SUMMER CAMP 2020 UPDATE, 5/11/2020
Click here to READ Executive Director’s Message about Summer Camp 2020
SUMMER CAMP 2020 UPDATE, 5/06/2020
We had hoped that by the first of May we would have received specific guidelines from the state and local authorities with parameters for operating camp this summer. Unfortunately, these guidelines have not yet been provided, and without this crucial information, we (along with hundreds of other camps across the state) have not been able to make decisions regarding our summer schedule.
We must have specific guidelines regarding food service and cabin housing, as well as a defined number or percentage (based on capacity) of people allowed on campus during each ‘phase’ to be able to make these decisions.
We have been told that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) will release camp guidelines/recommendations this week. Based on this, we plan to make a decision next Monday, May 11th – at least concerning our first two weeks of summer camp, 1st Day Camp Week and 1st Junior Week. At this point it looks highly unlikely that we will be allowed to have overnight camps this summer. We are actively pursuing and hope to be able to offer some alternatives for the week your child is registered. Again, it all hinges on how many people we are able to have at camp at one time, and the timing of Phases 2 & 3 being implemented.
Balance Payments: You do not need to pay your balance at this time. If we are able to have camp the week your child is scheduled to come, we will communicate with you regarding your balance due an payment due dates. All automatic payments have been deleted. If we are not able to offer camp the week your child is scheduled to come, we will work out a refund and/or donation on a case-by-case basis.
We appreciate your patience and prayers concerning decisions, and we will give you more information as soon as we are able to.
SUMMER CAMP UPDATE, CONCERNING NEW REGISTRATIONS, 4/17/2020
Even though there are still spaces available in some camp weeks, MCC has closed the registration process to new registrants until we can determine if each camp will be able to operate. As of Friday, April 17, 2020, if you try to register for a camp week online, the system will take you to a waiting list (which is no charge). We will email you should camp continue and a spot open up for the camper.
LETTER CONCERNING CAMP SITUATION TO CAMPER PARENTS, 4/14/2020
Usually at this time of the year, it feels like we are FLYING towards Memorial Day in a whirlwind of serving weekend guest groups, wrapping up the school year with our own children, and marking things off our ‘to do’ lists as our staff diligently prepares for summer camp. This spring couldn’t be further from that! We are still preparing for summer camp, but with so many unknowns, it’s difficult to make concrete plans. We have almost our entire summer staff hired and ready to come, our summer camp weeks are at 96% capacity….and now we wait. We wait to see what the next few weeks will bring.
You are probably wondering what will happen with camp this summer. As with many things right now, circumstances are changing on a daily basis and we are waiting as long as possible to make a final decision on summer camp. We are under a state mandated ‘stay at home’ order until April 30. Local public schools will be out until at least May 15. Our staff training is scheduled to begin on May 24, preparing to welcome our first campers on June 8. If the ‘stay at home’ order is lifted April 30th, our team will be free to look at the feasibility, safety, and wisdom of conducting camp this summer, taking into consideration medical advice, local health department guidance, and how this potentially impacts the two-week staff training period for our summer team.
To be transparent, here are some possible scenarios we see at this time: 1) We are able to run all weeks of camp this summer, with some health screening and health safety modifications in place. 2) Some of the first few weeks may need to be canceled, but weeks later in the summer may be on schedule. 3) We may be unable to hold any summer camp weeks safely in 2020.
You may have questions about what will happen to the camp fees you have paid if the week your child is registered for is canceled, or if you choose to cancel even if the camps are held as scheduled. While we understand that some families have been hit harder than others, some parents have lost jobs, please also know that these times impact Merriwood’s finances greatly as well. As a non-profit, most of our annual income for the year comes from summer camp and spring/fall retreat groups. All of our spring retreat groups, with the exception of one, were forced to cancel due to complying with executive orders, which has already left us in a difficult financial position.
If Merriwood is unable to have camp the week your child is registered for, we would ask families to consider some options in potential donations or partial refunds. Please know that Merriwood values each camper family and will work with each family individually to reach a solution, if the difficult decision to cancel summer camp weeks becomes a reality. If you choose to cancel even though the camp takes place as scheduled, we will not be able to refund your $75 non-refundable deposit, although we will make a policy exception and refund any additional amounts you have paid above the initial deposit.
As of now, we are looking at the first week in May as a target date to make some of these decisions. By then we hope to know the status of the ‘stay at home’ orders (on the federal, state, and local levels) and should have a better picture of what this summer will look like for ALL of us.
Balance payments are normally due two months prior to camp. If you are concerned about not getting a refund, please WAIT to make your payment. We are extending all payments deadlines for payments due in April an additional 30 days with no late payment penalties. If you have automatic payments scheduled, those will still be processed unless you notify us that you want those stopped.
Please continue to lift our community, our nation, and our world up in prayer and ask God to stop this virus, or to give the medical personnel the tools to control it. In this time when so much is out of OUR control, we are thankful that God is still on the throne and answers the prayers of those who call on His name.
If you have any questions, please feel free to email email@example.com or call Annette’s cell phone at 336-909-8347.
Waiting on the Lord….
The Camp Merriwood Staff
COVID-19 STATEMENT, AS OF 4/3/2020
Merriwood Christian Camp is aware of and monitoring the current information regarding COVID-19 (Coronavirus), staying informed and complying with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , the North Carolina Governor, and the local health department.
Due to current executive orders, Merriwood has been unable to host most of our spring retreats.
CONCERNING SUMMER CAMP 2020 – At the moment, Clemmons, NC is under a “stay at home” order until the end of April which only allows leaving home for essential business and which also bans groups larger than 10 to meet. President Trump also has a social distancing order to remain in effect until the end of April requiring people to stay 6-feet apart. Local public schools are doing online e-learning through May 15th.
Our hope and prayer is that by early May we’ll have a much better outlook on the implications of COVID-19 and that social distancing will be coming to a close. We hope by this time, we will be able to determine if we will be able to host summer camp this year or not, and if so, what modifications may need to be made.
At this time, we hope to continue summer camp operations, but we are taking a “wait and see” approach as long as we can. We are seeking guidance and counsel to make a wise, expedient decision in the interest of health and safety of all.
QUESTIONS CONCERNING SUMMER CAMP BALANCES: With summer camp balances typically being due two months prior to camp, and considering the unknown and potential financial instability some may be facing, we are giving grace with the payment deadline schedule. We are allowing families to wait until May 1st if need be, to make final payments that would have been due before that date. Campers attending later in the summer are able to wait until one-month out to pay balances, without penalty, should they need more time.