Summer Camp

Policies & Procedures

Hello and thank you for registering your camper(s) in our Summer Camp!

This Camp will run in weekly sessions from May 27 through August 9 and will start daily at 9am, and end at 3pm. Post camp will run from 3pm to 5pm and is an optional add-on for each day.

The meeting place will be:

Main Visitor Center
16831 W. Alameda Parkway, Morrison, CO 80465
303-697-3466 – Select 2 (gift shop/front desk – opens at 9am)

Camp Day Arriving and Leaving Policies and Expectations

Upon Arrival

Please don’t forget to sign in your camper(s)! If you have two children attending the camp, please sign them both in individually. The sign in sheet will be with the camp leader outside the giftshop at the west/north patio. Please refer to these instructions:

Morning Drop-Off
  • Day 1: Please provide any documentation not previously submitted. – This could include camper’s immunization records, general health appraisal, or medication forms (epi pen, inhaler, etc.). Examples of these forms are available through ACTIVE under Supplemental Forms. You can (and it’s suggested) to upload these ahead of time for ease of checking in.
  • If possible, please limit the number of accompanying children under 3 years of age to one child.

Please don’t forget anything listed below under What to Bring and What to Leave at Home such as multiple masks (if required or recommended), a lunch, two snacks, a refillable water bottle, and more.

In Case of Outside (non-camp related) Emergency During Camp Hours

If you have an emergency and need to contact your camper or their instructor you can call the instructor via cell phone numbers below. If unable to get a hold of the instructor please leave a message on the cell phone and then contact the Dinosaur Ridge Visitor Center Gift Shop (303-697-3466 – select 2) to leave a message with the staff there.

(Certain areas like Red Rocks Park, Morrison, hiking areas, and other sites have intermittent cell phone reception, so a message may need to be left with the Visitor Center staff in order to be passed on to your camper or our camp leaders. This would include early pick up, family emergencies, etc.)

Main Contacts for Emergencies
Camp Co-Director: Erin LaCount

Cell Phone: PROVIDED TO CAMP PARENTS THAT REGISTER (phone number only to be used for camp needs between 9am and 5pm, May 27–August 9) For any non-emergency concerns, please email her at

Camp Co-Director: Amanda Rea

Cell Phone: PROVIDED TO CAMP PARENTS THAT REGISTER (phone number only to be used for camp needs between 9am and 5pm, May 27–August 9) For any non-emergency concerns, please email her at

Camper Sign-Out/End of The Day

Please don’t forget to sign out your camper(s)! If you have two children attending the camp, please sign them both out individually. The sign in sheet will be with the camp leader outside the giftshop at the west/north patio. Please refer to these instructions:

Afternoon Pick-Up

Please have these things ready to show when you arrive to pick-up your camper(s)!

  • For pick up (not for drop off) we will be located in the west/north patio, and you can pick them up there.
  • A form of ID with the name clearly visible (the name will be checked against the provided names authorized for pick-up and drop-off). If a name needs to be added as an authorized adult to pick up, we can have a parent add the name to the camper’s printed registration form at drop-off. In the event that a person is not authorized, a temporary allowance can be made if the parent can email a scanned picture (or text) of a written and signed authorization.
  • Please remember to remind the campers to bring any items home with them, i.e. lunch boxes/non-disposable lunch bags, medications, etc.

Please don’t forget anything listed below under What to Bring and What to Leave at Home such as multiple masks (if required or recommended), a lunch, two snacks, a refillable water bottle, and more.

Pick up Authorization

Children will only be released to persons authorized by the parents/guardians on the registration forms. Parents and guardians can authorize another pick up person in writing, however, identification will need to be presented by that person (and the name must match the records) at time of pick up. Children are to be picked up at 3pm unless arrangements for Post Camp have been made. If a camper is not picked up by 3:15pm, the camper will be enrolled in post camp for the day ($20). Attempts to contact the parents/guardians will be made after 3:30pm; if no response, emergency contacts will be notified. If by 4pm we have not had any contact with parents/guardians and/or emergency contacts, local police will be contacted and made aware of the situation.

Post Camp

Post Camp is an optional program with the flexible pick-up time between 3pm-5pm. The campers and their Camp Leaders will stay at the Visitor Center throughout this time in the downstairs classroom, and can be picked up there! When parents arrive at the Visitor Center they can provide ID and then sign out their camper for the day.

If you need to add Post Camp to your camper’s registration, you can sign into your ACTIVE account and select it as an optional add-on. If this doesn’t work, contact

Attendance Procedures

A daily attendance form is maintained by the staff upon which parents/guardians or other authorized persons will sign campers in and out of camp each day. Attendance will also be taken at lunch and periodically throughout the day (especially when moving to separate sites). Parents will receive an itinerary of each day’s proposed activities, a copy of which will also be maintained at theVisiter Center. Some modifications may be required to the daily schedule due to weather or other emergency situations.

During the camp day, the camp director(s) will have a cell phone with them at all times where they can be reached in an emergency by the parents or Discovery Center staff. The kids will be with an instructor at all times during the camp. Breaks will be taken as a group, and bathrooms are located right next to the indoor classroom for use as needed.

A camper will be released only to individuals who have been authorized in writing in the camper’s registration materials. In the event that an unauthorized individual attempts to pick-up the camper, the parents/guardians will be contacted for verbal permission to release the child. If the parents/guardians fear that there has been an attempt to violate the child’s safety, the local police will be contacted.

Late Arrival

Campers that arrive late when the group is off-site will be required to wait for a staff member to lead them to the area or wait at the Visitor Center until the group has returned. Parents and Dinosaur Ridge staff will receive a schedule notifying of where we will be at all times. If a camper will be late and an offsite trip is planned, parents can quickly call and arrange to have their camper meet camp at their destination by contacting Camp Director Erin LaCount (303-828-8833).

Hours of Operation

The Dinosaur Ridge Summer Camp will only be in operation from 9am to 5pm Monday through Friday during these weeks: May 27-31, June 3-7, June 10-14, June 17-21, June 24-28, week off July 1-5, July 8-12, July 15-19, July 22-26, July 29-August 2, August 5-9, 2024.


In the case of illness or absence, the responsible adult needs to notify Friends of Dinosaur Ridge by calling Erin LaCount or Amanda Rea (NUMBERS PROVIDED ONCE REGISTERED). If withdrawing the student from camp earlier than the last day of the session, camp directors need to be notified in writing of the last day of camper. Camp costs will not be pro-rated or refunded.


If you need to cancel your session, you can at any time place all of the funds into your ACTIVE family account for use on a future Dinosaur Ridge Camp.

  • Registration opening through March 31 – refunds are available in full.
  • April 1 through April 15 – refunds will be full minus the $100 deposit (per registration).
  • April 15 through April 30 – refunds will be 50% of the session cost (aftercare refunded automatically).
  • May 1st through the end of the camp season: no refunds will be available*.

*At any time you can cancel and choose to place paid funds into your ACTIVE Family Account for future use. These funds can be used for future Dinosaur Ridge Camps (Summer, Winter Break, Spring Break, etc.). You can also choose to give any or all of the paid funds to Dinosaur Ridge as a tax-deductible donation.

What to Bring and What to Leave at Home

Daily Items for Camp

There are a number of items that you, the parents/guardians, will need to supply your camper(s) for our camp. Please use the below as a checklist each day before coming to camp to make sure nothing important gets left at home!

  • Multiple Face Masks (at least two) – in the event that they are needed throughout the day
  • Lunch
  • Two snacks (morning and afternoon)
  • Water Bottle (refillable)
  • Hat
  • Backpack – a good size to fit everything on this list as well as art projects coming home
  • Sunscreen (we have generic sunscreen available, but if they have a specific need or allergy, please send sunscreen with your camper)
  • No open-toed shoes! This would include flip-flops, sandals, crocs, etc., save on designated water days. Close-toed shoes, hiking shoes/boots, comfortable tennis shoes would be best.
  • Snow boots – we will be going outside to explore, even if there is snow/mud! Regular shoes can be used for most of the day, but a few excursions will need boots.
  • Warm clothes in layers for indoor and outdoor activities.
  • Medication (if required – must provide signed paperwork and bottles/boxes with pharmacy/original labeling). If bringing medication, please bring an extra copy of the medication order from the doctor (especially for emergency medications).
Camper’s Belongings

Label all personal belongings with camper’s name. Campers are asked not to bring toys (particularly card-based games like Pokémon), money, or electronics (including phones) to camp. Each camper is responsible for his/her own belongings.

Hygiene, Sanitation, Food Prep

Dinosaur Ridge Camp does not prep food for campers. In the event that a camper needs supplemental food, it will be pre-packaged (fruits or vegetables, crackers, etc.). All Dinosaur Ridge staff will maintain a high level of hygiene around food by hand-washing followed by glove-wearing if foods do need to be handled.

Meals and Snacks

Each camper is required to bring two snacks, lunch, and water bottle each day. The camp will provide water refills as needed and have extra bottles in case of emergency or lost/forgotten bottles.

Lunches will NOT be provided by Dinosaur Ridge Camp.

Dinosaur Ridge Camp will have supplemental foods on site if a camper is seen with an insufficient lunch/snack, or needs a supplement. Please keep in mind to send your camper with a nutritious lunch and a couple of nutritious snacks.

Dinosaur Ridge will have Supplemental food on site in the event that a camper forgets a snack or has a lunch without appropriate food content. This would include (but not be limited to):

  • 1 Serving of carrots or,
  • 1 Serving of applesauce or,
  • 1 Serving of grain-based item (E.G.: single serving of a packaged plain, sugar-free granola)
  • Bottle of Water (if provided only with a Soda or other sugary beverage)

Social Distancing will take place during meals, snacks, crafts, or activities that are done at the table with 3 campers at each picnic table – two on opposite ends with one in the middle on the opposite side.


Medications will be stored as required, in either the camp refrigerator or camp pack and will be accessible to camp staff only (under lock and key if required).

Medications will be administered by qualified camp staff according to our nurse practitioner. A daily record will be kept of medications given. All medications, prescription and/or over-the-counter must have a doctor’s note and signature. We can provide you with these forms if you need them. The forms that are required for schools or school-age-care facilities will work for Dinosaur Ridge.

If you have any details for the instructors that are special to that day (camper has a cold and you’ve provided cough medicine with a doctor’s note, etc.) please let us know! We’re ready for anything and have been trained in application/administration of medications, first aid, and CPR*. Our staff will look over the medication and paperwork to make sure nothing is missing. If there are any issues, we will have camp directors Amanda Rea and/or Erin LaCount double-check things with you off to the side as we continue to check in other campers. This will resolve any issues and then your camper can be signed in to start their day.

*If your camper has a specialized medicine, it may require our staff to take a special training with our camp nurse. Please notify our camp leaders as soon as possible so we can schedule any training ahead of time to be able to administer specialized medication safely. This could include seizure, diabetes, or other types of non-emergency medication.

NOTE: We cannot accept any medications at camp that do not have paperwork signed by the doctor and the parent/guardian on the proper medical forms! The forms must match the medication (can’t be for Tylenol and you bring Ibuprofen for example), and if over the counter needs to be in the container with directions present. If a prescription, it must be in the container/box that shows the prescription label. Medicine must be labeled with the child’s name, either by prescription labels or by you if it’s over the counter.

Dinosaur Ridge Safety/Emergency Policies


The purpose of the Dinosaur Ridge Camp is to provide campers with the opportunity to actively participate in scientific exploration of the geology and paleontology of Dinosaur Ridge and surrounding areas. Education and preservation of the fossils of Dinosaur Ridge is our organization’s mission. Our philosophy for the Camps is learning through hands-on education.

Qualifications for Acceptance

Campers must be between 5 and 13 years of age (5-year olds must have completed kindergarten).

Students with Special Needs

The camp will use its best efforts to accommodate campers with special needs. A lot of our activities can be modified for full participation by all. Sufficient advanced notice must be given to the instructors by the parent or guardian of the camper so that accommodations can be made for those with special needs. Prior to enrollment, parents are informed about camp activities so that they may determine if the camp’s activities and location is appropriate for their child.

NOTE: We may not be using a vehicle that can accommodate wheelchairs, so this camp may not be appropriate for campers with those specific needs. If a camper needs a wheelchair for mobility but can get on and off the bus with use of a walker or a bit of help, we can manage that during our camps.


All visitors will be asked to check-in with the staff and Dinosaur Ridge staff will be present during the duration of their visit. This includes guest speakers and volunteers working with the camp directly.


Transportation of the camper to and from the camp at the beginning and end of each day is the responsibility of the parents/guardians. While on site, children will be transported in Dinosaur Ridge vehicles with authorized, licensed drivers only. While in the vehicle, all children will wear seatbelts. In case of an accident, authorities will be called first, then Dinosaur Ridge staff will notify parents/guardians. Staff will be with the children at all times.

Illness, Lost Children, and Emergencies

Parents/guardians will be notified immediately of any illness, accident, or injury requiring medical treatment beyond a Band-Aid. In the event a camper becomes ill, the camp will notify the persons listed on the camper’s emergency card as emergency contacts. Should the camper become ill off site, staff will arrange to bring the group back to the Discovery Center for pick up, or arrange for the a parent/guardian to pick them up offsite at the current location, if possible.

If a child is noticed to be missing or there is an emergency:

  1. The other campers will be transported to the indoor classroom/exhibit area with two of the instructors.
  2. Local authorities (911) will be contacted as well as the parent/guardian.
  3. The other instructor will notify the staff and volunteers to be on the lookout for said missing child or made aware of the emergency.
  4. Once the child is located or emergency has ended, staff and volunteers will be made aware of changes in circumstance.
  5. A report of the incident will be sent to the required licensing personnel.

In the event that a camper comes down with a communicable disease during their attendance at camp, each family whose child attended the session will be notified of the potential risk of contracting the disease, even if camp is out of session. A report will be made to the Colorado Department of Human Services and the nurse consultant to the camp of the disease. The confidentiality of the ill camper’s identity will be maintained except as necessary for governmental reporting purposes.

Dinosaur Ridge works with the following as a nurse consultant

Bryan Maki, RN
Child Care Health Consultant
Colorado CPR & Safety Professionals
Approved Vendor CDHS/DECL
720-708-9705 |

Natural Disasters

In case of heavy rain, hail, lightning, or other severe weather, shelter will be taken inside at the Discovery Center. If the campers are off-site, shelter will be taken in the vehicle or our indoor location if at a museum or other field trip destination with an indoor facility. In case of a fire, campers will be evacuated from the building or location (if off-site) and moved a safe-distance away. In the event of an earthquake, campers will be moved away from any buildings or outcrops. Because of the location of the camp, tornado activity is unlikely. In the rare event that a tornado should be in the vicinity of the campers, shelter will be sought in the downstairs classroom if on site or the nearest building or ditch if off-site.

On-Site Hostile Person/Persons (Active Shooter) & Shelter in Place

Dinosaur Ridge is open to the public while camp is running, though the public will not have any access to the downstairs classroom. In the event that a visitor to Dinosaur Ridge becomes hostile, or if there is an active-shooter situation, the staff will move the children to the large storage “tank room”, which has a lockable door and plenty of water. From this location staff can contact emergency personnel and parents/guardians while staying with the children at all times.

Reunification Location

In the event that an emergency takes place (fire, flood, etc.) and campers are unable to stay at or make it back to the Dinosaur Ridge Visitor Center, the meeting place will be at the Dinosaur Discovery Center (17681 W Alameda Parkway, Golden, Co 80402 – Red Rocks Entrance #1, first building on the right). All parents/guardians will be contacted about the new meeting place for pick-up of the students. In the event that a parent/guardian cannot be reached, the emergency contacts will be notified.


The camp staff will operate with the highest regard for the mental, physical and emotional well-being of the campers. An atmosphere of mutual respect will be encouraged through cooperative activities. In accordance with the rules and regulations of the Colorado Department of Human Services, the following guidelines will be observed: 1. Campers will not be subjected to physical or emotional harm or humiliation. 2. No staff person will use corporal or other harsh punishment, including but not limited to, pinching, shaking, spanking, punching, biting, kicking, rough handling, hair pulling or any humiliation or frightening method of discipline. 3. Discipline may not be associated with food, rest, or toileting. No child should be punished for toileting accidents. Food must not be denied or forced upon a camper as a disciplinary measure. 4. Verbal abuse and derogatory remarks regarding a camper are not permitted. 5. Authority to discipline may not be delegated to other campers, nor will the camp sanction one camper punishing another camper.

When disagreements arise between campers, a staff member will serve as a mediator to assist the campers in resolving their differences. When campers are unable to participate in such a discussion, they will be removed from the group activity until they are willing and able to discuss the issue, after which they may rejoin the group activity. In the event that a camper causes physical injury to another camper or staff member, intentionally causes damage to personal or public property, intentionally jeopardizes his/her safety or that of another, or manifests behavior which is overly disruptive and disrespectful, the camper will be removed from the group, notification will be made to the persons listed on the camper’s emergency card as emergency contacts and request for the camper to be picked up from camp. Readmission to the camp will be conditioned upon the resolution of a follow-up meeting between the camp personnel, responsible adult and camper. In extreme cases, the camper will be denied readmission and withdrawn from the camp. Any decision barring the camper from returning to camp will be accompanied by a letter from the camp director to the responsible adult stating the reasons for the decision. Copies of the letter will be maintained in the camper’s records and distributed to the responsible adult and the Board of Directors of the Friends of Dinosaur Ridge.

Child Abuse

Any incident of suspected child abuse will be reported immediately to the Colorado Department of Social Services, local authorities, and to the Board of Directors of Friends of Dinosaur Ridge.

To File a Complaint About This Facility, Contact

Division of Childcare, 1575 Sherman Street, Denver, CO 80203, or call: 303-866-5958 or 1-800-799-5876.

Duties and Responsibilities of Staff Members

The Camp Directors are responsible for planning the activities of the camp; overseeing the purchase and maintenance of supplies and equipment; ensuring that the camp meets the rules and regulations for school-aged child care centers as set forth by the Colorado Department of Human Services; informing staff members and volunteers of camp rules and regulations; leading instruction and group activities at the camp.

Camp Leaders will implement the curriculum, be attentive and responsible for the well-being of the attendees, and oversee the Junior Counselors (aged 14-18), camp assistants, as needed throughout each camp day.

Junior Counselors

Dinosaur Ridge Camp will have one Junior Counselor during the camp week. These JCs will be 14-18 years of age completing volunteer/internship hours. They will undergo training on the policies/rules of camp and given minimal responsibility over camp operations (leading an activity, helping kids participate in activities, running and grabbing supplies for the Camp Leaders, etc.). They are not and will not be qualified as Camp Leaders through Child Care Licensing and will never be alone with the children. They will be supervised by Camp Leaders.

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