Cook Co. Forest Preserve District seeks camping plan input
March 17, 2012 12:48AM
Updated: April 19, 2012 8:29AM
Before the Cook County Forest Preserve District invests in new camping facilities, it wants to know what the public wants.
From now through April 30, a survey will be available online at www.fpdcc.com/camping. Input will be used to develop a new Camping Master Plan.
Printed copies of the survey are available at the six nature centers throughout the county, as is a mobile version for smart phones.
“Camping is a phenomenal way to introduce people, especially children, who live in urban areas to the natural environment,” forest district Supt. Arnold Randall said in a news release. “We are eager to hear from Cook County residents to understand how we can make this program work for them.”
The forest district operates three overnight camps, which are rented out to organized youth groups, such as Scouts, attracting about 5,000 people in 2011. But there are no opportunities now for adult and family camping within the district, and officials hope to attract a broad range of people to the forest preserves.
The Camping Master Plan will analyze the camp programs and assess whether there is a need to expand camping to families, retreat or reunion groups, day camps and people with special needs.
After the survey period, the district will host public meetings to get more feedback. Dates and sites are to be posted on the district’s website at www.camping.fpdcc.com. The final camping plan is expected to be released in August.
Susan DeMar Lafferty