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New camping spot open at Philpott
Group campground is 'the first piece' of marina project
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Jeff Turton (from left), project engineer for Henry County; Roger Adams, director of Henry County Parks and Recreation; and Dale Wagoner, deputy county administrator, stand Thursday at a new group campground that is open at Philpott Lake. (Bulletin photo)

Friday, July 26, 2013

By DEBBIE HALL - Bulletin staff writer

A new group campground at Philpott Lake is open for business.

“The is the first piece of the marina project,” Deputy Henry County Administrator Dale Wagoner said Thursday from the campground that features 10 sites with water/sewer and electric hookups.

It is the only group campground on Philpott Lake with water, sewer and electrical hookups, Wagoner said.

Many groups — such as families/friends, churches, civic groups and others — find the space ideal because they can camp next to one another, as opposed to being split up among different campsites, according to Roger Adams, director of Henry County Parks and Recreation.

The facility includes rest room/shower facilities, a shelter and other amenities such as a basketball hoop, amphitheater, horseshoe pit and a sandbox for youngsters, according to Wagoner and Adams.

Visitors may play volleyball, walk on nearby trails, enjoy wildlife, go fishing and/or visit Philpott Lake, which is within walking distance, they added.

Renters can lock the gates at night and have the entire campground to themselves, Wagoner said.

The campground already has been rented, and many groups don’t need all 10 spaces, he said.

“The last group only used four campsites, but they had the campground all to themselves, Adams said.

Jeff Turton, project manager, said local contractors Prillaman & Pace and Triangle Electric expedited work on the campground project so “the people who rented it could get the extra benefit of water/sewer and electricity.”

When the marina project is completed, campers also will have two boat slips to use during their stay, Adams said.

The current rent for the 10 sites and all amenities in the group campground is $100 per night, officials said. The rates do not change if fewer sites are needed.

In updating progress on the marina being built by the county nearby, Turton said the floating dock is “being fabricated as we speak” in roughly 8-by-20-feet sections. “They are right in the middle of working out the framing,” he said.

As the sections are completed, they will be brought to Philpott and floated, and then affixed to one another, officials have said.

The floating dock will provide 40 reserved slips with 24-hour access, six day use (first come, first served) slips, a fuel slip, store, rest rooms and picnic area, Adams said.

“Sixty three people have called so far and expressed an interest in renting the 40 slips, and we’re hoping to be sold out (have all the slips rented) before we open,” Adams said.

An exact opening date has not been set, but likely it will be after Labor Day, officials said.

He has little doubt that will happen because he still is getting calls from people who want to be on the list of potential renters, he said.

The slips rent for $1,200 per year, and current tenants have the right of first refusal each year when the contracts are renewed, he said.

The list of names includes a family from the Poconos in New Jersey who have a home in Ferrum, Adams said. Others who have expressed interest in renting slips include people from Williamsburg “and a lot of local people, from Patrick County, Franklin County and the Greensboro (N.C.) area,” Adams said.

As part of the overall project, a few more renovations at the campground are planned in the coming months, including minor repairs to the rest room/shower facility, possibly a new roof on the picnic shelter and a final coat of asphalt/sealant on the paved drive through the campground, officials said.

“We will do those this fall and winter,” Adams said.

Most if not all of those projects will be undertaken by county employees, Wagoner added.

For additional information on rentals and group camping, online, visit; email; or call 634-4640.


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