What Summer Camps Will Look Like Amid Coronavirus

June 22, 2020

    As states continue to reopen, many are allowing summer camps to begin operating amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

    And while parents may be excited to see their children enjoy time outdoors, safety is of utmost importance considering many areas are seeing an uptick in COVID-19 cases.

    To calm fears and keep everyone healthy, camps are putting in new protocols that will alter how they looked like in the past.

    Right off the bat parents may have to get used to new procedures while dropping off their kids at day camp.

    "Parents aren't really allowed in... just to minimize how many people are coming in and out," Dominic DelBrocco, executive and artistic director of the Henegar Center in Florida, told “Today.”

    Instead, he has implemented a drive-up system similar to the ones seen at many schools to get everyone in and out quickly and safely.  DelBrocco also plans on running temperature checks as each child arrives.

    Frank DiLeonardi, president of Level 5 Athletics in Maryland, is making sure all staff and kids use hand sanitizer upon entering any building or bathroom, and also at dismissal at the end of the day.

    "We have jugs of hand sanitizer all over the place — the 99.9% effective kind," DiLeonardi said. "When you smell it, it knocks you out, but we know it's doing its job."

    Social distancing will also be implemented at many camps with plexiglass barriers and floor markings. In addition, high contact activities like tag could be placed on hold.

    To maintain the recommended six feet distance, some camps are breaking up classes and activities into smaller groups.

    Depending on state and local guidelines, face masks may be required. Other areas are leaving it up to the camps to set their policies.

    "Our staff only wear a mask when they're inside, or when we're checking kids in and out," DiLeonardi said. "Initially, we planned on our coaches having to wear masks on the field during training, but that requirement has been lifted statewide."

    Parents should also consider making sure they send their kids off with hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, spray-on sunscreen and a water bottle in their backpacks, the outlet reported.

    While the precautions may take getting used to, DiLeonardi believes camps can still deliver a fun time for the children.

    "I feel bad for the kids," DiLeonardi said. "We should try our hardest to give them a good experience, and we're trying to figure out how to do that."

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