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Campers arrive at Camp Good Days
Branchport, N.Y. - Camp Good Days welcomed their first campers of the season, Monday.
This after a flood devastated the property six weeks ago when organizers questioned whether the camp would open at all this year.
"I knew I'd get here, but it would just take a little rearranging," said camper Owen Myers of Victor. Myers is one of 77 campers this week who have a parent dealing with cancer. "It just makes me feel relaxed that my dad is going to be okay," he said.
Dymond Cherry can relate, her mom was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011, and even though she's in remission now she says this camp is more than just a summer getaway.
"This camp for me got my hopes up, it also made me comfortable in society," said Cherry, "to know that other people are in the same situation as me."
It's campers like these that chairman and founder Gary Mervis thought of in May when flood waters tore through the camp.
"When I first came down here and saw the devastation from the two storms I was hoping I going through a bad dream, a nightmare," said Mervis. "I was hoping I would wake up from it and today after a little over 6-weeks I'm waking up from that nightmare."
According to Mervis, during those six-weeks, over 600 volunteers cleans the camp, fixing cabins, the beach, everywhere the water touched. The last damaged cabin is being worked on this week.
"it says a lot about this camp but it says a lot about this community that we live in too," said Mervis.
A community that knows this isn't just a summer camp, but a place for all to have 'good days.'
Camp Good Days did have to cancel some weekend camps; they plan to make those up at the end of the season.
The total damage to the camp was around $450,000.