Camp Registration

A well run and organized registration will give a great first impression to your participants. Whether it is done in person or online, you want to make sure the participant leaves with all the information they need on the upcoming camp. Registration also gives you the opportunity for you to get all the information you need on the participant for the upcoming camp so you don’t have to chase them down to get it later. Here are some tips to run a seamless registration:

Registration Window: It is always good to have a registration window to allow participants flexibility to register. If you have to do on site registrations give more than one option such as a few week nights and weekends. Try to avoid just a one day registration. If you have limited space in your program make sure that is clearly advertised to avoid those come on the last day and complain when your program is full!

Registration Forms: Whether in person or electronic make sure your registration forms are clean, easy to read, and collect all the information you need. Make sure to get any required signatures for waivers, code of conduct, etc.

Contact Information: Get as many phone numbers and emails as you can for participants for your email, text, and contact lists and group rosters. It is not uncommon for contact information to become outdated for participants so if they don’t update it with you, you want to make sure you have a 2nd and 3rd way to reach them.

Additional Information: Ask as many questions as you need to get all the required information on your participants. Information you should consider getting at registration would be things like:

  • Authorized Pick Up List
  • Allergies
  • Special Needs
  • Medication Requirements
  • Swimming Ability
  • Emergency Contacts
  • Shirt Size

Information Handouts: If you are doing in person registration, always make sure they leave with a handout with all the important upcoming dates and information. If they are registering online make sure this information is posted or they receive it with their receipt. It is much more work for you if you find yourself having to track down participants to get them the information later or have them end up showing up to camp un-prepared.

Camp Checklists: Above and beyond general information for parents, give them a check list of all the things their kids need at camp and cannot bring to camp. Make it as easy as possible for parents to have their kids come prepared.

Send Reminders: You can never communicate too much! Once participants start to register, start sending them reminders on the first in person dates. You took the first step above by making sure they leave registration with all the information, now you have to remind them to ensure they show up ready for camp.

Train Staff and Volunteers: If you are doing on site registrations, make sure whoever is taking your registrations has all the information they need to pass on to participants and answer their questions. If they don’t know an answer make sure they have your contact information to give to that person. It is not a good look for your program if a first time participant registers but then gets no information while the staff cannot answer any of their questions. Also, ensure the money is being handled and accounted for properly.

File System: As you are conducting registration make sure you have a filing system to keep track of all the paperwork. If you are registering electronically you still need to make sure you have a system in place to easily allow you to look up and pull information on participants. You also want to make it easy for yourself to transpose that information to group rosters so your counselors have it during camp.

Check Your Rosters: Periodically during your registration window make sure to check your rosters to ensure everyone has been placed in the proper groups and you have all the information requested. It is much easier to make corrections or adjustments during the registration process than after when camp is about to start.

A smooth and seamless registration will set the tone for your upcoming camp and take your camp to the next level!


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