4-H'ers spend timeat camp,

The Covington News - - Front page -

We left it all at home. There are no cell phones, no mp3 play­ers and no video games at camp.

The cab­ins have no tele­vi­sion or air con­di­tion­ing.

Sixty-seven New­ton County 4-H’ers, ages 9 to 12, braved the wilder­ness with a week of Camp Wah­sega.

And yet, the kids aren’t sure they even want to go home.

As I write this, we’re down to only about 12 hours of camp and the 4H’ers are torn.

“If I had a choice to go home, and to stay here for­ever, I don’t know which one I’d do. Re­ally I want to go home be­cause I miss my fam­ily, and I want to stay here be­cause it’s re­ally fun, but I also want to go home,” one young man told me tonight.

It’s easy for me to see why each kid has fallen in love with our 4-H camp in the moun­tains.

Mon­day, we set­tled into our one-room log cab­ins around the Wah­sega pond, filled up our wa­ter bot­tles and im­me­di­ately kicked off a high-en­ergy week with the col­le­giate camp coun­selors.

Days start at 7 a.m. with clean­ing for the cov­eted Clean Cabin Clover award and end with lights out af­ter 11 p.m.

Campers take turns serv­ing on “kitchen pa­trol” to set up the cafe­te­ria and clean up af­ter meals.

Each day we have fam­ily group meet­ings where campers learn cheers and skits as well as class ses­sions.

Classes in­clude archery, her­petol­ogy, stream ecol­ogy, gold pan­ning, healthy liv­ing and ultimate Fris­bee.

We swim in the pond and play in the wa­ter­fall when the life­guards are on duty at each, and kids splash in the creek all day long.

The tal­ent show on Wed­nes­day night brought out the best singers, dancers, cheer­lead­ers and ac­tors in camp.

I dressed up along with the kids for the hillbilly cos­tume con­test and tried to use my 5 foot in­flat­able al­li­ga­tor to eat the competition, but it didn’t work. Anna Mul­li­nax man­aged to evade the al­li­ga­tor and win the gold coin.

Some campers came to camp with si­b­lings, cousins or friends, but many came barely know­ing any­one.

You’d never know it, though, by look­ing around camp. I can’t even tell which kids are ours and which are from Rock­dale any more.

Oh, and it wouldn’t be camp with­out a crush on a coun­selor.

The girls have fig­ured out he’s some­where be­tween 18 and 32 (I’m sure he’s go­ing to be thrilled to hear the high end of that range!), and are try­ing to fig­ure

Tar­get prac­tice: out when they’ll all be old enough to date him.

We’ve had scraped knees and el­bows, hurt feel­ings, home sick­ness and a few more se­ri­ous bumps and bruises, but over­all it’s been an­other in­cred­i­ble week of camp.

I’ve asked around and there’s no con­sen­sus on what the best part of the week is, al­though tub­ing the river, spend­ing money in the can­teen and play­ing in the wa­ter­fall seem to come up a lot.

A lot of kids also men­tion the high ropes course. One of the great­est parts of Camp Wah­sega is that ev­ery camper is guar­an­teed a chance to con­quer the high ropes el­e­ments.

“I over­came my fear of heights, do­ing the zip line, fly­ing squir­rel and climb­ing wall,” said a fe­male camper.

When asked if she’d do it again, she said, “oh yeah!”

Not ev­ery­one chooses to try out the high ropes, but ev­ery kid can tell me some­thing they’ve done

Colum­nist for the first time this week, even if it’s just watch­ing the chick­ens walk­ing around over be­hind some of the boys cab­ins.

Most have never played in a creek, or ob­served a snake in the wild.

Sev­eral have never had to sweep a floor or pack their own suit­case.

I’m con­fi­dent that each and ev­ery 4-H’er will never for­get this in­cred­i­ble week of 4-H camp.

We couldn’t do it with­out the in­cred­i­ble vol­un­teers and teen lead­ers who give up a week to chap­er­one, drive, com­fort and guide our youth.

Thanks to David Dorsey, Dianna Gal­loway, Doug Kim­ble, Colleen Lewis, Pa­trick Turi, Ken Gal­loway, Mary Lathem, Michelle Lewis and Liz Simp­son.

We’d also like to thank Mama Bear Christin and all the ex­cel­lent Wah­sega Bears for lead­ing a sum­mer we’ll never for­get here in New­ton County.

Terri Kim­ble is the 4-H Ed­u­ca­tor for New­ton County 4-H. She can be reached at (770) 784-2010.

Terri Kim­ble/the Cov­ing­ton News

New­ton County 4-H’ers pre­pare for Archery Class dur­ing their two-week stay at Camp Wah­sega.

Terri Kim­ble

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.