After many hours of national zoom call meetings with camp directors from around the country, representatives from the CDC, Y-USA and the American Camping Association, as well as phone conversations with officials in our Wisconsin Department of Health, and nurses at Pepin County Public Health, we have made the decision with our Advisory Board to close summer camp programming for the 2020 summer. This decision was not made easily and it was made with the welfare of our campers, staff and Pepin County neighbors in mind, and from input from the thoughtful Summer Camp 2020 team of cooks, maintenance, and counselors.
We are working out a few things looking forward that are important for you to know. As the coronavirus spikes decline, and we are able to invite more than 10 people at a time to Camp Pepin, we are working on a model that would fit with the cohort group guidance from CDC, to create opportunities for families to come and stay in a cabin at camp together and enjoy the beautiful shores of Lake Pepin together; different from summer camp but a safer model this year.
We will also be building out the process next week, so that you can make your decision on how you want your camp payments to be handled. Currently, there is a stop payment on all registrations, and we would like you to consider the options of a refund, leaving your money in toward your camper’s 2021 Camp Pepin registration, or donating your registration to support the expenses already incurred from building the summer season.
I will be candid and tell you I have cried quite a bit with the struggles of this decision, but especially this evening when I walked down to the river and thought about the evening campfires, from our hilarious ZANY campfire to our deeply meaningful closing fire, the Friendship fire. Camp Pepin is a place that I have watched your children let go of your hand and move into the camp community- some with fear and trepidation, some with ease and some just wide open wild and ready to play. It’s a place where your children get to learn more about nature, making new friends, trying new things and taking healthy risks. I am so thankful that you entrust us with your children, and although we will not have our cumulative feet here in the sand all together on the shores of Lake Pepin- Be Brave this summer and share the values that we live at camp, reach out to help a neighbor, learn new skills, work on being a good listener, use your voice, step up to needed tasks in your own home and do what you can to make your community a safe and welcoming place.
Peace and Gratitude,
Your Camp Director - Martha