What to pack for summer camp

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packing suitcase campBy Cathy Ashby

For many families, packing for summer camp is much like the annual to-do surrounding the choosing and buying of school supplies. The kids spend hours laboring over the list of what the camps suggest to pack, adding their own special touches and must-haves to the mix. And they look forward to the requisite trips to Wal-Mart and Target.

Whether or not you plan to buy all new supplies or pack things you have on hand, packing for camp is a crucial part of the summer camp experience. And sticking to the camp's unique packing list is a must.

The lists will vary from camp to camp, based on specific program needs. Traditional, outdoor camps require different things than sports camps, academic programs require different things than adventure or travel camps, and so forth. So, if you haven't received a list of what to bring to a camp your child is registered to attend, call to request one. Generic lists probably won't do much good.

Camps often also recommend specific kinds of luggage, trunks or footlockers. If possible, follow the recommendations because camp staff have experience with their facilities and storage capacity, and they know what works best.

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