HAMBURG, N.Y. (WIVB)- The Town of Hamburg’s Day Camp at Woodlawn Beach is a place where kids go every summer to disconnect from technology and get back to the basics of childhood.
“Just seeing them come out here everyday and enjoying being outside, not talking about what’s on their iPad or what’s on TV and using their imagination is cool to watch,” said Parker Linsley, a camp counselor.
They read books, play games, and even build forts where they stash buried treasure found along the beach.
“We do fun games and the counselors are nice and the kids here are nice. I just have fun,” said 9-year-old Dominic Brusci.
But on Jan. 1, 2020, that will all change. New York State is taking over the beach’s lease next year putting an end to the summer program. That means there will be no more camp adventures at Woodlawn Beach.
“I went to work for orientation and they said it would be the last year so just enjoy it while you can. You’re going to have to find a new job next summer,” said Linsley.
With the state taking over, there’s a concern on if the six year plus program will continue or if kids will be left without a place to play.
“There’s so much room there and there’s so many other activities kids can do there. The Hamburg Town Beach is much smaller than Woodlawn Beach so we thought we could give everybody the same level of service they’d grown accustomed to by moving them over to the Nike Center,” Shaw said.
But with the Nike Base so far in Lakeview, the convenience of parents being able to go straight to the city after drop off is gone.
“They drive up to Buffalo for work so instead of going all the way to Lakeview to drop them off at camp it’s a lot easier to just drop them off here,” said Linsley.
Shaw says the new program will likely need the same number of staff. He says hopefully the town will be sending out emails and mailings to residents with more information before next summer.