As we prepare for the summer, we want to be as transparent as possible with our families about our approach to the COVID-19 pandemic and what steps we plan to take to protect our campers, staff, and the greater community.
COVID-19 is a very real and potentially harmful virus that spreads easily from person to person, and is particularly harmful to people who are vulnerable due to their age or underlying medical conditions. It is the responsibility of the community at large to minimize the spread of the virus to protect the most vulnerable and to reduce stress on our health care systems.
While we understand that the virus may not be under control by summer 2022, we will be operating with more data, information about the virus, and clear operational guidelines. We will be relying on guidelines from the American Camp Association and Washington State, to keep our community healthy.
Vaccines & COVID Testing
As of Fall 2021, per Washington State guidelines, all campers and staff must either:
- Be fully vaccinated when camp begins, OR
- Show proof of a negative COVID-19 test no more than 3 days before camp, and quarantine between the test and the start of camp
All of our staff, and all eligible campers, are highly encouraged to get vaccinated as soon as possible. More vaccines may mean fewer restrictions at camp. Campers and staff who are fully vaccinated (at least 2 weeks after the second dose for Pfizer or Moderna, or 2 weeks after the single shot of J&J) will not need to get a COVID test before arriving at camp.
Operational Changes for 2022
We feel that it’s important to be transparent about the changes that we’ll need to make for 2022. These changes are needed both to keep campers and staff safe as well as to ensure Camp Fire’s long-term financial stability.
The policies below to all summer Day Camp programs at Blyth Park, Carkeek Park, Hans Jensen (Lake Sammamish State Park), and Golden Gardens park.
- COVID Safety Policies: We will be implementing COVID safety procedures determined by Washington State guidelines and recommendations from the American Camp Association and CDC. Known protocols will include health screening and temperature checks, wearing masks, frequent cleaning, limiting interactions between camper group. Possible requirements for campers and staff may include COVID testing. Regardless of which phase we reach, or restrictions that may be lifted, the following policies will be in place this summer:
- Masks will be required by all participants, both campers and staff. Masks must fully cover nose and mouth. Single use masks will be available for anyone who needs one.
- Temperature Checks will be conducted at check-in everyday. Anyone with a fever will be asked to return home for the day.
- Hand Washing will become a more prominent role in our participants daily schedule, before and after activities.
- Non-Refundable Camper Deposit: The deposit of $25 – $75 per reservation is non-refundable, even if we have to cancel programs. Any payments made beyond the $25 – $75 deposit will be refundable until June 1, or later in case of medical cancellation. Exemptions will be made for financial aid recipients.
- Limited Capacity: We will be limiting participation capacity at all our day camp locations. The exact limitations are specific to each location, check the day camp location pages for more information: Blyth Park, Carkeek Park, Hans Jensen
- Park Use: All of our Day Camps operate at City, County, and State Parks, we rely upon the permission we receive by each respective parks departments to operate our programs. Additional modifications may be required to meet the individual park restrictions. The Parks Departments may decide not to allow group/event reservations; in which case we will cancel our programs at that/those locations.
- One Reservation Per Camper (grade K-7) and CIT (grade 8): Due to the need to limit capacity, we are initially limiting registration to one summer day camp session per child.
- Limited Teen Volunteer Capacity: We will be initially limiting teen volunteer participation at our day camps. Teen Volunteers entering 9-12th grade in the fall will now be required to submit an application to volunteer. Submitting an application is free. The applicants who are accepted into the program will be provided a code to confirm their participation and register. Visit the Day Camp Volunteer page for more information.
- No Overnights: For health/safety reasons, we will not be offering our overnight in the park program at any of our day camp locations.
- Find a COVID-19 testing site (MANY places offer free testing, including most Walgreens)
- Quarantine requirements (between testing and arrival at camp)
- COVID-19 Parental Resources Kit
How We’ll Make Decisions
We know that even with the best possible plans and preparation, there is a chance that we will have to cancel camp again in 2022. We will be closely following the data and guidelines released by King County and Washington State.