Opinion

EDITORIAL: Tough but right call on Hurlburt

We love our heritage in Vernon and in a perfect world, we’d be able to keep things forever.

We mourned the loss of the historic grandstands in Polson Park and Kin Race Track to fire.

Those of us old enough to remember going as kids wish we could go back one last time to Nick’s Kandy Kitchen, Athen’s Pizza or buy the latest hit album, 45, cassette or eight-track from Freddie’s Records and Tapes.

Now comes word that Camp Hurlburt, situated among the eastern shore of Okanagan Lake, not even 15 minutes from downtown Vernon, is closing down its kitchen and cabins for good after more than 80 years.

Owned and operated by Trinity United Church, Camp Hurlburt has housed thousands upon thousands of campers every year from 1931-2012, when the church suspended camp operations. There were limited camps in 2013 and nothing this year.

As the camp grew older, it became tougher and more expensive for the church to keep up with the upgrades needed. A campaign to raise $3 million started in 2006 to help rebuild the camp fell significantly short.

So the church, in consultation with its congregation, made the gut-wrenching decision to put the property up for sale. The money from the sale will be used for programs along the same guidelines as those of Hurlburt: helping youth, young adults and young families.

Prime lakeshore property should fetch a pretty penny. Here’s hoping the camp site is turned into public greenspace.

For thousands, Hurlburt will be fondly remembered. But the decision to sell is the right decision.

 

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