Here is a hopefully story published October 30th, 2011 about former Girl Scout Camp Tapawingo reopening to campers after five years of being closed. When the consolidation of the Girl Scouts of Northeastern New York occurred and the organization’s base of operations moved out of the local area, friction between the new council and the Turner Board over permits and operating expenses resulted in the closing of the camp.
“When the councils merged down in Albany, it became more of a formal relationship,” Lemza said, explaining that in a litigious society the vastly expanded council needed to assure liability and other coverage in a more contractual way than the board was used to. “The two groups just weren’t able to come to terms,” she said. “We just realized that was silly, and it’s not benefiting the cause that Mr. Turner donated the property for.”
Thankfully now it looks like the camp is reopening. “We’re closer than we’ve ever been to getting it reopened,” said Colleen Lemza, a former Girl Scout, Tapawingo camper and member of the board of the Ernest Turner Memorial Fund Inc., which has owned the property since 1954 when it was donated by Turner for use by the Girl Scouts. – Read the full article in the Press-Republican.
Camp Tapawingo is a 4.90-acre promontory with 1,175 feet of Lake Champlain. “It’s such a beautiful, prime piece of property, and there’s so much history there, and Girl Scouts for years have used it and loved it,” said Valerie Trudeau, chief development and brand officer of the Girl Scouts of Northeastern New York and the last CEO of the North Country Girl Scout Council in a related article published in the Press-Republican in November 2008 about the original closure.
Thank you Chris Hildebrand, Communications Coordinator Friends of Eagle Island, Inc. for bringing this success story to our attention. Camp Eagle Island was a Girl Scout camp from 1938-2008 and is located on an island in Upper Saranac Lake, New York. Unfortunately, Chris’s email came with the disheartening news that the Girl Scouts Heart of New Jersey that own Eagle Island have still refused to sit down and negotiate with the Friends of Eagle Island, Inc. “As far as we know, we have the only offer on the table to buy the island, but not for their price of $3.75 Million,” wrote Chris. “We have the support of the Graves Family, who gave the island and the National Historic Landmark buildings to the scouts so there would always be a camp and children playing there. Unfortunately, the current merged council has no interest in keeping the camp or honoring the spirit of the gift. They now have only one sleep-away camp, for a council of 25,000 girls.”
Lets hope and pray Friends of Eagle Island see a similar success as Camp Tapawingo.
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