Session 4 Day 5--Plenty of Produce!

By Sandy Schenck

Wow! The GRP farm is turning out a fabulous harvest, one that we will enjoy in the coming days. One of our mentor hikes went down to the farm this morning, and they pulled squash, cucumbers, tomatoes, beans and 113 lbs. of potatoes! We’ll enjoy the veggies over the next few days—one of the outdoor cooking activities already snagged some of them and sauteed them over an open fire—yum!! We also often find arrowheads and spearheads at the farm, since we are turning over the soil, and this morning they found an arrowhead that could possibly date back to 7000 BC. Other mentor hikes had productive and exciting mornings, too. One hike went to Fawn Lake, which is located in DuPont State Forest, where they snorkeled and fed the bream and talked about aquatic environments. Two other groups put their eyes and hands to work in a different way, sketching what they were seeing. One of these groups, hiking down around the Hemlock Field, began making an illustrated catalogue of different species, like plantain, that can be found in that particular area—the beginnings of a field guide to the GRP.

After lunch, campers went back to the cabins for rest hour and then on to activities. Campers who are taking archery got to try out the walking range today; yesterday, they fine-tuned their stance and practiced their aim on a range that has the traditional bullseye targets set up. The walking range is set up to the side of the traditional range; different targets are set up on a trail that winds through the woods. Some of the targets are moving, giving campers a new and unique challenge. Other campers were making mementoes of camp in woodburning. Campers create designs on “wood cookies” that they can then gift to others or take home. Some campers were putting their names on their wood cookies. Others were burning images, pictures of flowers and trees. In our Low Challenge Course activity, campers were participating in a modified “nitro transfer” exercise. Campers crowd onto one platform, and they must figure out how to transfer all the participants across to another platform, using only a rope swing. Staff facilitate, helping campers figure out their resources and how to better communicate and work together as a group.

Tonight for evening program, we had an Appalachian Shindig. Campers had a great time do-si-do’ing, gypsying, and allemanding right! Tomorrow, campers head out on camp-out, where they will be hiking, cooking out, and looking for the other 3 Grand Slam animals, among other experiences. We are looking forward to some new adventures!