While children may be at varying developmental stages, age is a good indicator of a camper’s skills and maturity. In order to give campers the best chance of success when away from home, we cluster campers whose ages are within a range of a few years from one another into cabins together. By clustering the campers by age, they have the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships with peers with whom they are likely to share common interests, have similar abilities and skills, and have acquired similar developmental assets.
There are three settlements of cabins at Camp Christopher. Lowers settlement, which usually hosts primarily male campers, is the closest to the entrance and the cabins are named after Catholic Martyrs. Middles settlement is just past Lake Marion and is named after explorers. And the Uppers settlement is the furthest down the road, and is named after Catholic Bishops. Both the Middles and Upper settlements host usually female campers.
We assign campers to cabins based on gender and age. Typically, the male cabins will hold campers youngest to oldest in the following order*:
- Anthony Daniels (AD)
- Rene Goupil (RG)
- Kateri Tekawitha (KT)
- Isaac Jogues (IJ)
- John Bosco (JB0)
- Oscar Romero (special needs campers) (OR)
The female cabins will typically hold campers youngest to oldest in the following order*:
- St. Teresa
- Elizabeth Ann Seton (special needs campers) (EAST)
- Kutz Lodge (KL)
- Junipero Serra (JS)
- Ponce DeLeon (PD)
- Hernando Desoto (HD)
- Lord Baltimore (LB)
- John Carroll (JC)
- James Gibbons (JG)
- Old James Gibbons (OJG)
* If there is an unusual spread of ages or other unusual circumstance, the cabins may be rearranged to host campers in an alternate pattern.
Campers are assigned to cabins based on chronological age. We attempt to keep campers within a few years or less range of age within a cabin. As an example, if there are 103 male campers scheduled to attend the same week, the youngest 24 will be placed in cabin AD, the next 24 will be placed in cabin RG, the next 24 will be placed into cabin KT, the next 24 will be placed into cabin IJ, and the final 7 will be placed in cabin JBO. This same process would apply to female cabins.
There is no set age to be in any cabin—it is strictly dictated by the chronological ages of those campers who are registered each week. We accept campers ages 7-16. Some weeks have many children on the younger end of that spectrum, while others have the opposite composition. We accept cabin mate requests, but we do not accept cabin requests.
Campers may request up to two cabin mates. When the campers are the same age, this is usually not a problem. When there is a difference in age that would ordinarily separate the campers into different cabins, Camp Christopher will place the older camper into the younger camper’s cabin as long as the age range in the cabin remains within 3 years. Christopher will usually NOT place a younger camper into the older cabin.
Caregivers should consider making a request to move an older child into a younger cabin as this may place greater limitations on the older child’s activities throughout the week. For example, at age 13, campers are eligible to participate in the high ropes course which is scheduled by cabin. But when a 13 year old camper is placed into a cabin of 10 year olds, the 13 year old will follow the schedule of that cabin, he/she will not experience the high ropes that summer.