How to get them to come to your camp

How to get them to come to your camp
by Pauly Hart
Where Truth Matters.

I think the biggest way to draw groups in is connecting to the energies they have already spent in their own families, churches and extended social groups. Such groups are mostly: Independent Home School Groups, Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts, Campfire Girls, Frontier Girls, Spiralscouts, 4H and Church youth groups and children's groups. To grab a hold of these already built youth club organizations is key to a vital Camp growth experience.

A synergy is formed when the entire club is united in an experience that fits their curriculum at a place they feel is committed to their cause. When the Troop leader or Parent leader becomes sold then you are seen as a venue for an activity and not just a stand alone outdoor activity camp. By creating a place for their thing you intertwine the idea in the minds of the children.

"Look dad, they have a SUMMER CAMP TOO!" and suddenly Mister Smith is filling out your forms online.

I believe the key to selling yourself and your camp to one of these groups is personal involvement. Offer to go into a meeting and so a presentation about constellations or basket weaving or whatever it is you and your camp do best to help them obtain badges, medals, or the like. Become the expert on that subject in their eyes and then offer to let them come to your camp for free in two weeks on Saturday and you will teach them another merit badge (the idea here being the open house without that name attached to it). Feed everyone a free lunch. Run it from 9AM - 4PM and invite several groups at once. Have several clinics going on at the same time, schedules posted everywhere, games ready and staff on hand to help with direction for non-staff led activities.

By selling your Camp as a "Venue for Entertainment and Growth" to fit their programs you are opening yourself up to a whole other level of new camper-ship. Again, creating the dynamic synergy between yourself as a place and the groups as the people and You Will Help Them Achieve Their Goals is 8 or 9 months of preparation and foundation laying for the cash cow that a full Summer Camp calendar can bring you.

Finally, parents are begging for a place to take their kids. Why would you want them anywhere else but at your camp? They may have heard about your camp or know of it through a friend, or luckely have a child that has gone there in the past... SELL IT. There are public and state parks and lakes galore! Why should they come to your camp to do their activities? Because you are designed to do it. You work at a location on this small planet that is close to where they live that offers everything they need that has a well organized staff, well tended trails, an ACA rating, obeys OSHA, with plenty of parking, free food and good heaters! GO GET 'EM!