For Parents

You have registered your child for Forest Dancing, now what?

First of all, THANK YOU for choosing Forest Dancing.  We are confident your child will have an incredible summer intensive experience.  Whether you have been coming to Forest Dancing for years, or if this is your first time with an overnight camp, there is some important information you need to understand.  Our goal is for your camper to have the best camp experience possible and for you and your child to make the most of this time away from home. (Please note, for the ease of reading, gender pronouns will be used randomly.  We welcome both male and female campers to Forest Dancing!)

Packing:  Check out our Prepare for Camp page for all the details about packing.  Everything your child needs to bring for a fun and successful week is listed here.

Cell Phones:  We understand you want to be in communication with your child.  However, your child will likely have a much better camp experience without distractions. We know this may sound counter-intuitive, but it is something we have learned from over 31 years of first-hand experience.  To minimize distractions and adjustment challenges, dancers will be required to leave cell phones at home.  In the case of an emergency, we will contact you immediately.

Homesickness:  Children and teens sometimes experience homesickness when away from home, even for short periods of time.  This is not unusual and nothing to be concerned about.  Here are a few tips to help you support your child in dealing with homesickness…

  • You can help minimize your child’s adjustment struggles by respecting our cell phone policy.  Often, when a child struggling with homesickness hears the voice of a loved one, it triggers challenging feelings for them and they can feel worse.
  • When talking to your child, realize the more upset he sounds, the more he may need your support with separation.  Offer calm reassurance and put the time frame in perspective.  Let him know you will miss him too and you will see him at the end of the week.
  • Help your child make the most of the Forest Dancing experience by giving he/she the opportunities to grow into more independence.  Let your child know you have confidence in the ability to stick it out.  They will build confidence and competence if you let them work through the hard feelings to discover a newfound growth which will serve them well in the coming years.
  • Learn more about Homesickness and how to support your child.

Medical Emergency:  Although extremely rare,  in case of a medical emergency, the camper will be transported to the nearest hospital for treatment.  Signed consent to treat will be completed by a parent or guardian upon registration.

Letters and Packages:  The best way to communicate with your child at camp is to send him a letter or care package.  Mail Call is much more fun when there is something in the bag with your name on it. If you wish, you can leave some dated letters or packages with us when you drop your child off at camp.  We will distribute them throughout the week as you instruct.

Emergencies:  If you have an emergency during camp week and need to reach your child immediately, contact Joan Van Dyke or the Head Counselor (see contact numbers below).  We will have your child call you as soon as possible.

  • Joan Van Dyke: 814-939-9291 or 814-938-8517

Facebook Updates:  Check out our facebook page for daily updates and photos of all the fun…and hard work!  Be sure to comment and share with family and friends.

Final Showing:  We hope you will invite all of your family and friends to attend our final showing on Friday at 11:00AM in the Jackson Theater, downtown Punxsutawney.  Immediately following, campers are free to go and start planning for next year!  Tickets for guests and family can be purchase for $5.00 each upon registration.