Packing for Camp

Simple Living

At Camp DeSoto, we embrace a philosophy of simplicity – from the things girls bring to Camp to the mail they receive to the ways we celebrate. As you pack, keep in mind that Camp is an opportunity for girls to live simply. Costumes can be home made, tribe gear should be minimal, art supplies should be the basics, books should include a Bible, a journal, and a few rest-hour reads.

We have made a list of those things we know your daughter needs in order to feel prepared for Camp. Things beyond that list are extras. Please encourage your daughter to be thoughtful about the added extras, the room those things will require, whether she will be able to keep up with all of her things and keep them organized, and whether there are some things she can be okay without for a few weeks.

By embracing the truth that “less is more,” you will be giving your daughter a great gift: freedom from too much “stuff”, the chance to be resourceful when creating a costume or making a gift, and a much easier and quicker cabin cleanup each day!

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Packing for Camp

Each camper needs only a trunk, a duffle bag, and a shoe pocket for keeping her small things organized.

Trunks should be be no larger than 32L x 20W x 16.5H, and you should pack your camper’s clothing and most-used items in her trunk. This trunk is a good option for DeSoto campers. Pack her duffle bag with linens and other items to be unpacked, as well as occasional use items, such as her costume and sleeping bag. Once unpacked, duffles are stored in the rafters and only accessed occasionally.

Each camper is allowed one plastic storage container that will fit under her bunk (no higher than 10 inches.) Campers often use a shoe pocket hung by the bed to organize small, miscellaneous items, such as flashlight, toiletries, batteries, etc. Any other shelving or crates brought to Camp will be sent back home with parents or discarded.

What to Bring

  • 5 pairs of white shorts
  • 5 white shirts
  • 10 pairs of shorts
  • 10 shirts
  • 1 solid color t-shirt
  • 2 long-sleeve t-shirts
  • 2 pairs of sturdy tennis shoes
  • 3 – 4 sets of pajamas
  • 8 – 10 pairs of socks
  • 2 pairs of jeans
  • 10 – 12 pairs of underwear
  • Outfit for Alpine Square Dance
  • Sweatshirt or fleece jacket
  • Raincoat and rainboots or duck shoes (necessary)
  • Holiday t-shirt and shorts (see note below)
  • Costume (any kind)
  • 2 one-piece swim suits (no tankinis)
  • Goggles (optional)
  • Water shoes with a back strap (tevas, chacos, keens)
  • Riding or cowboy boots (if taking horseback riding)
  • Bible and journal
  • Stamps, stationery, pens or markers
  • Small mirror
  • Small fan (optional, battery-operated only)
  • Small rug for bedside
  • 3 bath towels and 2 beach towels
  • Shower robe or towel wrap
  • Shower bucket
  • Shower flip flops (no other flip flops allowed)
  • Tennis racquet (optional)
  • Guitar (optional)
    • Hiking boots (8th graders for backpacking)
  • Shoe pocket (for miscellaneous storage)
  • Flashlight
  • Water bottle
  • Crazy Creek
  • Sleeping bag
  • Pillow
  • 2 pillow cases
  • 2 sets twin or cot sheets
  • Egg crate and mattress pad (optional)
  • Reading Pillow (optional)
  • Quilt or comforter
  • 2 laundry bags

A Few Important Points

Sunday Whites

Campers and staff (including those attending Mass) wear all white on Sundays. Any sweatshirts or sweaters worn with whites need to be bright white with no writing or other decoration. Please do not send strapless, one strap, halter-top, spaghetti straps, backless, low cut, or too tight tops or dresses for your daughter’s Sunday whites. Shorts, skirts, and dresses should be a modest length and not too tight. All white should be “bright white” – no cream or off-white – and free of colorful accents.

Campers will also need white shorts to wear as part of their tribe uniform. It is smart to pack at least one pair of white shorts that your camper can play hard in, as tribe uniforms are worn for all competitive events.

Parties with Alpine

Guidelines for parties with Alpine: 1) tops should have straps at least 3 fingers wide 2) tops should be long enough to cover your stomach 3) and shorts should be modestly cut and not too tight (no skirts or skorts.) Please make sure your daughter has an appropriate outfit for the Senior Social, the Dance, and Glee Club in light of these guidelines. Thank you for helping your daughter pack accordingly.

Special Events

First Term campers need red, white, and blue to wear on the 4th of July.
Second Term campers need red and green for Christmas in July.

Footwear

Campers need sturdy shoes around Camp, and no flip-flops are allowed (except for showering). At night, all campers must wear closed-toed shoes. Due to safety standards, cowboy or riding boots are required for campers taking Horseback Riding. (Hiking boots, sneakers, duck shoes, and girls’ dress boots are not acceptable for horseback riding.)

Laundry

Laundry is sent out once a week and returns two days later. Camp laundry is not as gentle or precise as your home laundry – please send only sturdy camp clothes. Send only cloth or nylon mesh laundry bags that will not melt in a commercial dryer. Please label all of your camper’s belongings so she will be able to keep up with them easily.

Living Unplugged

We ask campers not to bring any electronic devices to Camp. If it plugs in, it should stay at home! Girls love living this way, and we love the opportunity it gives them to more fully inhabit the present moment, to relate with each other face to face, and to enjoy the beauty of the woods and the sounds of Camp.

Activity Equipment

Camp will provide the necessary equipment for each activity, including helmets and safety gear, with the exception of those items listed above (tennis racquet, horseback riding boots, guitar, goggles). Expensive equipment that campers bring to Camp (such as a tennis racquet or musical instrument) will be each camper’s personal responsibility. Please do not send campers with electronics, bicycles, vehicles, personal weapons, or personal pets to Camp.

Everything Summer Camp is a great resource for your packing needs!

Happy Packing!

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Shipping Trunks

If your camper is flying to Camp or if it is easier for you to ship her Camp luggage for any reason, you may ship items to Camp and we will hold them until Opening Day.

Trunks should be shipped to:
Camp DeSoto
264 Highway Above the Clouds
Mentone, Alabama 35984

Shipped trunks and duffle bags will be delivered to cabins after girls’ are given their cabin assignments on Opening Day. Your daughter’s luggage will not be waiting in her cabin when she arrives, but it will be delivered in plenty of time for her to make her bed and move in before lunch.

I you want to ship your daughter’s trunk and/or duffle home from Camp at the end of the term, you will need to email Camp’s office administrator, Bill Berry (). We will have ship items by UPS and charge the fee to your daughter’s camp account.

We are happy to provide this service for families. Please be mindful as you and your daughter pack for Camp that she will need to be able to repack her things at the end of the term in just the trunk and duffle she came with. We are not equipped to provide packing and shipping supplies for items that don’t fit in the trunk and duffle.

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