Wild Pagosa ready for Summer Wilderness Institute

Are you looking for a great program for your child this summer? Immerse your child in the great outdoors. The Wild Pagosa Summer Wilderness Institute kicks off in less than three weeks, and there are still a few spots available. The program offers a small student/teacher ratio and a curriculum that combines leadership, team building and wilderness education to foster an appreciation of nature, community and self. Each session is limited to 20 participants.

Wild Pagosa, an outdoor summer institute for kids, piloted a very successful program in June 2008. The enthusiasm of the participants and their parents convinced Wild Pagosa’s founders of the need for ongoing and expanded programming for the youth of Pagosa Springs. This summer, Wild Pagosa will offer three weeklong sessions for children entering grades 1-6.

The Wild Pagosa program is designed to use sensory exploration, hands-on experiences, daily hikes, nature journals, and projects, crafts and activities to help synthesize learning. “Backyard Habitats,” for children entering first or second grade, will run from June 22-26. This session offers experiential learning about native plants, animals and insects. Participants will also make daily theme-related snacks and crafts. “Wet and Wild Expedition,” for children entering third or fourth grade, will run from July 13-17. This session offers place-based instruction and activities in geology, water conservation, wetland ecology, and local geothermal features. “Wilderness Quest,” for children entering fifth or sixth grade, will run from July 27-31. This session offers place-based instruction and activities in river hydrology, riparian habitats, water conservation and a local, nature-based service project. The culminating activity for this session will include an overnight campout. All Wild Pagosa enrollees will study and practice the Leave No Trace principals and participate in team-building activities.

If this is an adventure that your child would enjoy and benefit from, call 946-8612 to enroll, or visit our Web site at www.wildpagosa.homestead.com for more information. Through the generosity of local donors like GECKO, Dave and Lue Armbrecht, Pagosa Springs Ruritan Club, Terry’s Ace Hardware, Wild Turkey Federation, the Masonic Lodge and other individuals, there is a limited amount of need-based scholarship money available.

“If we want children to flourish, to become truly empowered, then let us allow them to love the earth before we ask them to save it.”— David Sobel.

Photo courtesy Jim Shepherdson
Members of the Pathfinders participated in the National Rifle Association (NRA) Youth Hunter Education Challenge regional event held in Bayfield May 16. In back, from left, are Dan Shepherdson, Chase Purcell, Tyler Manzanares, Kyler McKee, Katy Laverty and Jeremy Horstman. In front are Noah Logan, Keaton Anderson, Daniel Cabrera, Jacob Manzanares, Hunter Thompson, Johanah Laverty, Carson Laverty, Jesse Laverty, Tim Shepherdson and Josaiah Cabrera.