Which Type of Summer Camp Packer Are You?

Is your child preparing for summer camp? Before you know it the day will be upon them to grab their duffel bag, tie up their closed-toed shoes and smear on waterproof sunscreen. You’ll hop in the car together and make the voyage to summer camp. But before you head out the door, you need to pack!


Types of summer camp packer parents range from the “of course your bucket has is labelled on both sides” moms, to the “we have 7 minutes to stuff this backpack” uncle. Read on to find your type, taking some inspiration along the way.


You might be a Just-In-Case Packer if your camper, their two sisters and the family golden retriever were required to sit on the suitcase while zipping the zipper. If any of the following words are found on your packing list, they are also red flags: hair blower attachments, ski goggles, metal detector, French press, dental pick.


Camp staff can spot a Let-Em-Do-It-Themselves Packer if at camp your camper wears the same three socks all week (not three pairs, three socks) or grabbed a bottle of Nair instead of shampoo. Depending on the camper, the space saved from skimping on extra underwear may be strategically used for transporting a two-foot glittertastic baby shark or entire collection of hockey cards.


If you are wondering whether you’re a Tactical Packer, simply ask yourself: did I use more than one box of Ziploc freezer bags? Does my camper have enough flashlight batteries to make it through to college? And finally, when using your label maker (which obviously had a perfect five-star Amazon review), did you ever incorporate the words “use in case of”?


Every child hopes their parent is a Life-Of-The-Party Packer. Reminiscent of their plight to be cool at summer camp in 1991, these packers know the trifecta of camp glory: glow sticks, gummy candy and friendship bracelet string. If you type “cool…” into Google and the most recent search is “cool bunk bed decoration ideas Pinterest”, no more needs to be said.


The I’ll-Miss-You Packer can be spotted writing calligraphy on care package labels and including photos from 2013 in letters that begin with “Remember when…”. These packers are prone to making their camper’s favourite meal on the eve of drop-off day, and always put their hand over their heart as they stare through the rearview mirror driving off camp property while listening to “Leaving on a Jet Plane”.


Or perhaps, like most, you’re the Classic Packer. You got the packing list in an email from your camp and made a note of it. You thought about it ahead of time but were a little last minute in the end. Your campers did some of the work, and you helped too. You put in a fun snack left over from a birthday party and wrote a note or two, but nothing too extravagant. You forgot a water bottle, but it wasn’t a big deal, there was an extra one in the car.


Everything was all alright and your campers had a great time at summer camp.


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If you need a packing list you can keep your eye on your email a few weeks before your camp session or access it on your camp website at any point. We recommend printing it and keeping it on the fridge until it’s time to break out the suitcase.


Flashlight, check. Underwear, check. Lots of clean masks, check. Excited camper, double check.

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