Yampatika offers slew of camps | SteamboatToday.com
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Yampatika offers slew of camps

Nonprofit expands summer programs for kids

Yampatika summer programs

Yampatikes

Ages: 3 to 4

Date/Time: June 26 to Aug. 16 (9 to 11 a.m. or 1 to 3 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays)

Location: Yampatika

Cost: $12 members, $15 nonmembers (cost is per class)

Description: Let your little one explore a new topic each session through hands-on activities. Morning programs are nearly filled.

Critter Kids

Ages: 5 to 6

Date/Time: June 25 to Aug. 15 (9 to 11 a.m. or 1 to 3 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays)

Location: Yampatika

Cost: $12 members, $15 nonmembers (cost is per class)

Description: Let your kids go wild. Each session highlights a different Colorado animal with creative and educational hands-on activities. Morning programs are nearly filled, with a waiting list.

Summer Sprouts

Ages: 4 to 6

Date/Time: June 29 to Aug. 17 (9 to 11 a.m. Fridays)

Location: Drop-off and pick-up at Yampa River Botanic Park

Cost: $12 members, $15 nonmembers (cost is per class)

Description: Yampatika and the Yampa River Botanic Park have teamed up to offer plant and gardening programs to teach children how plants grow, what lives in the soil and why earthworms and bugs are important to a healthy garden. Each child will have an opportunity to test his or her green thumb and learn to garden.

Nature Explorers' Camp

(weeklong camp)

Ages: 7 and 8

Time: 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Location: Yampatika or at various hiking destinations

Cost: $200 for members, $220 nonmembers per week

- "Water, Water Everywhere" runs July 9 to 13. The aquatic environment is home to oodles of interesting animals, plants and insects. Children will study the water's surface using dip nets, hand lenses and other naturalist tools, and learn to identify, track and better understand the critters that live on and around Colorado's waterways.

- "Rock On! The World Beneath Our Feet" runs July 23 to 27. Become a geology expert in a week. Young rock hounds will uncover the history of the Rocky Mountains by exploring mountain formations, volcanoes, glaciers and prehistoric life forms.

- "The Zoo Around Us" runs Aug. 6 to 10. Did you know you have a zoo in your backyard? Learn how furry mammals and scaly reptiles in the Rocky Mountains survive, where they hide and how to find them.

Additional: Each program includes one day when children will explore the surrounding mountains on an age-appropriate day hike and will have an opportunity to participate in a hands-on stewardship project that teaches the importance of caring for the natural world.

Junior Naturalists' Camp

(weeklong camp)

Ages: 9 to 11

Time: 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Location: Yampatika or at various hiking destinations

Cost: $200 members, $220 nonmembers per week

- "Splish! Splash! Watery Worlds!" runs from July 16 to 20. From insects and fish to ducks and beavers, our wetlands and ponds are filled with fascinating life. Use dip nets, hand lenses and collecting trays to discover water's tiniest inhabitants while learning about the ducks, fish and other animals that love these watery worlds.

- "100 Million Years in a Week" runs from July 30 to Aug. 3. Become a geology expert in a week. Young rock hounds will uncover the history of the Rocky Mountains by exploring mountain formations, volcanoes, glaciers and prehistoric life forms.

- "Wildlife Detectives" runs from Aug. 13 to 17. Become a wildlife sleuth and learn the art of tracking animals. From identifying footprints, scat and animal homes, you're sure to develop a new set of detective skills that you can use in your own backyard.

Additional: Each program includes one day when children will explore the surrounding mountains on an age-appropriate day hike and will have an opportunity to participate in a hands-on stewardship project that teaches the importance of caring for the natural world.

— It’s clear Yampatika wants to encourage children’s fascination with nature.

This summer, the nonprofit environmental education org-anization is extending its programs to include children ages 3 to 11. The camps are designed to foster a connection between youths and their natural environment in Northwest Colorado.

“We feel that it is paramount to enhance the students’ science and leadership skills in the context of meaningful, inquiry-based environmental students in their own community,” said Jenn Wright, executive director of Yampatika.



Increasing demand warranted an expansion of programs, Wright added, and the list of activities available this summer through Yampatika is long, but slots are filling fast. Some programs already are full, and parents are encouraged to contact Yampatika to learn more about all programs and availability.

“The earlier the better,” Wright said about signing children up for the camps. “The weeklong camps are new this year. We built upon the successful hikes for the (older) age group. We try to start two weeks after school gets out, and go up until one week before school because we know families go on vacation or school shopping.”



Programs such as Yampatikes, Critter Kids and Summer Sprouts for children ages 3 to 6 have been around for several years, but Yampatika is opening up weeklong programs for children ages 7 to 11.

“These weeklong, interactive programs focus on exploring the natural world while encouraging creativity and discovery,” Wright said. “Students will also learn how to become stewards of their environment through hands-on experience.”

If parents register their children before Friday, they will be given a 10 percent discount off the regular cost of $220. Parents can register their children online at http://www.yampatika.org, by calling 871-9151 or by stopping by the Yampatika offices at 925 Weiss Drive.

Registration for Yampatika’s programs for younger children can be done through the same outlets.


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