WHEN DOES A-CAMP START? WHAT TIME DOES IT END?
It begins the evening of May 18th at 5pm and ends at 11am on May 23rd.
WHEN WILL WE GET OUR SCHEDULES?
We'll send out our programming schedule a week or two before camp. Most of our programming is open to everyone, but there are some workshops that allow a limited amount of participants. Instructions on how to enter lotteries for these limited workshops will be sent to you with your programming schedule! May the odds be ever in your favor.
I'M ON THE WAITLIST WILL I EVER GET IN?
We don't know! If you signed up on the waitlist within a week of registration opening, then you probably will. If you didn't, we're not sure.
IS THERE WI-FI AT A-CAMP MIDWEST?
There is limited cell reception and wi-fi at camp, but we STRONGLY encourage all campers to unplug.
I'M VEGAN / VEGETARIAN / HAVE FOOD ALLERGIES / GLUTEN-FREE, WILL THERE BE ANYTHING FOR ME TO EAT?
Yes! We work with kitchen staff to ensure that all food identities and needs are satisfied.
WHAT'S THE DEAL WITH ALCOHOL?
Drinking is permitted at camp — BYOB! If you drink irresponsibly, you may be required to leave camp.
IS CAMP NON-SMOKING?
There are two designated areas for smokers. Smoking is prohibited elsewhere on the campsite.
WHAT IS THE ACCESSIBILITY LIKE AT A-CAMP?
We here at A-Camp want to make sure you have the best camp ever no matter where you land on the ability spectrum. Here aresome details on campsite so you can figure out what your access needs will be and reach out to us if necessary. Even if you don't identify as disabled and/or neurodivergent, there may be useful info for you here!
There are two sides to the camp, a retreat center (Perlman) and a more traditional campsite (Beber). Perlman has paved paths and accessible housing. There’s at least one accessible restroom in every building on that side. Beber is a little more rough-and-tumble (gravel paths and only one accessible bathroom).
The new midwest site is larger than our previous campsite in California! So we rent vehicles to help transport those of you both with limited mobility or who need assistance negotiating long distances. The van will shuttle people from the Perlman to the Beber side for meals and be available to move you between the two sides in between workshops. The golf cart will help get you around the Beber side as needed. Designated pickup and dropoff points for both vehicles will be labeled on the A-Camp map in your Activity Program.
If you are a wheelchair user, be sure to let us know whether you use a manual chair, power chair, or both. Please also indicate whether you are able to transfer out of your chair into the van.
The dining hall is on the Beber side, and there are bathrooms in that building, but no accessible stalls. The closest accessible bathroom is a short drive away, so if you need to use an accessible restroom during a meal, we’d have a staff member on call to transport you over and back.
Seating in the dining hall is picnic table-style, but if you need alternative seating, let us know at camp [at] autostraddle [dot] com, and we'll make it happen.
All of the buildings we’re planning to hold activities in are either ground-level/you can just go right in OR have an accessible entrance somewhere.
If you are in need of a bathroom with a shower chair, we can provide.
We designate a quiet/rest space should you need to take a sensory break in between activities but don’t want to go all the way back to your cabin.
Our Accessibility Maven, Carrie, will be there to field questions and voice your concerns to the powers that be! So if anything comes up, you always have a point of contact.
In light of all that, if you have any access needs that you noted during registration but would like to make more clear / expand upon before arriving at camp, or any questions about accessibility of the site, please email us at camp [at] autostraddle [dot] com!
WOULD IT BE WEIRD TO COME TO CAMP ALONE?
Absolutely not! Most of our campers come alone, knowing not a single soul.
AM I TOO OLD FOR CAMP?
Nope! Literally nobody is too old for A-Camp. Usually about half our campers are under 25 and half are older, with a majority of campers in the 22-29 age range, but there are tons of campers in their 30s and at least 15 or so each session over 40. Our senior staff is primarily composed of people in their 30s.
CAN MY CIS MALE FRIEND COME? HE'S A FEMINIST/GAY/QUEER/ETC AND SUCH AN AMAZING QUEER ALLY!
CAN MY STRAIGHT BEST FRIEND COME? SHE'S SUCH AN AMAZING QUEER ALLY!
No. A-Camp is a queer-normative space — the only queer-normative space most of us will ever be in. Keeping it that way is part of what makes the A-Camp experience so magical.
I'M A TRANS WOMAN, CAN I COME?
YES! It's extremely important to us to create a space that is comfortable for trans women and we do our best to make that space, and admittedly that hasn't always been the case for every trans woman who has attended. We always have at least two trans women on staff and we provide trans-inclusive sensitivity training and/or education to all site staff, A-Camp staff, talent and campers. If you are a trans woman considering A-Camp and have questions you'd feel more comfortable discussing with a trans woman, please hit up our Queen Trans, Mey Rude, at mey [at] autostraddle [dot] com.
I'M NON-BINARY, CAN I COME?
Initially, A-Camp was intended as a women's space, but as so many of our staff and campers began identifying as / coming out as non-binary, that intention shifted, which is just to say: YES! YES YOU CAN COME! Which brings us to....
I'M A TRANS MAN, CAN I COME?
Again, this was initially a "no." But now it is a "yes." Centering women's experiences and empowering trans women was a priority from the start — and remains so — but then we shed the "women's space" to be inclusive of non-binary folks. And as time went on, we had campers (and staff!) who'd come to camp when they presented as female who had since come out as trans men, and it seemed mean to tell those valued members of our community "now that you're happy and living your truth, you're not allowed to see your family again!" Most trans men who attend A-Camp fall into that group or come with (or were referred by) queer female friend(s), but nowadays some do come on their own. We understand that the choice to be inclusive of trans men is a controversial one, but ultimately drawing that line felt impossible and also sad. We understand and recognize the political implications and historical complications of trans men often being more welcomed into women's spaces than trans women. A-Camp has always been and will always be a place where trans women are welcomed and affirmed as the women they are, but as the world has grown, A-Camp has also grown into a space where some trans men may feel welcome as well. We don't expect all trans men to feel comfortable or affirmed in an environment that has evolved from a female-centric intent and prioritizes the needs of trans women, but many do. It's up to you if you feel like it's a good or comfortable place for you to be!
I FEEL UNCOMFORTABLE/ANXIOUS/PANICKY AROUND [POSSIBLE THINGS THAT COULD HAPPEN WITH 300 PEOPLE AT AN OVERNIGHT EVENT]. PLEASE MAKE SURE THAT [THINGS] DON'T HAPPEN.
Hey, that's not a question! But if it was, the answer would be "we can't :(" Here's the thing: A-Campers are some of the most amazing, empathetic, respectful, caring and accommodating people you'll ever meet, but they're also grown-ups on vacation! Most of our campers come to have fun and kick back, not handle emotional crises. Nor is A-Camp a Queer Utopia for everybody who attends. A-Camp is filled with people from the real world. Everybody comes to camp from vastly different backgrounds and we all have different awarenesses of and comfort levels with different types of language, entertainment, humor and relationships. A-Camp is about respecting that diversity with mutual respect and assumptions of good faith. We cannot promise that the girl you like will like you back. The A-Camp staffers are not goddesses, social engineers, religious leaders, wizards, or therapists. But they are really good people, and our senior staff team has been assembled avenger-style to make sure that we can help tackle any questions that might arise