Summer camps fall victim to COVID-19

Local summer camps canceled due to COVID-19
Rosie’s Girls 2020 summer camp, hosted by the Rosie the Riveter Trust, is among the summer camps that have been canceled due to COVID-19. (Photo credit: Lisa Foote)

By Kathy Chouteau

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been widespread, forcing the closures of schools, businesses, events—and now it appears—summer camps.

As reported in the Standard, Richmond City Council’s proposed cuts to city services to resolve a $27 million budget deficit next fiscal year has placed recreation programs like summer camps on the chopping block.  

Also in Richmond, Rosie’s Girls summer camp, hosted by the Rosie the Riveter Trust, is canceled—yet another victim of the pandemic.

“We made the difficult decision to cancel Rosie’s Girls this summer and still seek ways to engage with the cohort of Rosie’s Girls alumni and others who were interested in the camp,” said Sarah Pritchard, executive director of the Trust.  

A possible school-year Rosie’s Girls program is being looked into, Pritchard added, where local girls can be mentored in leadership and job training skills and spend time with rangers at the Rosie the Riveter/WWII National Historical Park.

Over in San Pablo, the City’s summer camp programs were also canceled.

“We made this decision to ensure the well-being of our community by avoiding extended contact in large group settings,” stated San Pablo Recreation Division officials. 

Those previously registered in San Pablo’s summer camps were set to receive a refund, per officials.

At the Richmond Art Center (RAC), the staff is remaining hopeful about the possibility of hosting camps this summer.

“We hope we can run Summer Camp this year,” said RAC Exhibitions Director Amy Spencer. “However, at this time we’ve paused further planning on it until we have more information about what is going to happen with lifting shelter-in-place orders.”

Spencer added that RAC program staffers are currently working on “developing online classes, including for youth” and that the center will be launching a Distance Learning Library, “a collection of art instruction videos for young people to stay creative at home.”