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Camp El Tesoro - Overnight Camp

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What age children can attend Camp El Tesoro?
How do you screen staff?
What kind of training does the staff receive?
Is Camp El Tesoro licensed?
Is Camp Fire inclusive?
My child is on an alternative vaccination schedule, what are my options?
Do you offer scholarships/financial assistance?
How can I best prepare my first-time camper?
What are some great packing tips?
When do I drop-off/pick-up my child?
What do I need to have when I drop my child off at camp?
Can we bring our pet to camp?
How are campers grouped in cabins?
What is the staff to camper ratio for each age group?
Can my child be in a cabin with his/her friend(s)?
What are the cabins like?
What is the camp store? What is the suggested amount to deposit?
Can I visit El Tesoro before camp?
How can I get in contact with camp?
Can I call my child or come visit them at camp?
Can I send my child mail or a care package?
What do you do in case of homesickness?
What happens if my child is sick or injured?
What is the food like?
How do you address high temperatures outdoors?
What if my child loses some items at camp?
What is your cancellation policy?
How do I sign up for the e-newsletter?

Can I stay with my child or stay on camp property while my child attends camp?

Is camp a nut free facility?

My child has special needs, can they attend an overnight camp?

Is camp El Tesoro religiously affiliated?

 

Q: What age children can attend overnight camp?
A: Camp El Tesoro accepts children entering grades 1-10. Youth entering 11 and 12 grade are eligible to apply to the Counselor-in-Training Program.

Q: How do you screen staff?
A: Camp El Tesoro's staff is dedicated to making your child's camp experience memorable, fun and safe. We require counselors to be at least 18 years old (activity directors are 21 and older). All staff go through an extensive screening process that includes interviews, personal reference checks and annual background checks.

Q: What kind of training does the staff receive?
A: Prior to camp, all staff participate in a training that includes risk management, emergency procedures, positive behavior management and teaching activities. All staff are certified in first aid and CPR; activity leaders are certified in one or more of the following: lifeguarding, archery, challenge course and horseback riding.

Q: Is Camp El Tesoro licensed?
A: Camp Fire Camp El Tesoro meets the high standard set by Camp Fire and is licensed and operates in accordance with the Texas Youth Camp Safety and Health Act. Camp El Tesoro is accredited with the American Camp Association.

Q: Is Camp Fire inclusive?
A: Camp Fire recognizes the dignity and worth of each individual and to seeks to eliminate human barriers based on all assumptions which prejudge individuals. Our program standards are designed and implemented to reduce sexual, racial, religious, and cultural stereotypes and to foster positive intercultural relationships. In Camp Fire, everyone is welcome.

Q: My child is on an alternative vaccination schedule, what are my options?
A: We strive to ensure the health and safety of all campers. If your child is on an alternative vaccination schedule, we require they have a Texas vaccine exemption certificate from their doctor or place of worship.

Q: Do you offer financial assistance?
A: Yes! El Tesoro Camperships are available for families who qualify. Award amounts vary, but each family is expected to pay a minimum of $75 per camper. Please contact us or call 817.831.2111 to receive an application. Forms will be available online in January and are due by April 1.

Q: How can I best prepare my first-time camper?
A: Try having your child spend the night with friends a few times before camp; this will get them used to saying away from home before staying at camp for a week. Have your child look for things in the house with a flashlight at night; this will prepare your child for getting up to go to the bathroom at night in their cabin. Have your child help pack for camp; this will let them know exactly what is in their footlocker and make it easier for them to pack when they go home. We only have showers at camp, so have your camper practice using a shower at home and send them with a shower caddy to help them keep up with their belongings.

Q: What are some great packing tips?
A: We recommend packing a footlocker instead of a suitcase, and remember to label everything! Pack each day's clothes in a separate plastic bag labeled with the day to help your child easily find everything they need. Send old clothes, towels and washcloths; we spend a lot of time outside so things tend to get dirty! Check out our camp packing ideas board on Pinterest.

Q: When do I drop-off/pick-up my child?
A: Drop-Off
On the first day of your child's camp session, check-in begins as follows:

  • Grades 1 - 6: Arrival is between 3:00 - 4:00 p.m.
  • Grades 7 – 10: Arrival is between 3:30 - 4:30 p.m.

Staff will be available to assist with luggage.

Pick-Up
Please note the day and date that your child's camp session ends. At each session's end, there will be a closing ceremony beginning at 6:30 p.m. Families are invited to the ceremony, which will conclude at approximately 7:15 p.m.

Q: What do I need to have when I drop my child off at camp?
A: The consent form, physicians form and any medications should be in hand when you arrive at camp. Campers should have a swimsuit (preferably wearing it under their clothes) and towel in their backpack and be ready to swim on Sunday afternoon.

Q: Can we bring our pet to camp?
A: No. While Camp El Tesoro is a natural environment, please leave your pet at home regardless of size, temperament and breed to help ensure safety.

Q: How are campers grouped in cabins?
A: Campers are grouped by grade level and gender.

Q: What is the staff to camper ratio for each age group?
A: 

Grade: Staff to Camper Ratio:
1st & 2nd 1:6
3rd - 5th 1:8
6th 1:8
7th & 8th 1:10
9th & 10th 1:10



 

 

 

 

Q: Can my child be in a cabin with his/her friend(s)?
A: Yes, you can request up to two "cabin buddies" (that are the same gender and in the same grade) on your registration form. We try our best to accommodate cabin buddy requests. Cabin assignments are made the week prior to your child arriving at camp.

Q: What are the cabins like?
A: Campers stay in newly constructed enclosed cabins set in various locations in camp. Each cabin has the capacity to sleep ten campers and two staff members. Each bed space has its own outlet for campers who bring fans. Bathrooms are located inside the cabins with two toilets, three showers, and three sinks. Each cabin is ADA accessible. Watch our virtual tour video.

Q: What is the swim test?
A: A mandatory swim test is conducted immediately after check in. To pass the test, a camper must successfully complete two phases: Phase I: Swim across and back (the full width of the pool), without touching the bottom. Phase II: Tread water for one minute in the deep end, then swim one width of the pool. During the swim test, trained and certified lifeguards are on duty. Campers unable to pass the swim test are required to stay in the shallow end of the pool during free swim.

Q: What is the camp store? What is the suggested amount to deposit? Can I get a refund?
A: The camp store sells gatorade, snacks and souvenirs. Campers can purchase merchandise two times per week and can purchase snacks daily. We recommend that campers have $30-50 in their account per week. 

You can view your camper's store balance online through your Bunk1 account. After the camp session, balances under $5.00 will be considered a donation to the campership fund. If your balance is $5.00 or greater, you may request a refund by emailing Refunds@CampFireFW.org by August 31. Refunds will be processed and sent out upon request. Otherwise, your balance will be transferred to the campership fund. Store balances remaining from early bird or other special store credit are not eligible for refunds.

Q: Can I visit El Tesoro before Summer camp?
A: Yes, El Tesoro has camp previews in April and May! The FREE event includes archery, canoeing, hiking, s'mores and a Q&A with the camp director. You will also get to see the cabins, equestrian center and dining hall. Find upcoming previews.

Q: How can I get in contact with camp?
A: If you need to speak to the Camp Director or get a critical message to your child, please call the El Tesoro camp office 817.989.9004. If you have a need that concerns your account, please call the Camp Fire main office at 817.831.2111.

Q: Can I call my child or come visit them at camp?
A: We ask that you not visit or call your child while they are at camp. An overnight camping experience is designed to foster independence in your child. We will call and consult you if any issues arise. We have a no cell phone policy at camp.

Q: Can I send my child mail or a care package?
A: Yes, we encourage you to! There is nothing like a letter from home, so please write your camper regularly. You may want to mail a letter before your child leaves for camp so that it will arrive at the beginning of the week or bring letters and packages with you to drop off. Please do not send candy, cookies or gum as they are not allowed at camp. Mail and BunkNotes emails will be distributed everyday at lunchtime.
Camp address:
    Camper's Name
    Camp Fire Camp El Tesoro
    7710 Fall Creek Hwy
    Granbury, TX 76049

Q: What do you do in case of homesickness?
A: With years of experience, we've learned four things about homesickness: (1) by watching for early signs, homesickness is usually avoidable; (2) once parents/guardians are out of sight, counselors and other campers come into a child's focus and the fun starts; (3) parents/guardians are usually more uneasy about leaving their children than children are in leaving their parents/guardians and, (4) the parent/guardian's attitude about their child being away from home has a strong impact on children. Parents/guardians can help prevent homesickness prior to arrival at camp by speaking of the camp experience in a positive manner. NEVER tell your child that you may not make it without them or that you think they may miss home too much to stay away that long. Let them know how much you love them and want them to have a great experience in growing up!

Q: What happens if my child is sick or injured?
A: There is a health-care provider living on-site during each week of camp. Parents will be contacted by the camp in case of illness or injury.

Q: What is the food like?
A: Camp El Tesoro provides three meals a day. For breakfast we offer a hot meal line as well as a variety of cereal and fruit. Lunch and dinner include a hot meal served family-style and a salad bar. Prior to your child's arrival, let us know if your child has food allergies or special dietary needs so we can plan in advance for their stay at camp. Part of the camp experience is participating in meal set-up and clean-up. Every child in a cabin takes a turn and shares in this responsibility.

Q: How do you address high temperatures outdoors?
A: Even if it's hot outside, camp is a great place to be! Campers easily adapt to living in the summer heat by staying hydrated, resting during the hottest part of the day and wearing cool cotton clothing. Camp staff are trained to recognize heat problems and take steps to minimize them. We plan quiet activities during the hottest part of the day and campers swim daily. We require that each camper bring a water bottle with his or her name on it. We will see that it is always filled with water, which always makes the heat more bearable.

Q: What if my child loses some items at camp?
A: We have a Lost & Found for just such a thing! Please do not send anything to camp that is irreplaceable. Learning to be responsible for your own items is a big lesson at summer camp. Please check the Lost & Found before leaving on closing night. All unclaimed items will be held at camp until August 31.

Q: What is your cancellation policy?
A: Your $125 deposit is non-refundable. If you provide written cancellation notice at least 2 weeks prior to the first day of your session, you will receive a 50% refund of your balance or your entire balance can be applied to next year's summer camp. No refunds will be issued to those who cancel after this date.

Q: How do I sign up for the e-newsletter?
A: Just visit the E-Newsletter page.

Q: Can I stay with my child or stay on camp property while my child attends camp?
A: No. Camp El Tesoro believes your child’s camping experience should be a time for growth, just as much as it is a time for fun. Because of this, we do not allow parents to stay with their campers or on camp property.

Q: Is camp a nut-free facility?
A: Yes. Camp is a nut-free facility.

Q: My child has special needs, can they attend an overnight camp?
A: Absolutely! Camp El Tesoro can include up to five campers each week with mild intellectual or developmental disabilities to join the fun opportunities for personal growth at camp.

Q: Is camp El Tesoro religiously affiliated?
A: While we recognize and are proud of our religiously-rooted historic beginnings, Camp Fire and Camp El Tesoro are not religiously affiliated; however, because of our strong belief in tradition and history, some aspects of camp may involve language that could be perceived as religious. For example, campers will say grace before every meal in the form of a song. Two-week campers will attend a reflection service at our outdoor chapel area on Sunday morning. During this time, campers are asked to reflect on their week and discuss how they can grow as leaders.

Can I stay with my child or stay on camp property while my child attends camp?