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69RoadRunner

What If - All High Adventure Camps Cancel

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Posted (edited)

The promised 15 April update from Philmont.  Upshot:  Go/No Go decision for each high adventure base will be announced on 1 May.

https://www.philmontscoutranch.org/coronavirus/

High Adventure Base Update Regarding Summer of 2020

Update 4/15/20 – 8:30 AM  

Status of summer 2020 operations
COVID-19 has brought unprecedented uncertainty, financial challenges and impact to our daily lives. The leadership of the BSA and the National High Adventure Bases (HAB’s) recognize that Scouts and leaders have been planning for many months to enjoy a life-changing High Adventure experience.

The health and safety of our participants and staff is our utmost concern. At this time, the HAB’s plan to operate in the summer of 2020 if we can do so safely and within the guidelines of the CDC.

On May 1st we will provide an update on the 2020 season specific to each National High Adventure Base. We understand that crews need to make travel plans. However, by applying a metered approach to the summer season, it allows the most flexibility in adjusting programs to serve participants.

Refunds for summer 2020
The National Executive Committee will review the refund policy for the HAB’s and information regarding those policies will be posted on May 1st.

Additional programs for summer/fall/Holiday 2020
HAB’s have added additional late summer/fall and Holiday 2020 programs and we encourage you to review those.

Wilderness First Aid and other required courses
We understand that courses such as Wilderness First Aid are currently unavailable. We are working with the organizations that provide those trainings to have options for Crews which will be posted on May 1st.

BSA Annual Health and Medical Record
We are evaluating all options while being mindful of those who have valid exams as well as those new members and adults who may have never completed a Part C exam, state and local authority requirements, and the special review required by high adventure programs. In the interim, we recommend that council health supervisors, camp staff and volunteers begin a conversation on local availability of wellness exams and alternatives that could be put in place.

State “Lockdowns” or “Stay at Home Orders”
We are monitoring the status of state “Lockdowns” or “Stay at Home Orders” that would interrupt travel during the time you are scheduled to attend an HAB. We will work with units to fill openings later in the summer should a state order preclude you from travel.

Additional information can be found in a joint statement from the High Adventure Bases here.

Edited by desertrat77
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Northern Tier sent basically the same update, which provides little for us.

We had to cancel our mulch fundraiser. We raise a lot of money for scouts to use as Scout Bucks based on the hours they work. We also provide stipends for high adventure and summer camp.  That's gone and families were counting on that to pay for both summer camp and Northern Tier.

Combine this with the economy taking a hit and we might have some crew members not able to attend.  We committed to 2 crews for Northern Tier.  I don't know if we'll be able to fill 2 crews.

We haven't purchased airfare yet.  Right as the plague hit we were collecting non-refundable deposits to pay for the airfare.

Still not sure what will happen.

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15 hours ago, walk in the woods said:

Our trek is end of July.

If it's going to be cancelled, I'd rather know now.  I want to go.  I want the scouts to enjoy it.  

I fully understand BSA not being able to give definitive answers.  Right now, I have little respect for people who claim to be certain of what the right call to make is for late July.

We have a committee meeting (virtual) next week to discuss this.

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Posted (edited)
48 minutes ago, 69RoadRunner said:

Our trek is end of July.

If it's going to be cancelled, I'd rather know now.  I want to go.  I want the scouts to enjoy it.  

I fully understand BSA not being able to give definitive answers.  Right now, I have little respect for people who claim to be certain of what the right call to make is for late July.

We have a committee meeting (virtual) next week to discuss this.

My daughter took a flight this week. Six passengers on each leg. I'm pretty sure the airlines will be ready to take your $$s.

IMHO, the right call to make is have a plan A, B, and C. Be open to your committee helping you decide to drop plan A now. Some people find keeping options on the table too stressful, and you've already mentioned why that might be the case. But, if the you all come out of that meeting willing to keep everything on the table until next month, and even the month after that, roll with it. In these situations we learn a lot about our teams.

Edited by qwazse
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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, 69RoadRunner said:

Our trek is end of July.

If it's going to be cancelled, I'd rather know now.  I want to go.  I want the scouts to enjoy it.  

I fully understand BSA not being able to give definitive answers.  Right now, I have little respect for people who claim to be certain of what the right call to make is for late July.

We have a committee meeting (virtual) next week to discuss this.

I wish you the best.  I'm trying to make just a simple decision for summer camp ... if summer camp is offered.  My last son has a medical condition that makes him vulnerable and there is no chance of a vaccine by July.  So do I wait until I have to put money out?  Or do I cancel now?  Our local camp is asking for deposits, but they have been fairly good at waiting for full payment.  

My gut says there is no way I'll send my kid even if the camp is open.  But, I'm leaving options open for now.  

I just can't see how any summer camp will happen right now.  This will take a year and a vaccine to solve.  

I'd hate to be the camp directories and councils this year.  How do you budget, staff and purchase materials with such huge unknowns ?  I'm better there are tons of parents holding off saying no, but that when the final decision comes they will NOT send their kids to camp this summer. 

Edited by fred8033
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2 hours ago, fred8033 said:

I wish you the best.  I'm trying to make just a simple decision for summer camp ... if summer camp is offered.  My last son has a medical condition that makes him vulnerable and there is no chance of a vaccine by July.  So do I wait until I have to put money out?  Or do I cancel now?  Our local camp is asking for deposits, but they have been fairly good at waiting for full payment.  

My gut says there is no way I'll send my kid even if the camp is open.  But, I'm leaving options open for now.  

I just can't see how any summer camp will happen right now.  This will take a year and a vaccine to solve.  

I'd hate to be the camp directories and councils this year.  How do you budget, staff and purchase materials with such huge unknowns ?  I'm better there are tons of parents holding off saying no, but that when the final decision comes they will NOT send their kids to camp this summer. 

 I totally agree with you. If your son is immunocompromised due to a more serious chronic disease, then I wouldn’t send him. If it’s something like asthma, which is serious, but there are worse diseases. 

On a different note, I know my camp is doing business as usual. In a recent meeting, we aren’t even at the point to start buying all the supplies we need. The budget is the same as if it was a normal summer. I believe it’s too early to do that with everything going on. Everything you brought up is probably going through every council’s minds as well.

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22 hours ago, qwazse said:

My daughter took a flight this week. Six passengers on each leg. I'm pretty sure the airlines will be ready to take your $$s.

IMHO, the right call to make is have a plan A, B, and C. Be open to your committee helping you decide to drop plan A now. Some people find keeping options on the table too stressful, and you've already mentioned why that might be the case. But, if the you all come out of that meeting willing to keep everything on the table until next month, and even the month after that, roll with it. In these situations we learn a lot about our teams.

That assumes there are flights to where we want to go when we want to go.  A lot are cancelled.  Too far to drive with scouts (we're in VA).  It would take multiple days by scout rules.

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16 hours ago, fred8033 said:

I wish you the best.  I'm trying to make just a simple decision for summer camp ... if summer camp is offered.  My last son has a medical condition that makes him vulnerable and there is no chance of a vaccine by July.  So do I wait until I have to put money out?  Or do I cancel now?  Our local camp is asking for deposits, but they have been fairly good at waiting for full payment.  

My gut says there is no way I'll send my kid even if the camp is open.  But, I'm leaving options open for now.  

I just can't see how any summer camp will happen right now.  This will take a year and a vaccine to solve.  

I'd hate to be the camp directories and councils this year.  How do you budget, staff and purchase materials with such huge unknowns ?  I'm better there are tons of parents holding off saying no, but that when the final decision comes they will NOT send their kids to camp this summer. 

I hate to say this, but if I ran the camp, I wouldn't allow someone with a high risk condition to attend.  It's not worth the risk.  And I hate that it's the case.

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2 hours ago, 69RoadRunner said:

That assumes there are flights to where we want to go when we want to go.  A lot are cancelled.  Too far to drive with scouts (we're in VA).  It would take multiple days by scout rules.

Plan A makes the "where we want ... when we want ..." assumption, so your first deadline is for deciding go/nogo with that plan. If your committee says they have no stomach for waiting any longer, you should decide that Plan A is a no go ASAP.

Plan B contains a different "where" for the same "when" or a different "when" for the same "where". Or, you make each those two different plans. It depends on how much energy you have for that sort of thing. Creating each plan consumes a lot of energy. (As many of us know because our jobs -- if we're blessed to have them --- are now already operating on plan B and there's pressure for us to have plans C and D at the ready.)

The challenge as scouters is to be open-minded and positive. If you have good district scouters, let them know that you are looking for some plans B and C. They might have something to offer.

I was in a situation where plan A tanked, and Seabase offered a plan B1 (FL Keys instead of Bahamas) and my committee found a plan B2 (Bahamas, but we'd have to pay more). My crew went with plan B2 by majority vote -- and fortunately we didn't lose the minority. But, with 4 from my family on that trip, my big-ticket scouting budget was tapped for multiple years.

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Our Troop Committee met this past weekend.  While our council's camp, or Summit Bechtel Experience, have made any definitive announcement, as a Troop we will not be supporting summer camp or high adventure this summer.   We have yet to contact parents who had, pre Covid-19, expressed interest.  As an adult leader that was to attend both of these trips, I simply have no comfort level in being responsible for a group of scouts 500-800 miles away from their homes, to destinations with medical facilities that are subpar from those in our own community.  We all assume a heavy responsibility on these trips under normal circumstances, but absent a vaccine, it is not something I, or other leaders, wish to undertake at this time.   While I tend to think the risk to a healthy scout is low,  many of our adult leaders have aging parents with imuno-compromised situations.  Another factor was allowing adult leaders more flexibility to planning alternative summer trips for their own families, in an attempt to salvage some of the summer.    

We will continue with our online troop meetings, which are being very well attended, encourage Scouts to continue to work together via facetime, identify safe community service projects and plan for next year.  If conditions allow, we may feel more comfortable in scheduling a summer trip or two within 2-3 hours of our community, but that will be driven by state guidelines and parental comfort.  I really do feel for these Scouts.  My own kids had 4 weeks of overnight camp (non-BSA), and my son was to follow that with Scout camp (and his OA induction), plus a Troop high adventure trip.  Be well all.  

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29 minutes ago, Jeff1974 said:

Our Troop Committee met this past weekend.  While our council's camp, or Summit Bechtel Experience, have made any definitive announcement, as a Troop we will not be supporting summer camp or high adventure this summer.   We have yet to contact parents who had, pre Covid-19, expressed interest.  As an adult leader that was to attend both of these trips, I simply have no comfort level in being responsible for a group of scouts 500-800 miles away from their homes, to destinations with medical facilities that are subpar from those in our own community.  We all assume a heavy responsibility on these trips under normal circumstances, but absent a vaccine, it is not something I, or other leaders, wish to undertake at this time.   While I tend to think the risk to a healthy scout is low,  many of our adult leaders have aging parents with imuno-compromised situations.  Another factor was allowing adult leaders more flexibility to planning alternative summer trips for their own families, in an attempt to salvage some of the summer.    

We will continue with our online troop meetings, which are being very well attended, encourage Scouts to continue to work together via facetime, identify safe community service projects and plan for next year.  If conditions allow, we may feel more comfortable in scheduling a summer trip or two within 2-3 hours of our community, but that will be driven by state guidelines and parental comfort.  I really do feel for these Scouts.  My own kids had 4 weeks of overnight camp (non-BSA), and my son was to follow that with Scout camp (and his OA induction), plus a Troop high adventure trip.  Be well all.  

I'm expecting camps to have delayed opening here- condensed from 6 weeks to 3 weeks.  My feeling is attendance will be sparse enough from parents being cautious that the camp will be able to handle the reduced volume for the 3 weeks.  so that would be the last two weeks of July and first week of August.  I have asked our SM to start talking to the PLC about planning a 4 day/3 night trip for mid-August, when things might be far more settled, as a potential trip in lieu of summer camp.  I think our parents will have more confidence in our small group getting together than trying to share with 200 other people outside our community.    

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@Jeff1974, I definitely relate to the "old folks at home" experience. Mrs Q's mom is at our house. Plus my grandson is just around the corner on home isolation due to major surgery last month. We are grateful for every day we can keep the two of them out of the hospital, and we are resolved to keep it that way. My TC knows that'll be a deciding factor in my availability going forward.

At the same time, a couple of scouts (before all of this happened) asked me to restart our crew. So, I'm asking myself: is this the right time to get online and throw down the gauntlet with these boys to start a recruitment plan?

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4 hours ago, HashTagScouts said:

I'm expecting camps to have delayed opening here- condensed from 6 weeks to 3 weeks.  My feeling is attendance will be sparse enough from parents being cautious that the camp will be able to handle the reduced volume for the 3 weeks.  so that would be the last two weeks of July and first week of August.  I have asked our SM to start talking to the PLC about planning a 4 day/3 night trip for mid-August, when things might be far more settled, as a potential trip in lieu of summer camp.  I think our parents will have more confidence in our small group getting together than trying to share with 200 other people outside our community.    

We are having similar discussions.  Our plan A is stick with our June date … but I expect that will be cancelled.  Plan B is to go to same camp in mid/late July.  Plan C is different camp in mid/late July.  Plan D is our own Troop summer camp in late July or August (we have 2 crews headed to Philmont in August).  Plan F is an additional extended weekend in the Fall.  Plan G is a week in Florida during winter break.  Plan H is giving up until 2021 or later when a vaccine or good treatment becomes available.

What gives me some confidence is that we have many scout parents who are doctors and nurses … all of them have shown support in us going to summer camp.  Now if our state numbers start looking like NYC I'm sure that could change.

I have a bad feeling that this may be the last summer of many of these summer camps.  Between BSA bankruptcy, FOS failure, recession/depression, loss of summer camp income, falling rosters and failing units … I expect many camps will be sold after this summer.  I hope I'm wrong.

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We're going to poll our troop to see who can still afford Northern Tier.  We have a very successful mulch fundraiser that was cancelled due to Covid-19.  Families were counting on money earned from that to pay for part of the cost.

Combine that with people who may be hurting financially and fear of sending their scouts on planes and we likely will have many decline to go.

We had a virtual CM last night to discuss our finances in light of no fundraiser along with the summer camp and NT issues.  While neither summer camp nor NT is currently cancelled, we're all thinking they most likely will be cancelled.  I want both to be open and safe.  But, right now, I'd almost prefer they cancel and refund us.

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