausea or vomiting
Fever or chills
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Muscle or body aches
New loss of taste or smell
If your child or any family member becomes ill with COVID-19 keep your child(ren) home until all family members have met criteria as described below.
If a child has symptoms of COVID-19 and does not get evaluated by a medical professional or complete testing, it is assumed that the child has COVID-19 and cannot return to camp until they have met the criteria.
Sibling(s) and other family members will need to quarantine with the affected child.
Please alert the camp immediately if your child is ill with COVID-19 so that we can best determine the next steps for our camp and school community in accordance with state and national guidelines.
According to CDC guidelines, a child with COVID-19 who has exhibited symptoms may return to camp when the following criteria have been met:
At least 72 hours have passed since resolution of fever without fever-reducing medications; and
The child has improvement in respiratory symptoms such as cough and shortness of breath; and
At least 5 days have passed since the symptoms first appeared or the child has negative results from at least two consecutive COVID-19 tests taken at least 24 hours apart.
Upon return to camp, after any absence due to illness, our health staff will assess your child prior to entering camp.
*Decisions about extending closure will be made in consultation with the Maryland State Department of Health.
What do you do on weather related “code red” days?
Activities are modified to allow less time in the sun, and more time in the water and the woods. Outdoor campers will use air-conditioned rooms in the afternoon, or at other times as needed, for some “cool down” time. Drinking water is important EVERY DAY and on “code red” days we are especially insistent that the children take regular water breaks. The campers also enjoy our “water misting” system to cool off after activities throughout the camp season. The staff is trained to be especially alert on hot days for any change in the physical condition of a camper.
What is your policy on continued misconduct of a camper?
Because our camp is group-centered, we will address challenges related to the individual camper behavior by addressing both the campers needs and the needs of the other children in the group.
When a child demonstrates negative behavior, we will work with the child to adjust their behavior. If the behavior is serious or repeated, a director will step in to provide additional support. Parents will be called when a behavior is serious in nature, not easily resolved, repeated, or is affecting the whole group.
Participation at Butler Camp is a privilege, and we believe that all children have a right to a physically and emotionally safe environment. If a child repeatedly demonstrates inappropriate behavior at Butler Camp, we will work to resolve the issue. If it becomes a larger issue, Butler reserves the right to remove the child from the program.
Specifically: To maintain our staff/camper ratio, if one child consistently requires one on one attention thus changing the ratio and quality of the program, and the behavior is not changing with reasonable amount of effort made by staff and directors, the child will be asked to leave. If a child demonstrates a serious negative behavior that is not likely to improve and is detrimental to the group and camp culture, the child will be asked to leave camp immediately.
How long does carpool take?
Carpool usually takes about 15-20 minutes. We understand that waiting can be frustrating. However, we ask parents and caregivers to be patient especially at the start of each session as new families learn the system. In order to keep carpool moving and ensure the safety of all our campers, we kindly ask you to refrain from exiting your car during drop off or pick up. Our staff and counselors are trained to safely bring your child to and from your car. If you must exit your car or stop, we ask you to pull over to our visitor parking.
What is your cancellation policy?
If you cancel between February 1 and March 31, 2023, you’ll receive a 50% refund. No camp fees will be refunded after April 1, 2023. However, any fees for aftercare will be refunded in full at any time prior to the start of a session.
No refunds are available for camp absences due to illness or vacation. The required application fee of $25 is non-refundable.
If we must cancel a session for any reason, we will offer a full refund or the option to move your tuition to 2024.
Which camp sessions did I register for?
Life is busy and we understand you may have misplaced your camp information. Please login to your Parent Portal to access your forms and view your sessions. It’s located at the top right-hand corner of our website.
Do you offer camp discounts for referrals and siblings?
Yes! When a camp family loves our camp and refers a friend, we give them a $50 camp referral reward. This can be taken off their camp session fee. There is no limit to the amount of families you can refer to us or the amount of referral rewards you receive!
Please note, your friend needs to enter your name upon registration and needs to pay for the camp session in order for you to qualify for the $50 camp referral reward.
Siblings receive a 5% discount automatically!
Interested in more promotions? Check our camp website and social media for fun and fabulous camp specials!
Can you group my child with the friends I listed during registration?
We can not guarantee that campers will be grouped with specific friends; however, we will try and fulfill a request if we have a space available.
What is Campout and Cookout?
Cookout is held during the afternoon on the second Friday of each session for Wilderness Explorers. We will serve Kosher Beef Hot Dogs/Buns and S’mores. Campers are asked to bring other food items to balance out their meals according to their needs.
Campout is held on Tuesday night of the second week of each session for Pathfinders (ages 10-12). This is an overnight experience where we will have a cookout and a late swim after a very busy day of hiking/tubing. *weather permitting
Campout is held on Thursday night of the second week for Trailblazers (ages 12-14). This overnight experience is where we will have a cookout and a late swim after a very busy day of hiking/tubing. Day two starts with a hearty breakfast and continues with a full day of camp activities. This is the highlight of the Trailblazer experience.*weather permitting*
Do campers need to bring a SNACK and LUNCH?
Yes! Each camper brings a bag lunch and snack. We recommend that your camper’s lunch and snack include healthy items that fuel them for a day of adventure (ex: protein, carb, fruit, veggie). Many campers use small coolers with ice packs which keep food and drinks satisfactorily cold for the day. Water breaks are taken frequently throughout the day. Water is provided, but campers need to bring their own refillable water bottles (labeled with name).
What should I pack in my child’s lunch and snack?
A healthy lunch and snack fuels campers for adventure. Consider including healthy options like fresh fruit, vegetables, sandwiches, and muffins in your child’s lunch (ex: protein, carb, fruit, and veggie). Snack options could include two items, such as fruit and protein. Please label snacks in a separate bag within the lunch bag or else a separate container in the backpack.
Please, no sugary foods/drinks or glass beverages! Remember to pack ice packs and include foods that won’t spoil.
What if my child has a food allergy?
Please note that we are not a nut-free camp. However, we try to make our campers feel included by seating children with allergies at a table with other children who do not have allergy-foods in their lunches.
How often do campers swim? Is there a lifeguard?
The two-foot shallow end allows even the youngest camper to stand and start their swimming experience comfortably. Children are not expected to be “swimmers” at camp. On the first day of a session, campers who wish to swim in the deeper end of the pool must pass a swim test. Otherwise, they are restricted to the “roped off” shallow end (2 to 3 feet depth). There are two lifeguards at the pool at all times, along with their counselors and other assigned "watchers". Children may not use floatation support as this gives campers a false sense of security and can hinder the view of lifeguards to watch all of the children in the pool. Lifeguards and counselors will guide campers in their swimming progress to acquire confidence in the water.
How many children are with a counselor?
Nature Navigators (ages 4.5-6) have up to 12 campers with two counselors. Wilderness Explorers (ages 7-9), Pathfinders (ages 10-12) and Trailblazers (ages 12-14) are in groups of 12-14 with two counselors (1:7 ratio). Additional certified instructors join the Wilderness Explorers, Pathfinders and Trailblazers for various activities, as needed.
Where do campers spend their day?
Nature Navigators spend time both outside on campus and inside our air-conditioned classrooms. Wilderness Explorers, Pathfinders and Trailblazers are outside all day. These groups will hike to local creeks and ponds for fishing, canoeing, and other water activities. Pathfinders and Trailblazers will be further out on Seneca hiking, tubing, and mountain biking, while preparing for and their overnight “survival skills” campout on our campus.
How do I know what my camper did during camp?
Every week we’ll post photos from camp on our Facebook page. We suggest you share the photos with your camper and ask about the activity and adventures they did that week. It's a great dinner table talk! Please be sure to sign your photo waiver so that we can include all campers in camp photos that we share on Facebook and Instagram (no names are used).