Dear Culver Summer Schools & Camps Alumni/ae and Parents,

I am so much happier to be writing this letter than the one I wrote to you a year ago. I have no doubt you share the same sense of excitement and anticipation that I personally feel as the moment draws closer for the kind of Culver summer that we all know and love to begin. Thank you for all your patience and support during the past year as we worked to hold our 2021 summer sessions, as we did with the Academies this past year, in person and on time.

At our June 20, 2021, opening ceremonies, we will welcome back to campus more than 1,200 Woodcrafters and Upper Schools students, along with the 400-plus staff members who support them. While Culver Summer Schools & Camps (CSSC) will be in session this summer, the following decisions have been made regarding campus access and general event policy in order to provide a safe environment for our campers and staff, in light of ongoing pandemic concerns.

Campus buildings will be closed this summer to external constituents, including Eppley Auditorium, the Memorial Chapel, the Shack, and the Fitness Center. As it always has been, Woodcraft Camp is closed to all visitors. This summer that closure has been expanded to the Council Fire Ring and Sunday night awards. 

Peripheral areas including the tennis courts, golf course, track and lakefront path will be open on a limited basis to alumni and camp families. The tennis courts, golf course and track will be available on weekdays after 4 p.m. and on weekends when not in use by CSSC. The lakefront path will be open for visitors as a walking path. Please follow all CDC guidelines when using these facilities.

Summer Schools & Camps will host two permit weekends for summer camp families on July 3-4 and July 17-18. On those occasions, families may access campus to pick up and drop off their child(ren) and to watch the Saturday evening parade at 7 p.m. Specific details regarding permit logistics will be sent to summer families at a later date.

Please keep in mind the following policies and procedures for attending parades on July 3 and July 17:

  • Parking is available behind Memorial Chapel.
  • The parade site will open for spectators 20 minutes prior to the beginning of parade and will close 20 minutes after the end of parade.
  • Campus buildings will remain closed to anyone who is not wearing a Culver-issued wrist band.
  • As part of our ongoing COVID protocols, there is to be no interaction between parade spectators and students.

The July 16-18, 2021, Summer Homecoming and Parents Weekend has been cancelled. The Homecoming Weekend has been a centerpiece of our summer programming for nearly 100 years. It is a privilege for us to provide the setting that allows you to recall familiar faces and names, favorite places on campus, as well as that moment when you pause to reflect on an experience at Culver that still defines who you are. We share the feelings of disappointment as milestone events like these are postponed or cancelled. 

We look forward to celebrating our 2020 and 2021 Woodcraft Camp and Upper Schools graduates on Saturday, July 31. Families will be allowed on campus starting Friday, July 30, to attend Final Parade, Upper Schools Final Awards, Woodcraft Camp Final Awards and Final Ball. Specific times and locations will be announced at a later date.

As the summer progresses, we will introduce to you, via email and social media, a variety of virtual engagement pieces that we believe adequately represent Culver today. While we do not expect this to replace your physical presence on campus, we do hope it helps you feel connected to Culver.

As you know, the pandemic situation evolves rapidly and there may be adjustments to campus visitation policies. Please watch for emails and posts on our website and social media channels for updates. In the meantime, we appreciate your cooperation and assistance in supporting these decisions. 

Douglas O. Bird ’90
Head of Schools