Frequently Asked Questions

Camp FAQ

learn about mythology while performing in a show

Getting to Camp

You will drop off and fetch your child from the Freedom Center.

Traveling Players offers shuttle service to and from Washington Dulles (IAD) on the first and last day of every session.

There is an $80 fee each way to use the shuttle service. If you are interested in using the shuttle service please email for further booking details. 

Shuttle Dates for 2023
Arrival Dates – June 25, July 16
Return Dates – July 7, 14, 28 & August 2

Traveling Players is unable to arrange shuttle service to any airport other than Washington Dulles IAD. 

Unaccompanied Minors (aged 14 and under for most airlines) 

Unaccompanied Minor is a term used by the airlines for a fee-based escort service for a young traveler. The airlines charge a separate fee for this service. Each airline has its own specific requirements for transporting young travelers. We recommend that families check with the air carrier to determine what requirements apply to a minor child. See below for unaccompanied minor information for the main carriers for Dulles IAD. 

United Unaccompanied Minors 

American Air Unaccompanied Minors 

Delta Unaccompanied Minors 

Southwest Unaccompanied Minors 

Jet Blue Unaccompanied Minors

We also recommend that you schedule flights early in the day. Airlines will not board an unaccompanied minor if any flights of the trip are the last flight of the day.


If you are planning to ship your luggage to camp please allow at least two weeks for items to arrive at Freedom Center from the continental U.S. and Canadian sites and longer from other locations. Place origin and destination addresses, and phone numbers, inside shipped items in case exterior tags become lost. It is recommended to ship belongings in boxes that can be reused at the end of the session. 

To ship luggage and boxes in advance use the following address and include the student’s arrival date:

<Camper’s Name>
Traveling Players
c/o Freedom Center
13922 Freedom Center Lane
Leesburg, VA 20176

Shipping Luggage Home

Campers who shipped their luggage to camp can elect to ship their luggage home after camp. Families will be responsible for the cost of shipment from camp and an additional $25 convenience fee.


If you are coming from out of town, we will help you to find a castmate that you can stay with over the Mid-summer break! Traveling Players is fortunate to have a generous and interconnected community.  Just let us know that you are interested in being hosted, and we will connect you with another family in your ensemble who will be eager to welcome you.  

Need to audition from afar?  No problem!  Please see the Auditions FAQ page for details.

What to Pack

You can read all about our policies for electronics on this page.

Storage space underneath bunks and in the sleeping bays is limited.  Please do your best to pack efficiently.  Luggage that fits underneath bunks is highly preferred as it will be more easily accessible.

We recommend that you send both sheets and a blanket and a sleeping bag. The kids will spend a couple nights in tents so the sleeping bag will be good for that, and the cabins will have AC so sheets and blankets will be good for them. The sleeping bag can be used as the blanket if it unzips entirely 

The kids will need a small daypack to carry their script, pencils, water bottle, camera, etc., but only Shakespeare Troupe will need a framed camping backpack.

At Camp

You can bring laundry pods if they are powdered.  We don’t want parents to send liquid detergent since it could create a huge mess.  Your student can also buy detergent from the camp store.  Campers should have about 12 days’ worth of clothes.   We will do extra laundry as needed (i.e. big rainstorm, surprise period, etc.) 

Please do not send food in your care packages.  We like to keep the nature in nature, and food invites critters into the lodges.  

Please also refrain from sending items such as electronics and medications (over the counter or prescription). These items should be handed over to camp staff on move-in day.  (See the Packing List)

  • Campers eat a delicious, diverse, and healthy menu.  Every meal will offer a vegetarian and non-vegetarian entree. 
  • Students who have food allergies or other dietary needs should contact after they enroll to discuss their meal options. If your child has a more restrictive diet, we may ask you to send a “safe box” of favorite foods that can be eaten if the entree being served does not fit within your child’s dietary requirements. (Note: This is only for campers with food allergies.)
  • Of course!  We have found that the most effective way for campers to attend therapy while at camp is by phone call – that way they are not distracted by notifications from their personal devices when they log on for their appointments. We will provide phones for campers to use – and a hammock might be available, too! If possible, please move their appointment time to between 4:00 – 6:00 pm on a weekday, which is during their free time. Please email with the appointment time and doctor’s phone number. 
  • Please let us know if your child must speak to their therapist in a virtual setting (using software like Zoom) so that we can arrange accommodations for that. Please note that wifi is limited, so phone appointments are greatly preferred. 
  • Students who are starting college this year will have limited access to their phones for the purposes of registering for classes, filling out their paperwork, et cetera. Please contact the camp director in advance for further information. We’ll make sure they don’t miss any deadlines during their stay with us!

No, we don’t advise a pre-camp physical, unless your camper has a condition or a health issue that you think requires a physician to evaluate them before any summer camp adventures.

If your camper had COVID-19 any time in the past 6 months, we do require a note from a doctor indicating that they are cleared to participate in the physical and social activities at camp.

Our 2021 Health Forms are now available on our website’s registration system.  Please fill out your health form as soon as possible — having all the data about where our community’s health is allows us to make informed choices about camp.  We need your health forms and all associated documents no later than 11:59pm on Sunday, June 6.

Below, please find a guide to our online health system. For most campers, checking all these boxes should take no longer than 30 minutes — so please do it as soon as you can, rather than leaving it for later!

  • Click this link to fill out our digital health form.
    • When finished, make sure you have selected “this form is complete” and click “submit” — otherwise, your data will not be saved.
    • If you’d like to fill this form in more than one sitting, please save your progress by scrolling to the bottom, selecting “this form is not complete”, and clicking “submit” before closing your browser or leaving your computer.
  • Click this link to access your document center. On this page, we need you to submit three important documents:
    • A copy or a photo of your camper’s health insurance card (front and back).
    • A copy or a photo of your camper’s immunization history.
    • A copy or a photo of your camper’s COVID-19 vaccination card.
      • If your camper has not yet received their first shot, please upload their vaccination card as soon as they receive it.
      • If your camper has received their first shot, please upload their vaccination card now. Once they get their second shot, you will be able and required to reupload their vaccination card with the updated information on it.
    • Click this linkto access your medication record. Please ensure that all the medications your child will or may take at camp are recorded here (including vitamins and natural remedies).
      • You do not need to include OTC drugs used circumstantially (ibuprofen, Benadryl, etc.) unless they are a part of your child’s routine healthcare.

Please note: this entire process is associated with the account used to register for camp. Log into your existing account and do not create a new account in our system to fill out your health info.

Traveling Players camp is in residence at the Madeira School in McLean, VA.  Read more about our Camp Locations.

Camp runs from 9 am to 4 pm every weekday. In addition, for every camp except our Acting Sampler Weeks, every Thursday night features a campout: students camp overnight at Lake Fairfax and leave for home at 4 pm on Friday. We host three performance festivals. On those days, campers should expect to remain through the evening.

We offer programs for 3rd through 12th graders.

Some groups go onto a waiting list in January and others in February, just before the Early Bird deadline. By the time spring arrives, availability is still good but it is scattered across our many programs. Our advice? Register as soon as you can—it only takes a few minutes—and then relax!

Traveling Players operates purple buses that run throughout the DC Metro area.  You can find the bus stop closest to you here.  There is no additional charge for bus service.  Families living close to The Madeira School are welcome to drop their kids at camp as well.

No.  While we do have a weekly overnight on Thursdays, campers will return home on most days.  Campers from out of town will need regular housing during their season with us.

The majority of our campers come for 4 week sessions; in our opinion, this is the minimum time required to effectively rehearse a play.  However, we do offer several shorter mini-camps, as well as advanced camps that run longer than 4 weeks.  You can see all of our ensembles’ lengths and learn more about each of them.

Child development experts agree: longer sessions are better! It takes a week to integrate yourself into a new community, and it is only in the subsequent weeks that transformative learning happens. In order to create new habits, you need to practice them long enough for them to become ingrained. Your average student will learn twice as much in a four-week session as they do in a three-week session.

Interestingly enough, in our first summer, we began with three-week ensemble programs – and Shakespeare Troupe started out at six-weeks. 100% of our students wanted the programs to be longer. Longer programs allow our students to learn more, build real trust and life-long friendships, gain new skills on and off stage, and rehearse a show they can truly be proud of.

Ensemble theatre forms the backbone of the Traveling Players philosophy. Learn more about what that means!

While not all of Traveling Players’ alumni pursue theatre professionally, those that do have done quite well.  Our students have attended Yale, Emerson, Muhlenberg, NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, among other schools, often receiving artistic awards or scholarships.  Our alumni are currently working with the SITI Company, Trinity Rep, Shakespeare & Company and Cal Shakes.

On regular days, campers should bring a lunch with them.  On the Thursday night campouts, please bring two lunches.  We provide Thursday snack, dinner, and Friday breakfast.  We also provide the majority of meals on the longer tours; see the individual programs for details.

You can find out what to bring to camp here.  Please note that Traveling Players provides tents; your child will not need his or her own tent.

We offer a remarkable staff-to-student ration of 1:4. Learn more about our staff!

Our overall camper retention rate is approximately 70%.

We go swimming every Friday afternoon in the swimming pool at the nearby Spring Hill RECenter.  In addition to our own staff, Spring Hill RECenter employs certified lifeguards.  High School programs also have opportunities to go swimming while on tour, supervised by the TPE staff.

Traveling Players Ensemble offers high-value programs at competitive costs.  You can see what your tuition pays for here.

There are a few ways you can be eligible for discounts on our summer programs:

Early Bird Special: If you enroll for a TPE program before midnight on Feb. 14, you can receive a special early bird discount!

Referrals: If a new student enrolls in any program at your suggestion, we will gratefully give you a rebate. Multiple new campers equals multiple rebates! You don’t have to wait to register to get the rebate—enroll and pay now, and we’ll gladly refund you as a thank you for every referral.

Full Summer Discount: Families enrolling one child in multiple sessions are eligible for a discount! In order to qualify for the discount, you must purchase two sessions of 4 weeks or more.

Sibling Discount: Families enrolling more than one child may take a discount.