Greenland Point Center to Continue Under 4-H

By Sandra Smith

 

This past Tuesday, June 5, there was great news for Princeton: Greenland Point will continue to operate as a camp for children. The facility with twelve log cabins and a lodge on a sixty-three acre peninsula on Long Lake will become part of the Maine 4-H Program. Susan Jennings, Executive Director of the Maine 4-H Foundation, made a presentation to the Board of Selectmen and interested parties. She announced that within 30-90 days the sale of the camp would be complete.

The Maine 4-H Foundation will be the primary investor. The Foundation is described in their information flyer “As the official private support group of the University of Maine 4-H Youth Development Program, the 4-H Foundation generates investment in young people who are addressing the issues facing Maine.” They will be working with the University of Maine at Machias as well as a board that includes local groups.

The plan is to improve the camp’s infrastructure this year and then open next summer for five weeks offering six or seven programs for ten-twelve children in each program. Their primary goal is to reach out to the children of Washington, Hancock and Aroostook counties and then other areas of Maine. Some of the possible programs are: Hunter Safety Firearms, Archery, ATV, Woodcrafts, Naturalist and Teen Leadership. Then each year new programs will be added until it becomes a year-round facility.

Currently there are three other 4-H Camps in Maine, Tanglewood in Lincolnville, Blueberry Cove in St. George and Bryant Pond 4-H Center in Bryant Pond. Second presenter, Ron Fournier has been the manager for Bryant Pond since 2007 and also will take charge of the Greenland Point Camp. He wants to work with local growers and have a garden at camp as well as livestock. Additionally, he hopes to work with the Princeton Rod & Gun Club on some of the related camp programs.

Greenland Point has been both very successful and almost lost as a resource to the area. In 2004 the University of Maine Machias, which had operated it as a conservation camp for over twenty years, put it up for sale due to it being too costly. Local residents, concerned about losing the camp, in 2004 organized the Greenland Point Coalition. In 2005 they took title to the property and opened the camp in 2006. However, last year once again, due to financial difficulties, the camp was put up for sale.

The Princeton Board of Selectmen gladly signed their letter of endorsement. Those attending the meeting were very enthusiastic and pleased that Greenland Point Camp would remain a children’s camp and continue to be an asset to the community.