We are blessed to have a high return rate of summer staffers from year to year, usually between 40-50%.  Beyond that, many of our summer team come from word of mouth recommendations of past summer staff or have come through the camp program as campers, and come back as summer staff once they are in college. Our staff come from a variety of colleges, including:  Liberty University, North Greenville University, App. State, Western Carolina University, Carolina University (formerly Piedmont International University), Gardner-Webb University, UNC-G, NC State, etc.  Our counselors are required to be college-age.  Our application process includes an extensive staff application, personal interviews, reference checks, background checks, and praying for the Lord’s guidance in our decisions. Staff are also trained in Child Abuse Prevention, CPR/AED/First Aid, and much more!

Merriwood does not have a Parent’s Night.  There are several reasons for this:  We want the campers to focus on the week. Sometimes when campers see parents, mid-week, this can add to homesickness for campers that may have otherwise been just fine.  Also, many camper parents are not local, so it would be difficult for them to attend an evening event, leaving those campers feeling left out. It would also be difficult to fit 150 campers plus families into our meeting spaces. Finally, we have a full, fun-filled week already!

Our college-aged counselors are trained in First Aid, CPR, and AED and are prepared to meet the basic physical of their campers.  For campers that bring prescription medications, we have a detailed medication registration form that parents can fill out online ahead of time or upon drop-off the first day of camp. This allows the parent to communicate the type of medication involved, what the diagnosis is, the dosage amount, and times it should be administered.  The medications are primarily kept in our First Aid Room.  The camper’s counselor (or Health Assistant) will chart each time they administer the medication.  (Merriwood keeps a supply of “as needed” medicines on hand, such as: bandaids, hydrocortisone creams, pain relief/fever reducers, wraps for sprains, benadryl, cough drops, etc.).  If your child has more significant needs, please contact MCC at 336-766-5151 to discuss the needs and/or to get an Exceptional Needs Screening Form.

If your child has a life-threatening allergy, there will be a place to indicate this in the online registration process. MCC will then send you an additional Life Threatning Allergy form to fill out ahead of time. MCC’s kitchen does not serve food with treenut or peanut in the ingredient label (but sometimes a food item might be processed in the same factory or might say “may contain.”)  Campers with life threatening allergies will be given a band to wear (at arrival time throughout the week) so our staff can be aware at a glance what the issue is, should there become an emergency.

If your child has a special dietary concern (not life threatening) please indicate this on the registration form so MCC can send you a Special Diet Form to complete ahead of time.

For those indicating a diet-related life threatening allergy or special diet concern, MCC will send the week’s menu ahead of time in case you wish to bring alternative or additional food items for your child.

If a camper has allergies requiring a lot of meal modifications (gluten, soy, egg, etc.)  please indicate this on the registraiton form so MCC can send you a Special Diet Form. Parents may also wish to contact the camp office to discuss the matter in further detail.

Merriwood has several food items at each meal, which most campers can pick and choose from if they dislike something or are allergic to something.  Our kitchen always has cold cut sandwich items (ham/turkey/cheese/bread) available for campers, as well as salad bar for the lunch and supper meals.

All allergies or special diets should be listed on the camper’s registration forms. The counselor will have access to this information, so we can best meet the child’s needs and help keep them safe.

Merriwood has an outdoor swimming pool that is part of the program daily. Merriwood takes water safety very seriously. We have certified lifeguards on duty any time the pool is open.  We offer a deep water test the first day of camp for any campers wishing to go into the deep end of the pool (5-10 foot area) throughout the week. If passed, the camper will be given a wristband indicating they passed, and they may enter the 5-10 area where there is a lower and higher diving board.  Campers not passing this test or not wishing to take this test may stay in the 2 foot area (which is also a no-splash zone) or the 3-5 foot area (where there is a slide and basketball goal) throughout the week. The shallow end also allows for noodles, balls, and kick boards.  In addition to the certified guards, we also have Aquatic Observers stationed both in the water and around the pool to both play with campers and offer additional safety.
MCC also has a small lake where campers (depending on grade and program) can ride paddle boats, canoes, and participate in the blob/water trampoline/water obstacle course.  Campers are required to have PFD’s (personal floatation devices) on before getting on the dock.  When the water obstacle course or blob is in use, campers will be required to wear a heavy-duty PFD before getting in the water or using the water equipment.  Lifeguards are always on duty when campers are using the water obstacle course or blob (as well as aquatic observers) to ensuring safety.

Thank you for considering Merriwood Christian Camp.  We are not a special needs camp, nor are we able to staff specifically for special needs. Although we try to accommodate as many campers as possible, we also have to look at each unique situation and make a decision that is in the best interest of the individual, the other campers, and our staff’s abilities.

If your child has exceptional emotional, medical, behavioral, psychological, or physical needs, or if they are not in a mainstreamed classroom, please call the office to discuss if Merriwood is able to accommodate the camper before registering them for a camp week.  Exceptional needs include (but are not limited to) anxiety, panic attacks, depression, Diabetes, Autism Spectrum, gluten-free diet, life-threatening allergies such as nut or bee stings, Sensory Processing Disorder, Oppositional Defiance Disorder, suicidal or homicidal, criminal acts, etc.
By registering your child, you agree to disclose any and all information concerning the emotional, medical, behavioral, physical, and psychological needs of your child.  Any undisclosed information could result in your child being dismissed from the camp without refund should any issues arise.

Homesickness is a normal feeling.  In an outside study of boys at camp in general, approximately 83% of campers report feeling homesick at some time during their camp experience.  This can be caused by: little previous experience away from home, being forced to attend camp, being unsure if adults at camp will meet their needs, parents expressing a lot of anxiety, and inexperience with coping with negative emotions.

Since parents know their children better than anyone else, parents need to make the decision if the child is ready to spend a week away from home or not.  Although we’d love every 1st through 12th grader attend Merriwood, some may not be ready.

Once a camper is enrolled, we encourage parents to be positive and upbeat when speaking to their child about the camp experience and to let the camper know they “expect” their child to stay the entire week. Remind the child that some feelings of homesickness are normal, but resist the urge to tell the child, “I’ll pick you up if you are homesick.” Phrases such as, “I’ll see you at the end of the week!” spoken in a cheery voice, are excellent!  Parents should not tell campers, “Call me if you need to” as there is not a phone available for camper use, and cell phones are not permitted.  Parents concerned about their child’s well-being throughout the week may call the office if necessary.  Our staff can check on the child and call you back to let you know how they are doing.  We appreciate our parents being supportive of our policies.

We encourage parents to schedule the child for a week of camp that does not have conflicts. However, we realize that a situation may arise that cannot be avoided.  If a camper will need to leave, please see a MCC staff member at check-in on the first day to complete paperwork, arrange a pick up time, and learn about our pick-up protocol and return protocol. If sometime arises mid-week, please call the office well in advance so we can arrange things for you and your child.  Using this procedure will ensure your child is ready when you need them and the transition can happen in a safe, organized manner.

Day Campers should bring about $2 a day for an afternoon canteen time. For overnight weeks we recommend $4/day for canteen alone.  You may wish to send additional money for the camp store. (Campers are also welcome to bring their own snack items if canteen funds are not available.)  In addition to canteen, the Camp Store is open daily during the camp week as well as during camper drop off and pick up times.  Camp Store items range from $2 to $18 for items such as specialty pens, camp journals, snap and shoot camera, stuffed animals, T-shirts and more!

Absolutely!  Campers can request one or two roommates. We try to keep groupings to three or under. Those requests must also choose them.  It needs to be mutual in order for us to honor the request. Since some of our goals are for campers to get to know new friends, as well as make it possible to meet other campers’ requests, we cannot place large groups together.  If you have over three friends that wish to be together, we recommend talking amongst yourselves and breaking up the groups into smaller friend requests.

We welcome campers who are attending on their own. Our small group focus, camper/counselor relationship, structured program, and team-building environment will allow individual campers to make friends quickly. We will aim to place them in a cabin with other students their grade who are also coming on their own.  Many campers report back that it was a great experience getting to meet new friends.

Since we run two weeks of staff training and 9 weeks of summer camp, we are not available for outside groups to run camps or to lease the camp from mid-May through mid-August.  Groups interested in spring or fall retreats are encouraged to contact the office at 336-766-5151 or

Parents may send letters or care packages to their child during their camp week through the mail system.  There is also an option to send emails to your child via our registration system. (This is a one-way system so campers do not have a computer to reply to the emails.)  Merriwood also has Care Packages available for parents to purchase.  Our staff put those packages together and deliver them during mid-week to campers. We do not allow campers to bring cell phones nor do we have a phone available for camper use.  If there is an emergency, parents are welcome to call the office or emergency number.  If there is a concern with your camper while here, our staff will reach you at the numbers you have listed in their account.

One thing God taught me this week is that I am unique and special in my own way.


Merriwood has been the best thing for me.


Some of my most powerful experiences with God happened at Merriwood.