Summer 2022 Experience

Updated May 13, 2022

We are fully committed to providing a safe, supportive, and fun environment for everyone this summer.


The information surrounding COVID-19 is constantly changing and evolving. The Camp Wise team is using best practices for summer camps published by the CDC, American Camp Association, and Ohio Department of Health, as well as medical professionals on the local and national level, in order to establish a set of operations which is at the highest standard for our camp families. The procedures, as laid out on this web page, are intended to provide camp families and staff with information about how Camp Wise is adapting policies and procedures this summer to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 in camp. As information changes and evolves, so too will this page to reflect current information.


Our “Brit” – Our shared agreement to care for one another’s well-being:

Each camper and staff member who chooses to participate in an amazing summer at Camp Wise also makes a commitment to care for one another’s well-being at camp. As related to COVID-19, this involves the acceptance of and willingness to practice all of the policies and safety measures included in this page. Our shared agreement to care for one other includes adjusting our behaviors in the lead up to camp. Please see the section “Expected Behaviors” and plan accordingly as we prepare for summer.

Camp Wise Vaccination Policy

The health and safety of our entire Camp Wise community continues to remain our highest priority. Over the last two years, and inspired by the Jewish value of pikuach nefesh (saving a life), we have taken several measures to create a safe and healthy environment that mitigates the likelihood of infection and spread of COVID-19. All along, we have followed guidance from our medical advisors including our camp medical committee as well as national and local health authorities.

Planning for Camp Wise’s 115th summer is well underway and we must remain vigilant by implementing a multi-layered strategy that protects our community from infection and spread. One of the safest and most effective tools we have is building a community with a 100% vaccination rate, protecting us all from COVID-19.

All campers and all staff members attending Camp Wise are required to provide proof of being fully vaccinated and be up to date, as defined by the CDC, against COVID-19. This vaccine mandate is one of several essential components to a comprehensive COVID-19 mitigation strategy at the Home of Happiness.

We know that the measures we put into place that allowed us to run a healthy and safe Summer 2021 – cohorting and podding, masking, testing, and pre-camp isolations – may be necessary for 2022. As this is an ever-changing situation, we continue to evaluate our health and safety measures and will share more information about all of our 2022 policies later this winter and spring. With the best interest of our Camp Wise community in mind, and with the guidance of our medical advisors, we wanted to share this information with you about the vaccine mandate now, so that you can take the necessary steps in order to be a part of the Camp Wise family and help us celebrate 115 summers as a community!

To ensure we have a safe and healthy start to each session, we will require both pre-camp and arrival day testing. At this time, we will not be requiring masking or podding at camp. With the best interest of our Camp Wise community in mind, and with the guidance of our medical advisors, we wanted to share this information with you about the vaccine mandate now, so that you can take the necessary steps in order to be a part of the Camp Wise family and help us celebrate 115 summers as a community!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between fully vaccinated and up to date?

“Up to date” means a person has received all recommended COVID-19 vaccines, including any booster dose(s) when eligible. “Fully vaccinated” means a person has received their primary series of COVID-19 vaccines. Learn more about staying up to date with vaccines by visiting the CDC webpage.

What is the Camp Wise Policy regarding all vaccines?

It is Camp Wise’s policy – and that of the American Camp Association – that campers be immunized against those communicable diseases listed on the Camp Wise Immunization Record (such communicable diseases, the “Communicable Diseases”). Camp Wise’s policy is to also comply with the applicable immunization requirements under Ohio law, O.R.C. Chapter 3313. These Ohio laws require that any child entering elementary or high school in Ohio must present written evidence that such child has been immunized against the Communicable Diseases (and some additional identified diseases) by a method approved by the Ohio Department of Health, or that such child is in the process of being so immunized, unless the child’s parent or legal guardian satisfies one or more of the exemptions outlined in O.R.C. Chapter 3313.

What are the required vaccines?

Campers and staff must be immunized for the following for 2022: COVID-19, diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, mumps, measles, rubella, polio, hepatitis B, and chicken pox. It is the preference that campers and staff also have proof of immunization for (as is age-appropriate and recommended by your physician): haemophilus influenzae type B, pneumococcal, meningococcal meningitis, hepatitis A, and the flu shot.

Who is impacted by the Camp Wise COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate?

All campers, staff, and contracted providers (i.e. food service providers, daily housekeeping, and any specialty providers).

Will there be an exemption to the vaccine mandate for those who have recovered from COVID-19?

Following guidance from our medical advisory team, there will be no exemptions to the COVID-19 vaccination requirement. Please reach out to the Camp Wise office if you have any questions.

What will the vaccine policy be for camp visitors and guests?

Camp Wise will only admit vaccinated visitors and guests into camp programs. All visitors and guests will be required to show proof of vaccination and to provide results of a negative COVID-19 test within 48 hours, prior to entering our programs.

Outside contractors will be required to wear a mask at all times, and may not enter a building while campers or staff are present.

What activities are acceptable when campers and staff are away from camp and camp programs?

All campers and staff will sign a b’rit (agreement) prior to the start of the camp season. In this b’rit, it is our expectation that members of our community will limit their engagement in large, public arenas such as concerts, festivals, and amusement parks. We ask our community to choose outdoor dining and to consider scheduling visits to large venues and events until after the completion of their Mandel JCC Summer Camp experience.

Where can I learn more about COVID-19 and best practices in camping?

Where can I sign up my camper for a vaccine?

In partnership with the Jewish Family Service Association (JFSA), Mandel JCC will be offering Covid-19 Vaccinations (1st/2nd dose) and Boosters. The vaccination clinic will be held at the Mandel JCC in the Community Room. Registration is required, click on the links below to make your appointment.

Click Here – to Register – Mandel JCC – 03/13/22

Click Here – to Register – Mandel JCC – 04/10/22

Click Here – to Register – Mandel JCC – 05/15/22

Click Here – to Register – Mandel JCC – 06/12/22


Pre Camp Arrival

All campers/staff are required to take an FDA-approved-at-home rapid antigen COVID-19 test no more than 48 hours prior to their first day on camp. Only campers/staff with confirmed negative test results will be admitted to camp.

About the 48-hour test:

  • At-home tests and lab tests will be accepted. No need for a proctored test.
  • Results from these tests must be uploaded to your CampIn Touch account prior to arrival. Details to complete this will be shared closer to the start of the session.
  • Only campers and staff who provide negative test results taken no more than 48 hours prior to their arrival at Camp will be permitted to enter Camp-NO EXCEPTIONS.

Expected Behaviors

Recommended Pre-Camp Behaviors

For the five (5) days leading up to Camp, we are asking our families to abide by these recommended pre-camp behaviors to reduce any transmission of COVID-19 to their camper prior to Camp

• Minimize attending large gatherings where physical distancing is difficult

• Wear a mask when indoors when in the company of those outside of your immediate household

• Avoid extended exposure to those outside of your immediate household

• Avoid unnecessary travel

Temperature and Symptom Monitoring

Five (5) days prior to arrival to Camp, all campers and staff should self-monitor for symptoms related to COVID-19 and check their temperature daily and keep a daily log. The log must be submitted prior to their first day for approval by the Camp Wise Health Center.  The log will be available in your CampIn Touch account closer to the start of the summer. All campers and staff will be required to be completely symptom-free for at least 24 hours prior to their arrival at Camp without the use of any medication.

Arriving At Camp


All campers/staff are expected to provide their own transportation to Camp Wise. Here’s what to expect:


  • Plan to drive out to Kent State Geauga Campus (14111 Claridon Troy Rd, Burton, OH 44021) for drop off
    • We ask that all campers and parents arrive in a mask, and keep the mask on until a negative test result is received.
    • Camp staff will confirm your pre-camp health check log, your HIPPA form, and all other forms including you 48 hour test
    • Follow the signs and pull up to the testing station – staff will guide you along the way
    • After testing you will get into a line for a lice check and medication drop off.
    • Families should STAY IN YOUR CAR THE ENTIRE TIME, results will be available in about 30 minutes
    • Once we have confirmed a negative test – our staff will remove luggage from your car
    • Campers will say goodbye to their family, exit the car, and walk towards the Parent Free Zone
  • Drop off times will be staggered by village
    • Chalutzim/Rishon: 12-12:30 p.m.
    • Ohalim: 12:45-1:15 p.m.
    • Noar: 1:30-2 p.m.
    • Solel: 2-2:30 p.m.
    • Siblings can arrive in either age group – preferably with the youngest
  • We will be conducting a Rapid PCR Nasal swab test for campers while they remain in their car during drop off.
    • You must register with Bow-Tie Medical before arrival day by ‘scheduling’ an appointment via this link
    • You will not need to supply a credit card and you can pick any time – this does not impact your drop off time.
    • You will need to fill out the HIPPA form with Bow Tie, which will arrive once you ‘schedule’ the appointment.
      • If your camper is Covid recovered in the past 90 days prior to arrival day, that information should be on file with the camp office and noted on your physicians’ form. If they are Covid recovered after your forms were submitted, please come to arrival day with a doctor’s note stating when they had Covid and confirming they are recovered and cleared to resume in person activities. Campers that have recently recovered from Covid, will not be tested upon arrival, provided the above documentation has been provided or is on hand.
  • Only campers/staff with negative arrival day tests will be admitted to camp.
    • Those with a positive test will need to quarantine and may be admitted to camp at later date at the discretion of the Camp Wise Medical Director.
    • If a local camper or a camper from Ohio tests positive, they will need to return home, and a return date will be determined on case by case basis
    • If an out of Ohio camper tests positive, they will isolate in the Health Center until able to return to camp community (will not travel home at that point).
  • Patience is key!

Health Screen and Medication Drop Off

All campers/staff must provide negative COVID-19 test results [see testing] and their 5-day pre-camp health log during an on-site health screen with Camp Wise Health Center Staff. This screen may include:

  • COVID-19 Test
  • Temperature check
  • Lice check
  • Review of health history and physician’s exam form
  • Any daily or as-needed medication during the camp session

Daily Camp Life


In order to contain possible exposure and spread of COVID-19, we are requiring face masks that cover both the nose and mouth be worn by our campers and staff until we receive all of our entrance test results. After we receive confirmation of negative test results throughout Camp, masks will not be required to be worn. Masks will be available at camp, however please pack at least 8-10 masks in the event our masking policy changes during your camp session.

The situations when we may require face masks to be worn:

  • A mask mandate or requirement has been issued per Geauga county (or other governing health body)
  • Campers/staff have been exposed to a confirmed positive case and cannot maintain physical distance indoors

In Camp COVID Testing

At this time, Camp Wise will not be conducting pool or individual testing following arrival. However, we have the capability to perform rapid tests if anyone in our community presents with symptoms of COVID-19. We will work alongside our medical team and use best practices to determine when to test. At Camp, headaches, sore throats, and other complaints can be regular occurrences and automatically testing everyone when a symptom is present is not a sustainable plan. Anyone for whom it is determined that a COVID-19 test should be administered will be quarantined until the results are known. Camp reserves the right to request that any member of our Camp community who presents with a symptom of COVID-19 be tested to rule out presence of the virus.

In the event that we need to quarantine a single member of a cabin/group at any point during the summer (due to experiencing COVID-related symptoms or a positive COVID-19 test), they will be quarantined at Camp in our Health Center, where there are private rooms, a bathroom/shower, and laundry available. Out of an abundance of caution, based on guidance from our medical team, we may test the cabin/group where that camper/staff member came from and require them to begin isolating away from the rest of Camp as well. Parents will have the option to quarantine their camper and home and then return them to Camp after their isolation period has ended.

Whenever an entire cabin group is isolating and is completely symptom-free, they will still be able to participate in Camp activities away from other groups. Our program team will adjust schedules as needed to ensure that a full days’ worth of activities still takes place. During group isolation, meals will be delivered to those isolated at one of our several outdoor dining locations, or directly to their cabin.

The decision to end any quarantine or isolation will be at the direction of the medical team based on recommendations for doing so by the CDC, Ohio Department of Health, and Geauga County Board of Health.


  • Meal service will remain family-style and camp staff will be responsible for serving the campers in their bunk.
  • Campers/Staff may choose to select options from our breakfast bars, salad bars, and sandwich bars.

Out Of Camp Trips/Travel (excludes ILS)

We are excited to announce the return of out of camp programming for our teen campers. Campers in Noar and Solel will enjoy off-camp trips and overnights that meet a high-level of health and safety standards. All trips will be based in the outdoors and you can expect your Noar or Solel camper to experience:

  • Outdoor adventures: kayaking, hiking, whitewater rafting, rappelling, etc.,
  • Housing: tent camping, cabin/lodges, or hosted at community partners like JCCs or synagogues

Trips WILL NOT visit crowded indoor or outdoor public venues such as baseball stadiums, amusement parks, or museums.


A general laundry service, off-camp, will be provided twice during each session (once during Rishon). Each camper’s laundry will be individually laundered and returned folded and in their laundry bag. If needed, reusable, cloth face masks can be washed in camp, and after each use, on regular cycle for each pod.

Cleaning Procedures

Camp Wise will follow all cleaning and sanitization standards as set forth by the Ohio Department of Health and the CDC. In addition to our already high level of daily cleaning, the following procedures will be followed:

  • Electrostatic Cleaning: Daily use of an electrostatic sprayer in all living spaces, bathrooms, and shower houses, and program spaces.
  • Handwashing Stations: In addition to the bathrooms and hand sanitizer stations inside the dining hall, three handwashing stations will again be available outside of the dining hall. Campers/staff must wash their hands with soap and water prior to entering and upon existing the dining hall.

Health Center Operations

Daily Medication Management

All daily medications will be passed through our health center “med-pass” window. This medication distribution system allows healthy campers to receive their medication without coming to contact with others. Medication for daily management will be collected on the first day of camp during the arrival and health screen process.

Visiting the Health Center

The Health Center remain open and staffed by a team of registered nurses. While we expect most campers will stay healthy throughout the summer, occasionally campers may become ill or injured at camp. We have a professionally staffed Health Center at camp and our Standing Orders will be adapted accordingly.


There will be a separate quarantine area for individuals exhibiting symptoms associated with COVID-19 while at camp. Should any members of our community exhibit COVID-19 symptoms or if COVID-19 is confirmed through testing, one or more dedicated nurses will be assigned to those individuals under quarantine.

Coming and Going from Camp

Departure Day: Buses Home

Camp Wise will provide busing on the last day of each session. There will not be any pickups at camp! If we are not busing to your city, please arrange to pick up your camper at the bus stop in Cleveland.

  • End of Rishon I – June 26: Buses provided to Cleveland and Columbus
  • End of Session I – July 10: Buses provided to Cleveland and Columbus
  • End of Rishon II – July 27: Buses provided to Cleveland only
  • End of the Session II – Aug. 3: Buses provided to Cleveland, Columbus, and Toledo

Visiting Camp

There will be several opportunities to tour camp and meet our leadership team in person this spring, prior to the start of our camp season. Pre-camp tours will require advance registration and will follow COVID-19 safe protocols.

Late Arrivals

Campers/staff will not be allowed to arrive on dates other than their designated start date. There are no deductions for a camper arriving late or leaving early. If you have an extenuating circumstance, contact the camp office in writing prior to set up a meeting.