Camp Downer Policies

Camp Nut Policy:
Camp Downer is NOT a nut free camp. This policy includes both peanuts and tree nuts.

Camper Controlled Substance Policy:
At Camp Downer, the use or possession of any alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs or other controlled substances are prohibited at all times during the camp season. Prescription medication and health care provider approved over the counter medication are kept in the nurse’s cabin and may only be dispensed by a member of the health care staff. If you have any questions about an item that may be an over the counter drug, please consult with the nurse during check in. Campers in violation of this policy will be sent home immediately without a refund.

Camper Electronic Device Policy:
At Camp Downer, camper use or possession of any electronic device, with the exception of stand alone digital cameras, is prohibited at all times. This includes, and is not limited to, devices such as cell phones, MP3 players, handheld gaming devices, walkie-talkies, computers, pagers, etc. Any dual use electronic device, such as a phone that can also take pictures is considered a prohibited electronic device. Prohibited electronic devices will be removed from the camper’s possession and returned to the camper’s family at check-out.

Immunization Policy:
Camper medical forms are found in your CampBrain registration account. The immunization section of the medical form must be complete and accurate for your camper to attend Camp Downer. There are no philosophical exceptions made to required immunizations. Campers with religious exemptions to vaccinations must complete the exemption form every summer. The religious exemption form can be found at

Non Binary Statement:
Since it’s inception over 75 years ago, Camp Downer has been a place for everyone.  The collective experience teaches campers and staff alike that Camp Downer can be a place for you, a summer home, no matter where you come from or who you are.  Currently, the Board of Trustees in partnership with the Resident Director are working to address the needs of non-binary campers.  Non-binary refers to individuals who do not identify as strictly male or female gender.  We are actively learning about how to better include non-binary campers and are discussing changes to both camp policy and practice.  If your child identifies as non-binary, please reach out to the Resident Director at to discuss how to make your campers’ experience at Camp Downer the best it can be!

Payments and Refund Policy:

There is a deposit due at the time of registration per camper/per session. This deposit must be paid online with a credit card at the time of registration. Prior to May 1st, this deposit is fully refundable for any reason. After May 1st, this deposit is non-refundable. Registration deposits may be transferred to another session with written approval via email from the registrar. 

The remaining balance of the tuition is due two weeks prior to the check-in date of the camper’s session. This balance should be paid via credit card online. 

It may be necessary for a parent to cancel a camper’s registration. After May 1st, Camp Downer will refund the paid tuition when a cancellation is made 14 or more days prior to the start of the session. However, the initial deposit will be non-refundable. Cancellation notifications and refund requests should be made via email to the registrar at

If a camper has to leave camp during their session due to voluntary or involuntary withdrawal, no refunds will be given. Prorated refunds will be considered if a camper is sick/injured or if there is a death of an immediate family member. In the unlikely event that Camp has to close with little notice, the Director will also consider prorated refunds in this situation. The prorated schedule will be as follows: total tuition, minus non-refundable deposit, divided by the number of days the camper misses up to a maximum of four days.

Swim Test Policy
Only campers who can prove they have the ability to swim safely in the deep end of the pool will be allowed to swim in the deep end.  All other campers will be restricted to only swimming in the shallow end of the pool.

There are two ways campers can be able to swim in the deep end of the pool:

  • 1. Bring Proof of their current swim level to camp:
    • American Red Cross -Level 4 or higher
    • YMCA- Level 4 or higher
    • Boy Scouts- Swimmer or higher
    • Girl Scouts- Swimmer or higher
    • Other organizations not listed will be at the discretion of the testing lifeguard
  • 2. Campers will need to take and pass a swim test at camp on Sunday (or Monday if Sunday has inclement weather). The test will consist of the camper’s ability to complete all of the following requirements:
    • Jump into the deep end of the pool
    • swim 1 full lap of the pool
    • Tread water for 2 full minutes

If your camper does not have proof of swim level ability and needs to complete a swim test this is what to expect on Sunday: Once camper completes registration and settles into their cabin they will need to change into their swim suit, and head to the pool for testing (please have your camper pack their swim suit and towel near the top so they are easily accessible)

If campers have proof of an appropriate swim level or successful pass on the swim test, they will receive a wrist band.  They will need to wear this wrist band all week, so when they are at the pool, lifeguards can readily identify them as able to safely swim in the deep end.

We will keep record in our camp database of campers who have been approved to swim in the deep end. We will retain this record so campers don’t have to show proof of swimming level or take another test in subsequent years.

Campers who would like to take swim lessons during the week will need to take a separate test that will indicate which swim level they will be placed in for their lesson. If campers bring their Red Cross, YMCA, or equivalent swimming card/certification with them when they come to camp they will be exempt from having to take the test.  Instead they will need to present their card/certification to the evaluating lifeguards to prove what level they are currently in and will be placed in the appropriate level class for the week.

If you have questions about any of these policies please contact the director.



Camp Downer FAQs

Q: I’ve done my online registration but now realize I need a different week or that I need to cancel, can I do it online?
A: No, you cannot make changes to your registration through the website. To make changes or cancel your registration please contact the Registrar at

Q: My camper has food allergies, what’s the best way to inform camp?
A: The online health form has a food allergies section. This data will be shared with the food service staff. Please note that Camp Downer is NOT a nut free environment.

Q: My camper has special needs or I have a special concern, who should I discuss this with?
A: Please send an email to .

Q: I’d like to register my camper for a 2nd or 3rd session/week, can I do that?
A: Yes, you can. Just log in to your online account, choose your camper and register for the additional sessions/weeks.

Q: My camper is coming for 2 sessions/weeks, one right after the other. Can they just stay at camp in-between?
A: No, Camp is closed from Friday at 4pm until Sunday at 2pm. You must pick your camper up for the weekend.

Q: We’re excited about camp, when can we pick our activities?
A: Your camper will review and pick activities with their counselor the day they arrive at camp.

Q: Can my camper have electronics at camp?
A: No, Camp Downer does not allow campers to use any electronics with the exception of digital cameras at camp so please be sure they do not bring them.

Q: My camper has friends coming to camp, can they bunk together?
A: We offer the opportunity during online registration for you to request up to 2 cabinmates. If you’ve already completed a registration you can send an email to with your cabinmate requests. We make every effort to honor these requests but please understand that they are not guaranteed.

Q: Can I find out ahead of time who is in my camper’s cabin?
A: Cabins are assigned just prior to the start of each session. Your camper will find out at check-in which cabin they will
be in.

If you have any questions, please contact the Director

Camp Season (June 13th to August 20th, 2022):
Alanna Gaylord, Director
Camp Downer
1535 Downer Rd.
Sharon, VT 05065
Phone: 802-763-7007

Alanna Gaylord, Director
Camp Downer
70 S. Winooski Ave. #196
Burlington, VT 05401