Tarleton State goes green with new camps

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By RACHEL TUGGLE

TheFlashToday.com

STEPHENVILLE (July 2, 2015) — The Wildlife, Sustainability and Ecosystem Sciences Department at Tarleton State University will host its first series of environmentally friendly camps this July. Headed by Paula McKeehan, assistant professor in the WSES department, these three camps will teach students the relationship between food, people and the environment with each session will focus on a different theme.

“We want children to understand where their food comes from. We are also going to touch on what the process is for making food and how it impacts the environment,” intern Kaci Garbacik said.

Each camp will take place each Wednesday starting on July 14. Students can participate in one, two, or all three camps. The cost is $25 per camp or $60 to attend all three camps.

The first camp on July 14 is “Green Gardening.” Campers will get to visit the sustainable teaching garden located next the Fine Arts Center, learn about different gardening techniques and plant something to begin their own garden. Crissa Nugen, grant specialist, will also teach and have an activity on butterfly gardens.

“My presentation will be about how butterfly gardening is a way of creating a habitat that attracts and nurtures butterflies,” Nugen said. “It will provide kid-friendly tips and ideas towards attracting butterflies to their yards. This is important because butterfly populations are steadily declining.”

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The second camp, “Green Cooking,” will be the following Wednesday on July 21. Students will learn basic and healthy cooking techniques in the food lab in the Kinesiology building.

“This camp will focus on food nutrition and, of course, gardening will come into that, too,” McKeehan said.

The last camp on July 28 is Recycling Mania. Students will repurpose old materials, such as grocery sacks and milk cartons, by turning them into something new and useful. They will learn about how to recycle and the benefits of recycling.

“In the third camp, we are going to talk about food waste because that’s also a big issue when it comes to waste,” McKeehan said. “We will talk about how they can prevent food waste and how that can start with gardening. We feel like if they realize how difficult and how much work it takes to grow food they won’t waste it and will realize what a precious resource it is.”

Registration is still open for interested students who have completed kindergarten through the sixth grade. Contact Paula McKeehan at pmckeehan@tarleton.edu or Kaci Garbacik at kaci.garbacik@go.tarleton.edu. Students will can register on the day of the camp if spots are still available.

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