Summer 2021 Update

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We hope you are having a good start to the New Year! We are working on our Getting Ready materials and are producing website and video content to help give campers and camp families a sense of what the upcoming summer will look like in more detail. With that in mind, we are extending our cancellation (for full deposit refund) deadline until March 1st, 2021. We want families to have time to talk about the modifications and community mitigation strategies, to ask us questions, and to determine if it is the right fit for your child/children and family.

Most importantly, we want you to know camp will still be camp: children will laugh and play outside; they will choose different trips and activities; they will make friends; they will interact with inspiring role models; they will eat good food in camp and on trips; they will gain new appreciation for time away from technology and in the outdoors; they will discover strengths within themselves and within the community and they will have lots and lots of fun.

The following modifications and community mitigation strategies are based on what we currently know and what we would need to have in place if we wanted to operate camp next week. We know these will likely evolve and change as state and local guidance changes, and we also feel very, very confident in our plans and in our ability to operate a residential summer camp program in 2021.

A brief overview of some of the modifications we will likely make, include:

  • A signed “COVID Commitment” form from all campers, camp families and staff; this commitment will be a series of agreements including taking precautions prior to arrival at camp.
  • A local or regional emergency contact who could, in the event of a positive test result, pick up the camper within a reasonable time period.
  • The understanding that, if a camper tests positive for COVID (with detectable viral loads in multiple tests), that camper will need to be picked up from camp and will not be able to return.
  • A testing model that will include: arrival at camp with a negative test; testing on Opening Day; multiple PCR tests early on to create a bubble; and ongoing surveillance testing of the community throughout the session.
  • A different look and feel for Opening and Closing Day: including scheduled arrival/departure times for car arrivals; parents will stay in their cars; more focused health screening; and more health care communication prior to camp.
  • Cohort models, grouped by age, at both camps which will limit interaction between groups of campers if/when/until a “bubble” is established.
  • Mask wearing and social distancing requirements when/if campers/staff are interacting with others outside of their immediate living cohort
  • Activities, trips and large group events (ie: dances, gymkhana) won’t occur within/between the two camps (Big Spring and High Trails) because of cohort trip scheduling and group size limitations.
  • Meal times will include multiple seatings and covered, outdoor dining options.
  • Continued focus on community health and sanitation with more outdoor handwashing stations, hand sanitizer, additional ventilation and cleaning of shared spaces.
  • Vaccines will not be required for campers this year; staff members will be strongly encouraged to receive the vaccine (if it is available to them).

We know many of these modifications are familiar to you because of the different models you have encountered in schools, in youth sports, in religious organizations, in public spaces and within your own individual communities. The summer camp community continues to share and develop excellent operational advice, guidance and research in the COVID era, with much of this information coming from camps that operated successfully in 2020.

We have launched two new programs in the last week, our brand new Sanborn Gap Semester program and our new partnership with A Place Beyond. These programs are helping us inform and refine our testing, food service, health care and programming strategies–plus it is fantastic to have people back on the property.

We will send out more information via email over the next few weeks as we post information to our website. The Getting Ready for Camp magazine and additional information packet should arrive in February. We will activate our forms in the Camp InTouch portal within the next week or two, but please expect additional forms and forms updates to be released as we learn more about new state childcare licensing requirements and CDPHE guidelines as they pertain to COVID.

Thank you for your commitment to Sanborn and to the summer camp experience. We look forward to providing a place and space for your camper/s to connect and reconnect with each other, with themselves, with the natural world and with a sense of possibility, awe and wonder.

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Ariella Rogge
About Ariella Rogge

Ariella started her career at Sanborn when she was twelve. After five years of camper and five years of Sanborn staff experience, she continued her work with kids in the high school classroom. Ariella and her family returned to Sanborn in 2001 to take on the Program Director role which she held til 2012. She and Elizabeth Marable became co-directors of High Trails in 2013 and then Ariella became the High Trails Director in 2020. In the fall of 2022 she became the Director of Sanborn Western Camps, overseeing the director teams of both Big Spring and High Trails. She lists mountain golf, Gymkhana, climbing mountains and making Pad Thai in the backcountry as some of her favorite activities at camp. Ariella received a B.A. in English from Colorado College and is a certified secondary English educator,an ACCT Level 2 Ropes Course Technician, an ARC lifeguard and NREMT and WEMT. She lives in Florissant in the summer and in Green Mountain Falls during the school year so she can stay involved with the busy lives of her husband, Matt, and two teenage sons, Lairden and Karsten.