It may be a little different than in years’ past, but the LaFayette Parks and Recreation Department has plans to make its annual summer camp as fun and as safe as possible for children.
Summer camp will begin on Monday, June 15, and will be held in week-long sessions. Camps will also be held the week of June 22, July 6 and weekly throughout the rest of July. There will not be any camps from June 29-July 3.
The camp is open for children, ages 6-12 (children must turn six by Sept. 1, 2020) and will cost $80 per week. Children will be dropped off by 7:30 a.m. each morning, while pick-up time will be 5:30 p.m. at the recreation center.
As per orders from the state, there will be specific restrictions in place due to COVID-19.
Camp director Christy Madden said that while planning has been “challenging,” she and her staff are ready to do what they can to make it a memorable experience for the young campers, despite the extra rules and safety precautions.
“It will look a lot different,” she stated. “But we plan to work hard to make it as fun as possible, while doing everything safely. We want parents to feel confident with what we’re doing. We’re taking it seriously.”
Madden said she has been networking with other recreation departments and the YMCA to get ideas for games and activities that can be played, while adhering to safety and social distancing guidelines. One example is playing tag using a pool noodle instead of kids tagging with their hands.
“We’re really trying to find out from others what’s working for them and how to maintain the safety of the kids,” she added. “But we still want them all to have fun.”
She added that, weather permitting, many of the planned activities will take place outdoors. The campers will also get access to the Joe Stock Memorial Swimming Pool in the mornings, prior to the pool being opened for the public each day. The pool is scheduled to re-open on June 15.
Madden said that some traditional camp entertainment, brought in from outside sources by the local library, won’t be able to be presented this summer. However, she is working with the library in the hope of providing a book club or some type of reading program for campers, as long as it can be done safely.
According to the guidelines handed down from the governor’s office, specific procedures must be implemented when campers are dropped off every morning and again when they are picked up.
Children and staff will be limited to a maximum group size of 20 during the day and the different groups should be separated for the duration of the camp, if possible. Other measures, like individual health screening, frequent hand washing and sanitation and personal protection equipment for staff also are recommended.
A flier for the camp can be found on the LaFayette Recreation Department’s Facebook page, and a link with all of the state’s safety recommendations is available in the comments section under the flier on the Facebook post.
Space is limited and camp registration can be done online at teamsideline.com/lafayettega.