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Coed Camp Upstate New York FAQ's

There are some important questions a parent should ask when looking for a summer camp. Following are eleven basic questions that will help you get to know Pok-O-MacCready better and help you think of more questions you may have.

1. Are you accredited?
Pok-O-MacCready Camps is accredited and welcomes the American Camping Association once every three years for personnel, facility, safety and health inspection. Additionally, camp owner Jack Swan has long been active in the ACA community, serving as an inspector and advisor to other summer camps. See www.acacamps.org  for more details on accredidation.

2.  As a co-ed summer camp, how much interaction occurs between boys and girls?
Our camp originally began as a boys camp in 1905, called “Camp Pok-O-Moonshine”.  In 1967, our current Director, Jack Swan, established our girls camp, “Camp MacCready.”  We combined our name to “Pok-O-MacCready Camps”, and, even though we are now a full-fledged co-ed camp, we still hold on to our camp tradition and refer to boys camp and girls camp by their old names.  The Pok-O-MacCready summer camp complex is located on a 300-acre waterfront property, with the girls camp and the boys camp being separated by just a 5 minute walk “down the path”.  This allows all campers to utilize the variety of facilities Pok-O-MacCready offers.  Even though girls and boys have different sleeping quarters and tend to eat at separate meal times, our campers enjoy co-ed classes, activities, and all-camp events.  We feel this is the perfect combination and really gives our campers the best of both worlds!

3. What is your camper to staff ratio?
Our cabins at Pok-O-MacCready differ in size, housing from four to eight campers and at least one counselor. Meals are supervised by two staff members per table. Instructional activities are kept to a reasonable class size, with anywhere from one to three teachers. Likewise, our wilderness trips have either two or three staff for a group that rarely exceeds ten campers. In addition to our cabin counselors, Pok-O-MacCready has nine section heads; four additional camp directors (2 at each camp); one dozen activity specialists, and our administration. Our overall camper to staff ratio is 4-1. (See CAMP STAFF)

4. Who is your “typical” camper?
There is no “typical” Pok-O-MacCready camper. While we have a heavy representation of children from Northeast metropolitan areas, our campers come from all over the United States, and around the world (as far away as Asia and Africa). We have children from urban, suburban and rural backgrounds. No single religion or cultural belief is dominant among our campers. During their time at Pok-O-MacCready, all children become part of the same community and value system of sharing, teamwork and mutual respect.

5. How early should we register?
You can register your child or children for a summer at Pok-O-MacCready as early as one year in advance. “Early Registration” deals are in place into December, while a registration after February 1 may mean there is no space available in your child’s age group. Occasionally, last minute openings may occur right up until the start of camp, so don’t hesitate to contact us!

6. What is a “typical” day of activities?
Pok-O-MacCready packs a lot into a single day, a single week, and a single session. CLICK HERE to see our “Typical Daily Schedule”, or simply browse our web site to check out the multitude of activities and programs we offer every day! Campers go through our Activity Fair when they arrive at camp, and then create their own daily schedule according to their preferences.

7. Are there any hidden costs at the camp?
Tuition for any of the sessions at Pok-O-MacCready covers, among other things, lodging, meals, linens, instruction, all activities, wilderness trips and first-rate guidance and enjoyment. Extra optional costs include horseback riding, transportation to and from camp, accessories (such as batteries or toothpaste), camp merchandise and clothing, and “treats” from the camp store.

8. Is the price negotiable?
Pok-O-MacCready is proud to be affiliated with the Adirondack Scholarship Foundation, which endeavors to provide assistance to families in need of full or partial financial tuition assistance to send their child to summer camp. Requests for scholarship are handled exclusively by the Foundation by way of application. Additionally, discounts are awarded to those who register early, and may be available for families sending multiple children. Please CONTACT us for more information.

9. Who is on the medical staff and what are the facilities?
Pok-O-MacCready has three full-time nurses on staff each summer. At least one, and usually all, are Registered Nurses (R.N.’s.) Our two health offices are equipped with all first aid necessities and provide a secure place for your child’s medication. Beds and full-time supervision are in place for overnight stays, if necessary. Pok-O-MacCready is closely affiliated with a medical center in the nearby town of Willsboro,NY; and a hospital is located within a half hour drive of camp.

10. What are the camp rules and how is the discipline handled?
The staff at Pok-O-MacCready is committed to following strict adult-child guidelines and laws regarding discipline. Initial disciplinary action involves educating the camper and providing suitable, non-physical consequences for his or her actions. All disciplinary action follows our “chain of command” from counselor, to Section Head, to Head of Camp, to Camp Director, depending on how serious a situation may become. Our highest priority is the welfare of our campers and the comfort of their parents, and we will not hesitate to contact parents if we deem it necessary. In extreme circumstances following ongoing disciplinary problems, or if the safety of other campers is at risk, a child will be asked to leave camp.

11. Will my child be able to communicate with us?
As many experienced camp administrators can tell you, most cases of homesickness are “just a day or so of the blues.” As soon as campers get absorbed into camp life, they will be having so much fun that homesickness will be far from their minds! Our counselors undergo rigorous staff training and learn effective methods for helping kids overcome homesickness. Additionally, veteran campers can often relate to new, homesick campers, and are willing to help their peers deal with it in true Pok-O-MacCready spirit!
Parents may call their children after the first ten days of camp. We feel that the beginning of camp is an important time for the camper to adjust to new surroundings. If your child is initially homesick, our staff knows how to deal with it. Should the issue be prolonged, or deemed more serious, the Camp Director will call you, the parents. Following our ten day “grace period” parents are free to telephone campers at designated times. Naturally, our Directors welcome calls at any time to discuss camp and your child.