SUMMER CAMP FAQ
We know that parents need answers to lots of questions before they decide to send their kids to a Summer Camp. We have compiled answers to a list of the most popular questions parents ask Thorne each year and encourage you to e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 303.499.3647 if you would like to speak directly to a staff member about any questions you have regarding Thorne’s fun and educational Summer Camp.
You can always access registration information and account status, as well as update any account details by logging in to your CampInTouch account.
In Boulder, we have several drop-off and pick-up locations including Boulder High School (1604 Arapahoe Avenue), Chautauqua Park, and Sombrero Marsh Environmental Education Center (1466 N. 63rd St). To provide the best educational experience possible, some of our “Camp Experiences” have an alternative drop-off and pick-up location. Please carefully read each “Camp Experience” description for specific drop-off and pick-up locations.
Ages 2-4: Parent and Child camps meet at Various Locations
Ages 3-8: Thorne Nature Preschool Summer Camp, Eco-Explorers, Jeff & Paige Nature Music Camp, and The Ultimate Thorne Experience for 5-8 year olds meet at Sombrero Marsh Environmental Education Center
Ages 6-8: Meet at Boulder High School, Chautauqua Park, or Sombrero Marsh Environmental Education Center
Ages 9-11: Meet at Boulder High School, Chautauqua Park, or Various Locations
Ages 12-15: Meet at Boulder High School, Chautauqua Park, or Various Locations
Ages 5-11 Extended Care: Pick-Up at Sombrero Marsh Environmental Education Center
In Lafayette, the drop-off and pick-up location is Ryan Elementary (1405 Centaur Drive).
In Littleton, the drop-off and pick-up location for all “Camp Experiences” is at the Kassler Center (11250 Waterton Canyon Road) which is located at the base of Waterton Canyon.
The majority of our “Camp Experiences” are from 8:30 am-2:30 pm.
Several “Camp Experiences” are on different schedules:
- Thorne Nature Preschool camps for 3-5 year-olds run from 9:00 am-1:00 pm
- The 12-15 year old bird banding camps run from 8:00 am-12:00 pm
- Parent/Child “Camp Experiences” for 2-4 year-olds are from 9:30 am-11:30 am.
Please refer to the “Camp Experience” description for specific times. Extended Care is from 2:30 pm-5:30 pm.
To accommodate parents who are picking up and dropping off campers at different locations, Thorne offers pick-up and drop-off windows. For camps meeting at Boulder High School parents can drop off as early as 8:15 am and as late as 8:45 am with pick up at 2:30 pm. For camps meeting at Sombrero Marsh, Chautauqua, or Various Locations parents can drop off as early as 8:30 am and as late as 9:00 am and pick up between 2:30 pm and 3:00 pm.
To provide the most fun and educational camp experience and expose campers to different types of natural environments, most of Thorne’s “Camp Experiences” travel by bus or on foot to different natural areas each day. See the list below to learn more about the natural areas that your child may visit based on their camp meeting site.
Boulder High School Camps:
Camps that meet at Boulder High School travel by BVSD bus to different natural areas each day. The schedule varies each week but some of the locations visited by Boulder High camps include Heil Valley Ranch, Walden & Sawhill Ponds, Mt. Sanitas, Chautauqua, South Mesa Trail, NCAR, Coot Lake, Red Rocks Trail, Golden Ponds and more. Families will receive a specific site schedule on the first day of each camp week.
Camps that meet at Chautauqua travel on foot to explore many of the different trails and habitats within Chautauqua Park. One day per week, Chautauqua camps travel by BVSD bus to Heil Valley Ranch. Overnight camps that meet at Chautauqua spend Thursday night camping on the Cal-Wood Education Center property in Jamestown.
Camps that meet in Lafayette at Ryan Elementary travel by BVSD bus or on foot to different natural areas each day. The schedule varies each week but some of the locations visited by Lafayette camps include Chautauqua, Mt. Sanitas, Walden & Sawhill Ponds, South Mesa Trail, Coot Lake, Golden Ponds, Coal Creek Trail, and more. Families will receive a specific site schedule on the first day of each camp week.
Boulder Offsite camps meet at different natural areas around Boulder County each day. See the “Camp Experience” descriptions for specific meeting locations for each of these camps.
Sombrero Marsh Camps:
Camps for 5-8 year olds that meet at Sombrero Marsh spend three days at the Sombrero Marsh Environmental Education Center and two days on field trips to Walden & Sawhill Ponds and Chautauqua. Nature Preschool “Camp Experiences” spend three days at the Sombrero Marsh Environmental Education Center and two days on field trips to various open space locations in Boulder County.
Camps that meet in Littleton at the Kassler Center, travel on foot (or bike) to nearby Waterton Canyon, Chatfield State Park, and Bob Taylor Ecological Area, visiting a different location each day and exploring a variety of trails, ponds, rivers, forests, and grasslands.
In Boulder and Lafayette, a Boulder Valley School District bus and driver are used to transport campers enrolled in most “Camp Experiences” from Boulder High School or Ryan Elementary to a different natural area each day and to Extended Care in Boulder. BVSD buses and drivers are also used for Chautauqua and Sombrero Marsh field trips.
Drop-off Boulder Preschool campers will be transported by Thorne’s 14-passenger bus for field trips away from Sombrero Marsh.
For Overnight Adventure camps, campers are transported by BVSD school bus and driver, Thorne’s 14 passenger bus, or carpool with parents to and from Cal-Wood Education Center in Jamestown. Thorne Instructors do not transport campers in personal vehicles, except in case of emergency.
All Thorne Instructors have passed background checks through the State of Colorado. All are trained in First Aid, CPR, Standard Precautions, and Medication Administration. Thorne Instructors have diverse professional backgrounds ranging from elementary and middle school educators to environmental scientists to environmental education and summer camp professionals. All Thorne Instructors have a minimum of 460 hours of experience working with children and most importantly, all have a passion for connecting youth to nature!
Many “Camp Experiences” have the support of volunteer Teaching Assistants (ages 16+) and Student Teaching Assistants (ages 13-15). Some of our volunteers are high school and college students, some are retired teachers, and some are even alumni of Thorne camps! All volunteers have passed background checks and have completed our required volunteer training.
Thorne’s camper/instructor ratio in daytime “Camp Experiences” is 12:1 but we strive for 6:1 (one instructor and one volunteer teaching assistant for each “Camp Experience”). Some “Camp Experiences” may have a lower maximum number, such as 8 or 10, to provide the optimal environment for safety and specialized instruction.
Yes, you can call us to register over the phone; however, for most parents online registration is an easier and faster option.
For 3-5 Year-Olds: Because you retain care of your child during the “Camp Experience,” very little paperwork is required to enroll in a Parent & Child “Camp Experience.” We need general registration information (contact information and payment), but we do NOT need medical information (Medical History & Emergency Contacts Form, Immunization Form, or Parent Authorization Form).
For 5-15 Year-Olds: Because your child/ren are under Thorne’s care during these “Camp Experiences,” we need paperwork to ensure their safety and comply with Child Care Licensing. In addition to the Registration Information completed during online registration, we need the following forms that can be accessed from your CampInTouch account: Medical History & Emergency Contacts Form, CDPHE Immunization Form, Parent Authorization Form, and Medication Action Plan (if your child will be bringing ANY medication to camp such as an inhaler or EpiPen).
Full payment is due at the time of registration, unless enrolling in a payment plan. We are unable to reserve a spot in camp without completed registration and payment. We accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and Amex. A Payment Plan is available at the time of registration. See below for more information about Payment Plans.
Yes. In order to ensure that all youth have the opportunity to attend a Thorne Summer Camp, Thorne offers a payment plan that meets the needs of most families. In all instances, full payment must be received prior to the start of the “Camp Experience.” The Payment Plan is available to choose as a payment option during registration. A $45 deposit is required for each week-long “Camp Experience;” Parent and Child “Camp Experiences” must be paid in full at the time of registration. Payment Plans are set up with an eCheck and the remaining balance will be automatically charged across 3 equal payments on April 1, May 1, and June 1. An invoice will be e-mailed the day prior to being charged to notify you of the impending transaction, and in case changes need to be made. If you prefer to pay off your balance more quickly, additional payments may be made at any time by logging into your CampInTouch Account.
For the majority of Thorne Camp Experiences, tuition breaks down to $12 an hour for award-winning, educational child care in nature with experienced, enthusiastic staff. Tuition is listed with each Camp Experience description. Extended Care is an additional $75. Thorne offers more than $150,000 in scholarships each year to ensure no child is turned away from participating in Thorne Summer Camp because their family is facing economic hardships.
Yes, we offer discounts!
SUPER Early Bird Discount: Register between 12/01/19 through 1/31/20 and save 15% on Camp Experiences when you use the coupon code SUPER2020 at checkout*. Register SUPER early and don’t miss out!!
Early Bird Discount: Register between 2/1/2020 through 2/28/2020 and save 10% on Camp Experiences when you use the coupon code EB2020 at checkout*. Register early and don’t miss out!
Multi-Experience Discount: Register for one camper for two or more Camp Experiences OR two campers for one or more Camp Experiences and save 5% on Camp Experiences when you use the coupon code MULTI2020 at checkout*.
Parent Ambassador Discount: Thorne is always looking for enthusiastic parents to help us spread the word about our programs! Stay tuned for more information on how to promote Thorne and receive discounts and prizes*.
*Discounts do not apply to Preschool Summer Camps or Extended Care. Discounts may not be combined.
Thorne offers more than $150,000 in scholarships each year to ensure that no child is turned away from participating in Thorne Summer Camp because his or her family is facing economic hardships. Scholarship assistance is available for families with children who would otherwise not be able to attend camp with Thorne. To apply for a scholarship, fill out our online Scholarship Application, available on March 1st. The first round of scholarship applications will be reviewed after April 1 and awarded based on financial need. You may not register in advance to hold a spot for a scholarship. The Scholarship Application is located within Summer Camp registration. To apply, begin the registration process and select Scholarship Application as an option. Do not select Boulder or Littleton, rather select the button below entitled Scholarship Application. Before you begin your Scholarship Application, it is important that you visit Thorne’s Online Catalog to determine which currently available “Camp Experiences” and dates are your top choices. Within the application you will be given the opportunity to request your preferred “Camp Experiences.” After you have completed your application, a Thorne staff member will contact you after March 31st with a decision regarding your request. When possible, Thorne will offer you one of your top choices; however, due to limited scholarship resources and limited spaces within some of our most popular camps, it may be necessary for us to offer you a scholarship to an alternate “Camp Experience” or date than those you prefer. Please do not contact Thorne to inquire about your request. Everyone will be contacted once decisions have been made.
Thorne would like to thank the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District, Boulder Brands, The Sheila Fortune Foundation, and 1908 Brands for their generous support of our scholarship program.
CLICK HERE to visit the Online Catalog.
If your child wants to get even more involved with Thorne, they might want to become a Summer Camp TA or STA. Thorne’s volunteer program matches up individuals who want to gain experience working in a Summer Camp setting with Thorne’s professional Instructors. Volunteers will spend the camp week (M-F, 8:15am-2:45pm) outdoors assisting an Instructor with a group of campers as they explore nature. TA’s must be at least 16 years old and can volunteer with any of Thorne’s Camp Experiences. STA’s are between 13-15 years old, are still under Thorne’s childcare license, and can volunteer with Camp Experiences that meet at the Kassler Center, Sombrero Marsh, Chautauqua, or Various Locations (excluding Overnight and Biking Camp Experiences).
CLICK HERE for more details about applying for these positions.
Yes, Thorne is licensed by the State of Colorado as a child care provider. We are supervised by the State and adhere to all of its regulations while carrying out our programs. A copy of our State of Colorado Child Care license and inspection reviews are available upon request.
Yes, if you register for the same “Camp Experience” for the same week, they will be together. When you register, please be sure to record friends’ names in the space provided. If an Experience fills, Thorne will sometimes split a “Camp Experience” into A and B sessions and the friend information you report will be taken into account when dividing the sections.
Typically, “Camp Experiences” begin filling up in February/March and 90% of all Camp Experiences fill to capacity. Register as soon as possible to ensure your children and their friends get a spot in their preferred “Camp Experience.” Please check the Thorne registration website to see the number of spots remaining. If a “Camp Experience” is full, we will give you the option to be placed on a free waitlist and will notify you of your status if there is an opening. The waitlist is free and we encourage you to use it as each year more than 20 of our waitlisted campers end up being able to attend the “Camp Experience” of their choice due to a cancellation or if Thorne adds a second session of the same “Camp Experience.”
You can find out how many spaces are left in a “Camp Experience” by visiting the online catalog. Each camp description includes “spaces remaining” in real time.
If a “Camp Experience” is full, you have the option to be placed on a waitlist. If a space becomes available, we will contact you to see if you are still interested in the space. If a “Camp Experience” does not appear on the registration page in CampInTouch, it is already full. To guarantee your camper will get to experience Thorne Summer Camp this year, you might instead register for your second choice at this time and e-mail email@example.com to be placed on the waitlist for your first camp choice.
Specific packing lists are available in the Fact Sheet in your CampInTouch account. Campers will carry their backpacks with required gear throughout the day and will take backpacks off whenever possible. Please label gear and clothing with the camper’s first and last name. As campers explore, clothing and shoes may get dirty and wet – all part of summer outdoor fun!
The following list is required to bring to camp daily for all Thorne campers:
____ Backpack: sized to fit your child that can hold all personal belongings listed below.
____ Clothing for any weather (check daily weather forecast, weather can change suddenly): May include a warm layer (sweatshirt or fleece) and/or Rain gear. Campers will be outdoors (except in extreme weather) and will have fun as long as they are prepared!
____ Shoes: Sturdy and comfortable for exploring on land and in water (no flip-flops or Crocs, please). If you don’t have shoes that are good for hiking and water, pack water shoes in a plastic bag
____ Full bottle of water (20 oz size or larger)
____ Snacks (for example pretzels, trail mix, fruit)
____ Sunscreen (pre-applied and labeled with your child’s name)
____ Insect repellent (pre-applied if desired and labeled with your child’s name)
____ Optional items: net, compass, binoculars
____ Do NOT Bring: Electronics, games, toys, knives, or money
It is best if a camper is present for the full day, each day of camp, so that the group can bond and campers don’t miss any of the adventures Thorne Instructors have planned. If your child will be late, must be picked up early, or will miss a day, please notify your Instructor and Thorne’s Field Coordinator on the first day of camp. Refunds are not available for missed days (except for 2-4 year old Camp Experiences where a transfer is an option).
If you are late and miss the bus for a camp that meets at Boulder High School in Boulder or Ryan Elementary in Lafayette, please contact the Field Coordinator to make arrangements to drop off your child at the day’s site. Contact information for the Field Coordinator will be given to you on the first day of camp.
In general, kids are happiest and adjust to camp most quickly if parents leave promptly after check-in. Thorne Instructors have many fun activities planned to engage the kids immediately in their new surroundings, so having parents present after check-in can often make it more difficult to get kids involved in games and projects. If parents want to visit their child’s camp group for a day during the week, they are welcome to do so. Please arrange your visit ahead of time with your child’s Instructor.
Whenever possible, Thorne tries to accommodate youth with medical conditions, developmental disabilities, or physical disabilities. In order to ensure a fun and safe experience for all campers, please contact Thorne’s Summer Camp Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org or 303-499-3647 ext. 110 to discuss your child’s unique needs. We are most able to accommodate children with medical needs beyond allergies and asthma with advance notice. We will do our best to accommodate your child, but we cannot guarantee we can meet your child’s specific medical needs at Thorne Summer Camp. Be advised that Thorne will not issue refunds to families if, in our opinion, the camper needs to be removed from camp in order to ensure a safe and quality experience for all of our participants.
ALL medication (including over-the-counter medicine) requires medical forms to be completed and signed by the child’s physician. Medicine should never be placed in a child’s backpack; rather, it should be given directly to the instructor, and the instructor must be informed of any medication the child may need to be administered during camp hours. Thorne is not able to accept medication without a physician-signed form. The forms and instructions on how to complete them can be found in your CampInTouch account after you register.
Medication forms are available to download on the list of Downloadable Forms on your Camp InTouch dashboard.
Whenever possible, Thorne tries to accommodate campers with limited English skills. If your child speaks a primary language other than English or Spanish, please contact Thorne’s Summer Camp Manager at email@example.com or 303-499-3647 ext. 110 to discuss your child’s unique needs. We will do our best to accommodate your child, but we cannot guarantee we can meet your child’s specific language needs at Thorne Summer Camp.
Thorne’s Child Care License for our Preschool Summer Camp is for children ages 3 and older. We are unable to make any exceptions to this Colorado law. If your child does not meet this age requirement, consider signing up for our Parent and Child “Camp Experiences” for 2-4 year olds.
Thorne’s Child Care License for our standard day camps is for children ages 5 and older. Your child must be 5 years old by October 15 in order to participate in these camps. We are unable to make any exceptions to this Colorado law. If your child does not meet this age requirement, consider registering for Thorne Nature Preschool Summer Camp, a drop-off camp option for 3-5 year olds.
Your child must be 6 years old at the time of the 6-8-year-old Camp Experience in order to participate. We are unable to make any exceptions to this Colorado law.
Because you know your child best, we encourage parents to decide which “Camp Experience” will be most appropriate for their 6-year-old. Some 6-year-olds are more mature and will thrive in a “Camp Experience” with older campers, while for others, a “Camp Experience” for 5 & 6-year-olds is more appropriate. If your 6-year-old has not attended a summer camp in the past or completed kindergarten, we recommend registering them for a 5-6-year-old “Camp Experience” prior to their first 6-8-year-old “Camp Experience.” Thorne does not require that 6-year-olds attend a 5-6-year-old “Camp Experience” as a prerequisite for attending a 6-8-year-old “Camp Experience.”
If your child is almost 9 years old and you believe s/he is mature enough to go to camp with older youth, then yes, he/she can attend a 9-11 year old “Camp Experience.” All exceptions to age requirements must go through Thorne’s Administrative Director, Stephanie Brudwick. Please call 303-499-3647 ext. 100 or email firstname.lastname@example.org with inquiries.
If your child is almost 12 years old and you believe s/he is mature enough to go to camp with older youth, then yes, s/he can attend a 12-15-year-old “Camp Experience.” All exceptions to age requirements must go through Thorne’s Administrative Director, Stephanie Brudwick. Please call 303-499-3647 ext. 100 or email email@example.com with inquiries.
Thorne understands that sometimes a family’s summer plans change, family emergencies occur, or a camper becomes sick or is injured. In these instances, Thorne offers transfers and refunds as follows:
Transfers – To make a transfer, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with your child’s name, and the names and dates of the “Camp Experiences” you desire to transfer to and from. Prior to April 30: All “Camp Experiences” can be transferred at no cost. After April 30 and up to 21 days prior to the “Camp Experience” start date: Full Day “Camp Experiences” can be transferred for a $10 fee; and, Extended Care and Parent and Child “Camp Experiences” can be transferred at no cost. Within 20 days of the start of a “Camp Experience”: Full Day “Camp Experiences” can be transferred for a $45 fee, depending on availability; and, Extended Care and Parent and Child “Camp Experiences” can be transferred at no cost. Within 7 days of the start of a “Camp Experience”: Transfers will not be made; refer to the cancellation policy. All transfers are dependent on availability. If desired “Camp Experiences” are not available within the current year, refer to cancellation policy.
Cancellation – If you must cancel, please e-mail email@example.com as soon as possible. Prior to April 30: Full Day “Camp Experiences” will receive a full refund less a $45 administrative fee per program; and, Extended Care will receive a full refund less a $10 cancellation fee per program; and, Parent and Child “Camp Experiences” will not be refunded, but are transferrable at no charge. After April 30 and up to 21 days prior to the “Camp Experience” start date: Full Day “Camp Experience” will receive a full refund less a $45 administrative fee per program if we can fill the spot, or a 50% refund if we cannot fill the spot; and, Extended Care will receive a full refund less a $10 cancellation fee; and, Parent and Child “Camp Experiences” will not be refunded, but are transferrable at no charge. Within 20 days of the start of a “Camp Experience”: Refunds will not be given.
Last-Minute Medical Transfer/Credit – In the event of illness or injury prior to the start of a “Camp Experience,” please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible. Thorne will transfer the camper to another available “Camp Experience” or issue a credit good for up to 1 year for a future “Camp Experience” for the same camper for a $45 administrative fee (free for Parent and Child “Camp Experiences”). A doctor’s note stating the camper’s inability to participate will be required. Requests for a medical cancellation will not be granted after a “Camp Experience” has ended.
Thorne Summer Camp may be deductible on your taxes as child care. Thorne’s EIN/Tax ID number is 84-6029250. Please consult a tax professional for specifics.
Thorne’s Behavior Expectation Statement:
Our camp philosophy is to provide a joyful, safe space (physically, socially, and emotionally) to explore in and learn about nature. We believe Thorne is a community where children can both connect to nature and develop life skills, like making good decisions and being responsible for actions. We practice Social Emotional Learning, inclusiveness, respect for others, and bully prevention, with the knowledge that the well-being and safety of children is fundamental to the enjoyment of camp and nature connection.
Bullying is considered unacceptable at Thorne Nature Experience. Bullying is defined by The American Camp Association as “when one or more people exclude, tease, taunt, gossip, hit, kick, or put down another person with the intent to hurt another.” Bullying can occur “overtly and directly, with physical behaviors, such as fighting, hitting, or name calling, or covertly through emotional-social interactions, such as gossiping or leaving someone out on purpose.” Thorne determines consequences for bullying on a case-by-case basis. Depending on the severity and consistency of the behavior, parents may be asked to immediately come and pick up their children for the day. Thorne reserves the right to suspend a child for one day up to permanent termination as they feel is necessary to maintain the integrity of the camp experience for all campers and staff. In this case, no refund will be issued.
For more information on Thorne’s behavior policy, please see the parent handbook.
To retrieve your password, visit https://thorne.campintouch.com/v2/login/login.aspx?#nowhere and click on “Retrieve/Set Password.” If you need further assistance, contact Thorne Nature Experience at 303-499-3647 x100 or email@example.com OR contact CampMinder at 303-444-2267 and press 3 for Camp Parent support.