Frequently Asked Questions
Is this a festival?
Yes and no. If by "festival," you mean a place where lots of people are out in nature, dancing and singing and having a wonderful time, then yes. Dance Camp is different in several ways. It's a substance-free event -- we get high on dance, nature, and community. It's relatively small (220 people max), so you'll see the same people over and over and can get to know new people fairly easily. All meals are provided, so you don't need to figure out how to get yourself fed -- just show up at the dining hall, and food appears, almost as if by magic. It's very multigenerational, including a separate Kids Camp area for the little ones. Also there are a lot of structured activities during the day, more or less on a schedule, but if you want to just relax by the lake and read a book, that's perfectly okay too.
Dance camp? What kind of dance?
NCDC events include a wide range of dance styles that have come to be known as “conscious dance.” Each year is a little different, but during the day we generally offer classes in inner-directed movement practices such as Authentic Movement, contact improv, Soul Motion and 5Rhythms; high-energy classes such as African dance and capoeira; various partner dance forms, including fusion and tango; and a variety of other modalities, including yoga, breathwork, singing, and art.
Do I need to be some kind of pro dancer to fit in?
Not at all. NCDC events are about creative self-expression and connection rather than knowing all the right dance steps. We find that when we move from an authentic, non-judgmental source, we all look beautiful and can connect easily with others on the dance floor. Most of us are dance-a-holics, not professionals, and classes are geared towards all levels. And more advanced contact improvisers, for instance, will find plenty to challenge them as well.
Does the cost of coming to camp cover everything?
Yes! Your camp fees cover everything including three organic meals per day, sleeping in a cabin or your own tent or vehicle, all classes/workshops, dances, performances, parking, and more.
What if I want to stay in a cabin? Does that cost more?
For Summer Camp, the cost is the same, whether you stay in a cabin or a tent or your own vehicle. There are many cabins and lots of great places to pitch a tent. Cabins have 12 or 16 beds in bunks but are never full.
For Winter Camp, accommodations are dictated by which venue we use. See the respective event page for details.
Can I get a private room?
For Summer Camp, there are no private rooms or private cabins. Cabins are shared, often based on a theme or category, such as families with kids, women-only, men-only, etc. For Winter Camp, accommodations are dictated by which venue we use. See the respective event page for details.
Is food included at camp?
Yes, there are three organic meals provided per day with great love, consciousness and care by our chef and the chef's team at Summer Camp. At Winter Camp, the venue provides the meals, and they use organic ingredients per our request.
Are NCDC events scent-free?
Yes! Due to sensitivities and allergies, please leave perfumes, colognes, essential oils, scented soaps and deodorants, and other scented products at home.
What are your Covid policies?
You can find our Covid policies here.
Where is the schedule of activities?
Are there any forms I need to sign?
During registration for Summer Camp, you will be required to sign a Camp Release Form (for Camp Hye Sierra), available here,
and a Behavioral Agreements form, available here.
Where is Summer Dance Camp happening in 2023?
Our event will be held at Camp Hye Sierra, 45000 E Kings Canyon Rd, Dunlap, CA
What if I need a ride to camp? Can you help me find one?
When you register you will be asked if you need or can offer a ride. If you indicate so, the registrar will provide you with information for getting a ride.
I have special dietary needs and food allergies. Will you be able to accomodate them?
For the most part, the answer is yes! Read on:
We accommodate vegans and vegetarians along with all other dietary needs (see below). Please specify your needs during registration and we will make sure you get your dietary needs met!
Dishes that contain gluten will be labeled if not an obvious item such as pastas, bread at the toast bar, cornbread, and some desserts, which are all served separately. We try our best to offer gluten-free alternatives.
We typically do not add dairy to our entrees. If a dish is made with dairy, it will be labeled and we will provide a dairy-free version.
Dairy is offered in obvious ways at the coffee and tea bar and breakfast bar in the form of milk and home-made yogurt. A variety of non-dairy milk will be offered at the breakfast bar such as rice, soy, almond, oat or coconut milk to add to one's beverages and/or cereal for those who don't eat dairy.
If peanuts or peanut-based foods are offered in any recipes, they will be labeled, and a peanut-free option will be provided.
* Please note for late evening snack - if a variety of nuts is out in a serve-yourself bowl, they WILL contain peanuts.
We do not anticipate using shellfish in any dishes. If we do by chance, it will be clearly labeled and there will also be a non-shellfish alternative offered.
When you register, you will be asked about your dietary needs. Denise and her team will do everything possible to make sure you get what you need in the tastiest way possible.
If you are paleo, please note that during registration, you will have an opportunity to indicate this, and your needs will be met by the kitchen staff as well.
From Our Summer Dance 2023 Camp Chef
Here are answers to some common food allergy concerns:
We do not add gluten based products, i.e. flour, to any of our dishes. If a gluten based item, i.e. wheat noodles or say pita bread are served we will label them.
Since peanuts are a common allergen, we do not add them to any foods but may put out a bowl of ground peanuts at the end of the table for the Thai meal.
We will not be serving shellfish.
We do not add cheese or dairy to dishes without labeling and hardly any dishes will have dairy, except say a creamy soup or perhaps pesto which we will label.
We will be serving corn and perhaps cornbread and/or a corn soup, it will be labeled.
We will be using bell peppers, they will be easily seen in the dish/dishes.
We will label dishes that have soy. We use tamari, which is soy based, in some Asian dishes, and we serve one or two soy based/ tofu dishes for vegetarians,
The only oils we use are coconut oil, olive oil, and avocado oil
Can I arrive any time or any day I want?
Sadly, no. There is a narrow, not-well-maintained one-way road leading to and from camp. In order to prevent head-on collisions and traffic gridlock, the following are the established arrival and departure times:
Summer Dance Camp- Day of Arrival: No Earlier Than 4PM
Day of Departure: No Later Than Directly After Lunch
Can I charge my EV at camp?
Sadly, for Summer Camp, Camp Hye Sierra has no EV charging infrastructure, and all available outlets are quite a long distance from the parking areas. However, there are a lot of charging stations in Fresno, which is 50 miles away. We hope your car can handle a 100 mile round-trip before it needs recharging.
Our winter event happens at a venue much closer to the Bay Area, so we assume you will be able to find many charging spots.
Who comes to dance camp?
Our participants are infants to elders, with most in their 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s, who come mainly from California but various other places around the U.S. as well. Active, earthy folks who love to move, know the joys of community, and see life with an open, playful eye. Singles. Couples. Families. We usually have about 200 people each day at summer dance camp.
What happens in the evenings?
Right after dinner there is often a performance of some type followed by dancing to DJ’ed music in our sprung-floored dance temples, with a yummy mix of music conjured by our DJ shamans into the wee hours of the night. Expect funk, world, electronica, house, blues, and more, including high-energy and heart-filled grooves that often drop into downtempo, sultry places as the night unfolds.
Can I bring my kids?
You bet. We provide a terrific Kids Camp program for kids from 3 to 12 years old, with music, art, dancing, swimming, and lots of time for free play. We also provide more challenging activities for the older kids, such as adventure walks and scavenger hunts.
What happens in the evenings?
Right after dinner there is often a performance of some type followed by dancing to DJ’ed music in our sprung-floored dance temples, with a yummy mix of music conjured by our DJ shamans. Expect world, electronica, funk, house, blues, and more, including high-energy and heart-filled grooves that often drop into downtempo, sultry places as the night unfolds.
What should I bring?
You need not be vaccinated/boosted to attend camp, but please do your best to limit your exposure during the week before camp.
We require a negative rapid antigen test taken within 24 hours prior to camp. Please take a time-stamped photo of your smiling face and the negative test result.
Please bring extra rapid test kits with you.
Regarding everything else:
Unscented Products -- Dance Camp is a scent-free event. Bears think some scented products are food, and some people at camp are scents-itive and are negatively affected by chemical fragrances.
your open heart
any healthcare products and toiletries that you would normally use at home.
your own bedding (sleeping bag, sheets, blankets, pillows) if you plan to stay in a cabin, plus all your usual camping gear if you're staying in your own tent. It can be close to freezing at times, even in the summer. Be prepared for COLD!
layers of clothing for warm days and sometimes chilly nights. Temperatures can drop into the 30’s even during summertime; bring plenty of warm clothing.
closed-toed shoes for walking through tall grass (there are rattlesnakes at camp)
dance gear, dance-specific clothes and footwear, kneepads for contact improv, yoga mats
a labeled water bottle
sunscreen (unscented!), lip balm and foot moisturizer -- the climate at camp can be hot and dry, and feet and lips can get dry
fun, festive attire
drums, musical instruments, juggling toys, hula-hoops, frisbees, etc.
earplugs, night lights, power strips for your devices (for shared cabins), and a flashlight and batteries
a watch or other timepiece to keep you on time for classes
a bicycle (only if you'd like to get from one end of camp to the other more quickly)
swimming toys, towels, sun protection, sunglasses, and bathing suit if wanted (clothing optional at waterfront)
anything else that will aid your well-being, good health, and comfort at camp
What should I leave at home?
Perfumes and other scented products, pets, preconceived notions, alcohol, non-prescription drugs
Candles, incense, and camping stoves.
Cigarette smoking is permitted in very limited areas – this is mostly a non-smoking crew, and fire danger is usually very high at this venue.