COVID-19

Exciting Update!

California has allowed the operation of resident camp programs, effective June 1, 2021! River Way Ranch Camp’s opening day is June 20, 2021. River Way WILL be open this summer! Thank you to all of you for your patience and support.

Overview

Dear River Way Families,

Thank you for your loyalty and patience over the past several months, as we have all waited on State and County updates. With camp nearing and our enrollment coming in strong, we feel it is a good time to share with you where we currently stand.

Here Is What We Know:

  • Since last summer, we have been running very successful, family-oriented programs, family vacation weekends, and hosting other individual travelers through the Resort side of our business.
  • By supplementing all existing State and County guidelines with guidance from the American Camp Association and CDC, we have managed to provide healthy social interaction for children and their families in a beautiful outdoor setting without any COVID cases.
  • With our 55 years of operational experience, we look forward to opening River Way for the summer of 2021, and we will update this page regularly to provide our families with the most current information and news about summer operations.
  • The American Camp Association and other organizations have compiled pages of data, taken by the overnight camps that did operate successfully (using the established guidance and preventative protocols) outside California in 2020.
  • For 2021, as you would expect, the camp experience will look different in some ways. Although there may be changes to how campers are scheduled for activities or the way we congregate together, our goal is to continue to offer an incredible experience for campers, complete with laughter, community, new friendships, and many fun activities.

We all know how important it is for children to experience friendships, acceptance, self-confidence, self-esteem, exercise, and positive memories. Even if camp looks a bit different than it has in the past, we know that our campers will be happy to just be here, with us, engaging in the many activities we can provide and interacting with their peers. We can assure you we are doing everything we can to offer your camper a fun-filled experience that will create healthy social experiences while teaching safe social behavior. The safest option for everyone is still to shelter at home. There is a risk with any community-based activity, including camp. However, we feel kids are getting to a point where, for some of them, the isolation carries its own set of emotional challenges. Only you as a parent/guardian can weigh the options, but we are here if you feel camp is right for you and your family.

It is likely that the provided information below may change over the coming weeks as the situation with COVID-19 continues to evolve, and as we await additional guidance from California and Fresno County. We appreciate your flexibility and support and look forward to having your camper join us this summer. Please contact our team with any further questions or needs you may have.

River Way Ranch Camp FAQ

Last Updated: 4/29/2021

Will you be running camp programs at full capacity?

Our team has made the decision to significantly reduce our camper capacity this summer in order to allow for plenty of space to spread out, enjoy quality activities, and reduce the number of campers per cabin, if necessary. For this reason, we do anticipate most sessions will be wait-listed well before summer.

Will there be pre-camp COVID testing required for campers and staff?

Yes, campers and staff will be required to show a negative COVID-19 test result upon arrival to camp, 3 days (72 hrs) prior to arrival. No camper will be permitted on camp without a negative test confirmation. A second test will be administered upon arrival. We plan to have on-site testing, supervised by our camp physician and nurses.

We are in the process of arranging a COVID pop-up testing site for Southern CA families. We will let you know if and when this can happen.

Will my child have to quarantine before camp?

We ask that once your child has had their pre-camp covid test he/she quarantines to prevent any potential exposure.

Will you require vaccines for campers?

For those that are eligible and able to get the vaccine, we do encourage them to do so. This is one of the many reasons why we are choosing to put several layers of protective measures in place to help safeguard our camp community.

Will you require staff to be vaccinated?

Summer camp staff have been included in the CDC tier with education and childcare workers, and although we cannot require them to get vaccinated, we are strongly encouraging them to get their vaccines before reporting to training. The majority of our year-round staff have been vaccinated.

Will staff or campers quarantine before camp?

Staff will be quarantined, at the camp, prior to camper arrival for at least 14 days. Campers will be asked to quarantine once their COVID test has been taken prior to the start of camp.

When will I be able to submit forms, like my child’s bunk-mate request form or health form?

Forms are available now through your Parent Portal, (Camp Physical Form, Health History). Session 1 and 2 forms are due May 1, and Session 3/4/4A forms are due June 1. We appreciate you completing your forms in a timely manner.

When will campers be required to wear masks?

The majority of your camper’s day will be spent outdoors, in the fresh air, unmasked, and doing activities with their pod. Common sense mask-wearing will be implemented when necessary, such as in the following instances:

  • When distancing from other cabin groups cannot be maintained, or when in the dining hall while ordering from the buffet line
  • At the camp store, when picking up an order
  • While entering any office, infirmary, or meeting with a staff member outside their pod.
  • In a public bathroom

Will the staff be required to wear a mask?

Any staff that has not quarantined during the 14 day training period shall be required to wear a mask any time they are within 6’ of any other person. Any staff that has quarantined for the 14 day training period, will be required to wear a mask when not able to distance 6’ from anyone not in their immediate cohort. All kitchen and housekeeping staff shall be required to wear a mask while working.

What will the cabin size be?

Right now we are planning on having 8 campers in each cabin with two counselors, but this number may change once California releases its cohort guidelines.

Will there be free-choice activity sign-ups?

This year, due to the pod-based programming, cabins will be assigned a well-balanced activity schedule based on their interests while encouraging campers to try new activities! Campers will be able to provide input as to the activities they’re looking most forward to prior to the start of camp.

Will you be eliminating any activities?

Due to the close, indoor nature of culinary arts and film school, we will be postponing these programs until next summer. We look forward to offering them again then!

What about specialty camps?

Because specialty camps require a mix of campers from different cabin groups, we will NOT be able to offer all regularly scheduled specialty camps this year. We still look forward to providing campers with time at paintball, horses, and the ski lake as part of their regularly scheduled activities.

What is your refund policy?

We are offering full refunds through April 22nd (Extended from April 15th) with no cancellation fees. After this date, parents are encouraged to look into trip or camp insurance options through 3rd-party providers.

What about camp insurance?

If they are interested, we encourage families to look into a travel insurance program such as TravMark (AKA ‘A+ Program Protection’) or other similar providers. We do not endorse any specific insurance provider, nor are we affiliated with any provider.

Does my camper need a new physical if they attended in 2019?

Yes, every camper is required to have a completed Physician’s Exam form prior to arrival at camp. We understand that it may be challenging to get an in-person visit to your child’s pediatrician. For this reason, we will also accept forms certified via a Telehealth visit.

Will you offer bus transportation to camp?

At this time, we are not planning on offering camp-facilitated transportation. Please plan to drive your camper to and from camp. We understand this creates an inconvenience, however, in order to prevent the commingling and allow for ample tracking and tracing, this seems to be the best option for all right now. You may arrange to carpool with another camper in your child’s pod (cabin group). We will provide details, including nearby hotel options, directions, dropoff/pickup times, and detailed information in the coming weeks.

Can my child fly to the Fresno airport and be transported to camp from there?

You are welcome to fly with your child and transport them to camp from the airport. The airport is approximately 30 minutes from the camp. Rental cars can be arranged through Yosemite International Airport. **Should you have any concerns about transportation, please call the camp office.

What precautions will you take regarding using common space facilities such as the restrooms, the dining hall, camp infirmary, and the camp store?

Bathrooms will be cleaned regularly according to our detailed cleaning schedule throughout the day. Private showers and sinks are available in every cabin.

Mealtimes will be staggered by age division. Meals remain buffet, with a designated staff member serving food items. This will eliminate campers from touching any utensils. Their plate will be handed to them at the end of the buffet line, once the order is complete. All dining tables are outside, spaced a minimum of 6’ from any other table.

As we have been doing with our Resort, we will continue to clean and sanitize all common areas and surfaces multiple times per day, with designated cleaning schedules to account for increased traffic/activity. Camper rooms will be sanitized daily, We use CDC-approved cleaning products (for COVID). After activity periods, all equipment and surfaces will be thoroughly treated in between camper use. We will be increasing our medical staff, and increase the number of quarantine rooms available. We will continue to offer a separate area for campers who take daily medication.

What happens if a camper tests positive while at camp?

If a camper tests positive for COVID while at camp, they shall be moved to an infirmary quarantine room, supervised by our medical team, while the parent is contacted and asked to pick up their child that same day. Other campers, exposed in that cohort, shall be tested and quarantined while awaiting results. Once an individual has a negative COVID-19 test and is asymptomatic for 24 hours, they may return to normal camp activities. Closer to summer, we will know the specific quarantine and testing requirements for cabin groups and other age cohort campers and staff who were in contact with a COVID-19 positive community member.

Will I get a refund if camp my child needs to come home early?

If a child needs to depart camp early because of a positive COVID-19 test you may:

  • Forward tuition paid to a 2022 session.
  • Receive a refund prorated for the balance of unused tuition paid.
  • Have your camper return to camp after a negative test and a minimum of 10 days with no symptoms.

Refunds of tuition will not be given to families who decide after April 22nd, not to attend camp this summer because of any change in procedures or programming due to COVID-19, including, for example, modification of activities, lack of bus service, mask requirements, or testing requirements.

Have Any Additional Questions?