Neck of the Woods (formerly MECA) is preparing for a July 6 opening to offer summer camp and child care for up to 75 local children. School director Moie Moulton and her staff will be offering summer camp at the Waitsfield United Church of Christ Village Meeting House for preschoolers and Mad River Dance Academy for kindergarteners.
First-grade campers will meet at the Valley Players Theater in Waitsfield, second- and third-grade campers will tentatively be camping at the Masonic Lodge in Waitsfield, and fourth- through sixth-graders will meet in the former Small Dog Electronics building in Waitsfield.
Programming will be offered for five groups of 15 children, according to Rebecca Baruzzi, program director for the Mad River Valley Community Fund. Baruzzi helped Moulton find space to continue the summer child care program after the MECA program had to close when schools were closed in March by COVID-19.
Several weeks ago, the Harwood Unified Union School District Superintendent Brigid Nease told the community that none of the school district’s facilities would be available for any after-school child care or summer activities this year because it would be too difficult to adhere to the Vermont Agency of Education guidelines for safely reopening.
In the interim, Moulton has created a registered 501c3 for Neck of the Woods as a child care center, after-school program and provider of summer camps. Summer camps this year are named after Ben & Jerry’s ice cream flavors. Preschools will attend Phish Food, kindergarteners will attend Chunky Monkey and first-graders will attend Everything But The . . . camp. Second- and third-graders will attend Cherry Garcia camp. Fourth- through sixth-graders will be campers in the Americone Dream group.
Children will be screened each morning following Vermont Agency of Education and Vermont Department of Health protocols. Temperatures will be measured daily and cleaning protocols will align with state guidelines.
When dropping off and picking up children, parents are asked to respect social distancing and preferably have the same person drop off and pick up each day. Parents are required to wear masks when dropping off and picking up children. Only staff and children will be allowed in the facilities.
For more information, call 802-522-2520 or visit https://k6directornow.wixsite.com/website.