Parent Information

for Campers at Day, Overnight or Family Camps

Everything you need to know to prepare for your camper or family experience!

You’re at the right place to learn how to get ready for your camper or family’s summer camp adventure. We’re here to help all go smoothly, whether you have a first-time camper or consider yourself a summer camp pro.

Below we have packing lists, drop-off and pickup info, and more! If you have questions we’ve not answered, then definitely call or email us so we can relieve some stress. We want to ensure you and your camper head out the door relaxed and excited about having outdoor adventures and making new friends at Deer Run!

You can reach us at (615) 794-2918 or Contact@DeerRun.camp.

FAQ: About Deer Run Camps

No. Deer Run is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit nondenominational Christian ministry that teaches fundamentals of God’s Word from The Bible. Deer Run is not owned, governed, or funded by a church or church organization. Deer Run has a volunteer board of directors and is funded through user fees, individual donations, monthly supporters and grants.

Deer Run’s camp program focuses on creating a positive Christ-centered environment in order to help build strong character in the lives of young people. It is a place to have fun, make friends and learn more about God. We openly promote who God is and share Biblical truths from God’s Word throughout the entire camp experience including recreational activities. Every staff member is a follower of Jesus Christ and models Christ-like character. Our staff respects each individual camper’s right to make his or her own decision about accepting Christ as his or her Savior.

Day Camp Groups: Day campers are in small groups by age/grade.

Overnight Camp Groups: Overnight campers are in cabin groups by male cabins and female cabins. A minimum of 2 staffers are in a cabin with the campers at all times, regardless of the group size

From September to February, Deer Run camp directors make personal visits to college and university campuses across the southeast and midwest to seek out mature Christian college aged students — ages 18 to 25 — who desire to serve in ministry for the
summer.

Applicants must exhibit outstanding maturity, leadership and character in order to be a strong role model to campers of all ages.

Applicants…

  • are personally interviewed by the camp directors,
  • submit 3 personal references and
  • are thoroughly screened using national background checks.

 

Camp staff responsibilities include:

  • investing themselves in getting to know their campers by engaging them in conversation, listening to them, caring about them and praying for them;
  • creating an exciting, engaging environment for God to speak to each camper; and
  • committing to the overall success of the camp program by working alongside other staff members to create a positive, memorable and impactful experience for campers.

FAQ: Registration & Friend Requests

Registration for camps or family events is accepted throughout the year. A deposit is required to reserve a space. If a session is full, you can sign up online for the waiting list for that session. You will be contacted when a space becomes available.
You need to set up an online account to register for camp or a family event at Deer Run. You can…

  • make reservations for individual campers for summer camp sessions
  • make reservations for your family for family
    camp or family events
  • add Camp Bucks to an individual camper
    account as well as view purchases
  • add/change t-shirt size and friend requests
  • update contact or financial information
  • create or look up your camper pickup code

Once an account is set up, changes can be made at any time by going HERE.

After the deposit is paid, the remaining balance will be divided into equal payments and automatically drafted from the same account used for the deposit on the date of your registration each month. The final payment for camp is scheduled for May 15.
If you register after the final payment due date (May 15), full payment is due at the time of registration.

Payments can be made with…

  • Credit Card: MasterCard, VISA, Discover, AMEX
  • E-Check

Update info or make a payment by going HERE.

Bringing friends with you makes a week at camp even more fun! Friend Requests MUST be accepted no later than one week prior to the camp session start date.

DAY CAMPERS


Day Campers can request as many friends as they would like (no limit). Friends are recommended to be within one-year of age of each other.

OVERNIGHT CAMPERS


Our intent is to create the best environment and experience possible for all campers — those coming alone or with friends. We believe choosing to limit cabin requests to 6 campers per cabin sets the cabin up for success … providing an opportunity for unity within the whole group and with the counselor.

If you have more than 6 campers in your friend group, we suggest splitting into two groups. For requests above 6 per cabin, call the office at (615) 235-5688. We will do our best to accommodate when possible!

  • Invite up to 5 friends to be in your cabin … for a total friend group of 6 campers!
  • Camper friend requests may have up to a one year age difference. The older camper will be added to the younger camper’s cabin group.
  • Cabins are divided into male cabins and female cabins.

Requests are made by using the “Friend Request” button in the “Camp Services” section of your online registration account.

Friend Requests MUST BE ACCEPTED NO LATER THAN ONE WEEK prior to the camp session start date.

  • From your account dashboard, click “View My Registrations.”
  • Find the current registration for your child and click on their name. You will find the “Friend Request” button on that screen.
  • Only ONE friend should initiate the Friend Request and the other(s) accept. You will need the name and email address associated with the friend’s account.
  • When making a request, an email with instructions will be sent on your behalf to the friend.
  •  To accept a request, follow the same procedure above and then enter the code in the “Accept a Request” section.

 

Make changes in your account NO LATER than 2 weeks before camp start date.

Log into your account to update any of this information by going HERE.

To make a change LESS than 2 weeks before the camp start date: Email Contact@DeerRun.camp or call the office at (615) 794-2918, Monday–Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

FAQ: Friend Referrals

YES! AFTER YOU REGISTER, REFER YOUR FRIENDS– THEY SAVE AND YOU GET $20 FOR EVERY NEW CAMPER REGISTRATION!

After you register for camp, invite your friends!

  1. Your Friend Must Be a New Camper Family: To qualify as a referral, your friend must be part of a new camper family who has never attended a Deer Run camp or event before.
  2. Give Your Friend the Referral Codes: Simply give your friend the Friend Referral Codes listed below so they receive a discount at check-out AND ask them to enter your name as the person who referred them to camp during the “How Did You Hear” section of registration.
  3. Your Friend Can Invite Friends: After your friend registers as a referral, they can invite friends and also get $20 for every friend who registers and is part of a new camper family.

Friend Referral Codes
     

  • REF25DC: $25 OFF Day Camp
      
  • REF50ON: $50 OFF 1-week Overnight Camp
  • REF100TW: $100 OFF 2-week Overnight Camps

*Discount codes cannot be combined with any other code.

CLICK ON THE GRAPHIC BELOW TO DOWNLOAD & SHARE VIA EMAIL OR SOCIAL MEDIA.

Friend Referral Codes    

  • REF25DC: $25 OFF Day Camp
  • REF50ON: $50 OFF 1-week Overnight Camp
  • REF100TW: $100 OFF 2-week Overnight Camps

*Discount codes cannot be combined with any other code.

CLICK ON THE GRAPHIC BELOW TO DOWNLOAD & SHARE VIA EMAIL OR SOCIAL MEDIA.

• A family you referred to Deer Run Camps must be registered in order for you to receive the $20 credit. The Referring Family credits are processed on a weekly basis, thus they are not effective immediately.

• This credit is in addition to any discounts you have already received, and there is no limit to how many referral credits you can receive!

• Your credit must be used by December 31, 2022, or the credit will be forfeited.

Your credit can be used in one of the following ways:

  1. Automatically goes towards your balance if camp week is not paid in full.
  2. Applied to early registration for 2023 camps.
  3. Applied to register for a fall parent-child weekend — the August Father-Son Adventure Weekend or the September Mother-Daughter Getaway Weekend.

 

Note, the referral credit cannot be used as a credit for The Camp Store.

FAQ: Health, Safety, Snacks & Camper Meals

First, parents or guardians can help prevent the spread of sickness by keeping children at home when they have been diagnosed or show signs of illness — particularly illness which can be spread to other campers.

Deer Run staff take every precaution to protect campers from sickness or injury. Camp staff are trained in safety, basic first aid and accident prevention.

Certified, licensed nurses are on site during each camp session to handle injuries, administer over-the-counter meds as needed plus administer prescribed meds which campers bring to camp.

Water fountains and water coolers are located throughout the camp property. Water breaks are scheduled to help ensure campers do not experience dehydration.

Certified lifeguards are on duty during all scheduled lake activities. Additionally, camp staff accompany their campers when they are in the lake. All campers, regardless of swimming ability, are required to wear a life jacket at all times while in or near the lake and the pool. Life jackets are provided by Deer Run and are properly fitted to the campers before entering the water.

Campers may bring snacks for Day Camp and/or Overnight Camp. However, due to allergies, campers are not allowed to share their snacks.

Snacks brought to Overnight Camp or sent in care packages should be in a sealed Tupperware container to prevent camp critters from sneaking into the cabins!

All campers have a scheduled time each day to visit the Camp Store for purchasing snacks. Healthy options are available in the Camp Store.

Our chefs prepare nutritious, healthy meals which are kid and teen friendly. Information regarding your camper’s food allergies should be included in your account. You can update allergy info in your camper’s account at any time. Our Food Service Director runs a report for each overnight camp session and makes adjustments for specific camper allergies. However, Deer Run may not be able to accommodate ALL allergies and dietary restrictions; and we cannot prevent, nor guarantee, a cross-contamination-free environment. Call the office at (615) 794-2918 if you have concerns about your child’s diet. Campers should also accept responsibility for adhering to their specific diets.

FAQ: General Camp Questions

Due to our extra precautions in keeping campers safe and healthy, we are not allowing visitors at camp.

We must limit the people who will be on the property and in the facilities, so unfortunately this includes parents and/or family members of campers.

You can call to check on your camper; but rest assured, if you have not heard from us, they are doing great!

Campers LOVE shopping at the camp store every day with their group. Camp Bucks make it easy for your camper to make purchases (drinks, snacks, merchandise, apparel, and more) at The Camp Store without having to carry around cash.

When visiting the camp store, purchases are charged against the total of Camp Bucks in each camper account — or family account if attending a family event. If there is not enough money in a camper’s account, they are not allowed to make a purchase until more Camp Bucks are added to their account. If there is not enough money in a family account during a family event, you may add more Camp Bucks to your account or use cash or a credit card to make purchases.

  • During registration, a suggested amount of Camp Bucks (Camp Store money) will be added to your registration. Feel free to change this amount or choose to add money later. You may call the office at (615) 794-2918 and our staff will add Camp Bucks to your camper(s) account(s).
  • Log into your account to add more Camp Bucks, review purchases made, or check the balance for your camper or family.

Note: Day Camp Bus Staff are not allowed to take money to add Camp Bucks to your camper’s account.

Any unused Camp Bucks in the amount of $10 or more will be refunded to the credit card or e-check we have on file within one week from the end of camp or family event. Or during registration, you may choose to donate any unused Camp Bucks above $10 to the Deer Run Scholarship Fund. Any unused Camp Bucks in the amount of $9.99 and under are automatically applied as a tax-deductible donation to the Deer Run Scholarship Fund.

In your account, you can place a camp store preorder by the check-in day for your camper’s session. Packages are given to Overnight Campers on Monday and to Day Campers on Tuesday.

We believe campers have a more positive experience if he/she is grouped with other campers who are the same age/school grade. Activities and small group Bible studies are designed for specific ages.

We make every attempt to serve campers who have physical or emotional disabilities. However, the physical setting of hilly terrain and rocky areas makes it challenging for campers with certain physical limitations. Call the camp office at (615) 794-2918 to discuss the particular care your camper will require before submitting your registration.

Deer Run leadership aims to provide an excellent experience for all campers. Therefore, we cannot allow a camper’s behavior to detract from the experience of others. Because we believe in grace, we have a three-step behavior policy to encourage the reversal of negative behavior. Camp leadership has the right to override these steps at any time if determined necessary.

Campers who cause physical, verbal, or emotional harm to others or who are disruptive to another’s experience may be sent home. Harmful behavior includes non-participation in the program, bullying, stealing, telling inappropriate stories, using foul language, or any other conduct which detracts from the Christian and wholesome environment of Deer Run.

In most situations, the camp leadership team will address behavior using the following process. However, if positive results are not attained, then parents/guardians will be notified to pick up the camper from camp, and the camper may not return during that camp session. The camper may be allowed to register for and attend another session depending on availability. No refund or credit is given if a camper is sent home.

  1. At the first report of behavior, the camper will be given a verbal warning by lead program coordinators and/or camp directors. Following this warning, camp directors will contact and inform parents/guardians about the situation.
     
  2. At the second report of behavior, the camper will have a direct conversation with their guardians and the camp directors. The camper may be asked to take a break from camp for the rest of the day.
     
  3.  At the third report, guardians will be contacted, and the camper will go home for the rest of the day and possibly be dismissed from the remainder of the camp session.

 

Behavior at Deer Run is handled on a case-by-case basis. Camp directors may decide to take immediate action, possibly resulting in immediate dismissal following the first or second report of behavior.

It is never our goal to send a camper home, and it is always our intention for our campers to have a successful camp experience. We do not take our responsibilities lightly and aim to extend grace with our campers as Christ so freely extends to us.

Approximately 2 weeks prior to the camp start date parents receive an informational email about the first day of camp and how to help make this a successful camp experience for you and your child.

Emergency: If you have an emergency and need to speak with or pick up your camper, and it is during normal office hours, M-F 8am-5pm, please call the main office at (615) 794-2918. Our Guest Relations team will work in a timely manner to get communication to your camper.

If you have an emergency after normal office hours, you may call our camp directors: Josh Barrera, (615) 484-5370 or Brianna Corr, (931) 334-6655. Please limit calls to our camp directors for emergencies that cannot wait until regular business hours.

Non-Emergency: If you have non-emergency information which needs to be communicated to your camper, call the office M-F 8am-5pm at (615) 794-2918 or email Contact@DeerRun.camp.

Your camper will be fully engaged during their camp experience, so it is not possible for our staff to direct personal, non-emergency calls to campers. Assume your child is having a great time and trust our staff to contact you if necessary. If an issue arises with your child, the camp director will call you immediately. A camp nurse will contact you about health or injury issues.

Campers love receiving packages and mail from their family! Our staff put the package or mail in your camper’s cabin.

You can get these to your camper in two ways:

  1. Give to Deer Run staff at check-in on Sunday, or
  2. Mail to your camper during their week of camp.

To ensure your camper receives these while they are at camp, mail CARE PACKAGES no later than TUESDAY and mail LETTERS no later than WEDNESDAY.

Mail to:

Deer Run Camps
Camper Name
3845 Perkins Road
Thompson’s Station, TN 37179

We have partnered with a company called Bunk1 to provide communication with your camper and an easy way to see photos and receive updates from camp, all in one place!

Download the App from the iOS App Store or Google Play or go to Bunk1.com to choose a package which will allow you to send “Bunk Notes” to your overnight campers; these will be delivered daily during “mail call.”  Your login is your Deer Run account email and password.

For info on how to setup your Bunk1 account call Bunk 1 at (212) 974-9112 or email support@bunk1.com

For FAQ’s related to services visit Bunk1family.com/faqs

We have partnered with Bunk1 to provide a Deer Run App which you can download from the iOS App Store or Google Play. Your login is your Deer Run account email and password.

Using the Deer Run app (or on desktop go to Bunk1.com):

  • Upload a profile photo of your camper. Our facial recognition will scan all the uploaded photos and notify you about photos of your camper.
  • Save Favorite Photos for easy access to pictures of your camper all year-round.
  • Share Photos to social media or email a photo to family.
  • Customize Unique Photo Gifts such as photo books, mugs, calendars, phone cases and more.
  • Order high resolution digital downloads or prints.

For info on how to setup your Bunk1 account call Bunk 1 at (212) 974-9112 or email support@bunk1.com

For more information about all that Bunk1 offers, visit Bunk1family.com.

Cell phones are on the “What NOT to Pack” list. Do not send phones or other electronic devices to camp. These are a distraction to your camper and to other campers and may become lost or stolen. Items not allowed at camp will be collected for safekeeping and returned at the end of camp.

Absolutely! We are available to give you and your family a PERSONAL TOUR of the camp facilities! Get a glimpse of how camp at Deer Run can make a lifelong impact on your kids, teens, and family this summer. Schedule your tour by calling Guest Relations at (615) 794-2918 or by emailing Contact@DeerRun.camp or by texting DeerRun Tour to (615) 701-4918!

Follow us on Facebook or Instagram and be sure to turn on your notifications! We post stories and photos throughout the week.

Should inclement or threatening weather occur, precautions are taken by Deer Run staff to ensure the safety of all campers. If the weather is not threatening, camp-related activities will continue by moving indoors with some modification to activities if necessary.

We respect parents’ individual decisions whether or not to bring their children to camp if threatening weather is forecasted. However, no refunds are given.

Items are put in a Lost & Found container in The Fortress and are kept for two weeks (14 days) before being donated. Check the Lost & Found container before leaving camp to check for items belonging to your camper. You may also call the Deer Run office at (615) 794-2918 to schedule a time to pick up items left behind.

Call the camp office at (615) 794-2918 or email Contact@ DeerRun.camp and we will be happy to change your camper’s session.

There is no fee to change a camper session, but the request MUST be made more than one week (7 days) prior to the registered camp start date.

Less than 7 Days Notice is Considered a Cancellation: Any request made for a session change LESS than one week (7 days) prior to the registered camp start date will be considered a cancellation and all payments will be forfeited. At this time, a new reservation would have to be made to change a camper session.

Any fees incurred during a camp session including but not limited to transportation, extended care, and forgotten lunches is charged to the payment account on file no later than the Monday after the camp session ends.

Camp Cancellation Policy

All cancellations must be made IN WRITING. Send your cancellation notice by email to Contact@DeerRun.camp or by US Mail to Deer Run, 3845 Perkins Road, Thompson’s Station, TN 37179.

DEPOSITS

Non-refundable deposits, including a $4.95 registration fee, are required to complete a registration: $54.95 for Day Camps, $104.95 for 1-week Overnight Camps, $204.95 for 2-week Overnight Camps, and $79.95 per person, age 4 & up for Family Camps. The $4.95 per registration fee is transferable if a session date needs to be changed.

Deposits will be forfeited for cancellations unless we receive a written medical reason which may or may not include testing positive for COVID or contact with a positive COVID person. For cancellations involving a medical reason, the deposit will be held as a credit in the family account.

All account credits, whether for medical reasons or other, must be applied to a registration by the end of the calendar year; otherwise credits are forfeited. 

PAYMENTS

When registering before May 15th, calculated monthly payments are automatically scheduled with the same method of payment used for the deposit. All final balances are drafted by May 15th.

Payment in full is required for any registrations made after May 15th.

CANCELLATIONS

Any cancellation made by a family, outside of a government mandated shut down, falls under our normal cancellation policy as follows.

30+ Days Notice: If the cancellation is made MORE than 30 days prior to the camp start date, any payment made above the initial deposit will be refunded (if requested).

If the cancellation is made LESS than 30 days prior to the camp start date, no refund will be given, and the following applies.

  • 14+ Days Notice: Any cancellation received 14 days or more before your camp start date will receive a full credit for the amount paid above your deposit and registration fee.
  • Less than 14 Days Notice: Any cancellations within 14 days from your camp start date will result in funds being forfeited.

In the unlikely event Deer Run is mandated by the government to cancel camp due to COVID-19, your family will have the following options for your camp registration:

  • Receive a full credit of all funds paid to rebook for a camp next summer or for a Family Event such as the August Father-Son Adventure Weekend or September Mother-Daughter Getaway Weekend.
  • Receive a full refund if requested.
  • Give any portion of the funds paid as a tax deductible donation to help sustain Deer Run’s ministry.

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