Summers Inspire Stewardship

Mohonk Preserve summer programs provide opportunities for children and teens to spend their summers outside enjoying the natural wonders of the Shawangunk Ridge while they laugh, play and learn together, and expand their understanding of themselves, each other and their natural world.

During the successful 2015 summer camp season, our Young Explorers (ages 4-6) experienced a new adventure every day as they spent their mornings on the trails and participated in a range of activities such as building animal shelters in the Children’s Forest, playing nature games and experiencing creative movement, searching for forest creatures, and creating their own art from nature. Also, we took on our first summer camp teen volunteer who assisted education staff during the Young Explorers program in July.

Through hiking expeditions, stream play, journaling, pond studies, storytelling, land art, and forest explorations, campers in Camp Peregrine (ages 7-10) were encouraged to find their own unique expression and voice using nature as a medium. Each day was an adventure of exploration and discovery in science and the arts.

2015 included a change for Camp Peregrine families as we offered six 1-week camp sessions rather than the traditional three 2-week sessions. This allowed more children to experience our camps and made it easier for families to register siblings and friends together for the same session. It also allowed greater flexibility for families to balance summer camp and vacation commitments.

At Mountainside Adventures (ages 10-13), campers had fun while hiking to new and exciting destinations each day where they developed their problem-solving skills through exciting team challenges. Campers spent their days creating their own adventures along the trails, culminating in a star-studded overnight campout. Mohonk Preserve is committed to serving families regardless of their economic status and in 2015, offered six scholarships to Young Explorers, Camp Peregrine and Mountainside Adventures, thanks to the generosity of supporters at our Annual Benefit Auction.

Expansion of the Preserve’s summer camps since 2013 has advanced our Strategic Plan goal of providing a “Mountain of Choices” for a broader and more inclusive constituency.

The Preserve’s summer camps are an integral part of our outdoor education programming, and have helped inspire a lifetime of respect for and stewardship of nature for thousands of campers.