River Camp FAQs
Members only registration opens on February 1st of each year. Public registration opens on March 1st of each year. Registration is completed online using the UltraCamp website.
We recommend registering as soon as possible to ensure you receive your first choice of session. Most weeks fill up by mid-May. Due to decreased group sizes in 2021, sessions may fill earlier than usual.
Yes! Fresno campers may register for up to 2 weeks of River Camp or Young Explorers each summer. Firebaugh campers may register for up to 4 weeks of River Camp each summer.
If your desired session is full, you may register your camper for the waitlist through the UltraCamp website. If/when a spot opens up for your camper you will be automatically notified by e-mail and will have 48 hours to register. If you do not register within those 48 hours your spot will be forfeited and offered to the next camper on the waitlist. Please note: River Parkway Trust staff are unable to assess the likelihood that a spot will open up for your camper, as the variables are beyond our control. We are able to tell you your camper's current spot on the waitlist.
River Parkway Trust members receive the discount codes for the season via e-mail before Members-only registration opens on February 1st. If you did not receive a copy of the discount code please contact the office at (559) 248-8480.
You will receive an automatic confirmation e-mail immediately upon registration. This e-mail will include a copy of your registration and basic camp information. Additional information will be sent out 2 weeks prior to the beginning of your registered camp date.
A non-refundable deposit is required at the time of registration: $50 for River Camp or $25 for Young Explorers. Full refunds (less the deposit amount) will be given if requested at least 7 days prior to your camp start date. If you cancel less than 7 days prior to your camp start date, refunds will only be given for medical or family emergencies. The terms medical or family emergencies include any required quarantines due to potential infection with COVID-19. If you need to cancel, please do so by calling our office at (559) 248-8480 ext. 104.
Campers are grouped by age into individual groups of 9-11 campers led by a counselor and 1-2 Junior Leaders. Typically, the members of a group will be no more than 2 years apart from each other (e.g. the youngest group member is 6 and the oldest group member is 8). We strive to create an environment conducive for children to thrive socially and emotionally as they experience nature. It has been our experience that having campers more than 2 years apart in age in the same group creates a developmental gap that reduces the positive social interactions of the group.
Parents may request that their camper is in the same group as friends or family during the online registration process. While we do our best to meet as many of these requests as possible, “group-with” requests are not guaranteed. *If there are special circumstances that require your camper to be grouped with someone >2 years apart in age from them, please contact the Community Programs Director at 559-248-8480 ext. 104 with this request.*
Campers at River Camp at the River Center are dropped off and picked up at the River Center each day. Click here for a map to the River Center.
Campers at River Camp at Owl Hollow are dropped off and picked up from Owl Hollow directly each day. Owl Hollow is located next to the River Center, but uses a different access point. A map with directions to Owl Hollow will be sent upon registration.
Campers at Young Explorers are dropped off and picked up from the Young Explorers site located 4 miles north of the River Center (to be announced in early 2021) each day. A map with directions to the site will be sent upon registration.
We strongly encourage you to schedule your camper’s session to minimize any scheduling conflicts that require late arrival or early pick-up. In the event that such a conflict is unavoidable, please make arrangements with the Camp Director in advance. Late arrivals or early pick-ups will take place once a day at 12:30 pm. Full instructions will be given when arrangements are made.
If your child is going to miss a day of camp, please contact the Camp Director ASAP to notify us of the absence. If your camper has not been checked in by the daily start time you will receive a phone call from camp staff checking on his/her status for the day.
Though we strongly encourage all River Campers to complete basic swim lessons prior to participating in River Camp, swimming proficiency is not required. During swim-time or water activities, your camper will be supervised by lifeguards (30:1 ratio), counselors (10:1 ratio, including their counselor), and Junior Leaders (10:1 ratio). Life vests are available for all campers. Some optional activities, such as canoeing or ‘floating the river’ require all participants to wear a life vest. The general swim area does not require a life vest, but many of our campers wear life vests at all times when they are in the water and you may request that your camper wear a life vest whenever in the water. Water activities are completely optional, and children may remain on dry land if they desire. If you have special requests regarding swim time for your camper, please discuss them with their camp counselor at Monday morning check-in or note them on the emergency information form.
Please have your child wear the following to camp each day:
- Swimsuit (worn under clothing; no changing room available)
- Shoes that can get wet (NO FLIP FLOPS)
- Sunscreen and a hat
Please have your child bring the following to camp each day:
- Lunch and snack (no refrigeration is available)
- Full, reusable water bottle
- Extra sunscreen
- A towel
River Camp will provide:
- All activity supplies
- Water safety equipment
- River Camp T-Shirt
- Drinking water/Gatorade
- Hand sanitizer
- Please talk with your camper about the importance of physical distancing and minimizing physical contact and practice proper handwashing technique with your campers prior to the start of the camp session. We will also review these, as well as how to cover your cough or sneeze, with campers during the Monday morning rules.
- For those campers who are in the same COVID-19 bubble (siblings, etc.) and will be attending camp together, we ask that you prepare them to follow physical distancing guidelines during the camp session. For the safety of all campers and staff, we will be asking all campers to follow physical distancing guidelines while at camp.
- Each morning at sign-in we will be conducting a verbal screening regarding any potential illness or exposure which parents will need to complete on behalf of your camper(s). While we will not be conducting temperature screenings, we ask that parents take their camper’s temperature prior to coming to camp each day and keep their child home if they are showing any symptoms of illness. Questions will include:
- Does your camper have a fever (100.4 degrees or greater)?
- Does your camper have any of the following respiratory symptoms: sore throat, runny nose, loss of taste or smell, or shortness of breath?
- Has your camper had close, unprotected contact with a suspected or known COVID-19 patient? (Spent more than 15 minutes closer than six feet from someone sick with a fever and cough)
- We will have a touch-free infrared forehead thermometer at camp for use in the event that any camper is exhibiting symptoms of fever. If your camper shows respiratory symptoms while at camp or has a temperature reading over 100.4°F, you will be contacted and need to pick your camper up in a timely fashion (within an hour).
- Each child should be sent with a mask. We will not be asking campers or staff to wear masks for the entire camp day, but each individual at camp should have a mask to have on hand in case of any situation where close proximity to others is unavoidable. Drop-off and pick-up staff will wear masks during those times.
- Each group will include up to 9 campers, 1 Junior Leader, and 1 Counselor. Groups will remain together during the camp day, and interaction with other groups will be limited.
- The daily schedule, games, and activities have been modified to accommodate distancing between campers and increased materials sanitization between uses, or enough materials for each group to have their own set.
- Hand washing and hand sanitization will become group activities that are scheduled into the camp day.
- There will be one extra staff member on-site at all times whose primary role is to assist with the continued disinfection of all high contact points, restrooms, and activity materials.
- To reduce the risk of transmission, River Camp will not be providing snack in 2021.
- There will be no early drop-off or Friday afternoon Variety Show in 2021.
- We will be staggering drop-off/pick-up times to minimize the number of people on-site at one time. You will not physically sign-in on the sheet; the Camp Director will record your name and mark the camper has arrived.