Back From the Wilds of the Preserve

By Green River Preserve

As our campers streamed into the back field after a two-night campout, their energy was not diminished in the slightest. I stood there, waiting to grab cameras and memory cards from my media team, astonished to see nearly every child with smiles stretched across their faces, seemingly ready for another trek into the wilderness.

Fortunately, the campout is over and all will get a much needed rest today, during a two-hour rest hour (it makes sense, trust me), a “mountain party,” which translates to a more extensive free-time and then movie night which will feature a family-friendly film that I’ve been told begins with a T and ends with an S. If you can solve that riddle, you know how excited we all are for that special activity this evening.

Having never seen such a large number of children after a backpacking extravaganza, I had no idea what to expect. Mostly, I imagined about a hundred sleepy campers, dragging their feet as they made the final walk to cabins for a good shower and perhaps a nap. While many may have taken a shower (thank goodness), few, if any, of our campers showed any signs that they’d been in the woods for three days.

I think, as an adult, I often forget just how miraculous the spirit of a child can be, or their will, for that matter. A great number of our campers are simply made to be in the outdoors, whether it be playing field games, zip-lining, backpacking or simply taking a moment to read some pages from their favorite novel, these are kids who will grow up to love the environment and hopefully be the voices that will keep our wild places just as they remember them from their adventures on the Preserve, wild.

Brandon S. Marshall