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2015 4-H Camp is a success

The Clover Intelligence Academy, also known as the 2015 Brown County residential 4-H Camp was a huge success. Held June 9-12 at 4-H Camp Graham in Clarksville, the camp was held in partnership with Butler County. In total there were 104 campers and 48 counselors; 38 campers and eight counselors were from Brown County. Extension Educator for 4-H Youth Development Christy Clary and 4-H volunteer Christi Rockey also attended as adult staff. This is an increase of campers for both counties; in 2014 Brown County 4-H had 21 campers attend.

Campers participated in a variety of spy themed based activities along with traditional camp activities. Tuesday’s opening night started with get to know you activities and a photo scavenger hunt to introduce people to each other and the facility, followed by a game of Human Clue where campers had to ask informants questions to figure out “Who dunnit?” Wednesday morning the camp split into two groups with one group of campers and counselors going canoeing down the Little Miami River. Those who remained at camp played games, ate s’mores, learned line dances and camp songs. After lunch campers rotated through activities including archery and a craft of making a marshmallow shooter; rotations continued after dinner followed by an evening swim and campfire.

“This was one of our best campfires in years” said Erin Simpson-Sloan, Program Assistant OSU Extension Butler County. Counselors led songs, told a few jokes and performed skits. Counselors took a new twist on the skits this year, including dramatic interpretations of some of the campers’ favorite camp songs.

Thursday morning was a rotation of activities including spy crafts making decoders to solve a crime, life sized games like hungry hungry hippos and angry birds, campfire cooking and water games. First year counselor Laura Wood said her favorite part of camp were the water games, which included kickball with a waterslide into home plate. The afternoon was spent splashing around in the pool.

After a spy themed costume dinner, camper and counselors headed to their cabins to get ready for the Glo Party. Unfortunately, due to a small electrical fire, campers had to be sent home on Thursday night instead of Friday morning. Parents and guardians were called and everyone was picked up without any issues. It was a disappointing way to end camp, but one the campers will always remember.

Comments from parents about camp included “my son loved camp,” “I can’t say enough about the counselors.” Camp would not be possible without the camp counselors. Counselors apply in January, are interviewed and go through a minimum of 24 hours of training prior to serving as camp counselors.

Wood said for her the big difference between being a counselor versus a camper was knowing people and feeling closer to them. She also said it was stressful being in charge of campers, “but as time went along I felt I was able to get a better grasp of it.”

The growth and continued success of camp would not have been possible without scholarships from the Brown County 4-H Committee and the Brown County Pork Producers in Memory of Margret Rosselot. Thanks to their generosity, campers were able to apply for multiple $100 scholarships to help offset the cost of camp.

Excited by the success of camp and the growth in both campers and counselors, planning has already begun for 2016. If youth are interested in attending camp in 2016 or joining 4-H next year they can find more information about the program on the OSU Extension website or call the Brown County OSU Extension Office at 937-378-6716.

Christy Clary is the Extension Educator, 4-H Youth Development and County Extension Director for the area.

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