New York will allow summer day camps to open starting June 29, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday.
The announcement comes after weeks of uncertainty over whether summer camps would be allowed to open as the state looks to reopen businesses that were shuttered in late March due to the coronavirus.
Cuomo said as the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths decline, summer day camps can start to open at the end of the month. He said no decision has been made on sleepaway camps.
“We’re doing very, very well when it comes to dealing with the COVID-19 crisis,” Cuomo said Tuesday. So, he added, “Summer day camps are going to open on June 29. We’re still reviewing the situation with sleepaway camps.”
The state has yet to release its safety guidelines for summer camps, but they have been preparing a series of steps to keep the children and staff safe. Those are likely to include a limited number of campers, attempts at social distancing, the wearing of masks when need be and stronger sanitary measures.
Upstate New York is largely in Phase 2 of a four-phase reopening plan, and recreation, such as camps, fall into Phase 4. But by setting a specific date for summer camps, it gives them time to plan to open.
The YMCA of Greater Rochester, for example, said it plans to open June 29. It will give each camper a health screening each morning and require campers will stay in groups of 10.
The YMCA of Greater Rochester plans to operate its annual summer camp, but with alterations with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Camp will look different,” the YMCA announced on its website this week. “We are making plans, reducing capacities and making adjustments daily based on direction from national, state and local leaders as to what the camp experience will look like.”
The 10-week camp is set to begin June 29 and run through Sept. 4. Due to social distancing, space for summer camp will be limited.
HERE ARE SOME THINGS YOU CAN EXPECT:
• Camp is set to begin June 29 and run for 10 weeks ending Sept. 4.
• Every camper will be given a health screening each morning.
• YMCA will offer morning (7–9 a.m.) and afternoon (4–6 p.m.). care at no additional cost
• Campers will stay in groups of 10 and units of no more than 50.
• Due to social distancing regulations, space for summer camp is limited.
Summer camps provide thousands of jobs and give parents a place to bring their children as they head back to work as the state’s businesses are starting to open.
Last month, the the American Camp Association and the YMCA of the USA released its “Camp Operations Guide” to help guide camp operations this summer.
YMCA officials say they will continue to evaluate Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and ACA guidelines.