GRANBY, Mass. (WWLP) – A summer camp in Hampshire County has been cancelled.
Come Monday morning, cub scouts who planned to attend the Western Massachusetts Council Granby Day Camp will have to make new plans for the week.
This comes after the Granby Health Department failed the council’s inspection, saying it could operate its week-long camp at the Chicopee Sportsmen’s Club in Granby — under one condition.
Granby Board of Health Chairman Richard Bombardiere told 22News, when the inspector realized the camp’s location was near an “active shooting range,” they saw it as an “extreme safety issue.”
“We did not want shots fired when the kids were around and there aren’t barriers to keep [bullets] from spraying,” said Bombardiere.
He said the health department gave the council a condition — to coordinate with the sportsman’s club to shut down all ranges for five hours for the next five days.
The Chicopee Sportsman’s Club was not available for comment to talk about the ordered condition.
Jeffrey Glaze, president of the Western Massachusetts Council of the Boy Scouts of America told 22News, “They asked if they could come on Saturday morning prior to the week. We accommodated that and when they arrived, there was a new person from what I understand who was there from the Board of Health and they felt there was something unsafe.”
Glaze said the Chicopee Sportsmen’s Club has a target range on its property and they’ve had their camp there for many years, with no problem.
“The sportsman’s club even volunteered to shut down a couple of their ranges so that we could have the camp this week,” Glaze said. “Apparently that did not satisfy the requirement of this board of health person.”
Glaze told 22News, this week’s planned Granby Cub Scout Day Camp is the only camp canceled for the week. He stressed no other camps are affected.
The council told 22News it spent 24 hours appealing to the health department but called it quits at 2 p.m. Sunday afternoon, calling parents to inform them of the cancellation.
In an emailed notice to parents, the council said, “Despite operating a safe, fun, and quality day camp for the past 6 summers at this location, the health department refused to accept any alternatives for operations.”
Bombardiere told 22News, he had told the camp the board of health “would stand on its head to find an alternative location.”
He said he wasn’t sure what would be available but that they were willing to work something out.
“We did not say they couldn’t operate. We said they could operate but with the ordered condition,” said Bombardiere.
Bombardiere told 22News, a meeting will be held Wednesday morning at 11:15 at the Board of Health Office in Granby to make sure the inspector and a forum of the board agree to affirm their “emergency decision” in a “formal posted meeting.”