Camp Prep



Camp day runs from 9am-4pm. Campers will have an opportunity to swim every day, weather permitting. The Y is committed to healthy living and modeling healthy eating. A healthy afternoon snack will be provided for all campers.
Please note: Parents are responsible for informing the camp office in writing of all changes to camper registration. Changes will not be accepted over the phone.

All campers will be dropped off and picked up at the Roundhouse Pavilion in Genesee Valley Park, off of Moore Road.


Extended morning care begins at 7:00am and afternoon extended care is available until 6:00pm. Extended care is available at no extra charge or additional registration to campers.


Anyone picking up a camper must be listed on the child’s Authorized Pick Up List and must have either:

  • A photo uploaded to campsite as an authorized pick up. Please note that you may still be asked for a valid photo ID even with a photo uploaded to campsite.
  • A valid photo ID. Acceptable forms of ID include: Driver’s license or state non-driver ID, passport or military ID, or an employment identification card.

If a child is not picked up, YMCA staff will notify authorized individuals for pick up. If they cannot be reached within 2 hours of scheduled pick up time, the Monroe County Protective Agency will be notified.  There is a charge of $1.00 per minute for any child remaining after 6:00pm. Please note that we are no longer using PIN’s for authorized pick-ups.


To change authorized pick-ups, please log into your Campsite Parent Dashboard. No notes or phone calls will be accepted to change authorized pickups. In the event that an unauthorized individual attempts to gain access to a child, the parent/guardian or emergency contact will be notified. Law enforcement will be contacted if necessary. Please note that a parent, regardless of custodial arrangements, has the authority to obtain a child from camp at any time unless a copy of the Court Order is on file with the camp office.


Please provide written notice if you need to pick up your child prior to 4:00pm. Please be aware that due to the nature of the camp property, it’s likely your child’s group will not be in the immediate area of the camp office.

  • Unusual arrivals and departures close to regular arrival/departure time will result in delays.
  • Those who drop off/pick up between 9:00am and 4:00pm are required to sign in and out.
  • Email daily changes directly to your camp.


Please notify the camp if your child will be absent.


Please do not send your child to camp if they are sick and/or running a fever. If a child becomes ill at camp, a parent or person authorized to pick up will be contacted to pick up the child. Children must be symptom free for at least 24 hours before returning to camp. A doctor’s note may be required. Medical reasons for your child to remain home include but are not limited to:

  • A temperature of 101 or more.
  • Persistent nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.
  • Heavy nasal or eye discharge.
  • Any questionable rash or skin condition: This can include chicken pox, poison ivy, poison oak, or poison sumac, etc.
  • Any communicable diseases: This can include conjunctivitis, herpes virus which causes cold sores, lice,etc.


Session 1-Sampler Week (Located at Carlson MetroCenter YMCA – Session 1 only)
Session 2-Camper vs. Wild
Session 3-Messy Olympics
Session 4-The Great Thunderbird Mystery
Session 5-Mythbusters
Session 6-The Heart of Africa
Session 7-Color Me Crazy
Session 8-Thunderbird Around the World
Session 9-Superheroes and Storytellers
Session 10-Dreamseeds Expo


If you child will be walking or biking to and from camp, please send a signed note to the camp office with specific days and dates that this is permitted. Please remind your child to sign out with their counselors before departing each day. Please note: New York State law requires that children have proper safety equipment (i.e. helmet) to ride a bike.


Camp is a cell phone and electronics free zone. If cell phones come to camp, they must remain safely in a backpack. The YMCA is not responsible for the loss or damage of any personal item. If a camper is continually reminded to put their cell phone away, staff may take the phone and lock it safely in the camp office.


Campers will take part in a fully scheduled program of activities regardless of weather. We are prepared with a rainy day schedule for each group which focus on crafts, group games, and special events. Be sure to dress campers appropriately for the weather.


Misplaced items are common among school age children. You can help limit lost items by following the below procedures. All lost and found items not claimed after two weeks will be donated to a charitable organization. The YMCA of Greater Rochester is not responsible for lost, stolen, broken or destroyed items.

  • Label all belongings with the campers first and last name.
  • Remind each child to check their belongings at the end of each day.
  • If something is lost, check the lost and found as soon as possible.
  • Notify camp staff upon sign in/sign out regarding lost items or speak with your child’s unit leader.


Each registered camper will receive a Camp t-shirt as part of their registration. Camp t-shirts will be distributed to each camper during their first session in attendance.


YMCA Camps are permitted to operate by the New York State Department of Health. We are inspected twice annually. Reports are filed with the Monroe County Department of Health.


Campers who wish to swim in designated deep-end water areas must pass the deep-end test. Campers that are unable to complete the deep-end test and do not meet the height requirements will be required to wear a life jacket and remain in the shallow end while swimming.


  • Deep End swimmers are required to take the Genesee Valley Park Deep End Test every summer.
  • Deep End tests will be offered to campers every Monday at Camp.


Children should arrive to camp every day with the following items:

  • A camp bag for all camp stuff.
  • A refillable water bottle.
  • Swimsuit and towel.
  • Plastic bag for wet clothes.
  • Extra set of clothing.
  • Sunscreen and bug spray.
  • Sneakers (closed toed shoes are required for many camp activities.)
  • Rain Gear (weather permitting.)

All belongings should be labeled with your child’s first and last name.

Please note:

A healthy breakfast, lunch and snack will be served at camp and are included in your camp registration. We do not permit outside food at Camp Thunderbird. If your child has a medically documented food restriction, Foodlink will work with us to make appropriate substitutions.


The following items will be confiscated by YMCA staff and held in the office for parents to retrieve at the end of the camp day.

  • Tobacco, alcohol, drugs
  • Trading/playing cards
  • Valuables – The YMCA of Greater Rochester is not responsible for lost or stolen items.
  • Personal toys or games.
  • Weapons.
  • Candy, gum or cough drops (due to food allergies, campers should not bring candy or snacks to share.)
  • Animals.
  • Lighters or matches.


All campers should apply sunscreen and insect repellent in the morning prior to arriving at camp. Staff will assist campers with reapplying their sunscreen and insect repellent after swim periods. To comply with child abuse protection guidelines, the application so sunscreen will take place in an open setting. We recommend that each camper keep their own bottle of sunscreen and insect repellent in their backpack labelled with their first and last name. Because campers spend a large part of the day outside, we recommend campers wear a hat to protect them from the sun and wear approved swim shirts while participating in swim periods.


It is preferred that prescription medications be administered at home whenever possible.

All medications, both prescription and over-the-counter, dispensed at camp requires a Medication Consent Form/Special Health Care Plan to be completed by the parent/guardian and the child’s physician. This form can be found on our website or obtained by calling the main office number.

Camper medication may be dropped off the week prior to camp starting or given directly to the camp health designee or Morning Camper Care Coordinator during the camp season. All medication must be in its original container and clearly labeled with the campers first and last name. Medications will not be accepted if they do not meet those requirements.

Campers with special care needs, including severe allergic reactions, asthma, or physical limitations are required to submit a special health care plan which can be found on the Campsite. We also encourage a one on one meeting prior to the campers start date with the camp health designee and/or Unit Head.


New York State Department of Health requires each camp to keep a current copy of every camper’s immunization history on file in order to attend. Campsite keeps immunization forms on file for as long as you have an account. Upload all immunization forms once, then you only have to upload immunization forms when they have been updated. A complete copy of your child’s immunization history should be submitted to the YMCA by June 1, 2019. Campers without an immunization history on file will not be permitted to attend.


Our staff is trained in handling a variety of emergency situations. In the event of an emergency, we will make ever attempt to notify parents immediately. If necessary, emergency transportation will be handled by local emergency services.


All YMCA Camp programs strive to use discipline in a fair, nurturing manner. Punitive methods are not acceptable. The YMCA takes great pride in guiding children to become successful and happy individuals who are learning to independently get along with others. This is achieved through the following:

  • Role Modeling: Effectively exemplifies good qualities needed for acceptance in a group.
  • Positive Reinforcement: To encourage repetition of good behavior.
  • Reinforcing Problem Solving Skills: These include settling disagreements with aggressiveness, predicting consequences, thinking of the feelings of others, etc.
  • Reason and Logic:  Helping children to think through a problem and find the solution that works best for everyone concerned.

Any camper who commits an act of physical aggression or gross disobedience will complete a behavior incident report with camp staff. Reports will be shared with the child’s parents/guardians, and may result in any of the following actions as determined by the camp director or director designee:

  • First Offense: Parents will be contacted and the child will be suspended for the next day of camp.
  • Second Offense: Child will be suspended from camp for the remainder of the session.
  • Third Offense: Child will be expelled from camp for the remainder of the summer.

There will be no refund or fees or deposits for days a camper is suspended. Please go over these policies with your children. Expectations for behavior and consequences will be reviewed on an ongoing basis over the course of the summer, but your cooperation is needed to ensure that the right of each camper to have a safe and happy environment is attained.


We understand that when it comes to your children, an emotional response is sometimes hard to avoid. However, we ask you to understand that we are doing our best to ensure all children have a positive experience in a safe environment while at camp. We evaluate each situation or conflict as objectively as possible and assess the event of each incident, keeping in mind each child’s part in the issue. Our goal with any and every incident is to react as quickly and efficiently as possible to ensure we are moving forward and learning from the incident. Both as an organization and for all parties involved, our goal is to improve and prevent further incidents.

There are very few one-sided incidents and to successful address a situation, we must look at each child’s part and gather all the facts. When speaking with you, we exercise the confidentiality of everyone concerned and can only provide information pertinent to your child. Staff cannot provide any personal information of other children/parents involved in a situation. We ask that you work with us to reinforce concerns brought forward and help by offering positive solutions to your child to avoid conflict in the future.

Just as we expect your child to respect the facility, our mission, and our staff working within it, we ask you to do the same. Remember there are impressionable ears everywhere in our facilities and as an adult, you have a responsibility to express yourself accordingly. Bullying occurs at all ages an we will not respond to parents who attempt to intimidate our staff with threats of any kind.

Please speak appropriately and refrain from using threatening words, tone of voice, gestures, foul language, sexually inappropriate comments, and physical contact toward our staff. Please be aware that aggression of threatening behavior of any kind could affect your child’s eligibility to attend our program. Such behavior will not be tolerated and authorities will be contacted.

Camp Thunderbird campers have days filled with fun and active play.

A typical daily schedule includes the following:

  • 7:00 – 9:00am – Breakfast and Large Group Games
  • 9:00 – 9:30am – Flag Pole and Group Huddle
  • 9:30 – 10:45am – Activity in Counselor Group
  • 10:45 – 12:00pm – Swimming Lessons, Kayaking or Activity in Age Group
  • 12:00pm – 12:30pm – Lunch in Large Groups
  • 12:30 – 1:00pm – Activity in Counselor Groups
  • 1:00 – 1:50pm – Activity in Counselor Groups or Swimming Lessons
  • 2:00pm – 2:50pm – Activity in Counselor Groups or Swimming Lessons
  • 3:00 – 3:30pm – Snack/Crew Service
  • 3:30 – 4:00pm – Activity in Age Groups
  • 4:00 – 5:00pm – Activity in Age Groups
  • 5:00 – 6:00pm – Large Group Games and Daily Clean-Up