Our Most Recent COVID 19 Update
Dear Abnaki Family,
We hope this message finds you and your loved ones in good health. Thank you for your commitment to camp and your patience as we navigate through this unprecedented time.
With very heavy hearts, Abnaki leadership-with the support of Greater Burlington YMCA senior management-has made the difficult decision to suspend all of Camp Abnaki’s traditional overnight, day camp, trips, and CIT sessions for the 2020 summer season.
We have worked tirelessly to determine if or how the 120-year-old traditions of YMCA Camp Abnaki might continue this summer in a safe and meaningful way. The team has used all available resources to explore how camp facilities and the experience might be adapted. We have deliberated for countless hours, diving deep into guidance provided by the CDC, the Vermont Department of Health, Vermont Camping Association, YMCA of the USA, and the American Camping Association.
The Camp Abnaki experience is one of high fives and hugs, chanting loudly in the dining hall with 240 campers and staff, late night bunk conversations, and all-camp games of capture the flag. There is much that remains unknown about the novel COVID-19 virus and health guidance is continually evolving. The restrictive nature of these practices and the degree of uncertainty that still exists led us to conclude that our decision is the best course to protect the camp community. In addition to health concerns, we could not see a path forward that would have provided a camp experience that would have resembled what families and campers would expect.
This is hard news to deliver and certainly hard to hear. We know this decision will be met with many emotions and many questions. We have developed a frequently asked questions page on our website that we hope will help. In the next week we will send out specific information regarding refunds of registration fees and deposits. There will be several options for any payments made, including a full refund. We also encourage you to reach out directly for additional clarity or support at any point.
YMCA Camp Abnaki has been changing the lives of young men for generations. This will be true for generations to come. Our feelings of sadness at this time is tempered by optimism we maintain for the future and the planning we are already undertaking for the summer 2021 season. Additionally, we are actively working to see if we can design a new format for a day camp option we can roll out this summer. Keep a lookout in your e-mail inbox for program updates.
The camp motto, “Help the Other Fellow,” is as important as ever. Take care of yourselves and take care of each other. The spirit of Abnaki is strong, and we look forward to welcoming everyone back home as soon as we can.
Yours in Camping,
Jon, Adam, and Brian