May 2021 Update (5/20/21) Jeannine Lawless

Jun 1 2021
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Hello, Friends!

We hope you’re enjoying this beautiful weather, and getting excited for CAMP, which is right around the corner. We can’t wait to see your kids!

As you’ve probably heard, Governor Baker announced on Monday that masking is not required for campers when outside, including in the act of playing sports and other activities. This is based upon a new consensus among experts that the chance of person-to-person Covid transmission while outdoors is quite low. This is definitely an exciting step in our collective return to normalcy! Along with our health team, we’ve extensively reviewed the State’s latest Health and Safety Standards for camps to determine how these guidelines will impact our program this summer.

For this summer, your campers will not need to be in masks for much of the camp day; however, please don’t throw away the masks just yet. Campers and staff will be required to wear masks when groups are indoors, in Arts & Crafts and other buildings, if/when they are in a temporary rain shelter, when they are on buses, as well as during arrival/dismissal, and in certain other high traffic areas outside. Masks will also be required when campers are at (wait for it…) the Zip Line, Rock Wall, or High Ropes – YES, Adventure Challenge 2021 is officially ON! Please note: if for any reason the CDC or state or local board of health reverses course and mandates more extensive use of masks, we would act in accordance.

For those of you who’d prefer your camper to wear a mask during other times of the day (e.g. any time other than when swimming or eating), we will absolutely honor your wishes. We recognize there will be varying levels of comfort as we begin the process of “getting back to normal,” and as your partners, we will support anyone whose family prefers a more conservative personal approach.

Our primary focus at Sewataro is, and has always been, the safety and well-being of our campers and staff. That goal carried us through our Covid-free summer of 2020, and it guides us in our planning today. Although some guidelines have been relaxed, like mask-wearing outdoors, others are still strongly advised, such as cohorting and mask use inside. And though Massachusetts has revised its guidelines, the CDC has not yet done so, nor has the American Camp Association. Given this uncertainty, coupled with this late hour (we’re 2 weeks away from the start of staff training!), we will largely stay the course we’ve been on. Please keep in mind that many campers in our community will not have been vaccinated, so we continue to run camp in a way that protects everyone to the greatest extent possible. Know that as responsible camp operators, we will always err on the side of caution. We ask for your trust once again, as we are doing everything in our power to make the summer of 2021 the best and safest one yet.

At this time the outdoor mask amendment is the only change to our 2021 plans. Things seem to be headed in the right direction, and hopefully that will only continue as more and more people become vaccinated, including children ages twelve and up! We urge you to get vaccinated, and to have your eligible children vaccinated. Vaccines are now readily available. For more information, and to register for your vaccine, check out https://www.mass.gov/covid-19-vaccine. Vaccines are also available at CVS and Walgreens, among other places. Keep in mind that vaccinated children who are identified as “close contacts” to a positive Covid case will not be required to quarantine.

Things seem to be changing quite rapidly (again…), but in all of it, what we do know for sure is this: Summer 2021 will be filled with all the warm and fuzzy camp goodness that always fills your children’s days at Sewataro! We can’t wait to provide that safe space for them to laugh, learn, and play together, in the great outdoors, away from screens. Hooray for CAMP!

Please say hello to your awesome children!

With warmth and gratitude,

Amy, Emmy, Cheryl, Jeannine, and Ciaran

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