Six-day camp teaches youngsters outdoor skills and just plain fun

Co-sponsored by the Kansas Wildlife Federation (KWF) and the K-State Cooperative Extension Service, the Outdoor Adventure Camp (OAC) is a six-day summer camp for kids who either enjoy the outdoors or want to learn more about it. Now in its 19th year, the event will be held June10-15 at the Camp WaShunGa area of Rock Springs 4-H Center, near Junction City.

Kansas youngsters ages 10 through 12 will spend mornings exploring the grounds at Rock Springs with instructors, getting up-close experience with Kansas animals and plants. Session subjects include insects, mammals, reptiles and amphibians, fish management, wildlife management, wetlands, birds, and stream ecology.

Afternoons will be spent learning about birds of prey, skins and skulls, bats, streams, and more general topics, including ecology, wetlands, riparian areas, and watersheds. Instructors from the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks, Kansas State University, the Natural Resource Conservation Service, county conservation districts, the Riley County Fish and Game, 4-H clubs, and other organizations will be on hand.

Depending on the evening, participants may prowl for owls, star-gaze, or watch bats gobble bugs. Evening swims are on the agenda, and participants will sit around a campfire, eat s’mores, and tell stories. One evening will feature a friendly fishing competition.

Other activities planned are scavenger hunts; swimming and canoeing; fishing; rifle, shotgun, muzzleloader, archery, and pellet gun shooting; arts and crafts; and horseback riding. A day-trip to the Milford Nature Center and Fish Hatchery will occupy one day.

Participants should bring a swimsuit, sleeping gear, and clothes for a week. Sunscreen, insect repellent, a cap, a fishing pole, and a water bottle are also recommended. Food, instruction, and lodging are all included in the $225 price of the six-day camp. Sportsman’s clubs offer Outdoor Adventure Camp scholarships. KWF and the Outdoor Writers of Kansas offer scholarships through Kansas Big Brothers/Big Sisters. Space is limited, and the registration deadline is June 4.

For applications and scholarship information, contact Outdoor Adventure Camp, Theresa Berger, 406 S. New York Ave, Sylvan Grove, KS 67481. Checks should be made out to the Kansas Wildlife Federation. For more information, phone 785-526-7466 or e-mail mailto:bergkwf@wtciweb.com.