Preparing For Camp

A Parent's Guide for sending your child to camp

Going to camp for the first time can be an exciting, yet scary thing. At IOLBC we want to provide an opportunity for youth and families to make new friends, try new things, relax, and grow in their walk with Christ. We want both campers and families to feel safe, comfortable and excited about coming to camp.


Whether it is for a day or a full week, time at camp can be intimidating for both parents and youth and could cause some anxiety.  This is normal and can be worked through both prior to a camp experience and while at camp.  Here are a few things remember.


  • Coming to camp healthy is a great way to start off the camp experience.  Read through the Healthy Camp document prior to coming to camp.

  • Coming to camp/Going to camp is full of learning and growth opportunities, from meeting new people, trying new things, and sharing about your faith. Camp is a safe place to learn and grow.

  • Having conversations with your camper about how to act and handle situations that may arise will go a long way in helping them have a positive experience.


We take homesickness seriously. We train our staff and plan our program in such a way as to help avoid homesickness. We create the most nurturing, comforting environment possible, and with all our activities, most children are able to overcome their homesickness quickly. However, there are a few children every summer who are unable to shake homesickness. If this happens, one of our leadership staff will contact you.

Prevention Strategies

  • Set your camper up for success: practice spending extended time away from home at a friend or neighbors’ home. Don’t promise to rescue your child if they become homesick, instead form a plan for if it happens.

  • Talk about what could happen while at camp and talk about the exciting opportunities that await, whether it be friends, games, activities or meeting new people.

  • Don’t suggest phone calls - They are very difficult to manage and take the focus off of the fun and experiences waiting for them at camp. If needed, leadership staff will be in contact to work on an action plan.

For tips for preventing homesickness, please visit ACA Homesickness.  You can also check out this great ACA blog with tips to help parents set up their camper for a successful week at camp!


Check-in: Campers will be greeted by staff upon arrival and guided through the check-in process.  Please have any necessary forms, medications, and camp store money readily available.

  • For Summer Youth programs, Check-in for overnight youth camps is 4:00-5:00 pm on Sundays with a closing program on the final day (12 noon at Okoboji Lutheran Bible Camp, and 2:30 pm at Ingham Lake Bible Camp). Closing programs will take place outside, and will be canceled if there is bad weather. Camp-in-a-day at Ingham Lake Bible Camp starts at 9:30 am and concludes at 4:30 pm. Please watch for an email with additional details for your child's camp approximately 5-7 days before the start of camp.

  • For Recharge Programs, check-in begins at 8:00 pm and runs until 9:30 pm. Check out for Recharges is after lunch on Sunday (around 12:30 pm)

The camp store will be open for the kids during their time at camp, but you can also check out and purchase items for your campers at camp swag page.​


Check out the "What to Bring" page to see a list of things to bring to camp!


IOLBC has a qualified camp medic to handle distribution of medication, health issues, and, if necessary, accidents. On check-in day medications and health forms are looked over by the camp medic to best care for any and all special needs of campers.  A health screening will be done on the day of check-in. All medications must be brought in original containers.   


Please fill out all forms at least 2 weeks prior to the start of your camper’s event. Remember to check to be sure you’ve signed all forms so your camper will be able to participate in all activities. Having all forms completed prior to the coming to camp will speed up your check in process.  If you have trouble logging in, please contact our camp registrar at or 1-800-OKOBOJI.


Camper mail is always lots of fun for our campers! To make sure that your camper receives their mail from you, please be sure to send it early in the week, or even send it before the camper joins us at camp. 

For Ingham Campers, please send mail to: 


Camper Name

c/o Ingham Lake Bible Camp

2258 450th St

Wallingford, IA 51365

Or Email at


For Okoboji Campers, please send mail to:


Camper Name

c/o Okoboji Lutheran Bible Camp

1203 Inwan St

Milford, IA 51351

Or Email at

  • All camps require a non-refundable deposit. Your deposit may be transferred to another program or an immediate family member within the calendar year (for example, if your camper can't come to Trailblazers #1, you can transfer the deposit to Trailblazers #3 within the same year). Please contact our Registrar if you need to change the week your child is attending camp.

  • The only exception to this policy is if a camper isn't able to attend due to illness or injury. (We reserve the right to require a doctor's note before deposit is refunded.)

  • IOLBC offers camperships when local help cannot be secured or is not enough.

  • For assistance with questions regarding payments, camperships, or refunds, contact the Camp Registrar at or 1-800-OKOBOJI.


IOLBC strives to create and maintain a safe and caring environment that encourages opportunities for physical, emotional, and spiritual growth for each camper. Please check out the COVID-19 page for information on adjustments being made this summer for the health and safety of campers and staff.


IOLBC staff know that communication is an important piece when it comes to health and safety.  We strive to communicate with parents/guardians regarding the health of their campers anytime there is an emergency situation, anytime the camp healthcare staff seek additional medical care, and in any situation where clarification and guidance is needed from the parent/guardian.  


Camp staff are trained in safety procedures in the event of severe storms, including flooding and tornadoes, and fires. We have storm shelters at both Ingham Lake Bible Camp in Emmet county and Okoboji Lutheran Bible Camp in Dickinson county, where campers can gather if there is a tornado warning and designated areas in case of a fire. Camp also stays closely connected to weather watch and warning sources, including local weather updates, local news stations, and local law enforcement. If there is excessive heat, campers are given regular breaks and encouraged to wear sunscreen and drink water. Most sleeping and dining accommodations are held in air-conditioned spaces.


Staff are trained to deal with inappropriate behavior in a safe, constructive way that leads to positive outcomes.  At IOLBC, campers will be held responsible for their actions in a positive and respectful way. Misbehavior in a camping setting takes many forms.  We want to ensure campers and guests feel safe, secure and loved.  As staff we try to stop and redirect behaviors  which are not in alignment with this core value.  Each behavioral situation is dealt with on a case by case basis.  If staff are unable to correct the misbehaving, IOLBC reserves the right to ask parents/guardians to pick up their child early from camp.


Each year we are blessed with great counselors who love the Lord and who love sharing their faith with everyone who comes. Our counselors are carefully selected through an application and interview process. All counselors are required to complete training specific to their roles prior to the start of summer programming.


We're here to help! Give us a call at 1-800-OKOBOJI, or send an e-mail to