Lake MVIMA

Lake MVIMA (CLAP) is a 2.5 acre inland lake. It is spring fed and built between 1958 and 1960. Originally used for swimming, it is now used for small boating, fishing, and has a rope swing.

History

Prior to consturction, camp used Lake Erie for swimming and boating. Low water levels, lake contamination, and the desire for calm boating waters led camp to build an inland lake. Industrial pollution had begun to cause ear infections for people swimming in Lake Erie by the 1950s. Camp and the Health Department continued to test the Lake Erie water and it wasn't until the mid 1970's campers began to swim again in Lake Erie.[1] The contractor for the lake was Guterba & Holzer Inc. of Colombiana. The Mahoning Valley Industrial Management Association provided $20,000 to build the lake. The contract was awarded in 1958 and the dam was finished by midsummer that year. [2] Construction was completed in 1960. Joe Check was camp director at that time, and one of the largest proponents of the project. Fred B. King was president of the YMCA trustees.[3] Later, swimming moved to the John R. (Jack) McPhee pool upon it's completion.

The Camp Fitch Master Plan still calls for the eventual closing of Ables Rd and flooding the 6 acres west of Lake MVIMA to expand it into “Lake Fitch”.

These dedication pictures our from the Vindicator (1960):

Photo: Joe Check and Paul Davies with MVIMA staff at the dedication

Current and Previous Activities

Dedication Ceremony

The dedication ceremony took place just hours before campers arrived for the of start the 1960 season on Sunday, June 26th. Former MVIMA President, Earl Walker, presented the lake the YMCA Trustees. The current MVIMA president at the time, Robert J. Sauce presided over the ceremony. The invocation was given by Robert Doyle. Ed Barnes played the organ while Richard Hunneke lead the attendees in hymns. Camp Chaplain John McCall gave a brief address before Marilyn Goss lead the benediction.

Trivia

The Mahoning Valley Industrial Management Association started raising funds to build Lake MVIMA in May 1958. The Association took out a mortgage for the funds they expected to raise to expedite the building process. The construction mortgage for the lake was actually paid off in June 1962. On August 19, 1962 MVIMVA members and their families met at Camp Fitch to burn the mortgage paper work and celebrate.

See Also

References

1. a Collier, Jeffery, July 15, 1975. YSU Oral History Program: Youngstown YMCA Project: Henry Hunneke. Youngstown State University, pp.1-21.
2. a Youngstown Vindicator, July 1, 1958. Contract Awarded for Inland Lake. Vindicator Printing Company.
3. a Youngstown Vindicator, June 26, 1960. Camp Fitch Gets New Lake. Vindicator Printing Company.
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