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Summer camp uncertainty: Why some camps are holding onto hope

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CAMP
Camp Sertoma

BROOME COUNTY (WBNG) -- On Friday, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced schools would be closed for the rest of the academic year.

But the future of summer camps is still uncertain.

As of now, some summer camps in the Southern Tier are still planning on opening their doors.

"We're looking forward to a really good summer. We're in wait and see mode just like everybody else is now," said Path of Life Camp Director Brad Kark.

If the state allows camps to operate, changes will have to be made.

Path of Life camp in Port Crane says it will look to create smaller group sizes while putting more social distancing initiatives into place.

"A couple of the things that we're taking a look at right now are procedures we can put into place for lunch and craft time, things like that where kids are going to be handling a lot of the same materials from one group to the next," said Kark.

Camp Sertoma run by the Binghamton Boys and Girls Club says an option is to create additional overnight sessions, allowing less people to come in and out.

"Where the kids would come in on a Sunday and the staff. We would do all the health checks that health department would require us to do. And nobody would be able to leave until the session was over," said Binghamton Boys and Girls Club Executive Director Marybeth Smith.

While both camps are planning on adjusting, they're holding onto hope that they'll be able to be there for the kids.

"We're going to do everything we can. They're going to look to us for stability, and programming, and friendships, and love, and we have to be their rock," said Smith.

"I think that kids are going to be needing a return to normal more than ever before," said Kark.

If camps do close this summer, families will be impacted.

"We think of these parents who, now they're homeschooling, and they're trying to take care of the little ones at home, they're trying to work from home and it's not easy. We are usually that for the parents," said Smith.

No matter what decision is made, the Binghamton Boys and Girls Club will continue to serve its kids breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

For more information on Camp Sertoma, click here.

For more information on Path of Life, click here.

Annie Flaherty

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