Top Navigation

Menu Register Now! Request Info!  

First-Time Campers

First-Time Campers

We understand that homesickness can be a problem for children living away from home.

Our counselors will work closely with your child to ensure a smooth transition into camp life. First-time campers can also take advantage of Prep4Camp designed especially to help camper families get the most of out camp.

Less homesickness and more fun. Simple.

Prep4Camp is how our first-time camper families get the most out of camp.

Prep4Camp Program:

  • Dr. Thurber’s 25-minute streaming video (for families to watch together), a parent podcast (to listen to on your way home from opening-day drop-off), and a camper tip-sheet (for kids to download and bring to camp.)
  • Proven effectiveness. Watching the Prep4Camp video together as a family promotes positive attitudes and decreases the intensity of first-year campers’ homesickness by 50%, on average. Plus, you’ll learn packing tips, how to make a stationery kit, and ways to label everything.
  • Who created Prep4Camp? Dr. Christopher Thurber educates leaders using innovative content that stirs thinking and compels action. A Harvard graduate, board-certified psychologist, and faculty member at Phillips Exeter Academy, Chris has contributed keynotes, articles, and workshops on five continents. Chris and his wife, Simonida, are the proud parents of Danilo, born 2002, and Sava, born 2004. You can learn more about Chris and access all of his great content, including Expert Online Training, at

Spend the night at Appel Farm at our Family Art Camp!

Experience the joy of Camp for the whole family

This event is also a great chance for first-time campers and their families to get a taste of camp before summer. If your kiddo is nervous about their first sleep-away experience, Family Arts Camp is a fun and safe way for them to try out sleeping in a bunk, eating meals in the dining hall, and exploring camp classes and activities. Click here to learn more and register your family today!

Appel Farm Camper Profile: Charis, age 7

Friends, Fun & Independence:

Meet Charis! She studies swim, ceramics, special fx makeup, and a really cool performance class. If you have any questions, she’s an Appel Farm expert!