Mount Olympus at 4-H Camp Kinnissippewa

“Mount Olympus” was the Greek mythology theme of the 2017 Buffalo, Pepin, Trempealeau and Pierce Counties’ 4-H Camp Kinnissippewa in Marine on St. Croix, Minnesota from June 14-16, 2017.  Over 120 youth ages 9 – 14 attended this year’s camp with 25 youth leaders contributing their leadership skills and time to serve as camp counselors.

Over the three days of base camp, campers in grades three through six took part in a variety of activities designed to help develop leadership, teamwork, communication, critical thinking and outdoor skills.  These activities included: drama, nature, archery, arts and crafts, teamwork games, and much more!  Base camp also included activities that the youth have always enjoyed, including an obstacle course, group games, swimming, campfires and a climbing wall.  One cabin earned the Leaky Canoe Award for their Greek myth cabin skit!

At the three day 4-H Outpost Adventure, youth in grades seven and eight participated in a more traditional outdoor camping experience. Youth stayed in tents, swam, hiked at a state park, competed in a teambuilding scavenger hunt, identified trees, learned about waters sources and built their own campfire to cook their meals over daily.  Youth gained teambuilding, problem solving and resiliency skills in a collaborative environment.

New this year was an “inpost” experience for seventh and eighth graders that incorporated the elements of both base camp and outpost with a close-knit group of campers guided by a college student, Kali Ashmore. The campers that participated in this inaugural event were Paige Danzinger, Makena Moline, Brooke Putz and Rylee Rosenberg. The experience was intended to provide a unique experience for campers and serve as a simple counselor-in-training experience as well.

Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) programming that promotes critical thinking and problem solving is a central component of 4-H Camp. 4-H campers designed and engineered Greek pillars and exploded Mount Olympus using a chemical reaction.   In addition, youth engaged in experiential learning activities that encouraged them to consider how they could solve real world concerns related to natural resources.

4-H Camp Kinnissippewa is made possible by its counselors who plan, teach and implement the learning experiences for their younger campers. Counselors engage in three days of leadership training that prepare them for working effectively with and caring for youth as well as teaching younger members to be leaders themselves. Buffalo County 4-H counselors included Reece Fernholz and Katelyn Abts.

Sofia Sandberg of Lucky 16 4-H and Jaycee Lisowski and Gina Guenther of BBC 4-H Club were leaders in group games at 4-H Camp Kinnissippewa.

Paige Danzinger, Brooke Putz, Rylee Roseberg and Makena Moline were the inaugural campers for “inpost” camp experience.

Alison George of Hilltop Climbers 4-H really got in on the camp theme by eating ambrosia, the foods of the Greek gods and goddesses.

Caden Estrada (middle) of Golden Hornets 4-H enjoyed meeting new friends at the 4-H Camp Kinnissippewa campfires.

Katelyn Abts of Hill & Hollow 4-H (shown left) led her campers to a trophy winning first place for their greek myth cabin skit.

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