OSWEGO COUNTY – The 75th anniversary celebration of Camp Hollis continues with a new video showcasing the camp, its history and the impact it has had on the children of Oswego County.

Friends of Camp Hollis, which provides support to the camp, planned a variety of activities in honor of this milestone. Unfortunately, an in-person gathering scheduled to take place at the camp has been postponed until 2022 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“We were disappointed to not have a reunion this year, but safety has always been our first priority at the camp,” said Jim Farfaglia, author, former Camp Hollis director and current Friends of Camp Hollis member. “Until we can get together next year, we thought this video might be a great way for former campers and counselors to reminisce, and also provide a fun and informative piece for the public to see.”

The 30-minute video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v= 35rifnmAn3s&t=123s) was created through a collaboration of current and former Camp Hollis members. It features Farfaglia, who wrote the script, as well as former camp counselors Alexis Richer and Alex Bush; and Zach Grulich, coordinator of recreation and youth development and director of Camp Hollis.

When talking about the project’s origin, Farfaglia said that Jim Hooper, a former counselor at Camp Hollis, created a video for a camp he currently runs and suggested it might be a good way to honor Camp Hollis.

“Most of the credit should go to Jim,” said Farfaglia. “He had this great idea and, with his previous experience, offered to film, direct and produce the project.”

He added, “The weather was not in our favor the day we filmed. It was quite windy, so it was a struggle to keep the script from blowing away and get the audio to work. Still, he pulled it all together and came up with this great piece to reflect on all that Camp Hollis has given to the community over the years.”

As a college student, Jim Hooper worked as a counselor at Camp Hollis in the mid-90s. He said that his experience at the camp changed his career path.

“I was studying for a career I wasn’t really interested in,” said Hooper. “After just one summer working as a counselor and nature activity leader, I realized what I wanted to do. I changed my major to Recreation, and now I’m running a 4-H Camp in Canandaigua. Camp Hollis was a great experience for me; it really changed my life.”

Oswego County Coordinator of Recreation and Youth Development Zach Grulich is another life-long Camp Hollis member and the camp’s current director.

“Camp Hollis has always been a part of my life,” said Grulich. “As a camper, the counselors had such a positive impact on me. I learned a lot from them and knew that I also wanted to work with kids at a summer camp.”

He added, “Knowing what a fun summer camp experience can mean for a child and how to help young staff grow and develop is the legacy of Camp Hollis and its lasting impact on the community.

Located on the shore of Lake Ontario, Camp Hollis has been a treasure for children and families for over seven decades. It began as the Oswego County Health Camp in 1928. Dr. Leroy Hollis opened the camp to provide fresh air and wholesome living to children with tuberculosis.

Nearly 20 years later, the camp was re-purposed by Oswego County Family Court Judge Eugene Sullivan to benefit children from local orphanages and judicial programs. When Dr. Hollis died, Justice Sullivan moved to rename the camp in the doctor’s memory.

“Camp Hollis was started to provide a healthy environment and safe retreat for local children to enjoy the fun of summer camp,” said Oswego City-County Youth Bureau Executive Director Brian Chetney. “Now, 75 years later, that mission remains intact. Thanks to ongoing support from Oswego County and Friends of Camp Hollis, we are still able to give kids a positive and memorable summer camp experience, just as their parents and grandparents may have had.”

Today, Camp Hollis continues to operate primarily as a summer camp for children ages 8 to 14 with activities such as arts and crafts, athletics, aquatics, hiking and theater. The experience is dedicated to promoting creativity and good sportsmanship, as well as conservation and the responsible use of natural resources.

When summer camp is not is session, the facility is available for organizations and groups to hold special events and activities such as reunions, team-building retreats and senior camping.

Camp Hollis is owned by Oswego County and operated by the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau.

For more information about Camp Hollis programs and availability, go to https://youthbureau.oswegocounty.com/youth_bureau_/index.php or call the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau at 315-349-3451.

To learn more visit Friends of Camp Hollis online at www.friendsofcamphollis.org.

by Oswego County Family Court Judge Eugene Sullivan to benefit children from local orphanages and judicial programs. When Dr. Hollis died, Justice Sullivan moved to rename the camp in the doctor’s memory. “Camp Hollis was started to provide a healthy environment and safe retreat for local children to enjoy the fun of summer camp,” said Oswego City-County Youth Bureau Executive Director Brian Chetney. “Now, 75 years later, that mission remains intact. Thanks to ongoing support from Oswego County and Friends of Camp Hollis, we are still able to give kids a positive and memorable summer camp experience, just as their parents and grandparents may have had.” Today, Camp Hollis continues to operate primarily as a summer camp for children ages 8 to 14 with activities such as arts and crafts, athletics, aquatics, hiking and theater. The experience is dedicated to promoting creativity and good sportsmanship, as well as conservation and the responsible use of natural resources. When summer camp is not is session, the facility is available for organizations and groups to hold special events and activities such as reunions, team-building retreats and senior camping. Camp Hollis is owned by Oswego County and operated by the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau. For more information about Camp Hollis programs and availability, go to https://youthbureau.oswegocounty.com/youth_bureau_/index.php or call the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau at 315-349-3451. To learn more visit Friends of Camp Hollis online at www.friendsofcamphollis.org.Oswego County continues to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Camp Hollis with a new video project. The 30-minute video highlights the camp’s origins, as well as the experiences of its campers and counselors, and the impact it has had on the community. Pictured are campers playing games and making crafts as part of the whole camp experience. Photos courtesy of the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.