FAQ & Camper Tips

Tips on the Program

Recommendations on Choosing Classes

It’s very likely that sometimes you’ll look at our schedule and wish you could be three places at once. This is quite normal, and not grounds for alarm. In fact, our director feels he wouldn’t be properly doing his job as programmer if you didn’t want to be three places at once! The first time this happens to you, just follow your instincts and make your selection (you can’t go wrong, all the choices are good!). The next time you feel torn, try to select a class offered by a different teacher, the time after that by a third teacher, and so on.

Be diverse!

Try to sample at least one class by each of the instructors in your genre over the course of the weekend. Don’t feel intimidated about attending a class offered by an instructor who is well known or whose playing is complex. After all, if he or she can do the complex stuff, he or she can probably explain the simple stuff, too (and all our teachers are great explainers, or they wouldn’t be here!)

Check out the 2024 Instructors page.

Hands-on! vs. Demos

Most of our classes are “hands-on,” meaning that teachers have a set of skills or a tune or two in mind to impart, and that students should have their banjos in hand during class. On the other end of the spectrum are the few sessions labeled “demo.” Demos are presentations or mini-performances combined with explication and Q & A sessions (students will probably not have banjos in hand for demo classes).

Other Kinds of Classes

This may be primarily a 5-string banjo camp, but we do also offer full-time instruction in guitar and old-time fiddle.

Recording Devices

Many of our instructors teach by ear, so we strongly recommend that you bring recording devices so you can listen at home to the tunes and techniques you learned at Camp. Nowadays most mobile phones have inbuilt recording devices that are surprisingly good; otherwise there are quite a number of excellent inexpensive options on the market.

Supplies to Have Around
  • Your mobile phone charger!!
  • A music stand, or some way of supporting handouts (with some kind of clip to hold paper fast when the wind is blowing).
  • Electronic tuners
  • Spare supplies for your instrument(s), such as extra strings, capos, fingerpicks and flatpicks, rosin, etc.
Artists’ CDs and Instructional Matierials

No doubt you’ll want to take home lots of CDs, books and videos by your favorite banjoists. We’ll have an artists’ sales booth, run by volunteers, to help you fulfill this aim. In the past we have only taken payments by cash or check, but for 2024 we expect to have a system in place to either take credit cards directly or via PayPal. To make things easier for our volunteers, please bring along at least several personal checks or a reserve of cash. Thanks in advance for your cooperation on this!


When You Arrive on Site

As you continue on 75th Rd off US 90, you’ll reach the gates to Cerveny Conference Center. Just head down the main road; you’ll pass the RV and tenting complex on your left and eventually reach the Cenference Center itself (flags and a big parking area). Come through the main entrance into the courtyard and look for our check-in table at the Dining Hall. We’ll give you your room assignments, schedules, etc.

March weather in North Florida can be extremely variable. Daytime highs can be anywhere from low 60s into the 80s, while night-time lows can vary from the 40s to the 60s. Mornings can be chilly, but temperatures can warm up dramatically by early afternoon. Our best advice is to dress in layers. In addition, it might not be a bad idea to bring an umbrella or rain gear, just in case!


Covid Protocol (to be updated according to CDC advisories)
  • We strongly recommend that all attendees be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 and continue to get annual boosters as recommended by the CDC and medical community.
  • We will also follow common sense precautions re Covid testing, masking, and social distancing.
  • We reserve the right to ask all attendees to take a home Covid test before setting off for Camp (anyone who tests positive should of course stay home)
Sleeping Arrangements
Those staying in the cabins need to bring their own sleeping bags (or bedding) including pillows. They also need to bring toiletries and towels. You won’t have to worry about the temperature too much since the cabins have climate control.
Other Things To Bring
Towels, soap, shampoo and whatever else you need for personal hygiene. Bring an alarm clock, too!
Those staying in the cabins and at the RV/tenting site, should probably bring flashlights AND extra batteries!
We haven’t had too much of a problem at SBC with mosquitoes, but you might as well bring repellent just in case. Plus at this time of year it is always prudent to be on the lookout for ticks. This means that when showering, you should routinely check for unwanted “passengers.”