Located on the former Pine Valley Campground on Boswell Hill in Endicott, Binghamton Bear Campground has been redesigned under new ownership.
A water park, giant slides, gem mines, overnight stays in a luxury wagon… Residents of Southern Tier don’t have to travel far to find unique vacation activities this summer.
Binghamton Bear Campground is new to the local tourist scene this year, opening for its first season on May 1. Located on the site of the former Pine Valley Campground on Boswell Hill in the town of Union, the campground has been redesigned under new ownership. .
Assistant Campground Manager Moriah Abbott has been there every step of the way as the new vision took shape.
“Even before we closed the property, we started going to conferences and things like that looking at all the different ideas to bring here to the campground,” said campground assistant manager Moriah Abbott. “We have added many different attractions and amenities here.”
What’s New at Binghamton Bear Campground
Burke Campgrounds of NY, LLC acquired the 62-acre Pine Valley Campground for $540,000, according to property records. The new group of owners closed the property in December and set about transforming the grounds into a more modern center for summer activities. Customers can expect to find new slides that stretch 100 feet — “essentially like a snow tube without the snow,” Abbott described.
A ‘war of the darts’ course has been installed on the grounds and the recreation room has been updated with new table tennis, foosball, pool and air hockey tables. Giant jumping cushions are part of the new outdoor attractions. Two gaga ball pits were in constant use during the campground’s first month. Courts are also in place for more traditional sports like basketball, pickleball and sand volleyball, as well as a ball diamond for kickball tournaments.
Abbott is in charge of activities and “everyday fun”. This includes coordinating a range of daily events and themed weekends. Some on the calendar in July include a “Once Upon a Time Weekend” with a fairy tale theme, a Chocolate Lover’s Weekend and Christmas in July.
The campground is also home to daily activities like mini golf, pedal cart rides, and gem mining.
“We’ve revamped the place on every level and are making it really family-friendly,” Abbott said. “We wanted this campsite to be a place where everyone, regardless of age, could come and have a good time and enjoy the company of friends and family.”
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The “Splashtown” water attraction has been added to the lake
The improvements extend to the six-acre lake in the center of the campground. Binghamton Bear Campground now features an inflatable obstacle course on the lake, dubbed the Splashtown Inflatable Water Park. The water park is open from 5 years old.
“We had every imaginable age there,” Abbott said. “There is a big trampoline, a few slides and lots of different climbing obstacles. The favorite is this one which is kind of a swing.
The lake also has a swimming area with a sandy beach. Campers can discover kayaks, rowboats, pedal boats and paddle boards to take out on the water. Catch-and-release fishing is permitted on the lake.
Water activities are open Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend.
Unique Lodging Options at Binghamton Bear Campground
Binghamton Bear Campground has around 140 campsites, with a mix of RV hookups, primitive tent sites and three distinct accommodation options – luxury wagons, premium yurts and tents of glamping.
The campground is awaiting delivery of a number of Colorado luxury wagons. The wagons have an old, Oregon Trail appearance on the outside, but the interiors are outfitted with modern conveniences like a queen-size bed and bunk beds, as well as electricity, heating, and air conditioning.
The campsite’s glamping tents offer a similar experience with mattresses and electricity. The term “glamping” is a mixture of “glamorous” and “camping”. It was coined to describe a recent trend towards camping experiences that offer much more luxurious accommodations than traditional camping trips.
Another glamping option is the yurts at Binghamton Bear Campground. Circular abodes are a cross between a tent and a cabin, and come equipped with creature comforts.
While the campground still offers areas for traditional tent setups and RVs, the addition of luxury accommodation options was an intentional attempt to cater to campers of all preferences.
“We recognize there are a lot of different campers out there,” Abbott said. “Some people really like to camp with the comforts of home, so all of our accommodations have electricity and full furnishings, so you can feel more at home while you’re at this great campground camping. do whatever fun is outdoors. What do you want.”
The campground was nearly full on Memorial Day weekend as attendance increased as spring temperatures warmed. Abbott said that although many campers are from Broome County, some guests have traveled several hours to stay at the campsite.
“We have been working for a very long time to make this place a success. Every week there is more and more to do, to accomplish,” Abbott said. “To see it come full circle with all the people here now and to see all the kids having fun is really a great experience.”