KAMPN's Camp Cogger


THE 2017 Camp Cogger WAITLIST application is NOW AVAILABLE! Click here to access the form!  


What is Camp Cogger?


Camp Cogger is KAMPN's nature-based, cost free, summer camping program.  Camp Cogger is open and available to families of children with autism.  The program is unique in that both children with autism, and their families members participate in the Camp Cogger experience.  

We at KAMPN recognized early on that parents are the experts on their children, so we created a summer camping experience for the entire family to enjoy!

Check out these videos of previous Camp Cogger sessions to see images of the camp:

2015 Camp Cogger Video

2014 Camp Cogger Video 

 Also, check out this awesome article, wrtitten by our friends at the Watauga Democrat on KAMPN's Camp Cogger!

What does a weekend at Camp Cogger look like?

During the summer months (check back soon for the complete 2016 schedule) the Camp Cogger schedule looks similar to the schedule below:  

      Each Camp Cogger session runs from Friday at 12pm-Sunday afternoon.  


  • Typically as families arrive around 12pm on Friday, they enjoy a picnic lunch, followed by a hike around the property, a brief orientation, some time to unpack and relax, and a dinner.  After dinner there are s'mores and music.  After the evening jam session, campers begin their first night in the Camp Cogger cabin tents (which are provided along with air mattresses!) 


  • On Saturday we begin the morning with coffee and breakfast (pancakes- YUM!), followed by hiking, blueberry picking, or fishing- depending on the camper's interests.  Following lunch on Saturday, we head down to the creek.  This is a very shallow area just deep enough to splash around in.  After the creek there is often some down time for resting, leisurely hiking, or art/music activities before a potluck dinner (provided by a local church).  There will be another campfire on Saturday evening. 


  • Sunday is our 'wrap-up' day, we start the morning with breakfast and then families will have a chance to participate in an activity they particularly enjoyed/did not have to to try out on Saturday, and then we end our time together with lunch!


****As scheduling is important to many of us, we generally follow an hour-by-hour schedule (which will be posted on this site as the camping season gets closer!) but due to weather, fun, and other excitement we cannot always gaurentee the schedule will be followed to the exact minute.  As our staff quickly learns in Camp Cogger training- flexibility is key to KAMPN!  Your family's experience is our #1 priority and we are always willing to accomodate to your family's individual needs!  


 Here are the dates for the 2017 Camp Cogger sessions:

  • Session 1: July 7th - 9th
  • Session 2: July 14th - 16th
  • Session 3: July 21st - 23rd
  • Session 4: July 28th - 30th


 Who will I meet with during the Camp Cogger session?

At Camp Cogger you will have the chance to meet and interact with many different people!  One of Camp Cogger's 3 R's is 'relationships' (more information on the 3 R's can be found below!)  Relationships are a key to our programming.  During the Camp session, families will have the opportunity to interact with other families, children with autism will have the opportunity to interact with other children with autism, siblings will have the opportunity to interact with other siblings, and everyone will have the chance to interact with Camp Cogger's highly trained staff.  

Each camping session is opened to four families.  



Who are the counselors at Camp Cogger?  Will there always be staff available to buddy up with and support with my children?

Many of our 2015 counselors and staff!

Our counselors are the best!  Each year students from several universities and colleges throughout the state come to Camp Cogger to work as counselors.  At Camp Cogger, we have 4 'core counselors.'  Each child with autism has one 'core' one-on-one counselor to buddy around with them for the weekend.  Each of these 4 core counselors have two tasks- to keep their child safe and to ensure they have the best weekend EVER!  

In addition to the 4 core counselors we have support counselors.  The support counselors wear many Camp Cogger hats.  The support counselors spend time chatting with parents, building relationships with children, completeing logistical tasks, and doing any other 'as needed' task that comes up!  The main role of our support counselors is to keep the camp running smoothly.  

We also have leadership team staff members.  KAMPN president, Dr. Jim Taylor, is always around to keep the camp running.  He is tasked with the job of cooking our Saturday morning pancakes, singing songs at the campfires, giving sight-seeing tours to families on our ATV, and overseeing the programming of the camp.  KAMPN Program Coordinator, Kelsey Trevethan, is responsible for overseeing the staff at Camp Cogger.  Kelsey is tasked with training staff, mediating obstacles, forming relationships with children and families, and overseeing the general programming of Camp Cogger.  KAMPN Program Advisor, Lee Wilson, is around to provide humor, friendship, and to oversee the fishing portion of the camp.

There are several other staff members who work behind the scenes to make the camp run smoothly.  These are the unsung heros who ensure the dishes get washed, the trash gets taken out, and that the drinks stay full.  Our behind the scenes staffers are the best, and work tirelessly to ensure the camp stays clean and to ensure our camper's stay well-fed!  

Program Coordinator, Kelsey Trevethan, and President, Dr. Jim Taylor, hard at work getting ready for the Camp Cogger season!

What are these '3 R's of Camp Cogger' that I keep hearing about?

The 3 R's of Camp Cogger are our pillars for this summer camping program.  At Camp Cogger we strive to meet all 3 R's each weekend:

  • Relationships


   Relationships are key to our programming!  These relationships range from friendships formed between families, children, staffers, siblings, volunteers, and any combonation of these groups!  

  • Recreation 

  Just like all summer camps, Camp Cogger is all about fun!  We swim, we fish, we play, we sing, we make s'mores, we do arts and crafts, and many other silly things! Fun is our mission and our purpose.  

  • Relaxation

  It's hard not to feel peaceful when you are laying in a hammock that overlooks the Blue Ridge Mountains.  At Camp Cogger, parents can enusre that their children are safe and cared for all of the time, so why not take a relaxing nap in a hammock or sit and chat with another family?  

 Ok, I'm sold!  So how do I sign my family up for a weekend at Camp Cogger?

Applications for Camp Cogger will be available soon on this website!  Until then- be sure to connect with us on Facebook for updates and information on Camp Cogger's 2016 season!


 KAMPN's Camp Cogger

Also- check out our "2015 Season in Review Video" for images of the camp!





Winter at Camp Cogger

Dr. Jim Taylor sits at a campfire 

with child.

AppState Student leads two children 
through KAMPN trails.

ASU student with child.

 Winter at Camp Cogger



KAMPN's (Kids with Autism Making Progress in Nature) mission is to provide an option rarely available for families having children with autism to experience activities in nature at Camp Cogger. It will provide a program for the child and family as well as provide an opportunity for the wholesome interaction of the families during the week. In addition, students participating from universities will benefit by working with the children and families under the supervision of trained staff and university personnel.



1255 Wildcat Ridge
Deep Gap, NC 28618

KAMPN Inc. is a nonprofit, federally tax-exempt, charitable organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service Code. Donations can be sent to the address above.

 KAMPN's Camp Cogger

 KAMPN's LIFE Village



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