We have been in constant contact with both medical and camping professionals to weigh the risks and benefits of camp this summer. Camp has a huge benefit on children’s mental health and we know children need camp more than ever. We have been taking cautious steps forward this spring to form new procedures to try and provide the environment that our campers look forward to, while also implementing mandated regulations and safety guidelines. We understand that many are concerned that the limitations that will be necessary to ensure a level of safety will take the “magic" out of camp. Without a doubt, camp will look and feel different this year. However, we want to do our best to provide our campers with an opportunity to step into Rocky River Ranch this summer and feel connected, supported, and safe.
“We have growing concerns about the ongoing mental health issues that are increasing steadily, affecting young people today…We are big believers that being outside always matters. But given quarantine, getting kids outdoors is hypercritical this summer.”- Paul McEntire, chief operating officer of YMCA of the USA.
We are making changes to our camp’s daily schedules and traditions in order to provide the least amount of risk, with the understanding that there is no way to have a 0% risk of Covid-19. These include, but are not limited to:
Our recommendation is that each household will quarantine before and after their session and practice safe distancing to mitigate the risks of spread so that everyone will be safe during their time at camp. However, we strongly recommend those in high risk groups, and those who feel they would be unable to comply with safe distancing and hygiene practices, move their camp experience to summer 2021.
Those at high risk include people of all ages with underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled. Older adults, 65 years and older, are at higher risk for severe illness and death from COVID-19. We strongly recommend that if your camper or any household members have these, or any other, high risk factors that you plan on camp for summer 2021.
We are reserving the right to cancel session(s) as we continue to gather the most up-to-date information and safe practices. If we cannot offer your child a camp experience that we feel balances the joy of summer with the best safety practices we will inform you of cancelations and begin a process to refund or roll registrations to 2021.
This year at RRR is going to be unlike any of the 67 years before it, and hopefully the next 67 years! We acknowledge that it may be difficult for new campers to adjust to not only new surroundings, new people, and unknown traditions, but the additional protocols surrounding COVID-19. We encourage you to take this into consideration as you make your decision.
Parents will need to secure their camper transportation to and from camp. We will not be providing any transportation from airports, bus or train stations, and we recommend that campers do not travel on public transportation before or after their session. Parents will be required to sign a contract acknowledging that they or an approved emergency contact (someone who is not in a high risk group) must remain able to pick up their child if necessary within 4 hours of being contacted. We will be monitoring cases and areas that are deemed “hotspots”. If your area sees a spike in cases and is deemed a potential “hotspot” we may contact you in order to roll or refund your camper’s registration.
Opening day of camp is always full of excitement; being greeted by happy counselors, seeing old friends, and the joy of meeting new friends! This summer will have all those same cherished moments, however, the initial drop off procedure will be different, especially for our parents. Because we want to limit our campers’ exposure as much as possible, we will be asking parents to remain in their cars, and have their campers’ belongings and camp necessities ready at the time of arrival. We will also be incorporating an additional intake screening that will include a temperature check to ensure that everyone is happy and healthy before entering their cabin. We will continue to work out the details about staggered drop off times and official procedures.
Closing day is also full of excitement and energy. As usual, campers will have a memorable closing ceremony with their cabin groups and their cabin counselors, including a bead ceremony. However, this year we will not be hosting our closing day ceremony and lunch for parents. Pickup will be similar to drop off, where parents will remain in their cars to limit exposure as much as possible. As always we will be posting photos and videos online to ensure you get the highlights of your child’s camp experience, even if she falls asleep right away on the car ride home! We will continue to work out the details about staggered pick up times and email official procedures.
In addition to the normal Health History and Medical Recommendation Form, we will also ask parents to sign an additional release form. Parents will also be asked to complete (and submit at drop off) a temperature log for the seven days prior to her arrival at camp. The approved pick up list must be updated to ensure it includes someone who can be here within 4 hours and is not medically compromised. You will receive an email with these forms and additional requirements.
Since the sessions will only be one week and we want to limit in/out deliveries and outside exposure we will not be taking any mailed packages. However, you can leave letters/cards on check-in day, one approved packaged envelope to be delivered on Wednesday of their session, or use the Bunk Notes (via your online account) and we will print and deliver your messages to your campers. We will mail out any letters or cards that your camper writes during her week here.
We are required to limit the capacity of each session in order to accommodate the necessary spacing with cabins. Campers will be spread out and sleep opposite head to toe in order to further expand the space between each camper’s face. We will also have more cleaning procedures for the cabins and bathrooms in order to maintain a high level of sanitation. Campers will be taught on opening day, and gently reminded each time they enter their cabin, to wash their hands, and how to sanitize after themselves.
Classes are a huge part of the RRR tradition and a way we encourage girls to express their individuality and develop new skills and interests. The guidelines from the Texas Governor's office, CDC, and the American Camp Association all agree that keeping campers moving together in cabin groups or “cohorts” is the best way to mitigate many of the risks of becoming infected with/spreading Covid-19. This means that we must adjust this year and provide fun camp activities as cabin groups instead of individually. We will definitely offer many of the activities that make RRR such a fun experience such as (but not limited to): free swim in the pool and the river, pool games, river sports, diving galore, fitness, sport-a-day, 9G+, cheers & chants, strength and beauty, anything goes, gardening and growing, Triple R Girls, farm animal fun, discovery girls, improv, dance, fashion design, yarn girls, friendship bracelet making, sweet decorating, nature, arts & crafts. Within their classes and activities campers will be given the freedom to make many personal choices.
We understand remaining in cabin groups may be a disappointment, however, we also see it as an opportunity for campers to build close and lasting relationships with girls their own age. We truly believe “the friends you make, while camping here, will last your whole life through”!
We have a long tradition of sisters coming to RRR together and we hope to continue this tradition for many years to come. This year we will be using cabin groups as a safety measure to minimize the number of camper interactions which will mean that unless your daughters are in the same cabin group (which will continue to be determined by grade) they will not be interacting closely during the camp day. However, this will not mean they will be unable to send each other fun notes, exchange friendship bracelets and have a fun bonding experience they will remember for years to come.
Most of our outdoor activities will be held under shaded areas like our pavilions and porches, many of these areas will also have fans to help with air flow and cooling. A lot of fun water activities are scheduled to help beat the heat throughout the day. Our campers always keep their own water bottles with them at all times and this year it’s more important than ever to label everything with your campers name loud and proud! We also always recommend packing the appropriate sun gear including lots of sunscreen and a good hat.
Within the guidelines and regulations the benefits of reduced contact and outdoor activities outweigh the benefits of masks. During outdoor activities we will not require your camper to wear a mask. There may be times it will be beneficial to a wear mask indoors, like with our medical staff or directors. We will continue to review the guidelines and regulations and inform parents and campers before their daughter’s session of situations in which we will require a mask.
Yes! Yes! Yes! We will give your camper many safe opportunities to thoroughly wash their hands with soap and water, and we will be installing hand sanitizing stations throughout the entire campsite.
With regulations from both our state and our camping governing body about the risks involved with transportation and community spaces, at this time we have no plans to leave the property during any of the 2020 sessions.
Cabin staff will not leave the campsite during the session and campers will not be coming and going either. We will not have any visitors one the campsite during the session.
We will be taking each camper’s temperature daily. In addition to these temperature checks, we will be assessing daily if camper’s have any Covid-19 symptoms. Our staff will be trained to monitor camper’s for any sign of health concerns within cabin groups and as always we will have trained medical personnel on site throughout your daughter’s session.
If your camper is running a fever greater than 100.4*, or showing Covid symptoms, we will contact you directly, contact our Medical Director and make a plan together on how to proceed.. You, or your approved emergency contact, must remain within 4 hours of our campsite in order to be available to pick up your daughter if she is showing signs of Covid-19 or that her immune system is potentially compromised. As always we strive to maintain open communication while your daughter is here at Rocky River Ranch, and we will provide you with a direct cell number if you would like to express concerns or check in about your campers health and happiness.
Yes. We will inform parents if their camper was in a cabin group with someone who tests positive for Covid-19, and at the same time maintain the individual’s privacy.
Campers love the food at RRR! We will provide the same camp favorites this summer, but the serving of the food will look different- such as box lunches, cafeteria style with staff serving, no community ice bucket, having picnic, etc. We will still offer alternative foods to meet the needs of your daughter based on the information you supply on her health history. If your camper has a severe food allergy, we encourage you to take this into consideration as a hospital visit this summer comes with a higher risk.
We will not offer a paid virtual camp for everyone who is unable to attend this summer (with the exception of an online leadership training specific to rising 9-11th graders). However, we are planning to keep in contact through our many social media platforms throughout the 2020 summer. We are brainstorming ways we can have campers celebrate the camp lifestyle at home. We may upload some fun camp class instructional videos, and may offer a home care package so that we can maintain a connection with all our campers this summer. More information on this to come.
Since this syndrome impacts the ages of our campers we will continue to monitor any updated information surrounding it. As of now, the percentage of cases is quite low, and it is not an immediate concern of our Medical Director. The number of confirmed cases of Covid 19 and MIS-C will be a factor in making decisions about cancellations between now and your campers session. This is the most recent health alert from the CDC sent to medical professionals concerning MIS-C.
The perfect summer is waiting for your daughter aged 5 to 14 at Rocky River— filled to the brim with new friendships, challenging activities and, most importantly, lots of fun! Check out our day camp and resident camp options.
In the hot summer months, we’re an all-girls camp, but the rest of the year, we offer year ‘round fun at our Great Escapes for women and Mother-Daughter weekends!
Rocky River Ranch is the perfect solution for your special event! We host family reunions, church retreats, teacher work days, company picnics, Girl Scout groups, and more with lodging for up to 150 guests.
The truth is I would not have become the person I am today without RRR! Making decisions for classes at 7 years old (with the help of a big sister and Rue as my counselor), remembering to wear your bathing suit under your jeans so you could go from the barn to the pool without the dreaded trip back to your cabin, remembering not to sign up for your pool class right before horseback … I could go on and on. The mistakes we made there were safe and there was a support system to catch you if you fell. Later I enjoyed working with the campers younger than me. First in WE as a big sister myself and later as a CIT Mom. In 14 years I grew and strengthened my commitment to myself. I felt loved unconditionally and I formed everlasting friendships. Some of them recently re-kindled after a 15-20 year gap as if no time had passed at all. In the last year I received a letter from a former CIT that spoke of my influence on her life. How it made her a better mother and a better woman. I have saved that letter for my children to read one day. I will always feel like Skeet and Sandy helped raise me and they always saw the person I could be! I can never thank them enough for that.
I honestly believe that I wouldn't be the same person if not for my many years at Rocky River, and each year that passes makes me more aware of the grace I found here and the gift of the chance to become one of the few ... a Rocky River girl. To the land of the triple R, I pledge my heart to you!
We still can't believe it has been 50 years since my mother, Mama Knolk, started RRR. We are so proud that it is still the same as she built it and still has the same spirit upon which it was founded. Our children and grandchildren have had the wonderful opportunity to attend camp and we all can still sing some of the songs when we get together. May the spirit of Mama Knolk stay with all that have attended RRR.
I am still amazed and in awe of the subtle and mysterious way that simple activities and experiences weave together to leave an indelible impression of love ... confidence ... appreciation. They seem so simple there in the moment ... the singing of camp songs, Friendship Circle at the end of an evening program, the Cowpoke/Wrangler drawing, saddling a horse for the first time, scooting down the rapids ... but each song, with each tug on the halter rope, with each stroke of the canoe oar, with each ring of "Goodnight, campers!" a new brush of color is being painted on her childhood experience. From those "colors" spring forth amazing women as evidenced by the many remarkable people that now call themselves Rocky River alumni.
I love Rocky River Ranch. It was a place I could go and feel accepted for the person I was — not the person I was expected to be. When we passed under that arch, the playing field was leveled and I was free to be myself, or even to reinvent myself! If I could ride, if I could swim, if I could do crafts or even if my only talent was spitting watermelon seeds, I was accepted!
Rocky River was a HUGE part of my childhood and I cherish all of the wonderful memories I have. Sandy, Skeet, Jim, Rue, Arthur — y'all were the best extended family a kid could ever ask for. My favorite cabin, Bar K, holds fond memories as well. The stories I have would take days to repeat and the friendships I made were oh so REAL!