Camp Horizons 2021 COVID-19 Policy
Camp will undoubtedly look different in 2021—and that’s okay! Our traditions, programs, and camp spirit can still continue even if it does not look like our previous summers. We have our sights firmly set on summer 2021 and we are that much closer to it now that we can finally present our COVID resources which include:
Our team of full time Directors, Program Coordinators, Customer Service Representatives, Food & Beverage team members, and Maintenance & Housekeeping staff continue to improve our practices in preparation to serve our campers and local families and have all provided their expertise in the final version of our Action Plan. Our program planning is also impacted by a variety of external resources, including:
- The Virginia Governor’s office, which on February 24th released Guidelines for All Business Sectors, including summer camps
- The American Camp Association, who we have been accredited by for nearly 40 years and which has created a field guide for best practices within the summer camp industry
- The Center for Disease Control, whose guidelines we’ve been following and will continue to adhere to this summer
With the Governor’s support, the ACA resources available to us, and continued adherence to CDC guidelines, we feel confident in our ability to offer a safe and exciting program for the 2021 summer season. Following months of thoughtful planning and collaboration we are proud to share our plans for operation this summer. We ask all currently enrolled and potential families to review the Action Plan thoroughly to best understand the protocols we are executing that allow us to run a safe and responsible summer camp program. Please note, should any relevant guidelines change from the ACA, CDC, or The Virginia Department of Health, we will update our Action Plan as needed.
The Camper Guide functions as a resource for our campers (new and veteran) to best understand what to expect during their time at camp this summer. The Camper Guide should be reviewed in conjunction with the full Camp Horizons 2021 COVID-19 Action Plan.
Finally, our team put together a condensed FAQ which is a helpful tool to reference after reviewing the full 2021 Action Plan.
Below are some excerpts from the Camp Horizons 2021 COVID-19 Action Plan which highlight some of the important differences for this summer. However, please make sure you read through all three documents.
This information is current as of March 31, 2021
In 2020 we were prepared to successfully run safe, effective, and fun programming. While we were not able to implement our plan for traditional camp programming due to Virginia’s re-opening guidelines, we did host 2 new programs this year:
- Camp Horizons Family Camp/ Horizons’ Getaways
- Horizons Learning Foundation (HLF) Enrichment Program
Camp Horizons Family Camp ran for six consecutive weeks in July/August with three length of stay options, required masks, and social distancing protocols in place. We offered activities in all of our departments and were able to have indoor dining with plenty of room between tables, as well as enhanced cleaning measures. Horizons’ Getaways began in Fall 2020 as a continuation of Family Camp’s success. These seasonal weekend programs follow the Family Camp model of individual cabin rentals and flexible activity schedules.
The HLF Enrichment Programs, essentially a forest school, assisted students in grades K-7 with their virtual learning. Students worked on computers in an outdoor classroom setting then participated in classic camp activities occurring after classroom time. The Enrichment Programs showcased the success of “pods,” as students interacted with one instructor and a predetermined small group of students. The HLF Enrichment Program will continue in the Spring of 2021 for students not doing in-person school.
The experience of running these programs put our safety procedures into practice, and 61 Family Camp families and 140 Enrichment Program students can attest to the success of our programming. With months of successful programming during the pandemic under our belt we are confident in our ability to run safe, effective, and fun programming during the upcoming 2021 summer.
Pre-Camp Testing and Quarantine
All campers and staff should avoid any non-essential travel for the entire 10-day Safer at Home quarantine period. If travel outside of the home is absolutely necessary, a face mask should be worn at all times, social distancing should be maintained, and thorough hand washing should be practiced.
We will no longer be requiring an at-home PCR test before arrival to camp for campers or staff. Campers and staff are more than welcome to receive a COVID test prior to their arrival at camp, but again, it is no longer required.
Check-In Day Testing
Only campers and staff with negative test results will be permitted to attend camp. We will be purchasing Abbott Rapid Antigen Tests to perform on Opening Day. These 15 minute tests will be administered by trained camp staff. There is no cost to you on these rapid tests.
Campers who test positive due to a confirmed COVID-19 case on Opening Day are eligible to return for a different 2-week session following no symptoms or
additional exposures for 14 days.
Check-in will be staggered from 2pm-5pm, with families signing up for their arrival time. We will be using SignUpGenius.com and you will receive an email
instructing you to sign up for your check-in time a few weeks before camp. Each drop off is limited to 30 minutes and will have a maximum of 30 cars per slot.
Please arrive only during your scheduled time. We ask that if possible, only one adult arrive to avoid unnecessary risk.
Throughout the Check-In process we are requiring all passengers to stay in their car. This includes the 10 -15 minute waiting period on Rapid Antigen Test results. Parents and campers must be in masks the entire time, and parents must say goodbye to their camper after they have gone through our medical procedures. Parents will not be allowed to take their camper to their village. Staff will take campers to their cabins and cabin counselors will help your campers settled.
Similar to Check-in, Check-out will be staggered from 9am-11:30am, with families signing up for their arrival time. We will be using SignUpGenius.com and you will receive an email instructing you to sign up for your check-out time a few weeks before camp. Each pick up is limited to 30 minutes and will have a maximum of 30 cars per slot. Please only arrive at your scheduled time.
Campers must do activities in cohorts of no more than 25 people. We can decide how to create these cohorts and we have decided to do them by cabins. These cohorts will travel around and do activities that our staff have selected based on their age. Campers will not need to be in masks while in their cohorts, however, will still be expected to have their masks with them at all times in case they need to put them on. Two activities per day will run the entire week, and two will change daily. All-camp activities, such as the Talent Show, or Campfires, will be spaced out effectively. Discover Campers will do the pre-determined Discover curriculum of activities as a cohort.
We are hopeful that the cohort size will go up, and if it does, we will adjust from there.
The success at Family Camp and our education program showed that additional sinks and hand sanitizer stations stop the spread of germs. Those cleaning processes and hand washing and sanitizing stations that were implemented in response to COVID and allowed us to run these programs with success are here to stay. Our housekeeping team will continue with increased rounds paying special attentions to high touch areas and using CDC-approved products.
While an inherent benefit of attending camp is spending time in the great outdoors, we also use indoor spaces, like dining halls and cabins. We are fortunate that both dining halls and all of our cabins already allow excellent air flow, as they have plenty of windows. We will keep these open throughout the day to ensure plenty of fresh air gets in. We also will keep our cabin tables at meals more spread out than in previous years. Cabin counselors will remain the same during their session, so your camper will not have new counselors halfway through their session.
We will be practicing extra cleaning this summer and will make sure that any high-touch surfaces get extra attention such as: doorknobs, faucets, toilet handles, and showers. In previous summers, we have cleaned the dining halls after each meal and will continue to do so this summer. Cabin bathrooms and showers will be cleaned each morning by our cabin staff and will be cleaned by housekeeping staff at least once per day as well. Common bathrooms, such as
the ones at the dining halls, pavilion, pool, Western Village, and basketball court will be cleaned multiple times per day by our housekeeping staff.
We value every member of our Camp Horizons family and want our families to view camp as a fun and rewarding experience free of hesitation due to financial obligations. With this in mind we lowered our camp registration fee to $375. Finally, if we are unable to hold camp in 2021 families may request a full refund or move their tuition to 2022.