Days Before Summer, Volunteers Remove Storm Damage at Camp Hanes

Camp Hanes Cleanup

STOKES COUNTY, NC – Just days before the start of summer camp, the scramble is on to clean-up storm damage at YMCA Camp Hanes.

Volunteers joined forces Tuesday for another day of cleaning after last month's EF-2 tornado devastated parts of Camp Hanes.

Professional crews, camp staff, and lots of local families are working together to get camp ready before the kids arrive.

For some, Camp Hanes is more than a part of the community.

10-year-camper Adele Thomas says it’s a part of her heart.

“It was a bit of a shocker when I first saw it but I know how much this camp means to me and I know all the new campers, how much it's going to mean to them,” said Thomas. “So I just wanted to help out as much as I could.”

Covered in sweat and mud, over 100 volunteers broke out the chainsaws, rakes, and even used their bare hands to clean up the debris around Camp Hanes.

Construction crews worked on fixing the roofs of the cabins.

Camp Hanes Director Val Elliot says over 5,000 trees fell during the storm and every single building was damaged!

For a while, Elliott worried thought summer camp might not happen at all this year…

“Within the first 30 hours, I pinched myself several times. As that wore off, the realness came in to play,” said Elliott. “We had a vision of making Camp Hanes even better. We made that vision and the community's support is making that happen.”

Elliott says they want to make sure everything is safe before the kids arrive.

Professional crews are checking on the ropes course, the water slide, and all the activities.

The gym is still going to be closed to start the summer along with the canteen and the Baker Activity Center, according to Elliott.

However, the cabins have all been ruled safe.

Summer camp starts at Camp Hanes this Saturday, June 10.

© 2017 WFMY-TV


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