for First or Second Session campers
First-time camp parents will appreciate Assistant Director Annie Mauch’s Guide to Packing for Walden! Annie, a former camper, counselor, and mother of two Walden campers, offers suggestions and great hacks for making sure everything gets to camp—and comes home! In general, clothes that come to camp should be comfortable and modest. Our bathing suit policy prohibits swimwear tops or bottoms that tie with “strings” or are simply too revealing. Use your best judgment or call us with questions! Shorts should have at least a 3-inch inseam (lo, the dreaded micro-short trend!). If we see campers in clothes we deem inappropriate for an all-ages camp setting, we will ask them to change.  This is a suggested list, as is the buying guide. If your child tends to go through clothes rapidly, then pack a bit more. If s/he loves sports, probably best to send more pairs of athletic shoes.  Please remember: We will not send out laundry for two-week campers. These campers will need a 13-day clothing supply. All other campers should have a 10-to-12-day clothing supply. For trips out of camp, such as Mackinac Island, we request that campers wear a Walden T-shirt or sweatshirt for easy identification. Closed-toe shoes are required after 8 p.m. each night. Our camp clothes outfitters in the Detroit area are Brody’s in West Bloomfield and Perfect Trading Co. in Bloomfield Hills.


____ 6-8 pr shorts (At least a 3-inch inseam) 
____ 6-8 pr of pants (jeans and/or athletic pants, sweatpants, leggings)
____ 10 short-sleeve T-shirts (including 2-3 Walden T-shirts)
____ 3-4 long-sleeve T-shirts
____ 3-4 sweatshirts   
____ 4-5 pr pajamas (1 for cool weather) 
____ 15 pr underwear 
____ 15 pr socks (we wear closed-toed shoes in the  evenings, which typically require socks!) 
____ 4 swimsuits, consider long-sleeve rash guards for sun protection (please note our swimwear policy in the  Parent Guide) 
____ 1 rain jacket
____ 1 mid-weight (i.e. fleece) jacket
____ 1 cap or hat for sun protection


____ 1 pr water shoes (not flip flops; shoes that  will reliably stay on feet when in the water/river) 
____ 2 pr athletic shoes 
____ 1 Crocs or slide on shoe
____ 1 pr hiking shoes (a sturdy athletic shoe can often  substitute) 
____ 1 pr rainboots, if hiking shoe is not waterproof
____ If horseback riding: 1 pr paddock or cowboy boot, or a  hard shoe with small heel (no tennis shoes)


____ 2 washable laundry bags.  **Two-week campers need only one.**
____ 4 bath towels  
____ 4 wash cloths and/or hand towels 
____ 4 beach towels
____ 1 mattress pad (no egg crates)
____ 1-2 pillows 
____ 2-4 pillowcases
____ 2 cot-sized or twin fitted sheets  (either works; cot-sized are easier for little kids to make beds)
____ 2 cot-sized  or twin flat sheets (ditto above)
____ 2 blankets 
____ 1 sleeping bag (may be unzipped and used as the second blanket’; campers may not sleep in zipped sleeping bags


____ 2 medium or large duffel bags (please avoid “Big Berthas”;  they’re too heavy when filled) 
____ shampoo/conditioner
____ hair brush
____ pony tail holders
____ toothpaste/ tooth brush
____ body soap
____ deodorant, if needed
____ sunscreen
____ bug spray
____ bug bite relief (e.g. afterbite)
____ lotion 
____ flashlight and extra batteries 
|____ reusable h2o bottle (with or w/out carbon filters for taste)  
____ facial tissue
____ toiletry case/tote/dop kit
____ stationary/stamps (consider pre-addressing and stamping envelopes for younger campers)

OPTIONAL ITEMS (*available at camp)

____ Personal music player with no video capability  (Use CAMPWALDENMI10  for 10 percent off at
____ Disposable cameras  ($5 off at Camp Snap:
____ Foldable, ground-level camp chair, e.g. a Crazy Creek
____ Stuffed animal, blankie, pictures from home 
____ *If preferred, a personal tennis racket, archery bow, lacrosse stick, baseball glove, etc. 
____ Personal musical instruments
____ Dance shoes (Tap, Ballet, Etc.)
____ *Board games, cards
____ *Books (Walden has a nice lending library, and we’re also happy to order books for kids)
____ *Horseback riding helmet
____ Riding breeches or riding boots
____ Single-color accessories for Special Days (teams are determined at camp): Capture the Camp (yellow vs. red); Color Clash (six-eight teams; kids usually just borrow whatever color they need from other campers. Color Clash colors are typically red, yellow, blue, green, purple, orange, white, and black)
____Costumes for the banquet (theme TBD!)

diversity, equity, inclusion

Walden understands that a relevant camp community requires the harmonies of many voices—not only those that inspire, but also those that instruct and challenge. We strive to be a camp where diversity is celebrated and supported, and where each camper and staff member is provided the resources and opportunities to succeed. Our mission of teaching empathy and respect is incomplete if it only serves those who think and look like we do. We believe that our camp can be anyone’s camp, and that our greatest strength lies therein.

Walden is an Equal Opportunity Employer that hires qualified staff regardless of their race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, veteran status or any other basis covered by appropriate law.