Great Plains Camping Inc. has decided to suspend traditional summer camping programs for the foreseeable future at all five member camps due to the public-health risk associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Programming at Camp Fontanelle and Camp Norwesca in Nebraska and Camps Chippewa, Horizon and Lakeside in Kansas may resume later in the summer or fall, depending on a number of factors associated with the pandemic. Some forms of online or alternative camping programs will be considered. Check the individual camps’ websites for more details.
The camping board members made their decision based on the General Rules provided by John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist movement, allowing the concept of “do no harm” to guide their discussion and decision.
The camping board authorized local camp directors and site councils to approve other activities on the properties as long as those activities adhere to the strictest state, county and local health department guidelines. Such activities include weddings; family reunions; and cabin rentals for retreats, refreshment and faith development. Those types of gatherings would have to comply with crowd-size and social-distancing restrictions.
Refunds are available upon request from each camp. You also may donate all of the fees already paid or a portion of those fees to the camp.
More information will be shared as they come available at www.greatplainsumc.org.
UPDATE, MAY 20: The Camp Chippewa Site Council met May 19 and suspended all summer activities, including the United Methodist Youth Institute at Baker University, through Aug. 31.
"While we are disappointed that we will not be able to gather together this summer we feel this is the right decision for the summer of 2020. We are committed to John Wesley’s General Rules, of doing no harm, doing good, and staying in love with God," according to a Facebook post from Institute, which was to be from July 20-25.