Camp Hope now part of Passaic County Parks and Recreation

West Milford. Passaic County adds Camp Hope to its parks and recreation department.

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Expanded public recreational programming availability at Camp Hope is expected to result from an Administrative Code change recently made by county officials.

The Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders amended the county's Administrative Code to make the 62-acre camp a division of the Passaic County Parks and Recreation Department.

The action is expected to expand visitation and use of the property.

A number of programs are already hosted at the facility for county residents, including a summer camp and senior citizen programs.

The resolution adopted by the freeholders notes that there are a number of recreational facilities on the grounds, including a basketball court, athletic field, swimming pool and spray park.

Article 20 of the Administrative Code said the camp was operating as an independent department with an executive director responsible for operation and maintenance as well as acting as liaison representative to the Camp Hope Commission.

The resolution changed that provision by making the camp a division of the county Parks and Recreation Department.

The matter was first discussed in February at a meeting of the Finance and Administration Committee.

In April, the Public Works and Building and Grounds Committee recommended action to be taken.

Article 20 was then deleted from the code by the freeholders.

As a result of the action, the Passaic County Parks and Recreation Department has taken over responsibility of Camp Hope.

All rules, regulations and ordinances adopted by the board related to operation and management now apply.

The Camp Hope Commission continues to maintain its statuary role to oversee and advise on the operation and maintenance of Camp Hope, according to the resolution.

The idea of the camp dates back to the mid 1930s when President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal Civilian Construction Corps Public Relief Program was winding down.

Children of that era had seen little happiness in their young lives during the Great Depression and the county officials created a camp for their enjoyment.

An estimated 2,280 kids enjoy the Camp Hope experiences annually.

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