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Dear JCC Summer Camps Family, 

We hope you are staying safe and healthy and getting along well at home. No doubt, as the weeks tick by, you’re beginning to think about the summer and whether we’ll be able to open JCC Summer Camps. 

We, of course, are hoping and planning for a fantastic summer, even as we live in a new reality filled with “what if’s” and an abundance of unknowns.  

After careful consideration, we will be moving forward with planning for a modified 2020 summer experience. It will understandably look and feel a bit different from summers of the past. Please read the rest of this letter carefully and in its entirety, so you will know what comes next for your family. 

Here is the information we can share as of this moment: 

1. The health and safety of everyone in our community is always our highest priority. Before we can open for the season, we must know from local health authorities that it is safe to do so. In addition to our local experts, we are heeding guidance and advice issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and American Camp Association (ACA). Both organizations currently are preparing “Field Guides,” including decision trees, which we believe will be available within the next two weeks, to aid camps in making prudent decisions for this summer.  

We remain hopeful about providing alternative summer experiences, but also understand that it will take extra time to prepare responsibly and ensure adherence to health guidelines. Therefore, we are encouraging families to anticipate the need for alternative childcare options for the month of June.  

2. We are planning to create a virtual summer experience during the month of June. Our team is in the process of designing virtual summer activities for our community. More details will be available in the coming weeks.  

3. For various reasons related to safety guidelines, please note that the following programs have been cancelled or postponed until later in the summer: 

Kickoff camp – Cancelled 
Horseback riding camp – Both sessions cancelled
Sailing Camp – June session cancelled, July session tentative 
Theater Camp – June session has been cancelled… alternative two-week session might be available in July or August 
Hebrew Immersion Camp – Cancelled for the summer 
Soccer Camp – Cancelled for the summer 
Tennis Camp – Cancelled for the summer 
Camp Wise Experiences – Cancelled for the summer 

If your child(ren) are registered for any of the above camps, you can: 

a) carry your deposit and payment forward and apply those fees to the alternative summer camp experiences we are planning -or-
b) receive a full refund of deposit and fees paid -or-  
c) donate your camp fees and deposit to the JCC Sustainability Fund. The JCC Sustainability Fund was established to support our staff during the COVID-19 crisis.  

A separate email will be sent to those families impacted by these changes with a form to complete. 

3. We are devoted to providing a terrific experience. Although we don’t yet know exactly what that experience will look like — it will definitely be different from past summers. Please be sure to continue to complete your child(ren)’s medical history through the CampDocs link you received. In light of the fluid situation, we are waiving the drop fee to provide our families with the utmost flexibility. We would love your input to help guide our decision making for our virtual programming and our alternative youth summer programming. Please take a moment to complete this .  

4. We will communicate with you as soon as we make a decision about the 2020 camp season. As noted above, we have been working diligently with numerous summer camp and medical experts for several weeks to carefully assess various summer scenarios as they relate to our own camp operations.  We will share our decisions and the thinking behind them with you directly as soon as we’ve made them. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to our Camp Director, Taryn Terwilliger (tterwilliger@columbusjcc.org). We’ll be happy to address them as best we can. 

Please keep in mind that although you may hear about other camps that have made decisions about summer operations, the processes and time frames will vary from camp to camp and may be different from ours. We appreciate your patience, partnership, and on-going support and we look forward to being in touch again when there is more information to convey.  

In the meantime, best wishes to everyone in our camp family and wishes for healing and wholeness to those who have been personally affected by this virus.  

Stay healthy, stay safe, stay strong. 

Sincerely, 

Ronnie Conn, COO 
Suzanne Ecker, JCC Summer Camps, Committee Chair 
Taryn Terwilliger, JCC Summer Camps, Camp Director