Independence Adventure Campers

4H-Camp1-WEBSoutheast Area—Colorado State University Prowers County Extension partnered with the Prowers County 4-H Council, Prowers County Land Use and Environmental Health, Prowers Soil Conservation District, Holly National Resources Conservation Service, Colorado State University Extension Agents and community volunteers to host the first ever Independence Adventure Camp June 29 through July 1 at the Sand and Sage Fairgrounds. Campers came from Lamar and Wiley and counselors were from Granada, Wiley, and Lamar.

In February, CSU Extension agents, Amy Kelley and Lacey Mann, attended and presented at the National Camping and Environmental Institute Conference (NCEEI) outside Atlanta, Ga. NCEEI was a biannual conference for Extension educators to learn about camp, environmental education curriculum, evaluation techniques, and how to organize day and overnight camps. Kelley and Mann returned from the conference inspired to develop day camp activities for the Southeast Area.   The Independence Adventure Camp was the first day camp following NCEEI.

4H-Camp2-WEBIndependence Adventure delivered science, technology, engineering, math (STEM), environmental education, nutrition, baking, sewing, Santa Fe Trail history, Code of the West, Ag Innovators, swimming, robotics, rocket building, and Pinterest crafting. Workshops were led by the Prowers County 4-H Council officers, Kylee Holden, Miranda Morgan, Makendra Torres, Angelina Downing, Ashlyn Crossland, Callie Bennett, Dominque Cardinelli, Sam Steward, Roni and Neal Vallejos, Berta Downing, Mallory Sikes, Kaye Kasza, Amber Freouf, Glenn Kirmer, and Rick Sanchez.

The Colorado State 4-H Foundation provided Code of the West curriculum covering the ten Cowboy Ethics principles. The principle Independence Adventure focused on was Ride for the Brand. Campers were taught to see the value in team work, how to build a team, loyalty to the team, and how to work together to achieve a common goal.

Campers spent one morning at Bent’s Fort to learn about the surrounding history, fur trade, and domestic life on the High Plains in the late 19th Century. Campers also spent the afternoon building water bottle rockets and swimming at the city pool to take a break from the summer heat.

This year’s camp was successful according to camper evaluation forms and parent feedback. “My kids did not stop talking about camp for half a day, they had so much fun,” Ryan Sneller said. Day camp activities are already being planned for Fridays this fall. CSU Extension Prowers County would like to extend sincere appreciation to all the people that made this camp possible. Please keep an eye on the Prowers County Extension Facebook page for more activities.

By Lacey Mann, CSU 4-H Extension Agent, Bent & Prowers Counties

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