COVID Guidelines, Protocol, and FAQ (UPDATED: 5/7/21)

Tennis & Life Camps

TLC and Gustavus will follow CDC and Minnesota Department of Health COVID safety recommendations which continue to evolve.
The information posted here will be updated as recommendations are updated, always with your safety in mind.

UPDATED 5/7: *Please note: We are aware of Minnesota Governor Walz beginning a process to lift COVID restrictions in the coming weeks. It is dependent on 70% of the state's residents being vaccinated (16 and older). We are not there yet. So far, summer camps have not been informed of any changes, and they are currently among the most restrictive (which we must follow), due to the constant contact of a group over a number of days together. We are hopeful, however, based on the announcement, some outdoor mask restrictions might be lifted, but cannot guarantee it, so plan accordingly for either eventuality. We will keep you posted and will know more next soon! We appreicate your patience during this time. 

Please review these guidelines. Please note that if you choose to participate at TLC, these guidelines must be followed. Any violation of these guidelines may result in an early dismissal from TLC with no refund.

We are capping 2021 summer camp capacity at 50% of our normal numbers (55 campers). Gustavus and TLC are requiring all campers to show either proof of vaccination or a negative PCR COVID test (not rapid) within three days of camp in order to check in (detailed information on this policy below). If you show up to camp without this proof, we cannot have you participate in camp or refund your registration . For your convenience, here are links to testing and vaccination sites, as well as a form to complete when you have met the requirement. But our motto at TLC has, and always will be, “safety first”. And your partnership in accomplishing this is how we will do this together. 


What protocols is Tennis & Life Camps following to ensure camper and staff safety?

  • We are planning to run summer camps at 50% capacity.
  • Campers and staff will be expected to maintain 6 or more feet of physical distance from each other unless it is for fewer than 15 minutes cumulative during a day.
  • UPDATE: We are now allowing ONE roommate per camper, but if a camper prefers a single room for COVID reasons, there will be no extra charge. Roommate requests must be requested BEFORE camp. Complete this form if you would like to request a roommate. 
  • UPDATE: PODS, Campers will be placed in pods of 12-14 campers. In adherence to current MDH guidelines, we will be having pods of 12-14 campers be together throughout camp (This applies to junior, tournament player, family, and adult camps). These pods will reside in the same dorm section, travel together around campus, drill together, eat meals, and have free time together, and cannot mix with any other pods. Larger group activities (programs, Variety Shows, social hours) will take place with pods separated by at least 6 feet from each other but it is imperative they do not mix, in case a COVID case becomes a reality and we have to send a pod home. 
    • For junior camps, if you have a group you want to make sure is in the same pod during camp, PLEASE FILL OUT THIS FORM ASAP. (note: boys and girls at junior camps cannot be in the same pod because of dorm section arrangements). 
    • For family camps, your family can be in a section together (as always have been the case) and placed with other families to form your pod of 12-14 campers. If you have another family you want to be with in your pod PLEASE FILL OUT THIS FORM ASAP.
    • For adult camps, if you have a group you want to be with, PLEASE FILL OUT THIS FORM ASAP
    • BUT we stress pods cannot mix with other pods while at camp, even on court, though we will do group activities together at times while physically distanced. 
    • We will do our best, but cannot guarantee all requests for pod placement can be met. We cannot expand the pods.
  • UPDATE: If a camper tests positive during camp, that camper's entire pod will need to go home, UNLESS you are vaccinated. We do not anticipate this, if everyone follows the guidelines, but if it occurs, your camper will receive a pro-rated refund of the camp fee based on half days. THIS IS ANOTHER REASON TO GET VACCINATED BEFORE CAMP IF POSSIBLE. PLEASE DO NOT COME TO CAMP OR SEND AN ILL CAMPER (WITH ANY ILLNESS, NOT JUST COVID). 
  • Hand sanitizer will be at every entrance and exit to spaces used by TLC.
  • All restrooms and showers will be sanitized on a daily basis.

How will you keep campers physically distanced in all activities such as dining, tennis, socializing, variety show, singing, and swimming.

  • Dining: the dining room is currently set-up to be two people per table.
  • Social hour: Campers will remain 6 feet away as they play games or socialize.
  • Opening Night Program, Social Hour, Variety Show and Final Program: Will take place in Norelius Hall outdoor courtyard, or an appropriately large indoor space on campus, with chairs or markers set 6 feet apart.
  • Singing: All campers will be masked and physically distanced when they sing camp songs, outdoors or in an appropriately large indoor space.
  • UPDATE: Dorms: Dorm sections with a maximum pod size of 14 campers per dorm section (plus one dorm counselor for junior camps) 
  • Tennis: Our current drills are already designed for physical distancing. Our instructors will wear masks while teaching or explaining a drill on the same side of the net. Our hands-on teaching inside Swanson Tennis Center will be replaced this summer with physical demonstrations to accomplish the same result.
  • Inclement weather: We will follow the same physical distancing and masking procedures as any other indoor activity.
  • UPDATE: Swimming: The swimming pool is not available to campers, based on campus restrictions and capacity.

What is your policy on masking and hand hygiene?

  • Per current MDH guidelines, campers will be masked at all times in indoor spaces, including dining (except when they are eating), and on court during lessons. Campers may remove their mask when they are in the dorm room by themselves. Campers are expected to either wash their hands or use hand sanitizer upon entering and exiting indoor spaces. Campers and presenters will wear masks for all classroom sessions and be physically distanced.
  • UPDATE: We are waiting (and cautiously hopeful) for the MDH (Minnesota Department of Health) to make a ruling on mask wearing outdoors, because we must follow their summer camp guidelines for the entire state. (Summer camp MDH guidelines are different than school sports MDH guidelines, etc.) We are aware that the CDC has, indeed, lifted outdoor mask restrictions as long as people stay six feet apart, but we have to wait for the MDH to do so. If they do lift the outdoor mask requirement, we will certainly update you immediately. If not, we are TLC, and the Three Crowns (Positive Attitude, Full Effort, Good Sportsmanship) will still rule the day and we will focus on what we can control.

What will happen if a camper is exposed to someone with COVID?

  • UPDATE: As stated above, if a camper test positive during camp, that camper's entire pod will need to go home, UNLESS you are vaccinated. We do not anticipate this, if everyone follows the guidelines, but if it occurs, your camper will receive a pro-rated refund of the camp fee based on half days. THIS IS ANOTHER REASON TO GET VACCINATED BEFORE CAMP IF POSSIBLE. PLEASE DO NOT COME TO CAMP OR SEND AN ILL CAMPER (WITH ANY ILLNESS, NOT JUST COVID) 
  • If they have had exposure closer than 6 feet for longer than 15 minutes, they will be quarantine, you will be notified, and we will request you pick them up for the safety of all. This is one reason following protocol, physical distancing, and mask wearing is so important for all campers and staff.
  • If TLC learns of a positive COVID case, we will investigate any possible close contacts to the person who tested positive. A close contact is defined by the MDH as a person who was within 6 feet for 15 minutes within the 48 hours before the test date or 48 hours before symptoms started. MDH guidance currently says that all close contacts need to quarantine for 14 days. If a camper is determined to be a close contact, they will be moved to a quarantine space until they are picked up later that day to go home.

What happens if a camper has COVID symptoms?

  • Each day campers will be expected to review a list of possible COVID symptoms. If symptoms start, the camper will need to be removed from activities and be away from others.
  • The emergency contact person listed on the registration will be notified immediately. Your child (or any child who shows symptoms) will be moved to a quarantine area until it is determined if they need to leave camp or if they will be able to stay.

What happens if just before coming to camp a camper has symptoms, is a close contact, or has a COVID test?

  • A camper should not come to camp if they have any COVID symptoms that cannot be explained, have a recent known exposure and are in quarantine, or are awaiting COVID test results.

What happens if a TLC staff member gets COVID?

  • UPDATE: We expect that almost 100% of our staff will be vaccinated. If they are not, the following will apply: 
    • If a TLC staff member is experiencing COVID symptoms they will be tested and remain in isolation until test results are returned. If the test results are negative, they will return to work when symptoms improve.
    • If a TLC staff member is exposed as a close contact to someone who tested positive, they will be tested and remain in quarantine for 14 days.
    • If a TLC staff member tests positive for COVID, contact tracing will determine any close contacts and the staff member will remain in isolation for 10 days.

What precautions are in place before my child/family or myself arrives?

  • Dorm rooms and public spaces will be sanitized before each camp.
  • Hand sanitizer will be readily available in entrances and exits and pro shop. Individual sanitizer is available in the pro shop for purchase.
  • Campers will sign a statement saying they will not attend camp if they have had any symptoms of COVID, a known COVID exposure, or a positive test in the previous two weeks.

What can we do as campers before arriving?

  • UPDATE: Gustavus and TLC are requiring all campers to show either proof of vaccination or a negative PCR COVID test (not a rapid test) within three days of camp in order to check in. If you show up to camp without this proof, we cannot have you participate in camp or refund your registration. For your convenience, here are links to testing and vaccination sites, as well as a form to complete when you have met the requirement. 
  • UPDATE: Exemption to testing examples would be:
    1) Within 90 days of your camp dates if you tested positive to COVID, you are considered "tested". You must send the positive test result to be admitted to camp.
    2) For vaccination approval, you must be 2 weeks past your final dose of the vaccine in order to claim "fully vaccinated". Otherwise, you will need a negative COVID test within three days of camp.
  • UPDATE: To summarize, Campers still need to test if: You tested positive for COVID before 90 days from the start of camps or you are not 2 weeks past your final vaccination shot (1 dose for Johnson and Johnson or 2 doses for Pfizer or Moderna)
  • UPDATE: WHAT DOES THREE DAYS MEAN? From the CDC website about testing before travel:
    Why does the Order specify 3 days rather than 72 hours? What is considered 3 days? The 3-day period is the 3 days before the flight’s departure. The Order uses a 3-day timeframe instead of 72 hours to provide more flexibility to the traveler. By using a 3-day window, test validity does not depend on the time of the flight or the time of day that the test was administered. For example, if a passenger’s flight is at 1pm on a Friday, the passenger could board with a negative test that was taken any time on the prior Tuesday or after.
  • We would like for you to limit activity around groups that cannot be physically distanced and wearing masks in the two weeks prior to camp. 

Should my camper bring their own sanitizer and masks?

  • We will provide hand sanitizer at multiple locations and limited disposable masks if needed, but encourage you to bring your own masks and personal hand sanitizer.
  • Masks should have two layers of fabric and be a snug fit. They must be worn over the nose and mouth.

What about testing?

  • UPDATE: With the ability in the U.S. for PCR testing plus access to a vaccine, all campers should have access to one or the other. If not, anyone who would be sick in the two weeks prior to camp will be expected not to attend for the sake of others, and issued a refund minus the non-refundable $100 deposit, with a physician's note.

What is the refund policy if a camp is cancelled?

  • If an entire camp is cancelled due to COVID, you will receive a full refund, including the normally non-refundable $100 registration fee.

What is the cancellation policy if a camper tests positive or cannot attend camp for any other reason? 

  • UPDATE: IF you test positive for COVID in the three days prior to camp, that will act as a doctor's note and you will receive a full refund minus your $100 non refundable deposit.
  • UPDATE: If you have to cancel for any other reason, you must do so four weeks or longer before your camp starting date to receive any refund. (The exception being a positive COVID test within three days of camp or an illness or injury requiring a doctor's note that you cannot participate).

What is the refund policy if a camper is sick or in quarantine two weeks prior to camp?

  • The regular refund will apply with a doctor’s note, and you will receive all but the $100 registration fee back.

What is the refund policy if a camper has to leave camp early due to COVID?

  • In this event, your camp fee will be prorated for the amount of time spent at TLC and you will be refunded the remainder.
  • UPDATE: If a pod is sent home during a camp, you will receive a pro-rated refund based on the amount of time you were at camp (measured in half day increments). 
  • Leaving camp early for any other reason will result in no refund.

What if my camper wants a roommate?

  • UPDATE: We are not allowing ONE roommate per camper, according to MDH guidelines. If you still prefer to have your camper in a single room, you will not be charged extra for this, and need to take no further action. If you want a roommate, please FILL OUT THIS FORM. 
  • If your camper wants to room with a sibling or someone in your household, we will accommodate the request. For campers not from the same household, we will place them in rooms next to each other as much as possible, until it is deemed safe by the CDC, MDH, and Gustavus to do otherwise.

What should I do if I see another camper or TLC employee not following the COVID safety expectations?

  • If a student or staff member is not following the COVID safety expectations, you may contact the TLC office or contact camp Director Neal Hagberg directly at 612-875-1613.

What will happen if a camper does not follow the COVID safety expectations?

  • Campers who do not follow COVID safety expectations may be asked to leave camp for the safety of all. To run a safe, successful and fun TLC camp, it will take all of us together as a TLC family. Everything we teach about the Three Crowns of Positive Attitude, Full Effort and Good Sportsmanship, and the respectful and kind campers and staff who attend TLC, let us know this is possible, and we are grateful to you in advance!

What will be the same and what will be different from other summers?

  • What will be the same is the joy and enrichment of a TLC camp experience; individual and small group instruction; camp bonding exercises, singing, Variety Shows, and meaningful social interactions. TLC has always been a creative place, and with COVID regulations we will create new experiences out of our shared love for tennis, life, and interactions with others that bring us fulfillment. We will do the same activities in new ways and, with our Three Crowns philosophy, we will practice Positive Attitude, Full Effort, and Good Sportsmanship daily on the court and off, and use COVID as another life lesson we can learn from and become stronger as a community by respecting others and acting responsibly while we have tons of fun.