Updated April 29, 2020
April 29: Summer Programs Video Announcement
March 20th: COVID-19 update letter from Wolf Ridge’s Executive and Education Directors
April 9: Announcement of Wolf Ridge’s new online learning curriculum and general update video from Director Pete Smerud
Since March, our team has been following the changing landscape brought about by COVID-19. After considering pandemic trend projections and acknowledging the importance of protecting the physical health of our communities, we have come to a tough yet important decision. Wolf Ridge is canceling all summer programming, which includes youth camps and wilderness trips, adult programs like bird banding, credit academy, and visiting groups.
Our decision is based on the current data for COVID-19 in our state. We have taken into consideration the models by the University of MN about the peak of the virus in our state; the recommendations from the CDC and the MN Department of health for social distancing and group gatherings into the foreseeable future; and recommendations from the local county agencies for our area.
While we have thoughtfully considered and are currently working on how we can mitigate the risk of spread of COVID-19 at our facility, until there is more widespread testing available we feel it is safest to keep our campus closed. Our decision to cancel also took into consideration the safety of our small, rural community, which has limited resources to handle a pandemic.
This summer programming decision is heartbreaking for us, and we understand that two things can be true at the same time. One truth: we feel a loss and sadness for summer programs that inspire so much growth, learning, love for the environment, and community. Another truth: we believe that canceling programs is the right decision for public health, the health of staff and campers, and longevity of Wolf Ridge.
If you’ve already registered and paid for a program, you will be receiving information from Wolf Ridge about options for your refund. Read the April 28 Summer Program cancellation announcement in full.
Wolf Ridge is excited to provide standards-based lessons for learners of all ages. Students explore Wolf Ridge and outside in their own backyards – experiencing nature from a variety of perspectives including – science, history, culture, art, and literature. We release one new lesson each week. Each can be used as an interactive StoryMap, video, and online student worksheets, or as a paper-based lesson to deliver to students. See Wolf Ridge’s online Adventures in Learning.
Following Governor Walz’s recommendation for schools, Wolf Ridge will not be hosting school groups through the 2019-20 school year. Our staff is currently reaching out to the schools affected by this change.
Know that Wolf Ridge continues to work closely in partnership with the lead agencies handling the outbreak, including Lake County, regional epidemiologists, and the Minnesota Department of Health.
Any updates to how this might affect your experience at Wolf Ridge will be announced here.
Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have additional questions.
Wishing you good health,
Wolf Ridge ELC