Farm Camp ’12Posted by Mary Faulkner
This summer Unquowa welcomed many new and returning campers for the 6th year of Farm Camp! It was amazing to see campers who have been with us for four or five summers reunite and greet each other with hugs and happy hellos. For some campers it was their first year and we were proud to watch the veterans explain to the new campers what some of the things they would be doing were, and how much fun they were going to have at camp. It was as though returning campers were welcoming new members to the family, not unlike what any new member of the Unquowa community feels.
Campers enjoyed mornings at Sport Hill Farm in Easton working with farmer Patti Popp. Patti shared her knowledge and expertise for organic farming, but more importantly her passion and pride of what it means to cultivate and grow food “nature’s way”. A week at Patti’s farm ended in a fun day of games and thank you’s for all the campers’ hard work! Campers also went on all-day field experiences once a week to either The Fairfield Audubon, New Pond Farm in Redding and The Coastal Center at Milford point. The philosophy of sustainability and stewardship of our earth were a natural extension throughout all these experiences.
Our youngest campers, the Sweet Peas, will get a chance in a year our two to venture off campus for fieldtrips and to Sport Hill Farm, but for now they worked in our amazing gardens at school, watering, planting and harvesting. Our little ones also explored science in the garden and made related art projects. They even got a chance to hone their cooking skills with our schools chef, Peter.
When our full day campers were not at Patti Popp’s farm they were very busy. Afternoons were spent in science, art and cooking classes. The young scientists did everything from observing chemical reactions between commonly found household products, making contraptions from recycled materials and even exploring the Horse Tavern Brook and observing the different animals that call it home. In art classes students worked with different mediums such as clay, paint and sand to create lovely pieces. Cooking classes with Chef Peter introduced some campers to tastes and foods they hadn’t experienced yet, and many left at the end of the day telling their parents they had to stop at Sport Hill Farm or their farmer’s market to purchase the ingredients they used in that day’s class to try it at home! Sme campers were even heard saying, ” We have to get some quinoa!”
Many thanks to all of those who helped to provide hundreds of children with another summer farm camp season!
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