YOKOSUKA, Japan -- In an effort to maintain physical distancing while continuing to serve the community, Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka (CFAY) Morale Welfare and Recreation (MWR) Outdoor Recreation department hosted a “camp in,” April 8.
Because CFAY is currently in a mission essential only/shelter in place status due to the recent Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) pandemic, and residents were unable to come together for a camp out, MWR’s outdoor recreation department provided a virtual “camp in” experience.
During the camp in, campers participated in eight hourly events, six during the night from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., and two the next morning on April 9 from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. The hourly check-ins were meant to keep the camp in interactive and give participants tasks to do throughout the night.
Organizers of the event said the turnout couldn’t have been better.
“It went so much better than I ever expected,” said Jenn Bardoni, MWR Outdoor Recreation director. “We had 110 campsites reserved totaling 425 participants, two dogs and three cats.”
The activities consisted of campers posting photos and videos to the MWR Facebook page of their campsite set up, their dinner, playing a board game or card game, s'mores or other snack photos, singing a campfire song, a full moon view from their balcony or backyard, their breakfast and their cleaned-up campsite. After campers posted their photos or videos, MWR staff selected random participants for a prize drawing for each event.
Participants of the event said they were pleased with the way it turned out.
“I thought the event was fun; it was something new for us to do and my kids enjoyed seeing others doing the same thing we were,” said Allison Sherman, one of the campers. “My favorite part was seeing my kids pretend camping in their tent, they were very excited.”
For 75 years, CFAY has provided, maintained, and operated base facilities and services in support of the U.S. 7th fleet's forward-deployed naval forces, tenant commands, and thousands of military and civilian personnel and their families.