Camp is currently full but you are able to sign up for the waitlist!
Big Bear, California
Spend a week in Big Bear enjoying the fresh air and the exciting activities camp has to offer.Camp Oakes is a unique opportunity for kids to make friends, learn responsibility, cooperation, leadership and respect.
8 - 15
Drop Off Time, TBA
Pick Up Time, TBA
ITEMS TO PACK
WARM Sleeping Bag
Flashlight & Extra Batteries
Toothbrush & Toothpaste
Chap Stick/Lip Balm (SPF15+) Sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher)
Soap & Shampoo Shirts
Laundry Bag (optional)
MAKE SURE ALL LUGGAGE IS WELL MARKED!
DEPARTURE DAY CHECK LIST
Luggage & Sleeping Bag
Camper has applied sunscreen prior to leaving home
Medication (all medication must be in its original container)
Medication Authorization Form completed prior to departure
Medication & Medical Authorization Form in a zip-lock bag with camper’s name on bag
EMERGENCY & MEDICAL
Camp Oakes has a first aid station with medically trained staff available 24 hours a day. Big Bear Hospital is located 10 minutes away from camp.
Please make sure all luggage is well marked with name and address. This makes locating bags much easier, especially for the younger campers.
Keep in mind that there are approximately 800 pieces of luggage going to camp.
Pick Up/ Drop Off
Once again, we will be asking that all campers be dropped off and picked up from camp.
This year we will be offering an exciting opportunity for parents to explore the camp by participating in an informative guided tour.
This tour will allow you to see the sleeping arrangements and a majority of the camp activities. You will even have the chance to enjoy lunch in the camp dining hall.
Specific drop off and pick up times to be announced.
Everyone looks forward to mail at camp. We hope you will make sure that your child receives mail while at camp. The easiest way to get letters to your child is to leave them with staff at check in and they will be delivered during the week.
CANDY & FOOD
Please do not send candy or other food items to camp unless it can be eaten in one sitting. If any food is left in the cabin, animals will find a way into the cabin to eat it. This can be scary for younger campers as well as costly. Animals chew through sleeping bags, luggage and backpacks to get to food.
Due to the number of people at camp and the fact that camp is spread out over a few miles, we only allow phone calls for emergencies. If you have an emergency and need to contact your child, please call the YMCA at 760-341-9622. Member Services will forward the message to Camp Oakes personnel.
Once again, due to the large number of people at camp and the short duration of our stay, we are unable to accommodate visitors. Cell phones are also a distraction from the camp experience. Any phones found will be removed and retuned at the end of camp, so please have your child leave all cell phones at home. Our experience has been that campers who receive phone calls become very homesick and have a difficult time refocusing on being away at camp.
Learning independence and self-reliance can be one of the most valuable parts of camp.
Camp Oakes has a camp store. Campers can purchase snacks, drinks and souvenirs. This is optional but many of the campers enjoy visiting the store. All money must be turned in to camp a director on departure day. All unused money over $5 will be available for pick up at the YMCA until July 8th. Any money not collected by July 8th or less that $5 will be donated to the “Send a kid to camp” scholarship fund.
All cabin leaders are YMCA volunteers who give of their time to make camp possible. All volunteers are interviewed, fingerprinted and complete background checks are done prior to attending camp. All camp staff also attend a series of trainings including an extensive all day training.
Junior counselors are students 16-17 years old, who assists the cabin leader in the cabin during the week at camp. Junior counselor candidates must attend the same trainings as the cabin leaders in order to be eligible to be chosen to attend camp as a Junior counselor.
This program is an opportunity for our older campers to learn leadership that will help prepare them to be a Junior Counselor in the future. Campers in this program gain valuable leadership skills that help at camp and at home. We teach LIT’s about working with younger campers, as well as working with peers, problem solving, communication and more. This is where a lot of our counselors got their start.
If your child needs medication during camp, you need to check the medication in at the MEDICATION CHECK-IN TABLE on departure day. All medication, prescription and non prescription, must be checked in with YMCA staff. A Medication Authorization Form must also be completed and must accompany all medication.
Medication should be placed in a zip lock bag with the campers name on the bag. You can pick up a Medication Authorization Form at the YMCA before camp or on departure day.
FOR THE SAFETY OF ALL CAMPERS, PLEASE DO NOT SEND MEDICATION, INCLUDING OVER THE COUNTER MEDICATION, WITH YOUR CHILD OR IN THEIR LUGGAGE! PLEASE REMEMBER THAT ALL MEDICATION IS TO BE PICKED UP UPON RETURN, AS IT WILL NOT BE HELD AT THE YMCA. YMCA STAFF WILL DISPOSE OF ALL MEDICATION NOT PICKED UP.
The YMCA strives to instill the character values of Caring, Honesty, Respect, and Responsibility in everyone at camp.
The YMCA realizes that being with friends is an important part of camp, so we make every effort to honor all “Cabin Requests”. If your child has a friend and they would like to be partnered in a cabin, be sure to write their name on the Cabin Assignment Card.
Cabins are assigned with the following guidelines.
Gender: Males & Females are placed in separate cabins.
Age: Cabin ages are generally no more than 1 year apart.
Requests: Only 1 request per camper will be considered.
Ratios: Cabin leaders to camper ratios are from 1-8 to1-12.
Medical: We consider all medical needs of campers.
Relatives: We place relatives in different cabins to give each camper their own experience.
Some of the cabins at Camp Oakes are 3-wall cabins. This makes for a great camping experience, with views of nature and lots of fresh air. However, this can also make for some cold nights, so please pack accordingly.
Camp Oakes offers a wide variety of camp activities designed to promote confidence, fitness, teambuilding and fun! All activity areas are staffed by Camp Oakes personnel who are specially trained in all camp related areas.
Each night, all cabins come together for a traditional campfire program. Campers will sing campfire songs, perform skits and tell stories. For many of the campers, this is the highlight of the day.
In the mornings, we begin the day with a chapel program. Chapel consists of songs, skits, stories and devotions. We also use this time to emphasize our character values of Caring, Honesty, Respect and Responsibility.
The YMCA “Rags” program is designed as a personal growth exercise. Everyone at camp is welcome to participate in this optional program. Each “ragger” chooses another camper to share their challenges or goals, then keeps their rag on hand to remind them of their challenges throughout the year.
To help make meal time more fun and add to cabin spirit we have themes during the week. This year the themes will be:
Cabin Pride: Here’s a chance for you and your cabin mates to show off your cabin style. Find out from your cabin leader what the theme is and go big.
Formal: Put on your dancing shoes! Our Annual Dance is sure to make you want to dress to impress!
Favorite Character: Be it books, movies or television do your best to recreate one of your favorite characters.
Space: This theme is out of this world! Jump on board as we observe the night sky and explore the mysteries of space. Dress as an alien, an astronaut or wear your best galaxy print!