YMCA prepares to open all three camps for the summer 2022

For the first time in two years, all three YMCA summer camps in western Massachusetts will be up and running at full capacity.
Published: Apr. 5, 2022 at 7:27 PM EDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) - Summer is fast approaching and children’s camps are getting ready for a busy year. Western Mass News stopped by the YMCA to see how they are preparing and what parents should know.

“We’re really excited for a little bit of normalcy after the past two summers have been disrupted by COVID,” said YMCA President and CEO Dexter Johnson.

Warmer weather is finally here, which means summer is coming soon.

For the first time in two years, all three YMCA summer camps in western Massachusetts will be up and running at full capacity, ready to serve hundreds of kids ages 6 to 13.

“Sure, we did open up all three camps. Regulations were a little tougher, but we were able to serve about 550 kids last summer,” Johnson told us. “We have three camps operating; one in West Springfield, one on Wilbraham, and one in Town Square, and so, we are expecting to get back to our normal 700 kids that we would normally serve in a summer.”

Johnson told Western Mass News that spots are filling up fast, and they expect to reach a waitlist this summer as they used to pre-pandemic.

However, Johnson said that some restrictions will still be in place, including enhanced cleaning protocols and masks indoors.

“The Wilbraham and West Springfield outdoor locations, which didn’t really have a lot of mask restrictions, but our indoor program here right now, we do still wear masks when we are inside in our Springfield location because it’s classroom activity, but our outdoor programs won’t,” Johnson said.

All three camps are looking for counselors.

“We are definitely in the hiring phase,” Johnson told us. “It is tough, and I think all industries right now are trying to find good staff people, but we are definitely looking.”

Jennifer Rodriguez said that her seven-year-old son Chase is excited to spend his second summer at Camp Weber.

“I think he is looking forward to no masks, but now that he is a little bit older, he can do, according to him, mountain biking and zip lining, but above all of that, the swimming for him,” Rodriguez said.

If you are interested in signing up for any of the Y’s three summer camps, you can find more information on Camp Weber’s website.