New Campground at Jericho Park Set to Open July 26

July 13, 2012
by Barbara Tetrault
The Berlin Reporter

BERLIN – The new 20-site campground at Jericho Mountain State Park will open in time to accommodate visitors attending the annual ATV festival at the park.

Bureau of Trails Director Chris Gamache told the planning board Wednesday night that the campground is scheduled to open July 26. The two-day ATV festival gets underway the following day, Friday, July 27.

The campground will feature five cabins, six tent sites, and nine RV sites. He said the cabins will be simple oneroom structures with two sets of bunk beds and a futon. Water is available and porta-potties will be used to provide toilet facilities. The fee will be $23 a night for tent and RV sites and $50 a night for the cabins. Reservations can be made through the state park service at 271-3556.

The campground is located in an area across from the OHRV parking area. Gamache said it is an area that historically had been used for camping when the city owned the property. Gamache noted the state’s efforts to attract a developer to build and run a 200-site campground at the park under a 20-year lease from the state were unsuccessful. He said he believes the economy and the fact the campground would also be subject to property taxes kept developers from bidding on the proposal.

Starting Monday, there will be a charge to enter the park and to use the beach area. The charge will be $4 for adults and $2 for children under 11. Berlin residents, however, will have free access to the park – a condition the city negotiated when it donated Jericho Lake to the state.

Gamache said the tollbooth will be staffed through Labor Day although the campground will remain open through October. Park hours will be 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.  Once the campground is completed, Gamache said the bureau will turn its attention to adding to the 75 miles of existing ATV trail at the park.

The state Executive Council Wednesday approved the purchase of two parcels of land from Dillon Investment, LLC for inclusion in the park. One is an 11-acre site that will be the site of the septic system for the visitors center. The other is a 226-acre parcel along the eastern border of the park. The $108,500 purchase price will be covered by snowmobile and OHRV revenues.

Gamache said this fall the bureau will do the final site work on the visitors center, putting in water and septic service. Gamache said there will be a fully functioning visitors center for the 2013 season. The work schedule also includes some upgrading of the bathhouse.

Topping off the work this season, Gamache said the state Department of Transportation is scheduled to repave the road from Route 110 to the park.

Bryan Buonano of MMS Custom Home was working yesterday on one of the new cabins being
 constructed at Jericho Mountain State Park. The state is building a small 20-site campground
that is scheduled to open in time for the ATV Festival later this month

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