The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources will not offer its summer conservation camps this year due to the novel coronavirus disease 2019. Kentucky Fish and Wildlife operates Camp John Currie, Camp Earl Wallace and Camp Robert Webb to provide youth with outdoor education and experiences.
Department leaders made their decision in conjunction with the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet as part of the Commonwealth’s ongoing effort to ensure the health and wellness of the public as Kentucky fights aggressively to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The department will issue refunds to the family of paid campers. For more information: visit the department’s website at fw.ky.gov and select the MyProfile tab.
All parents/guardians will be refunded for the camp registration fee which they paid. There is no further action required to receive the refund. If the form of payment you used to register for camp is no longer available, please call the Department at 800-858-1549 and we'll make other arrangements for your refund.
Due to the large volume of refunds, there is a two-week time frame for processing. It takes an additional three business days to post on your account. So, you may not see your refund until May 5, 2020. If it is after May 5 and you still have not received your refund, please email Emily.Hogue@ky.gov
Campers currently in 6th grade
If your camper is currently in 6th grade, the department is discussing options and you will be notified via email regarding a decision.
Camp is open only to those Kentucky students who are in grades 4 - 6 (as of April 1st) and not older than 13. Applications are distributed by Conservation Educators during their school programs in January and February.
All three KDFWR Conservation Camps are COEDUCATIONAL. Boys and girls from the same county will attend camp during the same week. In the past certain counties or schools have been changed to different weeks to accommodate as many campers as possible. If this occurs, you will be notified of the change as soon as possible. If a conflict arises because of the change, you will have an opportunity to request a full refund.
Each camp operates nine weeks every summer (June through August) with a capacity of 200 campers per week per camp. Camp is open to all Kentucky students who are in grades 4-6 and NOT older than 13 years. Applications are distributed during Conservation Education classes in February and are also available online.
Campers are transported to camp by bus on Monday morning and return home on Friday. Campers are picked up Monday and dropped off Friday at a predetermined location in their home or adjacent county. Transportation is arranged by KDFWR personnel through local school districts or by charter bus service. The camp fee includes transportation costs.
Campers arrive at camp Monday morning and return home on Friday. Scheduled activities include:
- Outdoor Survival
- Firearm Safety
Successful completion of a camp activity entitles the camper to an achievement patch, certificate or award. Additionally, campers may earn Kentucky’s Hunter Education Certificate. This ‘orange card’ is honored in all states that require a hunter education card. Each evening, campers will also have time to enjoy their favorite playground activities such as basketball, volleyball, badminton, ping-pong, etc.
Camp Staff and Facilities
Each conservation camp has eight air conditioned cabins which house 25-30 campers. In addition, there are staff quarters, bathhouses, a kitchen and dining room, camp director’s office, sick bay/first aid station, snack shop, nature building, and shelters. We also have a playground, basketball court, volleyball court, badminton court, outdoor assembly area, nature field trail, rifle range, trap range, hunter safety field course, archery range, archery field course, lake swim crib, boat dock, storage and maintenance buildings.
Permanent staff consists of camp director, conservation educators, camp superintendent, and maintenance staff. Summer staff includes counselors, summer educators, and cooks. All summer staff college-aged students that are screened, hired and trained to chaperon the campers and assist the program leaders with camper safety, instruction, and supervision.
The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources has been involved in conservation education camping since 1946. Camp John Currie
, located on Kentucky Lake outside of Benton, Kentucky opened in 1949. Camp Earl Wallace
, located on Lake Cumberland outside of Monticello, Kentucky opened in 1951. Camp Robert C. Webb
, located on Grayson Lake outside of Grayson, Kentucky opened in 1969. An average of 4,500 Kentucky students attend our three camps each year.
What Parent’s Say About Summer Camp
As I find myself signing my son Charlie up for another year at Camp Wallace, I wanted to take a moment and express to you and your staff how much this camp means to me. Last year was Charlie's first experience at camp and away from home. As a mother, I was of course concerned for his physical safety but also how he would handle being on his own. Would the way I've tried to raise him benifit him now and would the staff be able to help him if he needed encouragement to be on his own? My greatest hope as a parent is that my children are happy, self confident, and independent when away from me. I was so excited to see,when he came home, that both he and the staff exceeded my expectations.
Charlie has always been a very quiet, reserved child. Camp Wallace brought him out of his shell and helped him feel more confident and self reliant. It allowed him to satisfy a child's basic need for connectedness and acceptance while challenging him learn the importance of teamwork and community. It challanged him to learn new things and understand that when he didn't succeed to not give up. Through the staffs encouragement he was already making plans to try again this year. He had to problem solve, make social adjustments, learn responsibility and gain new skills which helped increase his self esteem.
I don't have the resources or the knowledge to expose him to some aspects of the outdoors. He loved the boating, gun safety and so many other activities you offer.
Camp Wallace is a safe place for him to learn, grow and continue on his way to a healthy productive life. For me as a parent that is invaluable. Thank you so much for everything you offer my son. His younger brother can't wait until he is old enough to go! Sarah Newton