Storming Back

“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” Nelson Mandela


On July 3 at 3:30 in the afternoon, a severe wind and hail storm, some are calling a micro-burst, hit Poolville NY, where Camp Fiver is located. While we have our share of thunderstorms in central NY each summer, this storm was unusually powerful.  Our Camp Director, Mary Lee Dinski, and her entire team moved into action immediately and secured the safety of all children and staff. When the wind settled and the hail and rain stopped falling, we were able to assess the damage.  We lost several hundred trees, blocking access to Tucker Point, the waterfront, and the horseback-riding trails. Thankfully, there was no damage to camp buildings, other than the waterfront docks, which will need to be replaced. 

One of our biggest challenges was the lack of power for three days. In addition to our own generator, we borrowed five other generators from community members to operate our septic pumps, water pump, freezer and cooler, and hot water heaters.  Colgate University, The Colgate Inn and Michael's restaurant in Waterville each donated meals for kids and staff.  Others donated bottled water (our drinking water will be restored by July 13) and stopped by to help clean up camp.  Our SERVE team, Fiver’s 17 and 18 year-old participants, were remarkably dedicated, volunteering to clean up debris, keeping a positive attitude, and setting an example for young Fivers.

The storm knocked down our Camp Fiver sign, but it did not break the SERVE team’s Fiver spirit!

We would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to the following individuals and companies that supported Fiver during the immediate aftermath of the storm.  Please know that we are incredibly grateful to you all.  If we left out your name, we apologize.  It’s been a chaotic time and we want to make sure we thank everyone properly. There are more thank you’s to come!

THANK YOU: Tim Parent, Adam Schoonmaker, Amy George, Sally White, Curly Septic, Mark Colletti, Joe Colletti, Eric Ronning and family, Sally Campbell and Murray Decock, George Murray at Colgate University dining services, Mike and Jen Latrielle and friends, Joseph Dragone, Liz Harris, Franz from Valley Stream Water, The Furner Family, Don Miller, Casey Palmer, White's Farm Supply, Jeff Klein at SYSCO, Matt Leone at Colgate University, Mike Cappetto, Kirk Palmer and family, Keith Palmer, Lynn Compton, Martin Bonsie, Ben Eberhart and the Colgate Inn, Jennifer Hyatt, John and Janet Griffith, Brad and Sarah Dunley, Joan and Jim Ford, Andrew Fagon and Kezia Page, Denise and Ed Dinski, Joyce Nevison, Scott and Jill Dinski, Cory Lamb and Ron Myers, Earlville Fire Department.

We are facing a long clean-up and rebuilding process but we are reminded that after every storm, there is a rainbow, especially at Camp Fiver. (photo by Drum Phuban, Fiver Counselor)

Stay tuned for more opportunities to help Fiver rebuild...