Cars filed into Green Lakes State Park Sunday afternoon, not only to cool off at the beach, but also to get their campsite ready for July 4th week. This year, with the 4th falling on a Wednesday, campers had to take some time to choose which weekend or which weekday they would celebrate.
Bill Carinci, who lives in Oneida, goes to Green Lakes every year around July 4th, and says that his group had to work to coordinate their schedule so that they could all see each other.
"The 4th being on a Wednesday made it a little strange," he says. "Some of us had to work the day before, some of us the day after. So, we've got some people that are in this weekend, and we actually have some people that are leaving during the week, it's made it a little bit more challenging."
Matthew Mowers from Ilion also felt that challenge, as this year, he anticipated Green Lakes drawing a lot of people during the week, so he decided to come early.
"It was a little rough doing it during the week," Mowers says. "We figured if we came a little early we could beat the crowds, and coming now worked best with our work schedule."
The crowds filling up the campsites were not all Central New York natives, as some hailed from Canada, while others came all the way from Massachusetts and even Texas. For them, when it comes to meeting up with friends and family, Green Lakes has the best location for everybody.
"It's easy to get to," Tom McDonald, who was camping with a group of 30 as a part of a reunion, says. "It's only 15 minutes from the Thruway, and with everybody coming in from the south and the north and the west and everything...it's a great place to come to."
It's also easy for Central New Yorkers who live in the area, especially if they have family who live a half hour to 45 minutes away.
"The one thing that makes it nice is that everyone can get to this area, it's kind of centralized with our whole family, and it really works out well," Carinci says.