WATERFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Camp Harkness in Waterford is a 102-acre waterfront camp where people of all abilities and challenges can experience nature.

The bridge along the camp’s walking trail was originally built by the Boy Scouts. It was not made to accommodate larger wheelchairs, so volunteers got to work to change that on Thursday.

“We demoed the old one, built a new one and we’re about to put it in place,” said Matt Erdmann, owner of Keller Williams Realty in the Greater Hartford area.

Every second Thursday in May, volunteers put down their electronic devices to pick up hammers and rakes to do some hard labor for a good cause. They call it “RED Day.”

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“Honestly this is the best day of the year for us,” said Erdma, a volunteer.

“It’s renew, energize, donate,” said Jeni Mascaro, a realtor with Keller Williams.

Camp Harkness holds a special place in Mascaro’s heart. Her brother has Cerebral Palsy and he used to attend Camp Harkness for epilepsy camp, for free.

“It was a place where we weren’t judged,” said Mascaro. “That was the biggest thing for us. “

Mascaro was joined by her son Cooper, her coworkers and volunteers from several other companies to help make a difference at Camp Harkness on Thursday.

“Nothing can happen without collaboration with the community and this group is wonderful,” said Vicki Severin, who is with the Camp Harkness Foundation, which raises money for the camp.

20 years ago the Camp Harkness Foundation installed a playscape that is in need of repairs.
The camp’s maintenance crews have been able to do some of them like replacing a bridge for wheelchairs. But what they may need most is a new playscape altogether.

Although it’s not cheap, the cost of the improved playscape will be about $300,000. The camp will need more support to make that dream a reality.