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Coronavirus forces summer camps across America to close

Summer camp can help kids cope with stress: NJ camp CEO

Oak Crest Day Camp CEO Jonathan Gold says the summer camp will follow guidelines, and he ensures campers will have a great time.

No happy campers here.

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Summer camps throughout the country have canceled sessions or closed after attendees and employees tested positive for COVID-19 amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Despite enforcing health and safety measures like social distancing, masks and mandatory quarantines before arrival summer camps in Missouri, Texas, Georgia and Arkansas have recently reported outbreaks after opening this summer.

In Missouri, 82 counselors, campers and staff have tested positive for COVID-19 at the Kanakuk K-2 camp in Lampe. (Camp Ozark/Facebook) (Camp Ozark/Facebook)

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In Missouri, 82 counselors, campers and staff have tested positive for COVID-19 at the Kanakuk K-2 camp in Lampe, the Stone County Health Department announced on Monday. The network of Christian sports camps claims to draw more than 23,000 kids each year. Parents reportedly learned via email that the K-2 site was shutting down because of COVID-19, according to NBC News.

Although camps in Missouri must report any positive cases to the state, Dr. Randall Williams, director of the Missouri Department of Health, said on Monday that the agency had no plans to shut down summer camps following the Kanakuk outbreak.

“We think school is incredibly important to kids," Williams said. "We also think camps are important.”

What’s more, the camp plans to reopen later this summer once test results from all employees return and show it’s safe to do so, he added.

Kanakuk Kamp is hardly alone in battling an outbreak, however.

In Texas, at least 76 cases of COVID-19 were linked to the Pine Cove camp’s overnight camp for teens near Columbus. Dozens of campers and staffers who attended the Christian camp have tested positive. Several weeks of programming was consequently canceled.

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The Ridge camp reopened last week after shutting down for two weeks in June, Pine Cove spokeswoman Susan Andreone said.

In Georgia, two locations of the YMCA’s Camp High Harbour closed after reopening after a counselor tested positive for COVID-19. (Camp High Harbour/Facebook) (Camp High Harbour/Facebook)

In Georgia, two locations of the YMCA’s Camp High Harbour closed in June after reopening because a counselor tested positive for COVID-19, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Both the Lake Allatoona and Lake Burton locations have since been closed for the summer.

In Arkansas, Mount Ida’s Camp Ozark has shut down for the summer after "several" campers and employees tested positive for the viral disease, KATV reported on Wednesday. The camp, which is said to attract over 7,000 kids each year, did not disclose how many people tested positive.

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According to the American Camp Association, about 26 million kids normally participate in camps throughout the United States each year. Now, the camp association estimates that 19.5 million young people will miss out on the in-person day and overnight camps this year because of the pandemic, but 6.5 million children are still expected to attend.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Virus surge forces another local Spanish lockdown

Officials in Spain’s north-western region of Galicia have re-imposed restrictions on an area of 70,000 people following a Covid-19 outbreak.

Only those travelling for work will be allowed to leave or enter the coastal district of A Marina from midnight on Sunday to Friday.

The move comes a day after the north-eastern region of Catalonia imposed a similar local lockdown.

Nationally, Spain’s outbreak has been essentially brought under control.

The country has recorded more than a quarter of a million cases and at least 28,385 deaths. But daily fatalities have been in the single figures for most of the past three weeks.

Spain has been reopening its borders to other EU states, as well as the UK, in anticipation of summer holiday traffic.

What is happening in Galicia?

Regional health officials announced on Sunday that travel in and out of A Marina would be severely restricted for five days – although people would remain free to move around the area.

Gatherings will be limited to 10 people. Face masks will be mandatory outdoors.

Officials linked local outbreaks to bars in the area. Capacity in bars and restaurants will be limited to 50%.

There are now 258 cases of Covid-19 in Galicia, including 117 in Lugo province where A Marina is located, authorities say.

What about Catalonia?

On Saturday the autonomous government of Catalonia re-imposed controls on an area of 210,000 residents after a sharp rise in infections there.

Catalan President Quim Torra said no-one would be allowed to enter or leave Segrià, a district west of Barcelona that includes the city of Lleida.

Non-residents were told to leave and residents were advised not to travel between towns within Segrià.

Catalonia is one of the Spanish regions worst affected by coronavirus.

As of Friday, the region of 7.5 million people had recorded 72,860 confirmed Covid-19 cases and 12,586 deaths, accoding to an official news agency.

The lockdown is being enforced using police checkpoints

Sara Canals, a journalist in the region, told the BBC: “Some might consider [this] maybe too drastic, but there’s a willingness here to find a right balance between reopening the economy but also to ensure safety.”

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Wildfire near Byers forces residents to evacuate as 100-acre fire grows

More than 100 people in Byers who were evacuated from their homes Tuesday due to a 100-acre wildfire have been allowed to return, an Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman said.

The wildfire closed I-70 in both direction at U.S. 36, but the freeway reopened around 2 p.m., according to a tweet from the Colorado Department of Transportation.

The brush fire near County Road 173 and Interstate 70 burned 96 acres and did not reach any structures, said Ginger Delgado, a sheriff’s office spokeswoman.

“At this point we’re working towards containment,” she said, adding that gusty conditions could spark another flareup.

Fire officials believe the flames may have started from an electrical source and do not believe they were intentional, Delgado said.

The wildfire, roughly 40 miles east of Denver, briefly forced the evacuation of residents in the Royal Mobile Home Park and on Cheyenne and Arapahoe streets.

An evacuation center was set up at the Byers American Legion Hall, 278 West Front St.

The fire comes a day after residents near Chatfield State Park were evacuated due to a 461-acre fire in Douglas County. That fire was fully contained by day’s end.

— Arapahoe Sheriff (@ArapahoeSO) June 30, 2020

Approximate location of wildfire

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China to train forces in martial arts

China has said it is moving 20 martial art trainers to the Tibetan plateau to train its forces.

No official reason for the decision has been given, but it comes after at least 20 Indian troops were killed in clashes with Chinese border forces.

Under an agreement dating back to 1996, neither side carries guns or explosives in the area.

China has not released any information about its casualties, while India says 76 of its soldiers were injured.

News of the army’s new martial arts trainers was reported by official Chinese news outlets on 20 June, according to Hong Kong media.

State broadcaster CCTV said 20 fighters from the Enbo Fight Club would be based in the Tibetan capital, Lhasa, although Chinese media had not confirmed they would be training troops on the border with India.

China and India – both nuclear powers – have exchanged blame over responsibility for the fighting in the Galwan river valley in Ladakhon on 15 June.

The area, with its harsh climate and high-altitude terrain, is close to Aksai Chin, a disputed area claimed by India but controlled by China.

The deaths during the fighting were the first fatalities in clashes between the two sides in almost half a century.

However, long-standing tensions between India and China over the Line of Actual Control (LAC), the poorly demarcated border between the two nuclear-armed powers, had risen again in the weeks leading up to the incident.

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