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Camps allowed to operate Saturday at 5 p.m.

Video Credit: WAAY ABC Huntsville, AL - Published
Camps allowed to operate Saturday at 5 p.m.
Camps allowed to operate Saturday at 5 p.m.
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To open next week.

As one part of the new 'safer- at-home' order -- camps are allowed to operate beginning at 5 p-m tomorrow.

But -- for many camps in north alabama, that option is too little, too late.

Waay 31's spoke with several camps in our area about what they plan to do for the summer and beyond.

Some say there is too much uncertainty to bring children to camp this year.

Waay 31's will robinson smith reports.

Chase epps, executive director, maranatha camp & conference center this is one of those things where, rather than just be a specific area of the country or even a specific camp itself, it's across the board.

It's across the nation and you can even say probably worldwide in camping.

The 'thing' chase epps and camp directors across the world are dealing with is 'uncertainty.'

He says the maranatha camp staff starts planning their summer camps about nine months out.

So when coronavirus started shifting things back in march, they had a tough call to make.

Chase epps, executive director, maranatha camp & conference center we're mourning the missed opportunity of having life change happen this summer.

We believe if kids come out it's an interrupt, a welcome interruption to their regular life and it has an opportunity to shape and change their life in a new and unique way.

On the business side, the loss of campers over the summer also means missing out on a lot of revenue.

Will robinson-smith right now, the camp makes about 50 percent of its revenue from the camp side of things, however the other half comes from the conference center and hotel, which the camp is able to run using a smaller crew.

Chase epps, executive director, maranatha camp & conference center we were able to bring a few back through the ppp loan that we were granted.

And because of that, we've been able to do some improvements on camp and some work around here, but that's all up in june.

So we go back to myself and two other full-time staff running the full facility.

Despite this reality for many camps, others like the ymca's camp cha-la-kee, will welcome students... but with some changes.

Huy lu, executive director, ymca camp cha-la-kee drop off and pick up will be completely different from in the past.

No longer walking kids in with their parents and getting a quick tour of the camp.

We're going to ask the parents to stay inside their car.

Kids will also be getting their temperature checked at drop off and after lunch.

Plus certain activities like the swimming pool will be closed to help with social distancing.

Huy lu says while things will be different, he hopes everyone still gets a good experience while they navigate these new rules.

Huy lu, executive director, ymca camp cha-la-kee we're going to constantly change and adapt to the situation and we're just going to deal with real-time results and make those decisions at the time.

The ymca also made the choice to not have overnight camp this year to further improve safety.




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