Dear Camp Families,
With the approach of summer 2021, we wanted to send out a quick note to let our valued camp families know that we are taking steps to ensure a safe, healthy, and FUN 2021 Summer Camp for all of our campers, families, and staff at 4-H Camp Overlook! While the situation continues to evolve, we are making plans based on the general guidance that we have received from the American Camp Association, the New York State 4-H Program, the CDC, The New York State Camp Directors Association, and the experiences of the hundreds of camps that did run in some capacity in 2020. We are confident we can run a safe, fun, and wonderful camp this year, but the final decision to allow summer camps belongs to the Governor.
To ensure we are running the safest program possible, there will be a number of changes at camp this year. Changes to our registration process, camper check-in, daily schedules, class choices, cabin groups, health and sanitation and more. But you know what isn’t going to change? The opportunity for campers and staff to build healthy, thriving communities at camp. The positive, life changing experiences that happen at camp every day, simply because of the culture we have developed over 75 years of summer camping. Campers are still going to have great experiences, make new friends, try new things, and gain the independence that comes from a week away from their families. These experiences are the cornerstone of what 4-H Camp Overlook is all about. And so, while some things may look different this year, we are beyond excited to get back to camp and see so many smiling, happy children playing outdoors again!
We know you have questions, and many of those questions revolve around what we are doing this year to protect your child. The truth is, a lot. Below are some examples of the steps we are taking this year to enhance the health and safety of our campers and staff in 2021.
Paperless Marketing and Registration: We are changing the way we reach out to campers, and how to register for camp. Though we’ve had an online registration system for several years now, we will not be printing postcards and distributing them by mail or distributing brochures to schools. Saving trees feels good! As always, if you need a printed copy of the registration form, just email us and we’ll be happy to mail one to you!
Staggered Camper Drop Off: Nobody enjoys standing in long lines to drop off campers on registration day. This year, we are working on a new drop off procedure that will give families a check-in window. You’ll be able to drive into camp, be greeted by a staff member who will conduct a basic health screening right at your vehicle, and then help your camper unload their gear. Parents won’t even need to get out of their cars!
Squad Up: This year, campers squad groups will be assigned based on cabin and age. Based off current expectations, squads will include 2-3 cabin groups. These squad groups will be important, as they will become the “family group” that rotates through the daily schedule together. Campers and staff assigned to a particular cohort will have limited interactions with campers and staff from other cohorts. This will allow us to run a safe camp and minimize camper risk.
Masks: While we are still awaiting firm guidance from the New York State Department of Health, we anticipate that masks will be a requirement for all campers, staff and guests of camp through the 2021 season. Overnight campers should plan to bring a weekly supply face covering, in a large, zipper style plastic bag, with their name on it. Campers will be responsible for managing their masks properly throughout the week under the guidance and support of their counselors. Absolutely no sharing of masks will be permitted. Camp will have a supply of disposable masks available if needed.
Sanitation: We have acquired bulk hand sanitizer, which will be available throughout camp, including inside the doorways of most buildings. Each Squad will be provided with a Sanitation Kit including liquid sanitizer, paper towels, and sterile wipes, so that campers and staff can sanitize program areas before they leave, preparing them for the next group. Program supplies will be sanitized between uses, and we will be hiring additional maintenance staff to ensure sanitization of communal spaces like the restrooms and the dining hall. We have portable handwashing stations being added in more remote locations where access to running water is limited.
Reduced Capacities: Based on current guidance, we will be reducing the numbers of people in certain spaces together at the same time. Our current plan calls for a reduced capacity in many cabins, Great Hall, and any other indoor spaces. This plan may be subject to change as we await further guidance from the New York State Department of Health.
Meals: We are privilege at 4-H Camp Overlook to already have outside eating as part of our wonderful camp tradition. We will be continuing this tradition with a slight restructuring to require squads to be eating lunch at the same table. In the event of inclement weather, we will look at the possibility of eating staggered inside our Great Hall. This plan will ultimately depend on final guidance from the Department of Health.
Daily Schedules: Big changes are coming to our daily schedule! We have developed a schedule that allows our campers to rotate through the shared programming spaces so that no more than one squad is using a particular location at a time. With all our campers on site and different squads, there’s a lot of moving parts! Our camper squads will be rotating through all class programs throughout the week, so rather than selecting four favorite classes this year, campers will enjoy all our camp programs programs during the week. Special programs like Counselor in Training will be run in the Squad format as well! We are excited that campers will be allowed to experience all that Camp Overlook has to offer in a safe format.
We hope that you will consider joining the fun in 2021! We are aiming to be able to open registration for our overnight camp in mid-February. If you know anyone who is interested in working at camp, staff positions have already been posted on our website! https://4hcampoverlook.org/employment/
Please know that due to the evolving scenario with the covid-19 pandemic and the development and distribution of the vaccine, any and all programming is subject to change. As we move closer to camp, if things change, we will be updating our website, and we will post changes to our Facebook and Instagram pages, so be sure to follow us on those platforms, and/or check your email regularly. We will be in touch!
The Camp Overlook Team
It is with a heavy heart that 4-H Camp Overlook announces it will not run for summer 2020. It was not a decision made lightly, especially since this is our 75 year, but the health and safety of our campers and staff remain our number one deciding factor. Camp Overlook is, and will remain, a special place to us in the North County.
A camp without hugs, a ropes course, swimming in the lake, blob tag, eating shoulder to shoulder at picnic tables, silly skits and talent show acts, a dance, or any one of the amazing traditions seemed unfathomable to us. We attempted to try each scenario and kept coming back to the realization that it wouldn’t be camp as we all know and love. Social distancing at camp, with children, is an almost impossible task. As a mission driven organization, we felt it was impossible to meet the mission of camp while also safely managing a pandemic for campers and staff alike.
We have decided to focus our efforts on planning an unforgettable summer 2021, and beyond. While we are heartbroken, we remain encouraged and supported by our wider camp family. It is YOU who will get us through this incredibly hard time. We would love to see old camp photos, camp T-shirts new and old, a camp song sung at full volume, and campers getting outside this summer! It will remind us (and all of you) that the camp spirit lives on even when we are not physically at camp.
As many are aware we are offering full refunds, including deposit, to anyone who has already registered. While this will be financially devastating to Camp Overlook, it also seemed like the right thing to do for our camper families and our communities. We will be contacting all our enrolled families in the upcoming weeks by phone to process refunds and appreciate your patience. There is an option to make a donation to cover our non-variable operating costs, including supporting our year-round employees who depend on their camp employment. If you chose to donation we are eternally grateful to you and your generosity to help us through this difficult summer. You can also reach out to us directly anytime at email@example.com or 518.483.4769.
Thank you all for your unwavering support during this difficult time. Currently we are planning other programming options for campers. These options could include virtual camp programming, virtual campfires with camp songs and camp stories, and/or possible small group activities in person at camp later in the summer. We are looking forward to hearing camp stories and photos from you, and planning an incredible summer 2021.
Casey Sukeforth – Camp Overlook Program Director – firstname.lastname@example.org
Patrick Ames – Cornell Cooperative Extension St. Lawrence County – email@example.com
Glen Butler – Camp Overlook Summer Camp Director – firstname.lastname@example.org
Dear Campers and Families,
Please know that 4-H Camp Overlook is committed to the well-being of each camper, family and staff member. We are in regular communication with our Covid-19 Team at Cornell University, along with the NY Department of Health office and the American Camp Association in regards to the Coronavirus pandemic.
Currently, we are planning to be in full operation for Summer 2020. We are actively examining our arrival screenings, health response procedures, and cleaning procedures, ensuring that we meet or exceed standards required by the Department of Health. While we acknowledge that this is a constantly evolving situation, and everything is subject to change. The guidance that we have received indicates that the virus will be under control before the start of Summer Camp, and the school systems will not be extended into the summer season.
In order to help you register with confidence, we have updated our registration guidelines as follows;
For accurate information on how you can protect your family right now, we suggest resources found at NYS Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
We are committed to keeping you updated of any changes in our plans, policies, or procedures. If you have any questions or concerns you are welcome to contact us at email@example.com or 518.483.4769. Please be aware that our employees have been given the option to work from home, so phone messages may take a little longer than usual for a response. Email may be a faster route for contacting us.
Thank you for your continued support of 4-H Camp Overlook! We look forward to an amazing summer and year. See you soon!
The Camp Overlook Team
To access our online application, sign in or create a bunk one account here!
Need a bit of guidance using our online system? Follow the tips on our Online Registration page
Want to learn about our summer camp activities? Click here!
Do you have other questions not answered by our webpage? email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our office at 518.483.4769
Check out our activities for Summer Camp 2020! We have 3 new classes, as well as 2 favorites we have brought back by popular demand!
New for 2020:
Making MacGyver – solve problems with seemingly random objects…and finish the week with an escape room type challenge!
Dance – Move to the music in an amazing new dance class!
Zoonotic – Get your science on and study small creatures who make a BIG impact!
Plus, back by popular demand:
Drama & Advanced Fishing!
For a full list, visit: https://4hcampoverlook.org/summer2020/2020-summer-camp-activities/
Reminder! Summer Camp registration opens February 1st! See you then!
Mark your calendars! Summer camp registration opens February 1st! At that point our online registration portal, Bunk1, will be open. Please click the link below to view more information and to register (after Feb 1st!)
Employment applications are now open for summer 2020! For more information, and to apply, click the link below!
Dear Camper Families
As of June 13, 2019, the New York State Legislature passed, and Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a major update to Public Health Law 2164 which only allows for medical exemptions from immunizations only. Accordingly, Cornell Cooperative Extension/4H Day and Overnight camps will no longer be able to accept any exemption other than a doctor issued medical exemption for vaccinations to help ensure public health and safety.
The health and safety of our campers is our number one priority. If you have any questions, or need to submit updated records, please reach out to us at camp directly at 518.483.4769 or email email@example.com.