Planning Guide

We are so excited you have chosen to join us at YMCA Camp Kern! We’ve compiled a list of relevant information and resources to assist you in planning your upcoming trip to YMCA Camp Kern. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with further questions at 513-932-3756 ext 1526 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Unless other plans are made, please check-in with your host at the Boda Welcome Center upon arrival (YMCA Camp Kern Map). Your Camp Host will be your guide to Camp Kern, review your schedule with you, check-in with you at meals, and be available via cell phone for the entire length of your stay.


YMCA Camp Kern is not a public facility and is open to registered guests only. For the safety and security of all guests, each member of your group must wear a wristband for the length of their stay. The group leader will be given wristbands at check-in to distribute to group members. You will be invoiced for the number of wristbands used, so please remember to return any unused wristbands to your camp host.


Participation in any Camp Kern activities must be pre-planned and outlined in your contract. Many of our activities have age and time restrictions. Please make sure to confirm your schedule with us at least 2 weeks prior to arrival. If your group is participating in any activities at Camp, each participant will need to turn in a signed copy of our waiver. YMCA Camp Kern Waiver


We operate on a Challenge by Choice philosophy, meaning each participant chooses their own level of participation in our high adventure activities. If you are participating in a teambuilding event at Camp Kern, please make sure you have filled out a Teambuilding Questionnaire and returned it to us at least 2 weeks prior to your arrival.


YMCA Camp Kern is accredited by the American Camping Association. For all high adventure programming, we follow guidelines laid out by the Assocaiation of Challenge Course Technology. We have high standards of excellence in our staff, administration, programs, health, and safety. All facilitators have experience working with children and adults in an outdoor setting and are trained in CPR and First Aid.


We do not provide linens. Please make sure to bring your own bedding and towels.

Upon leaving, guests are expected to:

  • Remove all personal belongings from cabins
  • Return tables and chairs to original places
  • Remove trash from cabins and place in large barrels outside cabins
  • Sweep cabins – Flip each mattress on its side
  • Turn heat down to 65 degrees; Turn lights off; Turn air conditioning off
  • Shut all doors and windows

A housekeeping charge will be added to the final bill if cabins are not left in a clean and orderly manner.


At Singerman Lodge, the main dining hall, and Elk Lodge we eat family-style. Meals in the Assembly Hall are usually served buffet-style. Meals are served promptly at 8AM, 12Noon, and 5:30PM unless designated otherwise in your contract.

You are welcome to bring your own food or bring in outside caterers. Alcohol is permitted only at Schiewetz Assembly Hall. We are a nut-free facility. All of the food we serve is completely nut-free and we also ask that you do not bring any nuts to our facility. Guests with food allergies or other concerns should contact the Leadership and Conferencing Team at 513-932-3756 ext 1526 or the Food Service Director at extension 1516.


Camp Kern programmed activities will continue to run as scheduled in most kinds of weather. Please be prepared to continue activities in rain, snow, and cold and hot weather. We reserved the right to cancel activities if we determine it is unsafe to continue for any reason. In the event of severe weather we will postpone, reschedule, or cancel/refund activities on a case-by-case basis.


We recommend that all guests bring reusable water bottles. Water is available onsite, but may be a significant distance from your programming areas.


Fires may only be built in designated fire rings and fireplaces. We generally have a supply of split firewood available for free at Camp, however we do not guarantee firewood to be available to your group. Our supply is not covered, so during wet or snowy weather, we advise you to bring your own firewood. The supply is also depleted quickly during our busy seasons. Please be prepared to bring your own kindling and matches.


We have audio-visual equipment available and we will do our best to accommodate your audio-visual needs. Please make arrangements with us at least 2 weeks prior to your arrival.


You can purchase Camp Kern gear at our Canteen. Please plan ahead and schedule a time for the Canteen to be open for your group. We accept cash, credit (Visa, Mastercard, and Discover), and check.


A signed contract and 30% deposit are required to hold your space at Camp. You will be invoiced after your event based on your guaranteed minimum number of participants or actual number of participants, whichever is greater.


Wi-Fi is available at Schiewetz Assembly Hall and Singerman Lodge.