General packing lists are available for families to download. Program specific packing lists should also be consulted to ensure that your camper brings the proper equipment and apparel to participate in our dance and horseback riding programs.
After separating campers by age into smaller groups called unit, Camp Administration considers a variety of factors, such as common interests, personality qualities, and temperament when making room assignments. Our camper pairing process goes more smoothly when families are able to complete and return the All About Me surveys.
Roommate requests should be submitted to camp prior to June 1st. When two girls would like to room together, both families are asked to make the request. Staff will do their best to accommodate such requests. We do suggest that families consider carefully requesting a roommate that their camper knows from home or from a previous year because best friends do not always make best roommates.
If you use a GPS to find Grier Summer, input 2522 Grier School Road, Birmingham, PA for directions. We suggest you travel on Rt. 453 SOUTH for approximately 2 1/2 miles from Tyrone to our driveway with the Grier School sign. When drivers see the sign for the town of Birmingham, slow down and prepare to turn left up the Grier School driveway. Turn left into the school driveway and climb the hill, following the directions indicated by signs for Parking at the top of the hill, above the concrete steps and fish pond.
Grier Summer will meet campers for arrival or accompany campers for departure at selected locations during specific times. There is a fee for this service, and arrangements must be made by June 1.
Kish Travel, based in Tyrone, Pennsylvania, may be a helpful resource to families in planning their trip to Grier Summer. Since Grier Summer staff are only able to transport campers to and from specific locations and times, the staff at Kish Travel can help families make these arrangements. Kish Travel can be reached at 814-643-5240.
Campers should arrive on Sunday of their session between 12:00pm-4:00pm. For your safety and the safety and convenience of others follow the signs and instructions from staff guiding you to the appropriate loading/unloading and parking areas.
Parents should plan to pick campers up on Saturday of the camp session end by 12:00pm noon.
Campers in three-week Dance & Musical Theater programs perform on stage on Friday evening. Parents and family friends are encouraged to attend. Parents who want to depart with their campers after the performance should let camp staff members know in advance.
All campers who participate in horseback riding activities during their stay at camp will participate in the end-of-session Horse Show held on Saturday morning. Family and friends are encouraged to attend. Riders may depart Grier Summer following the show.
Laundry facilities are located in the dormitory buildings for campers. The washing machines have automatic detergent. Both washing machines and dryers do not need coins. The laundry fee is included in the activities fee. Counselors help the younger campers with their laundry. Units are scheduled for laundry times. Please make every effort to label all clothing brought to camp to ensure that articles left in the laundry may be returned to their owner.
A camper may bring her own horse to camp upon prior approval by the Riding Director. There is a horse-boarding fee, and any veterinary expenses will be charged to the parent. You must also provide proof of a current negative Coggins test in order to board your horse at camp. Please contact us if you are interested in bringing your horse to camp; there is limited availability.
While we make every effort to help campers keep their possessions organized in the appropriate locations, from time to time articles are missing from their rightful owners. Items submitted to the lost and found are returned to campers if the item is clearly labeled. Campers should not bring valuable or irreplaceable items to camp.
Weekend excursions off campus are planned one time per week to local attractions. Past trips have been to an amusement park, a state park, a lake, a guided cave tour, and US Independence Day festivities. Campers do not need additional money to purchase tickets or cover entrance fees for these locations, as admission prices and the cost of one snack is covered by Grier Summer.
Grier Summer drivers transport campers in vans and buses during field trips and travel to airports, bus stations, and train depots. All campers are expected to adhere to the following safety rules:
Passengers and drivers must wear seat belts.
Passengers must remain seated while the vehicle is moving.
Passengers must keep hands, heads, and all body parts inside the vehicle.
Passengers must refrain from yelling or engaging in behavior that may distract the driver from concentrating.
Campers are allowed to periodically call home during designated times during a camp session with their cell phone or prepaid calling card. Counselors secure all cell phones until a designated call time. Parents are welcome to contact camp supervisory staff at any time to discuss a their daughter’s progress at camp.
Grier Summer does not have a formal Parents’ Day, but parents are welcome to visit for a special occasion upon making prior arrangements with the camp director. Visitors must check in at the office. Grier Summer must have written permission from a camper’s parent in order for her to leave the camp property with a visitor.
Parents are also invited to attend the end of camp exhibits and performances and /or the camp horse shows. If parents choose to attend dinner the night of the performance, please provide the camp office with the number attending so we can inform the kitchen.
Grier Summer medical staff, in conjunction with dietary staff, are able to assist campers with a variety of chronic medical conditions and allergic reactions including: dairy, peanut, & gluten allergies; vegetarian & vegan diets; seasonal & insect bite allergies; dermatological conditions; ADHD; some gastrointestinal conditions such as acid reflux; respiratory conditions such as asthma. It is important that information about pre-existing medical conditions be shared with summer staff prior to a camper’s arrival so that proper planning may occur.
It is expected that some campers will experience a period a homesickness during the overnight stay at camp. Our camp counselors are trained to listen, support, and engage campers in other activities in order to help them through this period. The Director of Grier Summer, Jennifer Pepperman, is a licensed Clinical Social Worker, and has more than 20 years of mental health experience working with children, adolescents, and families. Jennifer draws from her professional training as a guidance counselor and outpatient therapist to both prepare staff to assist campers, as well as, to work with campers directly if needed to adjust to the experience of being away from home.
If the homesickness persists, a staff person will call the camper’s parents for suggestions about helping the camper to be more comfortable at camp. We do not issue refunds for campers who leave camp early due to homesickness.
An excellent resource for preventing homesickness (including coping strategies for parents) is The Summer Camp Handbook by Christopher A. Thurber and Jon C. Malinowski. More good advice for parents of first time campers can be found on the American Camp Association website at www.acaCamps.org.
Whether campers are swimming in the pool or at a nearby lake or state park, Grier Summer lifeguards will be on duty. Grier Summer aquatics staff have completed the rigorous certification process required by the American Red Cross which includes: water safety, rescue, CPR, AED, and first aid.
The Health Center is staffed continuously throughout the day and evening by certified nurses while children are at Grier Summer. Seasonal camp employees are are certified in First Aid and CPR, and the nearest emergency facility is about 10 minutes away.
Nursing staff or camp staff will telephone parents or an emergency contact person if a camper experiences a medical condition that prevents her from participating in camp activities for more than 24 hours, or if the camper must see a physician for any reason while at camp.
MedExpress of Altoona provides services for Grier Summer if a camper needs to see a physician due to illness or injury while at camp. In the event of an emergency that requires an ambulance, campers are transported to the hospital closest to the emergency accompanied by a member of the camp supervisory staff.
Campers must have a current, completed Health Form on file before arriving at camp. This form includes a health history reported by the camper’s parent or guardian and a physical examination performed by a physician with the past 12 months.
All campers see a member of the nursing staff within the first 24 hours after arriving at camp. During this initial consultation, a camper’s health history will be reviewed, vital signs will be taken, and hair will be checked for lice. If the parents of the camper who is found to have lice are still on campus when the diagnosis of the condition is made, then the parents will be asked to take the camper home for treatment. The camper will be welcomed back to camp after treatment is complete and she is found to be free of nits.
While Grier Summer carries general liability insurance for its facilities and programs, campers must have US based individual health and accident coverage.
Parents must provide the name of the insurance company and the policy number on the camper’s health form and attach a copy of the card to the form. Campers without health insurance will unfortunately not be allowed to attend Grier Summer.
In order to ensure that international campers are adequately covered for medical issues should any arise while at camp, it is mandatory for them to be covered by a local, US-based health plan. Grier Summer will make arrangements for the coverage and will provide families with the enrollment paperwork in advance so that coverage is secured before the camper arrives. International campers will be billed for health insurance.
ALL MEDICATIONS MUST BE TURNED INTO THE HEALTH CENTER UPON ARRIVING AT CAMP.
All prescription medications must be in the original bottle or container, and clearly labeled with the camper’s name and physician’s instructions. (Please provide a translation if this information is printed in a language other than English.) Medications that are unlabeled, unsecured in a dispensary container, or lack instruction from a physician cannot be given. Campers will be taken for a medical assessment by a doctor for clear orders about the necessity of the medication.
Nurses are responsible for the administration of all prescription and over-the-counter medication. Campers are not allowed to carry or handle medication. Nursing staff may make exceptions to this rule for campers with inhalers for asthma attacks, or emergency medication for severe allergies. If campers are on an overnight off campus event, the Health Center organizes the camper’s medication(s) and it is given to the camp staff in charge of the event.