Camps begin to cancel summer programs due to uncertainty


(NEWS10) — Many families in the Capital Region are anxiously awaiting word on whether or not they can send their kids to summer camp.

Some camps have already have chosen to cancel due to uncertainty as to when specific zones of New York State can reopen. Many local summer camps have already made the hard decision to close for the 2020 season. Even long running camps, like World of Life in Schroon Lake, where they’ve welcomed campers and their families for more than 70 years.     

“Camps won’t really be available to open in this area until mid- to late-summer. At that point, it really doesn’t make a summer camping season viable. Really disappointed kids and adults. My own granddaughter. I have a 9-year-old granddaughter. When I told her she just…that was tough,” said John Nelson, Executive V.P. of Stewardship at Word Of Life.

Governor Andrew Cuomo has not made any official decision on summer camps, but voluntary closures are bound to have a huge impact, says Assmeblymember Pat Fahy, who is making a push to keep New York camps open.

“The academic assistance, socialization and recreation to re-engage children in a safe and responsible way,” said Fahy.

Those also missing out — the young people employed by camps.

“Becoming a freshman in college next year, I’m going to need money to do things.”

Guilderland High School senior Gabby Gallacchi had enjoyed previous summers as a camper at the YMCA’S Camp Chingachgook on Lake George.

This year. she was going to be a counselor. The Capital District YMCA hasn’t made an official announcement, but after a board meeting Monday night, word began to spread on social media that the camp was closed.

“I really want to stay tough because there’s a lot of people who have it worse, but camp is a second home,” she added.

Her cousins, Jackson and Hudsen Krieger of New Jersey, are also bummed. 

“I’ve always wanted to be a staff member. This is my assistant counselor summer, which I’ve heard is the best,” said Jackson. His sister added, “I made really close friends at camp last year, and knowing that I’m not going to see them, I’m really upset.”

But organizations and businesses like the YMCA may still be able to offer day camps because they are already providing daycare for families of essential workers.

A spokesperson with Capital District YMCA told NEWS10 ABC they fully expect to offer care this summer and will have more details on registration and guidelines next week.

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