SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – San Francisco Recreation and Park Department officials announced Thursday that Camp Mather, the city-owned camp located in Tuolumne County, will remain closed for the second summer due to COVID-19.

The 337-acre family camp site, located just outside of Yosemite National Park, normally hosts about 500 campers and 70 employees each week during the summer months.

“We know summers at Camp Mather are very special for San Francisco families. We feel the same way,” Rec and Park general manager Phil Ginsburg said in a statement. “However, the health of our campers and staff are the most importation consideration. The COVID-19 transmission risk simply remains too high.”

The decision to close the camp this year was made after Rec and Park officials consulted with health officials in both San Francisco and Tuolumne counties.

“We support prioritizing the safety of campers and staff by closing Camp Mather for the season,” Friends of Camp Mather board president Eamon Barisone said. “We look forward to our continued work with Rec and Park and returning to camp in 2022 for another fun summer.”

San Francisco families have been visiting the camp for more than 90 years. But, since the summer of 2020, the camp has remain closed as social distancing is nearly impossible since campers share things like meals and participate in social activities.

Additionally, the ongoing pandemic has made recruiting camp employees challenging, Rec and Park officials said.

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