Summer Camp in the Fall: Familes Try to Break Up Monotony

Posted at 5:45 AM, Oct 06, 2020

LANSING, Mich. — The first day of October might seem like an odd time to talk about summer camp. But one business has found a way to keep its operation running overtime during COVID. Dan Grossman shows us how it’s also allowing kids and adults to break up the monotony of working from home.

“Um trying to figure this thing out… It’s going to be annoying” By his very own admission Stan Coerr isn’t very good at this. “Actually, I’m kind of embarrassed. This is the first Zoom call I’ve ever done” He is exceptionally talented- however- at allowing his kids a chance to do something different in an age where everything seems to be the same.

“I told my boys this won’t be the worst thing you go through but it will probably be the weirdest, and as much as I can get them out and doing things as a family, which is kind of rare these days, I will definitely take that opportunity.”

For 40 years Stan has gone to camp Sea Gull in North Carolina- first as a camper, then as a counselor, and now as a dad who is trying to show his kids a different COVID experience after he heard the camp was opening up to families who want to get away.

“To me this is giving a lot of our parents and students some hope in breaking up whenever their school started.” The idea was Allison Simmons’. She’s been the camp’s director for the last 16 years- and when COVID hit she found her business squarely in the precarious position so many others did as well.

“We sold out in about 3 days for our 5 one weeks programs we designed”

The camp shared this video showing how with the help of counselors like Easie and Samantha here - the camp opened up socially distant activities like boating, fishing, jet-skiing and archery so families could do something different after spending time in the bunks working or learning remotely.

“This is one son, this is my youngest, Tanner. This is his study spot.” For Stan that means his three sons can do their school work- with a pretty nice view - while he gets to tend to his job working for the Pentagon.

“They’re all sitting in their rooms by themselves for 6 or 8 hours a day in front of a screen and that’s just not normal for kids” He says he’s noticed they’re now more attentive to their work- and bicker less as brothers tend to do.

“We were blown away that 75% of our audience was brand new to camp” It’s also allowed Allison’s business to flourish as they’ve now found a new niche in clientele.

“You can probably see this better than I can- there’s so much glare” Who may or may not have a better Zoom acumen than Stan.

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