Young Santa Fe Historians Camp in Lamar

Setting up tents in Savage Stadium

Setting up before leaving for burgers at Willow Creek Park and a swim at the pool.

Several busloads of youngsters from the Wamego, Kansas area, ages 8 to 12, had on overnight stop in Lamar this past Tuesday, June 7.  This was the last leg of their journey along the Santa Fe Trail, a 12 day educational trip that combined sightseeing and learning about the history of the Trail.

Janet Armistead, one of the organizers, said the trips have been on-going for the past 20 years and are scheduled every other year.  Students submit an application which includes why they’d like to make the journey, and a teacher’s recommendation.  Armistead said the trip takes two different routes, “The dry run is outbound and we take the mountainous route on our return trip.”  She commented on the changes in climate that were noticed along their journey.  “We had about six inches of rain on our first leg and had to spend some nights in school gyms, but even the students noticed the dryness.  There was one historical area where it was so dry, the busses were not allowed in because of fire concerns, so the students had to hike a part of the way,” she added.

Along with their night camping in Savage Stadium, the kids were treated to a burger fry and some time in the swimming pool at Willow Creek Park, part of a fun night provided by Pat Palmer and local members of the Santa Fe Trail Association.  Armistead said arrangements are made to have local residents relate some of the Trail’s history to the kids from their own areas, and Palmer was providing the narrative for them.  Armistead commented that the last leg of the journey was getting a little tiresome for the students as it involved a lot of miles.  “We arrived in Lamar from Walsenburg, and the next day, we’ll be traveling almost all the way back to our starting point, although there will be time for awards and a recap of the trip,” she said.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: EducationEntertainmentHistoryLamarSchoolTourismWeatherYouth


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