mg bug camp 071918 (copy)

Selah Brossy inspects a butterfly she captured during a catch-and-release session during last year’s Hokie BugCamp. This year’s camps are scheduled for July 11 and 12.

Virginia Cooperative Extension is offering three summer camps to get kids interacting with the natural world.

The Virginia Tech Department of Entomology is once again offering its popular Hokie BugCamps. The half-day Mini Hokie BugCamp for ages 6 to 8 will take place Thursday, July 11, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The fee of $35 covers snack, camp T-shirt, books and activity supplies. Regular Hokie BugCamp for ages 9 to 13 will take place Friday, July 12, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The $60 fee includes snack, camp T-shirt, books and activity supplies as well as lunch. The site for each camp is 313 Seitz Hall, located at 155 Ag Quad Lane on the Virginia Tech campus, with drop-off and pickup in the Price Hall parking lot.

Both bug camps are open to all youth (kids do not have to be 4-H members) and will cover basic insect identification, followed by a “build your own collection” session that teaches insect collecting and pinning. There will also be a special activity on an insect-related field, and campers will get a peek at some of our favorite creepy-crawlies from the bug zoo.

The registration deadline for both Hokie BugCamps is Friday, June 28, by 5 p.m.

Parents should bring or mail a check and a completed health history form to the Montgomery County Extension office at 755 Roanoke St. in Christiansburg. You can download the health history form at https://www.ento.vt.edu/4-H_Entomology/HokieBugCamp.html. Make checks payable to the Virginia Tech Foundation Fund#875250. Please monitor www.facebook.com/hokiebugfest for camp updates.

In addition to BugCamp, kids can choose to take part in a Family Food Fest the week of July 15-19, presented by Virginia Cooperative Extension and Hahn Horticulture Garden. This program is for youth ages 9 to 13 (as of Sept. 30, 2019), but parents and younger kids will have a chance to participate too.

Camp will start each day at the Hahn Garden and feature various hands-on educational activities in the morning related to productive gardening techniques, cooking and food challenges, food preservation and more. During the afternoon, campers will take field trips to sites such as farmer’s markets, community gardens, beekeeping sites, berry-picking farms and others. Transportation will be provided with Virginia Tech Fleet Services vehicles.

On Monday and Wednesday evenings of camp week, organizers will provide education on cooking and food preservation, including tasty recipes using fresh produce, and will have a fun family cooking challenge to conclude with a family meal, complete with food and table setting etiquette. Younger children may attend the evening programs with parents.

The cost is $75 per child, $25 for each additional child in a family. Fee is for campers only; cost includes evening activities. If financial assistance is needed, please inquire about possible payment options.

The registration deadline for the Family Food Fest is Friday, June 28.

To register go to http://tinyurl.com/vcefoodfest and complete the Google form as instructed. There is a limit of 16 youth for the day camp. Once we receive registration, we will send additional information including instructions for payment.

For any camp, if your camper has a disability and desires assistance or accommodation, please notify Michelle Dickerson five days prior to the event at 382- 5790 (TDD 800-828-1120) Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. to discuss accommodations.

Please note that camps tend to fill up quickly so it is advised to register as soon as possible. For questions about any camp opportunity, please contact the Montgomery County Extension office at 382-5790.

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Submitted by Michelle Dickerson

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