WESTFORD -- The East Boston Camps is about to get revitalized with news of a $100,000 grant coming to the property stewards.
The Cummings Foundation awarded the Friends of East Boston Camps group $100,000 which the organization says it will now use to rebuild a permanent bathhouse for visitors to the site. The Westford non-profit group was one of 100 recipients selected by the foundation from a pool of more than 430 applicants from around the state.
The mission of the Westford Friends of East Boston Camps is to support the conservation, preservation, maintenance, and improvement of the property with the goal of providing camping, environmental and recreational programs for area residents including underprivileged and inner city youth. Established more 70 years ago and currently owned by the town of Westford, East Boston Camps includes 286 acres of pristine conservation land in the heart of the town. The property includes a pond, brooks, miles of walking trails and a historic camp with 30 buildings.
Beth Perkins, a member of the Friends of East Boston Camps, said the previous site bathhouse was condemned and torn down last year. She said the new structure will be located in the main camp area in the same location as the previous one for all to use.
"(You) have seen the intense interest that people in town have for this property," Perkins said, adding her group is comprised of volunteers who are excited to win this award. "It's been a long effort to raise money for this project.
Denise Brunelle, president of the Friends' Board of Directors, thanked the Cummings Foundation for the prize.
"Building this bathhouse is the most important step that can be taken to improve the experience of visitors to the many events and programs that take place at the Camps," she said.
Joel Swets, the Cummings Foundation's executive director, said his organization is committed to helping local communities, like Westford.
"We are delighted to support very worthy nonprofits like Westford Friends of East Boston Camps that are working tirelessly for the benefit of the people they serve," he said in a press release.
The Cummings Foundation's grant recipients this year represent a wide variety of causes, including those working for underserved populations and matters related to education, healthcare, hunger relief and homelessness prevention. The foundation reports most of the grants awarded this year will be paid to the non-profit organizations over the next two to five years.
The Friends of East Boston Camps will additionally hold the event "Summer Solstice Celebration" on Saturday, June 21, starting at 5:30 p.m. The evening will be held "under the stars," according to organizers, with gourmet dining by Two Chefs Are Better Than One Catering and live music with the Lookouts blue singer Sunny Crownover. For more information call Peter Mahler at 617-759-7323 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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