RANGELEY – Hermie Glick and his family were ready Saturday afternoon to meet with opponents of their plan to build a camp on Round Pond.
The family had invited 100 people to come to their house, learn about their plans and express their concerns. They hoped the private, informal meeting would build more enthusiasm in the community for their controversial endeavor.
To the family’s surprise, only 15 people showed up, and they voiced nothing but support for the camp.
Allison Hagerstrom, of the Greater Franklin Development Corp., said she thinks, “It’s a great project – and it fits in with Rangeley’s tourism industry.”
Pam Ellis and Sonja Johnson, both from Rangeley, stood outside the Glicks’ house looking at architectural drawings, showing the proposed camp set about 300 feet back from the pond, and built in such a way as to look as unobtrusive as possible.
The two women expressed their views that the camp will serve an important public service by getting children in nature as opposed to sitting inside playing video games.
Glick, 26, and his family bought a 300-acre parcel of land on Round Pond two years ago, hoping to build a summer camp for 400 children. Their plans include soccer and baseball fields, a pool and a theater.
Ever since the family announced their plans, members of the Rangeley Crossroads Coalition have been fighting the camp fearing overdevelopment could harm the pond’s wildlife and negatively affect tourism. In March, a judge vacated a decision made by the town Zoning Board of Appeals that would have eased the way for the Glicks.
At a special town meeting in May, townspeople will vote on proposed zoning changes that will affect the area around Round Pond.
Mary Glick, Hermie’s mother, said the proposed zoning changes will prohibit landowners around the pond, including the Glicks, from building more than one house or bed and breakfast on any 20 acre parcel of land.