Hal & Sandy grew up at camp, met at camp, and fell in love with camp. So, in 1956, it was no surprise that they fell in love at camp. While their beginnings can be traced back to their experiences at Camp Young Judaea, it was their future that was truly shaped by their time spent out in the fields and in the water.
After marrying in 1958, Hal had a desire to bring that same joy, energy, and fun that he felt as a camper and a counselor to children during the summer. Hal's vision of Round-up, Pow Wow, and pools floated round and round in his head like one of the many children he would eventually teach to swim. He had one mission: create a warm, welcoming, creative environment during the summer, that made everyone feel like family. He loved going to camp, and he loved teaching children. But, he had one problem, where would this dream camp go?
With Hal's dream in mind, she immediately called her husband and they worked throughout the fall to make the purchase of this special property a reality.
Coincidently in 1961, Sandy stumbled upon a small swimming lake in South Easton called Maplewood Shores. It was a hot day, she was looking for a place to cool off with her newborn daughter Susan, and she heard about a little watering hole down the street.
Upon arriving, she met the owner, Frank Shanks, and discovered that he was looking to sell the property! With Hal's dream in mind, she immediately called her husband and they worked throughout the fall to make the purchase of this special property a reality.
Three years later, in 1965, after much preparation, building, and tree-planting (Hal planted every tree himself), Hal and Sandy welcomed their first 100 or so campers to Maplewood Country Day Camp. The rest is history...
Today, Hal & Sandy's children, Sue & Lee, share in the same dream and vision their parents worked so hard to make a reality 56 years ago. Over the last two decades, Sue and Lee have labored tirelessly to continue their parent's original mission: create a warm, welcoming, creative environment during the summer, that made everyone feel like family.
Only one thing has changed, Maplewood is now open year-round and provides the same quality programs offered in the summer, during the school year.
Over 50 years and tens of thousands of campers, staff members, and families later, Maplewood has evolved into a home for children of all ages. Over the years, buildings and appearances have changed, activities have been added, but Hal's dream has remained constant.
One thing is certain when you are at Maplewood you are always with family. The joy, energy, and fun he felt in 1956, and again in 1965 are what motivate Sue and Lee today.