Discover Camp Tuttle

My experience at Camp Tuttle can be summarized as an outstanding opportunity to engage in the beautiful outdoors while being nurtured, included and genuinely heard by all. My family and I have been going for many years to family camp and grade-level camps. Camp Tuttle feels like a home away from home. We're always looking forward to the next camp excursion! It fills our souls! Days filled with delight, fun, and exploring personal stengths and challenges while surrounded by the kindest and most inclusive staff ever! My friends and I sometimes joke that we're going to "Jesus Camp" but it's so much more than that. Infact the traditional religion aspect is such a subtle part of the program. "Jesus Camp" for me is exemplified by the inclusive, kind, nurturing and compassionate environment that Camp Tuttle provides for its community of campers, parents, employees and all! The food and the setting is the cherry on top and adds to the therapeutic nature of camp. Love me some Camp Tuttle!!

Christy Bergin | Parent

Frequently Asked Questions

No. Although Camp Tuttle is a ministry of the Episcopal Church of Utah, you do not need to be an Episcopalian to work at or attend Camp Tuttle. We celebrate a diversity of spiritual experiences and encourage acceptance among our community. 

Campers who plan to attend overnight camp must be going into at least second grade to attend on their own. For older youth, we invite high school seniors to attend the summer after they graduate – and of course, anyone in between second to twelfth grade!

We offer two Family Camps where caregivers and children of any age can attend camp together that can be a gentle introduction to camp life before a young person goes to overnight camp on their own. 

Short answer: any and all genders are welcome to stay at Tuttle.

Detailed answer:

Camp Tuttle seeks to foster a safe place where all youth and staff experience spiritual, environmental, social, and personal transformation by challenging their comfort zones and deeply engaging with their community and the world around them. We embrace youth and families from a variety of backgrounds – celebrating the diversity of Creation through our participant’s experiences of age, ability, race, language, sexual orientation, and gender backgrounds. 

For over sixty years at our beautiful forested location in Big Cottonwood Canyon, Camp Tuttle has housed campers primarily in two cabin clusters, designated simply the Girls’ Cabins (comprising St. Catherine, St. Elizabeth, St. Margaret, and St. Martha) and the Boys’ Cabins (comprising St. Alban, St. Columba, St. Francis, and St. Vincent). In recent years, some cabins have transitioned into storage cabins (St. Stevens and St. Hilda) and a cabin for counselors to rest on their night off. 

While this strictly binary housing arrangement has generally been satisfactory, it is no longer an adequate model, nor does it reflect or conform to the diversity of the camper population we serve. While binary options may be sufficient for the majority of participants, a non-trivial percentage of campers now identify as non-binary or gender fluid, and creating a space in which all campers and staff can feel affirmed, accepted, supported, and safe should be as fundamental a part of our mission as providing opportunities for learning, growth, and fun. 

In 2019 our leadership team attended workshops at the annual ECCC conference about gender inclusivity and recognized that this was an essential area of growth for our camp. As a result, we began inviting campers to share their pronouns during introductions and expanded our staff training sessions to emphasize the importance of inclusion and diversity.  Through community conversations, we now know that gendered bathroom and cabin spaces were negatively impacting youth experiences. We are fortunate to be in a strong network of “sibling” camps across the Episcopal Church (special shout-out to Transplaining and Camp Stevens!) who have guided us in implementing similar gender-inclusive practices at camp.

Our decision to offer a gender-inclusive housing option is the product of extensive research on best practices in the summer camp industry and careful deliberation by Camp Tuttle staff. It is also motivated in part by some alarming statistics that underscore the difficulties that many LGBTQIA+ youth face:

    • More than 40% of LGBTQIA+ youth have seriously considered attempting suicide in the last year, including more than half of transgender and nonbinary youth
    • One in five trans* youth attempt suicide each year (but when transgender youth are empowered to share pronouns, use their name, and are affirmed for who they are, that risk is cut in half)
    • Substantial majorities of LGBTQIA+ youth report feeling unsafe at school because of bullying and harassment
    • An overwhelming majority of trans* youth never play a team sport

For more information about why gender-inclusive spaces are so important for trans* and non-binary youth, please watch this video by Chris Reys-Dupin of Transplaining whose work has assisted Camp Tuttle in developing this housing policy.

 

Here are some additional websites that you may find useful and informative.

Starting 2023, in applications for enrollment prospective campers will be able to choose from the following housing preferences: same-gendergender-inclusive (all gender), or no preference. We will make every effort to place in gender-inclusive housing every applicant who requests this option. All campers whose applications indicate a preference for same-gender housing will be assigned to the bunkhouse corresponding to their stated gender. 

  • Who can live in an all-gender cabin? Anyone can! All-gender cabins are good options for children who prefer to bunk with children of other genders, for non-binary children, for those who want to bunk with a friend who is nonbinary, or for campers who feel this is the best fit for any reason. Fraternal twins who want to bunk together often enjoy living in an all-gender cabin as well. Trans campers are welcome in all bunks including the all-gender cabin. 
  • What about bathrooms? The all-gender cabins have access to all-gender bathrooms and showers and the boys’ and girls’ bathroom and shower facilities. All single-occupant bathrooms at the camp facility will be designated as All Gender and available for use by any person, regardless of gender. All conventional social norms about respect, modesty, and civility apply. 
  • Who will be the counselors? We will assign loving Tuttle counselors to the all-gender cabins and provide additional training and resources to them.
  • Will there still be diversity of gender expression within the boys’ and girls’ cabins? Yes. Camp Tuttle believes there is not one right way to be a girl or a boy and encourages all campers to just be themselves regardless of what cabin they live in. 

Please see our various packing lists to make sure you and your child are packed appropriately for your stay at camp:

 3rd-8th Grade Packing List

High School Backpacking List 

Overnight Backpacking List 

PLEASE DO NOT BRING KNIVES, FIREWORKS, ILLEGAL DRUGS, ALCOHOL, OR CIGARETTES. THESE ARE NON-NEGOTIABLE AND WILL RESULT IN A TRIP HOME.

Campers, please DO NOT bring cell phones, iPods (or other music devices), hand-held video games, or candy. You will be asked to surrender these items to your parents at the time of check-in. We have an exciting and full schedule, and there will not be time for any of these things. Some of the focuses of camp include teambuilding and creating a sense of community among campers. As these items can only take away from and challenge that goal, they will be confiscated, and returned at the end of the week. Also, Camp Tuttle cannot be responsible for any lost or stolen items.

The typical camp day is jam packed with activities ranging from passive to active and from chosen to guided. As a part of an Adventure Groupo, your child will participate in working and playing together as a group with 10-12 other campers. During Camper Choice time, your child will make a choice about whether to rock climb, play Nuke ‘Em (a Tuttle specialty!), do arts & crafts, and many more choices! 

In the evening, our talented and skilled counselors will host and facilitate different activities that range from backpacking to capture the flag and more, highlighting the diversity of our staff experiences. We close out the day with an evening program featuring our chaplain of the week where we enjoy singing around the campfire. We often have guest speakers and workshops to enrich our camp experience. 

Campers are not permitted to have a cell phone during their stay at camp and are encouraged to disconnect and unplug for their duration in the great outdoors. To contact your camper, please pre-write letters to be delivered during the week or leave a care package with notes for your child. If an emergency involving your child arises, we will contact you promptly via phone call. 

Our primary goal at Camp Tuttle is to provide an excellent summer camp experience for our participants, especially those who may not feel welcome at other camps. We are openly Humanist and vocally tolerant of all but recognize we may be alienating some campers by reinforcing social norms related to the binary idea of gender – that all people are either male or female. Current science shows us that sex and gender identity exist along a spectrum.

Alienation of trans youth and other non-binary campers can be overt, like bullying, but it can also be unintentional with very uncontroversial things like cabin assignments, cabin names, pronoun use, bathroom designations, and the very common practice of splitting up campers into groups of boys and girls for activities for no reason other than expediency. We feel it is important for us to address this issue and set an example making sure that all campers are welcome and feel respected at our camp and in our community.

The safety of our staff, counselors, and campers is our top priority. All staff and counselors are required to be fully vaccinated in order to work at camp. In order to prioritize the health and safety of our campers, staff, and the entire Tuttle community, we may make adjustments to programs and Camp practices as needed.

New for 2022, all campers who are eligible for the vaccine by the time their summer program begins are required to be fully vaccinated* against COVID-19, as are all Tuttle staff. Children who are not vaccinated will need to show proof of a negative COVID test within 48 hours of coming to camp. Mid-week COVID testing will take place as the need arises for unvaccinated and/or symptomatic campers.

Most of our programming takes place outside, and when we are inside and in close proximity, masks will be required except when actively eating and drinking.

We are keeping a close eye on the latest recommendations for summer camp procedures provided by the  American Camps Association, the CDC, and local government officials. 

This page will be updated to reflect our current plans and is subject to update given new CDC guidelines. If you have any questions, concerns, or information that is relevant to us, please contact us at camptuttle@episcopal-ut.org.

*Campers may also submit proof of a negative COVID test within 48 hours of coming to camp. Mid-week COVID testing will take place as the need arises for unvaccinated and/or symptomatic campers.

Click the “Dates & Rates” button on this page to read more about our tier pricing system that allows families to pay according to their needs. Additionally, scholarships are available. Learn more here. 

All of our program registrations take place online through CampSite. Learn how at our “Dates + Rates” page or click the link here.