Winterfest Health Practices

How We Keep Campers & Staff Healthy

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Winterfest Health & Safety Practices

Since 1967, Pine Cove has existed to be used by God to transform the lives of people for His purposes and His glory. This purpose is no different today. Thus, in order to continue effective ministry, we have taken enhanced health and safety measures. However, an inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place where people are present. 

First and foremost, we will rely on expert guidance for COVID-19 provided by state government and health professionals, including the CDC, with the goal of providing a safe and fun environment for campers and staff.  We will be following all guidelines released by the Texas Governor’s appointed strike-force for overnight youth camp operators. 

According to the Texas Governor’s Health Protocol for youth camp families, campers returning from an overnight camp should minimize in-person contact with any person 65 years of age or older, especially those with pre-existing health conditions, for a period of 14 days. This includes maintaining social distancing of at least 6 feet of separation from those individuals, wearing a face covering or mask, and avoiding sharing utensils or other common objects with those individuals.

As parents, we want you to understand the rigorous efforts Pine Cove is taking toward protecting the health of your child. We are prepared for and have the ability to implement the following measures.

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Camper & Staff Screening

  • At Winterfest drop-off, everyone who arrives on camp property, not just campers, will be asked COVID-19 related health screening questions. And, every person in the car will be thermal scanned on arrival.
  • Pine Cove will immediately isolate and send home any camper or staff exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms. We have comfortable facilities to quarantine while waiting for parent pick up.
  • We have the ability to perform daily thermal scans and logs.
  • Staff and campers will fill out a health questionnaire before camp to be assessed by our medical teams on their potential for risk while at camp.

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Stopping It Before It Starts

  • Winterfest staff will have been monitoring their health and recording their temperature for a week prior to camper arrival.
  • Parents at Winterfest may not be allowed inside any buildings at arrival and closing, including cabins, with the exception of a designated location for restroom use that will be regularly sanitized during arrival and closing celebrations. This is to protect your camper since their cabin (and mattress) will have been sanitized prior to their arrival. If your camper needs special attention at drop off, we will work with you to ensure a great experience.
  • If buildings are open, we will abide by capacity and physical distancing guidelines.
  • Trunks and luggage will be disinfected prior to delivery to cabins.
  • Campers will always have the option to opt out of an activity if they are not comfortable.
  • Campers returning from an overnight camp should minimize in-person contact with any person 65 years of age or older, especially those with pre-existing health conditions, for a period of 14 days. This includes maintaining social distancing of at least 6 feet of separation from those individuals, wearing a face covering or mask, and avoiding sharing utensils or other common objects with those individuals.

Stopping It Before It Starts

    • Winterfest staff will have been monitoring their health and recording their temperature for a week prior to camper arrival.
    • Parents at Winterfest may not be allowed inside any buildings at arrival and closing, including cabins, with the exception of a designated location for restroom use that will be regularly sanitized during arrival and closing celebrations. This is to protect your camper since their cabin (and mattress) will have been sanitized prior to their arrival. If your camper needs special attention at drop off, we will work with you to ensure a great experience.
    • If buildings are open, we will abide by capacity and physical distancing guidelines.
    • Trunks and luggage will be disinfected prior to delivery to cabins.
    • Campers will always have the option to opt out of an activity if they are not comfortable.
    • Campers returning from an overnight camp should minimize in-person contact with any person 65 years of age or older, especially those with pre-existing health conditions, for a period of 14 days. This includes maintaining social distancing of at least 6 feet of separation from those individuals, wearing a face covering or mask, and avoiding sharing utensils or other common objects with those individuals.
Girl staffer demonstrating the camp face coverings

Health Practices at Camp

As we partner with the state, we are taking face coverings seriously, but it shouldn’t impact their camp experience at all. Your camper will receive a cool runners-style neoprene face covering they can easily pull up over their nose and mouth whenever necessary, just like their counselor! This is what wearing masks looks like at camp for campers 10 years and older:

  • Campers will not need to pull up their face coverings while participating in outdoor activities where social distancing can easily occur, or while sleeping, eating, or drinking. 
  • They will pull them up and wear them during transition times into buildings, during worship, spending time around a picnic table outside, etc. 
  • All food handlers will wear their face covering while handling food. 

We are going to continue having a great, seriously fun time at camp!

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Limiting the Spread

Physical Distancing

• To help campers stay physically distant in 2020, campers will be part of a small group, called a cohort. A cohort consists of two “buddy cabins,” not to exceed 16 campers, with whom campers will do all their activities, including club, meals, theme nights, and Bible studies. Cohorts do not mix with other cohorts.
• Large group, indoor interactions such as indoor theme nights and Club will be held in accordance with government guidelines for the number of people who can safely be together in an indoor space. These events may be moved outdoors and coordinated to have smaller groups as well as appropriate social distancing between groups. 

• Campers and staff will have face coverings as needed
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• Each camp is staffed with a screened and experienced RN.

Preventing contamination

We have added multiple layers of cleaning and disinfecting policies and procedures with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to instill cleanliness standards for campers and staff, as well as thorough sanitization of cabins, camp buildings, restrooms, high-tough surfaces, and more.

Read Our Sanitization Procedures

Cleaning & Disinfecting

Pine Cove has made an investment in electrostatic sprayers that are highly effective in destroying viruses, including COVID-19, and are currently being used in hospitals, daycares, and on commercial airplanes. Alongside our already rigorous sanitation procedures, they will be used throughout the week to spray cabins, kitchens, barns, ropes sheds, and more with an organic liquid disinfectant approved by the EPA for use against COVID-19. Watch this video to learn more about why these sprayers are so effective.

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Hydrate & Sanitize

Make Sanitizing Accessible - and Fun!

Hand sanitizer is available at every meal table and passed around to each camper as part of a sanitize cheer. We also have hand sanitizer in each building, including cabins, and at our activity class locations. Sanitizing our hands (and staying hydrated!) have always been important parts of our camp culture. Check out this fun video that the Pine Cove Ranch made during Summer 2019 to remind our campers and staff how important it is to be hydrated and sanitized—and to have fun while doing it!

Watch Now

Required Cleanliness Practices

Rigorous Handwashing

Here’s how we get all campers to wash their hands thoroughly and for the recommended twenty seconds.

Take It Seriously

We take handwashing seriously as the number one recommendation from the CDC for infection control.

Part of Our Program

Dining halls have handwashing stations right outside the door and all youth and day campers wash hands before meals.

Make It Fun

Staff are doing cheers, singing songs, and monitoring to make sure all campers wash their hands long enough and thoroughly.

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Winterfest Staff Health Training

Training

Training our staff and our campers is super important. We train our staff on how to properly sanitize, wash hands, and how to monitor campers to prevent behaviors that spread illness. For our campers we emphasize covering mouths when sneezing or coughing, avoiding unnecessary physical contact, and not sharing bathroom products.

We’re adjusting camp drop-off and pick-up procedures to prioritize your camper’s safety.

Details About Camper Drop-Off

If a Camper Tests Positive for COVID-19

If a camper tests positive for COVID-19, the camper’s parent or guardian should pick up, or have arranged to have picked up, the camper within 8 hours. When an individual tests positive for COVID-19, we will notify all parents or guardians of campers in the cohort. The parents or guardians may decide to either pick up their child from the camp or leave the child in the camp and trust the camp to take appropriate safeguards. Pine Cove will keep the cohort containing the individual who tested positive for COVID-19 isolated from other cohorts at the camp for the remainder of the camp session.

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