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Campground To Become Chautauqua County Jellystone Park

The Hidden Valley Camping Area announced its transition to Chautauqua County Jellystone Park. The camping area will join Jellystone’s franchise and provide visitors with a unique vacation experience. P-J photo by Timothy Frudd

The Hidden Valley Camping Area announced this week it is making the transition to become Chautauqua County Jellystone Park.

Hidden Valley, which has been operating for over 50 years, explained it has officially joined theYogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts franchise. The transition is expected to bring a host of changes to the park, located at 299 Kiantone Road.

“I grew up camping at Jellystone,” Jessica Spak, owner of the campground, said. “So when we acquired this campground, our hope was that someday we would be able to turn this family friendly campground into a Jellystone Park.”

After more than a decade of improving the camp and buying her parents’ portion of the camp’s ownership, the Spaks have achieved their dream and joined the Jellystone Park franchise.

Spak said the campground initiated the conversation with Jellystone.

“We approached them and told them we were interested in joining the franchise system,” she said.

Representatives from the Jellystone franchise visited the campground on more than one occasion before making a franchise offer. Spak said the whole process took about eight or nine months.

“We’ve been working on this since last fall,” she said.

Spak explained the campground system has two main franchise options, Kampgrounds of America and Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Camp-Resorts. The camp pursued the option of joining the Jellystone franchise due to its commitment to creating a family-friendly atmosphere for campers.

“We’ve always tried to be the family-friendly fun campground here in Jamestown,” Spak said. “Going with Jellystone just takes it to that next level because we get the characters. We can continue to provide more family fun entertainment and attractions for local families. We just wanted to continue to increase what we offer here and have the most fun that we can during the summer.”

Spak said a 10-foot Yogi Bear Statue and Yogi Bear character visits will be added to the campground, as it transitions to a Jellystone franchise. Additionally, Spak said some of the signage at the campground will change to reflect the Jellystone brand.

“We’re just going to continue to provide more amenities, more activities and just continue to try to have as much fun as we can,” she said. “We have a lot of fun things coming up.”

The camp currently features a jumping pad, pool, gaga ball pit, playground, basketball, tennis, gem mining and a variety of other activities for campers to enjoy. These attractions are expected to expand as the camp transitions to a Jellystone franchise.

“We’ll be increasing our theme weekends and our activity offerings,” she said. “We will be ramping up our activities as the summer goes on, and we will be a full Jellystone activity bubble come next May,”

Spak is hopeful that bringing a Yogi Bear Jellystone Park to Chautauqua County will have a positive impact on the area.

She said the campground will have to hire more people as it expands and increases its activities, offering additional employment opportunities for the community.

“That’s a positive impact as well,” she said.

The Jellystone Park franchise also anticipates the expansion of the camp will benefit the area.

“Adding a Jellystone Park location to Chautauqua County provides families with an exciting new vacation option we know they will enjoy,” Trent Hershenson, Jellystone Park vice president of marketing, said. “Jellystone Park locations throughout the United States are famous for their fun attractions, family activities, theme weekends and Yogi Bear costumed characters. We are excited about bringing this concept to the area as we expand our presence in New York state.”

Despite operating in Jamestown for over 50 years, Spak said a lot of people still are not aware the campground exists and what it has to offer.

“The national brand marketing will help with that,” she said. “I’m hoping it will just get the word out about what we have to offer in Jamestown. It’s all about family and it’s all about fun. I can’t stress that enough.”

Upcoming themed weekends at the Chautauqua County Jellystone Park include Chocolate Lovers weekend, Wet N Wild weekend, Glow-in-the-Dark weekend, and Halloween weekend.

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