First Nature Explore Event Successful

Kids at Camp Wa-Ri-Ki

The gang from Washington Elementary School Boys & GIrls Club pose at Wa-Ri-Ki.

Imagine close to 100 kids unplugged from electronic devices interacting with nature and learning from science teachers on 22 acres of wooded campgrounds under the sun on a warm summer’s day and you get the picture of the successful event held this week at Camp Wa-Ri-Ki.

Monday, August 18th, Camp Wa-Ri-Ki held its first Nature Explore event in conjunction with the Forest Service, the Parks Foundation of Clark County, and Vancouver Summer Adventure and combined a celebration of Smokey the Bear’s 70th Birthday with lunch and a science filled exploration of the wooded camp area and pond.

The kids helped Smokey Bear celebrate his 70th Birthday, and of course he taught them about fire safety.

The kids helped Smokey Bear celebrate his 70th Birthday, and of course he taught about fire safety.

Guiding the kids were local community leaders including Nat, a counselor with Boys and Girls Clubs of Southwest Washington, who had never been up to the Camp before, and Mark Watrin, a Science teacher from Battle Ground Schools.  The children progressed from area to area marked by sign posts and staffed by local experts who introduced them to their surroundings.  Kids especially enjoyed the “pond lady” who introduced them to many aspects of the local Camp pond itself, including tadpoles.

Ashley Davis of Boys and Girls Club led a group of kids from the Washington Elementary Clubhouse to the Camp for the event (that’s her on the right behind the kids, standing with the counselors in the group photo).  We were pleased to see them visit, in keeping with their mission of “To inspire and enable young people, especially those who need us most, to realize their full potential as productive, caring and responsible citizens”

Phyllis Goldhammer, Camp Director, thanked numerous volunteers and reported that the Camp will seek to work with the agencies involved to hold at least one more Nature Explore event in the coming year.


Here’s  a gallery of photos to give you a taste of the event:

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