April 29, 2008

Touch of Nature to host Wild Outdoor Week

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. — When they say Touch of Nature Environmental Center's Wild Outdoor Week is W.O.W., they really and truly mean it's a week of wows.

It's an action-packed adventure camp July 21-25 for youth entering grades six through nine at Southern Illinois University Carbondale's 3,100-acre site. Located along the shores of Little Grassy Lake, the camp is the perfect locale for the center's Underway Adventures Program experience, emphasizing learning and personal growth through outdoor adventure.

W.O.W. is rock climbing, canoeing, caving, hiking, teambuilding, the ever-popular high ropes course and swimming galore. The Illinois Caverns, Panthers Den, Giant City State Park and Touch of Nature provide spectacular venues for all the action.

The day camp runs 8:30 a.m. until 4 p.m. daily. Campers can go directly to the main office at Touch of Nature Environmental Center, about seven miles south of Carbondale on Giant City Road, or enjoy a ride to the center from the SIU Arena. A bus will depart the Arena for the camp at 8 a.m. each day and return by 4:30 p.m.

Just 20 youths can participate, with registration on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration closes May 30 or when the camp is full.

The cost is $250 and includes lunch, snacks, transportation to and from activities, equipment, and instruction and supervision by the experienced program leaders who possess numerous safety and activity specialization certifications. Campers will need water bottles, swimming attire, sunscreen, and appropriate clothing for the various activities.

For more information or registration, contact Travis Geske, outdoor program leader, at 618/453-1122, ext. 238 or by e-mail at travisg@siu.edu or look online at www.ton.siu.edu.