It’s a strange time to be publishing our annual You’re Invited issue — focusing on event-planning resources — when coronavirus fears have led to events being cancelled left and right. Diccon Hyatt’s cover story, explores what event planners do in the case of sudden cancellations or decisions to hold events virtually.

Perfect Company columnist Glenn Paul crunches the numbers and addresses the possible broader economic impact of the virus and the panic it has induced.

As this paper went to press, McCarter Theater and the Arts Council of Princeton announced no changes, yet, to their scheduled programming. The Institute for Advanced Study announced that it was cancelling large-scale public events for the immediate future. And while Princeton University and other colleges announced plans to hold classes virtually, encouraged students to stay home after spring break, and curtail larger events, the Princeton University Art Museum posted a message noting that it was open with no event cancellations of yet.

Keep up to date with events and cancellations at www.princetoninfo.com/events and subscribe to our weekly story and events newsletters at tinyurl.com/us1newsletter. Continue sending information about upcoming events — and cancellations — to events@princetoninfo.com. And now, especially, remember to call ahead or check online to confirm if events are still being held.

To the Editor: All Kids Should Have Summer Camp

While reading last week’s issue about the variety of summer camps available in our area, as a father I was struck by just how fortunate many local children are to have an opportunity for summer enrichment.

Whether it’s a specialized camp focused on robotics or music, or a more traditional camp experience, young people enjoy tangible benefits when they spend time at a high-quality summer program. Away from their screens and devices, children often develop a heightened sense of self-awareness, increased confidence levels, a connection with nature and enhanced social-emotional relationship-building skills. Perhaps one of the most important results of these experiences is a young person’s increased capacity for tolerating failure and dealing with adversity, that crucial quality called grit.

These critical skill-building programs should not just be available to children from families with financial means. This is one of the many reasons I serve as a Trustee of a local philanthropy called the Princeton-Blairstown Center (PBC). Since 1908, PBC has been helping young people from low-income communities have equitable summer experiences.

PBC’s award-winning Summer Bridge Program offers hundreds of children from Trenton, Newark and Camden an opportunity to engage in the same kinds of transformative experiences as young people from more privileged circumstances. Plus, Summer Bridge offers three hours daily of hands-on academic enrichment to help avoid the summer learning loss, or “brain drain”, that can impact students from less affluent communities.

ALL young people deserve opportunities for enriching and stimulating summer experiences so that they can better start the school year ready to compete on a more even playing field. For young people from low-income communities, PBC provides adequate food, safe shelter, academic stimulation, and the opportunity to develop skills that help them navigate the complicated challenges of their lives back home.

Warren Stock

Board of Trustees, Princeton-Blairstown Center

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