Camp Pinnacle’s Approach to Coronavirus

March 19, 2020

At this time, we are planning to run Camp Pinnacle summer 2020 as planned. All North Carolina camps and summer travel programs we know of are also preparing to operate this summer.

If you do not feel comfortable sending your child to Camp Pinnacle due to uncertainty regarding Coronavirus, please cancel by May 1 for a full refund less the $200 cancellation fee. You may always rebook later, if space remains. Assuming we operate the summer as planned, tuition is non-refundable after May 1 per our standard cancellation policy.

Like the rest of the world, we at Camp Pinnacle are learning more about COVID-19 every day. We’re lucky to have medical contacts with ties to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention who have been providing regular updates and helping us stay ahead of the news cycle. We’re doing our best to digest new information, study the science, and respond in the most intelligent and thoughtful way possible.

The safety and well-being of our campers and staff forms the basis of every decision we make, and the reality is that we’ll know a lot more about this Coronavirus, its severity, and its impact on the United States in the next month.

We are operating under the assumption that we will be able to run a safe and successful summer as planned. Please understand that we have been preparing for summer 2020 since May 2019 and must continue planning as we believe we will (and need to be prepared to) operate this year. We’re optimistic about running this summer despite the current uncertainty because the population we work with (children and young adults) seem to be minimally affected by the novel Coronavirus.

While the need to quarantine people this spring to slow the spread of the disease is urgent and important, we hope this will be less of an issue come summer, when the virus will have already passed through most of the population.

We are also hopeful that COVID-19 will mimic other respiratory viruses and lose potency during late spring and summer.

Beyond all the normal planning that goes into summer, we are working closely with our local health department, American Camp Association, and North Carolina Youth Camp Association to share information, review best practices, and prepare for various contingencies.

We want you to know that the CDC’s current recommendations for Coronavirus prevention have always been part of our standard operating procedures at camp:

  • We wash our hands regularly, before all meals, and after using the bathroom.
  • We have hand sanitizer stations all over our campus.
  • We bleach all showers nightly.
  • We clean and disinfect all sinks and water fountains daily.
  • We maintain a grade A (98.5%) health rating for camp and kitchen.
  • We maintain the integrity of our camp community by restricting visitors during summer.
  • We eat balanced meals with lots of fruits and vegetables and get plenty of exercise and sleep.
  • We have hired an additional nurse for the summer.

Our staff will arrive two weeks before session 1 opens, providing time for a full quarantine if necessary. Health, hygiene, hand-washing, and camp cleanliness will continue to be part an essential part of staff training. Before opening day, we work with parents to self-screen campers to ensure that everyone arriving at Camp Pinnacle is healthy.

Prior to each session:

  • Campers must be fever-free for 48 hours prior to arriving at camp;
  • Campers must not have traveled within three weeks prior to camp to places the CDC reports as having a level 3 risk of contracting Coronavirus;
  • Campers must feel well (beyond the normal first-day jitters) on opening day;
  • and we reserve the right to add additional screening criteria based on the latest information and best practices at a future date.

Upon arrival to camp, campers will continue going through our regular check-in:

  • All campers will have their temperatures checked. Campers who register a fever over 100 degrees may not remain at camp but can return once they have been fever-free for 48 hours;
  • All campers and their families will check in with our nursing team; and
  • All campers will be checked for lice.
  • As opening day approaches, we will continue to modify and improve our camper check in process to best guarantee a virus free community.

For currently enrolled families:

Regarding final payments: We know this is not an ideal time to receive an invoice for camp tuition, but that is the unenviable position we find ourselves in as we get ready for the summer. Because we are planning on running summer 2020 as scheduled, final payment remains due April 1.

If you do not feel comfortable sending your child to Camp Pinnacle due to uncertainty regarding Coronavirus, please cancel by May 1 for a full refund less the $200 cancellation fee. You may always rebook later, if space remains.

Assuming we operate the summer as planned, tuition is non-refundable after May 1 per our standard cancellation policy.

If North Carolina, Henderson County, or federal authorities do not permit Camp Pinnacle to operate this summer or if we feel we cannot run a safe, successful and healthy summer and choose not to operate, we will move tuition forward to summer 2021 or you may request a refund.

If a camper is sick and cannot come to camp on opening day, we can transfer tuition to another 2020 session (if space is available) or transfer tuition ahead to summer 2021.

As an aside, many thanks to all of you who have sent encouraging messages as we navigate new territory. Summer camp is our passion, and as we move forward together, let’s do it thoughtfully, carefully digesting the science without panic. We will always act in the best interests of our families, keeping the health and safety of our campers and staff as our top priority.

We will update and communicate our policies as the situation evolves and as more information becomes available. We continue to be touch with federal, state, and local agencies and are monitoring the following resources to help inform our decision-making:

Resources we’ve found helpful: