County officials say Mauch Chunk Lake Park is ready for the upcoming Fourth of July weekend.

On Thursday, the commissioners said everything is ready for the holiday, as thousands of area campers and visitors will travel to Carbon County as a getaway destination.

Commissioner William O'Gurek, chairman, said David Horvath, parks director, reported that all campsites and cabins in Mauch Chunk Lake Park have been rented for the weekend.

"I think we're ready," O'Gurek said. "We're fully staffed and I think our facilities are second to none. We expecting a good weekend."

Commissioner Wayne Nothstein added that as long as both lakes Mauch Chunk Lake and Beltzville State Park remain open over the fourth, everything should go smoothly.

Beltzville State Park, located outside of Lehighton, has already been closed once this year as a result of high levels of bacteria in the water. If higher than permitted levels are found, the lake is shut down until bacteria levels go down.

In other county matters, Ron Gilbert, owner of The Covered Bridge Inn in Lower Towamensing Township, thanked the commissioners for allowing he and his wife to post an award for the capture of the person responsible for severely damaging the covered bridge, located in the Little Gap section of Lower Towamensing.

The covered bridge, the last remaining of its kind utilized by motor vehicles in Carbon County, was damaged early last month, when Joseph Chiariello of Albrightsville, who was driving a large commercial truck, drove through the bridge, hitting a number of beams and snapped them off.

As a result, the bridge, has been closed to all traffic until repairs can be made. It is estimated that the repairs will cost $25,000.

Gilbert outlined what he heard about how state police learned the identity of Chiariello and also thanked the news media outlets for bringing the story details to the public.

O'Gurek then told Gilbert that the county's engineer is currently working on the specifications to restore the bridge.