Summer camp benefits touted by city commission members

The city Recreation Summer Camp program was touted as worth its value during Monday’s recreation commission meeting.

Jessie Novinger, city recreation director, said the program for young school-age children provides a wealth of experiences, and includes breakfast, lunch and a snack — but not on the city’s dime.

Instead, the families of the children get in touch with STEP Inc. and make arrangements for the delivery of the food, which comes directly from the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank on Wahoo Drive, Novinger said.

The department isn’t the “middle man,” but the families arrange for the food deliveries, saving the city in cost, according to Novinger.

The summer camp programs also provide the children with a pool pass from the department for use at Splash Cove, the swimming pool at Memorial Park, she said.

Faith Smith, a member of the commission, noted the value at $20 a week for the summer camp programs is important. “They get supervised child care, fed and a pool pass,” Smith said.

Novinger also reported on what she considered a successful Home Made Days at Brandon Park. At least 96 vendors registered, with four craft stand owners not showing up and one food vendor unable to attend, she said.

Vendors are considering the festival of food and craft sales a regional event, she said.

“We had vendors from Maryland, Virginia and New York, and spent $600 less on advertising costs,” she said.