Agree to the Five Elements of Participation
There is a great deal of flexibility and personalization for your group at Falls Creek. But, all churches attending the Falls Creek Youth Camp have five elements they must agree to for participation:
1. Your church must be a BGCO or Southern Baptist Church, or agree to the non-SBC Statement of Participation from the BGCO Board of Directors.
2. Your youth pastor/group leader and one other person from your church is required to attend one of our nine Falls Creek prep meetings held in April.
3. You must register your group online between January 2 and April 22, 2019. Registration will close on April 22 and groups will not be able to create new registration accounts after that date.
4. Your youth pastor/group leader must complete all registration forms and agree to require his or her group to adhere to all camp regulations, including the Dress Code and Code of Conduct.
5. Your group must attend the Morning and Evening Worship Service, and your church must provide a quiet time, an in-cabin Bible Study, and evening devotional/wrap-up for your group.*
Make sure you have a cabin reserved for the week you plan to attend Falls Creek. Every church attending Falls Creek Youth Camp rents their own cabin(s) for their week at camp.
To rent a cabin:
1. Determine your groups cabin need(s) and view all the cabin descriptions through the Cabin Information System online to find options that work well for your group.
2. Check the availability of the cabins that will fit the needs of your group through our list of cabin rentals by week. This list represents the latest information reported to us by cabin owners. Click here to view the Cabin Rental List.
3. Plan a pre-visit to Falls Creek to inspect any selected cabins. It is wise to avoid renting a cabin sight unseen.
4. Contact the cabin owners (churches or associations) to work out a contract for rental or to get on their waiting list. This contact information is available through the Cabin Information System.
Each church, in addition to securing their own cabin, also provides their own meals, brings their own sponsors, and plans and implements their own in-cabin activities.
Sponsors set the tone for the week. If a sponsor has a great attitude, students will have a great week at camp. If sponsors are godly role models and use their influence wisely for the kingdom, there will be more spiritual impact during the week. Please only recruit and take adult sponsors who encourage your students toward the goals of camp.
By attending Falls Creek, your church acknowledges that it is responsible for the selection and supervision of your adult sponsors and further warrants that it has exercised due diligence in the selection of these adult sponsors.
Who is considered a sponsor?
- Sponsors must be individuals at least 18 years of age and one year removed from high school.
- NOTE: Cooks will be registered as sponsors in the registration system. If anyone serves as a cook who is not at least 18 years of age and one year removed from high school, they will be registered as a camper.
- Churches must provide:
- At least one male and one female sponsor.
- A minimum of one sponsor for every ten youth in their group. (This will be verified at onsite registration)
Properly selecting camp sponsors
All churches are required to run background checks on their sponsors, however, background checks are only a small part of a thorough sponsor selection process. Group leaders should consider the following questions when selecting sponsors for youth camp.
- Are they associated with your church? It is often tempting to select people you know well as sponsors, but who have little to no connection to your church. You need to be aware that it is better to select qualified leaders from your congregation than to outsource this type of help. People who are not associated with your church do not always act as responsibly with the church in mind, as those who are significantly invested in your congregation.
- How long has this person been a member of your church? Have they recently joined your congregation? It would be important for you to be able to observe their life and character for at least a minimum of six-eight months before considering using them as youth sponsors.
- How well do you know them? Are these people you have known for at least a year? They may be new members to your church, but you may have known them much longer and can vouch for their character. Do others speak highly of them and is their observable character above reproach?
- Do they enjoy being around students? Do they currently work with students in your ministry and have a good rapport with students and other workers? Do they observe good boundaries in their relationships with students? Do they seem too strict or too permissive? Have they agreed to abide by the requirements set forth by the church and camp leadership?
Adult sponsors attending Falls Creek Youth Camp should adhere to the expectations listed below:
- Set the moral and spiritual example for the group.
- Model and enforce the camp code of conduct and dress code.
- Be responsible for the attendance of their students at BOTH worship services each day and participate in the daily in-cabin Bible study and evening devotional times.
- Use every moment during the week to equip and encourage students to follow Christ in their daily lives.
- Spend time with students in their cabin to hear their salvation story and/or to share Christ with them.
Have at least one sponsor/staff member from their church attend the daily 9:00am sponsor meeting Tuesday-Friday in Massey Chapel (north side of the tabernacle).
**NOTE**: Each church is required to run a background check on all participants who are 18 years of age or older. For more information about background checks, click here.
Registration for all eight weeks of youth camp is done online and everyone you bring to camp must be registered through our registration system. You can edit your information until Monday of your camp week. Complete your online registration before you arrive at Falls Creek. At the onsite registration, you will receive your registration wristbands once full payment is made. A few changes can be made at the onsite registration on Monday, but, before you leave for camp, all campers’ names must be entered and release form boxes checked. To get started with registration, click here.You will not pay for your registration until you arrive at camp. For more registration information, click here.
The cost per person (student or adult) from a BGCO church is $10.00 a day or $50.00 per week for the full-time registrant. The cost per person from a non-BGCO church is $16.00 a day or $80.00 per week for the full-time registrant. Non-BGCO churches also pay a programming fee of $10.00 per person (over 6 years of age).
Registration fees are paid on Monday of your camp week.
Develop a Prayer Strategy
Organize a prayer strategy for the week. Ideas for prayer are listed here.
Publicize Your Week
Use resources passed out at the required prep meetings, as well as your church’s website, facebook (your ministry’s page or the skopos.org page), twitter (@okskopos or your own twitter), or the skoposok Vimeo channel to get the word out to students in your community. We also provide theme logos and artwork for DIY promotional materials.
Organize Responsibilities and Customize Your Camp Experience
Organize recreation, meals, transportation, sponsor responsibilities, etc., for your group. Optional afternoon activities at camp include recreation, swimming, ropes course elements, breakouts, missions education, and hiking to Boulder Springs, just to name a few. It is good to check out all the camp options and plan to keep your students engaged during the afternoons. More information about customizing camp for your students can be found in the Lead Sponsor book.
Plan Cabin Wrap-Up/Evening Cabin Devotional
Plan the cabin wrap-up/devotion time in your cabin for each night. The late night cabin wrap-up should prioritize giving students time to process and apply the information they have gained throughout the day, rather than presenting new information. The devotional should also allow students to share their decisions or to make spiritual decisions. Some camp staff will be available each week to teach devotionals if you need assistance. You can sign up for a cabin devotional speaker at registration on Monday, but it is best to come prepared to lead devotionals each night.
Prepare for In-Cabin Spiritual Encouragement
Many of the decisions made at Falls Creek are made in the individual church cabins. Each church is responsible for planning and preparing for the encouragement times that should happen in your cabin each day. The Falls Creek leadership recommends each student, at least once during the week of camp, has an opportunity to meet one-on-one with an adult from their church to talk about spiritual matters. An adult should ask each student about their spiritual journey to see if there is any way that they could help them in their journey. These cards should remain with your group. It is provided as a resource for churches that do not already have a decision card for their cabin times.
Complete Release Forms
Make copies of your completed release forms for each of your students, sponsors, children and cooks. The parent or guardian for each student must sign the release form. All release forms (student and adult) must be alphabetized together by last name and turned in at registration on Monday of your camp week. Only the official Falls Creek release forms for the current camp year are allowed for registration. It is imperative that you make an additional copy of all the release forms and bring them to camp. At registration on Monday, you will turn in a copy of your release forms. Additional copies of the release forms are necessary for any emergency trips to the hospital and for your trip home. We also suggest you consider making copies to leave at your church, to keep on each vehicle that carries students to camp, and to leave with multiple adults in your cabin to streamline the process in the event of an emergency. To download all necessary forms, visit the resources page.
Host a Pre-Camp Parent Meeting
Organize pre-camp meetings for parents, sponsors and students. In your pre-camp meeting, pass out the parent and the student information handouts, have the parents sign their child’s release form, and distribute a camper packing list specific to your church. Be sure and go over the camp rules thoroughly, including the Dress Code.
Arrive at Camp
How do I get to Falls Creek? Falls Creek is just outside of Davis, Oklahoma off Interstate Highway 35, exit number 51. Highway and regional signs will direct you to the Falls Creek Baptist Conference Center grounds after you exit I-35. The physical address for Falls Creek is: 6714 HWY 77D, Davis, OK 73030-8002
Monday Arrival at Camp
Church groups should not arrive before 8:00am on Monday. All groups or individuals arriving after Monday at 4:00pm will need to check in at the office for registration assistance. You may also take part in late night registration after the service on Monday evening if arriving late.
Register Your Group Onsite
Onsite registration will take place in the north side of the tabernacle each Monday from 1:00-4:00pm. At onsite registration you will register and pay for your group, schedule recreation options, have the opportunity to enlist summer or missionary staff to speak in your cabin, receive parking tags, student books, and registrant wristbands.
BRING THE FOLLOWING TO ONSITE REGISTRATION:
1. Background Check Compliance Forms (Student and adult), along with two folders (one for students and one for adults) containing copies of their Background Check Reports
2. Church Contact Sheet
3. All completed release forms. These forms should be alphabetized and merged (student forms with adult forms)
4. Total payment (cash or check only)/ Checks made payable to BGCO
Tabernacle Seat Reservations
EVENING WORSHIP SERVICE SEATING
Registered churches for a week of camp will be randomly divided into 5 groups (20-25 churches per group). These groups will then be numbered 1-5. Each group will be ordered as well (1 to 20 … or as many as 25, depending on the number of churches in attendance that week). This will all be pre-selected, via a drawing by Falls Creek staff. On Monday, at on-site registration, churches will be given their GROUP number and their ORDER number for Monday night seat reservations. Your ORDER number will change each day, but your GROUP number will remain the same all week. Sponsors will only get seat reservation information for Monday night at on-site registration. The GROUP rotations and ORDER numbers for Tuesday –Friday will be handed out Tuesday morning at the 9:00am Daily Sponsor Meeting.
On Monday night churches send sponsors to the south tabernacle doors no later than 6:30pm to reserve seats. There must be at least two sponsors to reserve seating for any group, more are recommended for larger groups. Students may not save seats. At 6:30pm Falls Creek staff will begin calling churches by GROUP numbers from the South Lobby into the main auditorium. Once the leaders from the called GROUP are inside the main auditorium, they will then be sent to reserve seats in the ORDER they were pre-selected. No leader or sponsor should move to reserve seats until instructed to do so by Falls Creek staff. GROUP numbers will be called approximately every five (5) minutes, starting at 6:30pm. If a church’s sponsors are late for their called GROUP number, they will not be allowed in until the next GROUP number is called. They will then be allowed to move to the front of that GROUP. Please do not attempt to join with another church for seat reservations unless you are at camp together. This confuses the process and is not fair to other churches in the drawing.
The sponsors should stay with their seats until their students arrive around 7:00pm. Ushers will be in the tabernacle to assist adult sponsors as they reserve seats for their groups. Churches may choose to create a “standard” to hold up as the students enter (at 7:00pm) so your group can find your seating. When the service begins at 7:30pm, all standards should be lowered and moved out of the aisle.
The seat reservation process will operate much like Monday night’s process, however the TIME for seat reservations will change to 4:30pm; also Tuesday-Friday, churches may send students to represent them at seat reservations. Churches will again reserve seats by GROUP numbers (your group number remains the same, but the order the groups will be seated in rotates each day to promote fairness) then ORDER numbers (the order within your group changes each day). GROUP numbers will be called every few minutes starting at 4:30pm. After reserving seats for their group, individuals can return to their cabins, enjoy dinner, and then return at 6:45pm (sponsors only at this time) to man their standards for the entrance of students at 7:00pm.
MORNING WORSHIP SERVICE SEATING
Each morning at the morning worship service, your group will be sitting in the seats you had on the night before in the evening worship service. The tabernacle doors will open at 9:10am and all groups need to be inside the tabernacle and seated for SURGE, our morning wake up service, by 9:30am.
All groups should always sit together at both morning and evening services. If your group is very large and you cannot find room to sit together in the tabernacle, divide your group into multiple groups but make sure that an adult sponsor is sitting with each group.
One sponsor from each group, who plans to attend LAUNCH with their Middle School students, should go the event center between 9:30-9:45am to reserve seats for their group. They will need the group’s standard and an exact count of the number of middle school students that will be attending LAUNCH with them that day.