Frequently Asked Questions
HOW DO I REGISTER FOR CAMP?
Registration is done on-line. Applications will be accepted until July 10th and must be accompanied by a $150 downpayment applied to your tuition. Because enrollment is limited, we recommend that students apply early. There are no refunds after June 20th.
DOES THE CAMP OFFER SCHOLARSHIPS?
Yes. Scholarships are available for students with financial need. Please fill out an application HERE. Many school music programs offer scholarships to students in their programs. Check with your own school music director to see if they are available. The camp encourages students with financial hardship to apply for a tuition scholarship. The deadline is April 30th.
HONOR BAND DISCOUNT
Orchestra or choirs students need to email in a scan or photo copy of their HONOR BAND concert program to the following address:
HOW DO I GET TO CAMP?
You are responsible for transportation to camp and leaving to go home after the final concert which is over on Saturday.
WHERE IS THE CAMP LOCATED?
The San Francisco YMCA camp Jones Gulch is about 60 miles from Hayward near the town of La Honda. The drive from Hayward to camp Jones Gulch takes approximately 75-90 minutes. The camp is 1000 acres in size and is surrounded by redwood trees. The camp is located at 11000 Pescadero Rd. between the town of La Honda and the San Mateo County Memorial Park. It may be reached from State Highway #1 on the coast or from Woodside on Highway #84.
San Francisco YMCA at Jones Gulch
11000 Pescadero Rd.
La Honda, CA 94020
If you decide to use an internet site for directions,
please be advised that most mapping applications
and GPS directions will send you down Alpine or
Old La Honda Road. While this may be quicker by
minutes, these roads are off the beaten path with
one lane roads that we do not advise using –
especially for buses. We recommend the CA-1
route for school buses or those who experience
car sickness. I-280 is appropriate for automobiles.
WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR CAMP?
The Junior camp includes musicians entering the 6th, 7th, and 8th grades as of September, 2020. The Senior camp includes 9th-12th grade musicians as of September. Graduating 12th graders are also accepted.
IS THERE A PHYSICAL EXAM REQUIRED?
No. However the terrain at camp is hilly in some areas and students are required to walk to different facilities with their instruments. Any medical concerns or medications must be included in the registration application. This information will be reviewed by the camp nurse before the application can be fully accepted.
WHO TAKES CARE OF THE CAMPER'S MEDICAL NEEDS?
The camp nurse is a registered nurse who attends to all the students medications and medical needs at camp. Prescription medication is monitored and distributed by the camp nurse. If a camper is sick and needs to go home or see a doctor the nurse will contact the parent directly to schedule a pick up time.
WHERE DO THE CAMPERS STAY AT NIGHT?
Each cabin houses between 9-13 students with a cabin counselor who is either a professional music teacher or a college music student. The counselors have leadership experience that encourages teamwork, and fun for each student.
CAN I STAY IN THE SAME CABIN WITH MY FRIENDS?
During the Saturday registration/check in there will be cabin sign ups. It is recommended that you arrive with your friend at the same time so to secure a place in the same cabin. Most cabins have a minimum of 11 beds.
WHAT DO I BRING TO THE AUDITION?
Here are the Audition Guidelines.
HOW DO I GET PLACED IN A BAND OR ORCHESTRA?
All Junior band campers will be placed in the Junior Concert Band. All Junior orchestra campers will be placed in Junior Orchestra. All Senior band campers will be placed in either Senior Wind Ensemble or Senior Symphonic Band. All Senior orchestra campers will be placed in Senior Orchestra.
WILL EVERYONE WHO AUDITIONS FOR JAZZ BAND BE ABLE TO PLAY IN ONE?
All campers who audition for a Jazz band will be placed in either one of 4 Jazz Bands or one of 2 Jazz lab bands by the level of their abilities.
IF I'M PLAYING DRUMS IN THE JAZZ BAND DO I NEED TO BRING MY DRUM SET.
Yes. Camp does not provide drum sets for all jazz drummers.
WHAT SHOULD I BRING TO CAMP?
A What to Bring to Camp email will be sent to all registered campers that are fully accepted to camp.
WHAT HAPPENS AT CAMP?
After breakfast there are 4 periods of classes mainly focused on the students large ensemble group. After lunch there is a short rest period then 2 elective periods follow by afternoon recreation activities. These activities include canoeing, climbing tower, ping pong, zip line, archery, swimming, softball, and horseback riding. All activities are supervised by the YMCA staff and the music camp staff. The recreation period can also be used for practice time. After dinner there are night time activities including get acquainted night, ensemble night, jazz night, skit night, campfire night, and dances.
HOW CAN A CAMPER BE CONTACTED DURING CAMP?
Parents can call the YMCA office number (650) 747-1200 and a message will be delivery to the camper during one of the meals. Cell phones do not work at camp however campers can call home from the pay phones at camp. If a parent has to reach a camper due to a family emergency the Music Camp Administrator will be contacted directly by phone or walkie talkie.
WHAT HAPPENS IF A CAMPER CHOOSES NOT TO FOLLOW THE RULES?
Camp is for students who want to be there. Campers will be sent home if they are using alcohol/drugs, are caught stealing, or are in a physical altercation. La Honda Music Camp staff will work with campers who are having minor behavioral or emotional problems and will alert parents if the problems are not resolved. Multiple minor offenses can be grounds for the camper to be sent home. When campers are sent home it is the responsibility of the parent to pick up their child.
WHERE SHOULD PARENTS OR FRIENDS SEND LETTERS TO?
Hayward-La Honda Music Camp San Francisco YMCA, Jones Gulch La Honda, CA 94020. Please specify Cabin Name/number and Camp (SR/JR).
WHAT HAPPENS AT THE FINAL DAY CONCERT WHICH ON SATURDAY?
The final day concert is at the band shell and starts at 12:45pm. Parents and family members can bring a lunch and sit in front of the shell before the concert begins. All the large ensemble groups will be performing and campers can leave with their parents after the concert is over. Generally the concert ends by 3:15. We will also be having a fundraising auction for camp scholarships so please bring your credit cards, checkbooks or cash. (No pets allowed at YMCA facility)
HAYWARD LA HONDA MUSIC CAMP IS A NON PROFIT ORGANIZATION.
Donations are tax deductible under the law. Donations can be made online through our web site or checks can be mailed to the camp office.
WHAT HAPPENS THE FIRST SATURDAY DURING REGISTRATION?
Please bring a bag lunch for your child.
PLEASE NOTE: YMCA rules prohibit pets of any kind at the Saturday registration or at the final Saturday concert.
Please plan to arrive at camp between 10am and 1pm on the first Saturday of camp.
Senior Campers register at the Band Shell and make sure all camp information is up to date. Junior Campers register between the shell and the basketball courts. Any questions or concerns can be resolved here. Parents will also be asked to sign their campers in. Parents can leave after registration or stay through the auditions and full camp welcoming at 1:45.
Complete your instrument placement auditions. Complete your vocal placement test. Take a music theory or jazz improv test at the shell if you have signed up the one of these classes
1:30 Auditions stop and campers meet at Drake campfire for welcoming remarks, at-camp instructions, and personnel introductions. Parents may accompany campers here if they wish, but it is not a requirement. Upon dismissal, parents who have stayed for the staff introductions will depart and campers will go with their counselor and attend an orientation session.
A camp t-shirt and camp picture are included in the camp tuition.