Community Champion of the Week: The Back Mountain Recreation Fund

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In the mid-1990s, a group of Back Mountain area residents formed an ad hoc committee to study the need for more recreational space.

Work collaboratively with state, county and local governments; Nonprofit; youth sports organizations; civic groups; area businesses; foundations; school districts and area residents; its mission was to improve the quality of life for all residents of Back Mountain and to meet a wide range of community needs with an emphasis on serving the young and the elderly.

As a result, Back Mountain Recreation, Inc. (BMR) was formed in 1998 as a non-profit charitable corporation dedicated to the conservation of open space and the development of recreational facilities in the Back Mountain area of ​​the northeast Pennsylvania. BMR owns, operates and maintains the 130-acre Jean and Hal Flack Family Sports and Recreation Park located at 55 Outlet Road in Lehman Township, Luzerne County. It was purchased and developed through generous donations from local families and state grants.

BMR strives to promote participation in healthy activities and environmental stewardship, provide educational opportunities for the public, and demonstrate good land use planning in a rapidly developing region. The park is located in the heart of Back Mountain and is home to the Back Mountain Soccer Club, the Back Mountain Youth Football and Cheerleading Club, and the Back Mountain Bandits Youth Lacrosse League. It is a central location for organized sport for more than 2,000 Back Mountain youth each year.

The park includes seven soccer/lacrosse fields and a football field for organized sports and general recreational activities. A finished walking path around the soccer/lacrosse fields is used daily by those looking for a level walk, away from vehicular traffic.

For those interested in a more strenuous walk, five miles of rustic hiking trails have been constructed by a local Eagle Scout project through the scenic hillside woods. Trail maps are available at the trailhead kiosk at the end of the upper parking lot.

During the winter months, the park is open for hiking, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing. Opening hours are daily from dawn to dusk, except in bad weather. BMR is supported by donations, user fees by organized groups, and the Luzerne Foundation’s Back Mountain Recreation Endowment Fund created through the generous gift of the Jean and Hal Flack family.

If you would like to support the Luzerne Foundation’s Back Mountain Recreation Endowment Fund, please donate via the website listed below or by mail. If you’re like the residents of Back Mountain and have a cause you care about and want to make a difference here in Northeastern Pennsylvania, please give us a call at the Luzerne Foundation.

Do you want to make our community better? U.S. too. Let’s do it together.

Thanks to you and for you, we are… Here for good.™

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C. David Pedri is President and CEO of the Luzerne Foundation. This series of weekly columns is an advertising partnership between the Luzerne Foundation and the Times Leader. For more information about the organization, visit www.luzfdn.org or call 570-822-2065.

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