By Daniel Moser
(AJNews) – Camp BB-Riback waited as long as it could, but unfortunately the summer of 2020 for Camp is the latest casualty of the Covid-19 novel Coronavirus. Opened in 1955 in Pine Lake, Alberta, Camp BB Riback has never missed a summer until now, but with safety concerns Camp Director Stacy Shaikin and his board determined that postponing the 2020 summer was their only option.
For Shaikin, Camp BB-Riback is more than a summer camp, it’s a second home, and family, and deciding to not open for the summer was a difficult and painful decision.
“This was going to be my 15th year at Camp BB-Riback,” says Shaikin. “Many of us have very deep and heartfelt connections to camp and for the experiences we have had there. Whether you were a camper in the 70’s, 80’s, or 2000’s, we all know how it feels to be from Camp BB-Riback. It’s such a soulful place that transcends the generations.”
Shaikin’s love for his second home made the decision all the more difficult, but the recent guidance and information provided by the Government of Alberta and the Alberta Camping Association, as well as consultations with other community organizations and professionals made the probability of missing the summer a certainty. Shaikin explains,
“The decision was made with the primary goal of ensuring the health and safety of everyone in our community.”
“We know that the cancellation of camp is most impactful for our kids and to those who come out each summer to take care of them and pass on the experience of camp from one generation to the next.”
While the focus now must shift to summer 2021, and the 65th summer at Pine Lake, through social media Shaikin is hoping to spread some of the camp experience this summer with virtual programs such as camp Havdallahs, Video Scrapbooks, and a virtual Maccabiah. Staff development programs will also be offered in a virtual setting to make sure that those aging into staff next year are properly trained and prepared.
The financial implications of missing a summer are serious though for an organization like Camp BB Riback. Revenue from registrations and summer rentals cannot be replaced. Donations to Camp are more important now than ever and every dollar will help make sure that when Camp does return for summer 2021, a beat is not missed, and the magic that takes place ever summer at Pine Lake can continue.
For more information on how you can support Camp BB Riback through the pandemic please visit campbb.com