Carbon County Conservation Camp was an empowering experience for the 22 children who spent the greater part of last week at Camp Shehaqua at Hickory Run State Park.

Whether they came for the programs, hiking, camaraderie or bon fire, it certainly didn't hurt that each meal was homemade, tasty and filling.

"We like to think that the kids come for the programs and the outdoor experience," said Franklin Klock, naturalist. The camp is sponsored by the Carbon County Environmental Center, Jim Thorpe.

Klock added, "It doesn't hurt that the camp also has a reputation of having great food."

Each day the campers have full breakfasts, lunch, dinners, which are made at camp, They also enjoy homemade cookies, cakes and plenty of other snacks.

Each day at camp is a full day of activities for the campers.

As always, the campers make a tie dye camp shirt the first day, then hike, tell stories and have plenty of free time with their new friends. This year there was also a "mad scientist," session and campers also learned how to throw a boomerang.

Campers always have a great time on the Lehigh River on a rafting trip mid week and start winding down camp on Thursday with art, talent show, capped off with a bon fire. By Friday, there was a session on bugs and it was time to pack, say their good byes and depart for home.

"We had great bunch of campers this year," said Susan Gallagher, chief naturalist. "They were great kids - a really good group of kids."

Klock agreed, "The kids were awesome." Klock said that kids don't go outdoors to play anymore. "Camp is a place to have a great experience in the out of doors," he added.