The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the Department of Parks and Community Renewal want to make parents aware that limited space remains in Trailside Nature & Science Center’s popular summer camp program for students entering the 5th and 6th grades. The fee for each weekly half-day camp is $135 per child for residents of Union County and $165 for non-county residents.
“Trailside’s summer camp program is a great opportunity for students to gain a greater awareness of our local environment and wildlife while participating in fun, educational activities in the beautiful Watchung Reservation,” said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella.
“Backwoods Lore,” offered the week of July 9-13 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., introduces students to the history and life of the American pioneer; what it was like to live when each day brought new challenges for survival. Campers learn to identify wild edible plants, make an emergency shelter, build a campfire, follow a course with a map and compass, and track local mammals.
During the weeks of July 30-August 3 and August 6-10 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., students can take an in-depth look into the animal kingdom in “All about Animals.” Campers will learn about mammals, reptiles, fish, birds and insects. They will have the opportunity to meet live animals in the care of the Trailside facility, including snakes, turtles, frogs and fish. During the week-long camp, participants also will hike various areas of the Reservation and use binoculars, sweep nets, dip nets and field guides to identify varieties of wildlife inhabiting the Watchung Reservation.
“Kids for Conservation,” offered July 23-27 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. and August 6-10 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon, explores ways we depend on nature each day and discover benefits of renewable energy sources. Campers will experiment with solutions to clean our waterways and will hike to Lake Surprise to take part in water sampling activities. They will make a solar cooker, tie-dye a t-shirt and engage in fun-filled activities that demonstrate the importance of energy conservation. This camp also will teach ways of living a greener lifestyle that will keep the Earth healthy.
For information about any of these summer camp programs or any other upcoming programs and events at Trailside, call 908-789-3670 or visit www.ucnj.org/trailside. Trailside Nature and Science Center is located at 452 New Providence Road in Mountainside and is a service of the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders.