At White Pine’s Coastal Forest Summer Camp, children spend their days exploring the forest, streams and marshes of the woods surrounding Coastal Ridge Elementary School in York, Maine. In small groups and led by experienced mentors, children have the opportunity to learn about their wild neighbors through tracking, observation, sensory activities, games, songs and play. Children return to their parents dirty, full of stories and with eagerness to return. After a year of isolation and quarantine, who couldn’t use a fun-filled week outdoors?
Coastal Forest Summer Camp is for ages 5 – 11. Our youngest students must have completed kindergarten and our oldest will have just finished fourth grade. Join us for one or more weeks, just register early as space is limited! We have changed our financial aid process this year to be completed during registration. If you plan to apply for financial aid, please read about our process first, here. Also during registration, families who are able to help sponsor other campers will have the opportunity to do so during checkout. While White Pine Programs sets aside a portion of every program’s tuition to fund scholarships, the more families that can help, the more children who will have access to camps.
Week 1: July 5 – 9 Maine Mammalia Week
Are you an animal enthusiast? Jump in, paws first, to discover what fur bearing, homeothermic, animal neighbors lurk in your backyard. This week we will explore the ways of the northern raccoons, eastern coyotes, red-back voles, white-tailed deer, and more! Mentors will guide campers on how to track, identify, and transform into the mammals of Maine, all while diving deep into White Pine’s classic naturalist and wilderness skills.
Week 2: July 12 – 16 Birding Blitz Week
Black-capped chickadees, sharp-shinned hawks, wood ducks–GALORE! Campers will soar through the week by learning about nests, feathers, bird track and sign, bird language and MORE. Together we will reach new heights using field guides, stories, adventures, naturalist skills, and wilderness skills to uncover the secrets of our feathered friends.
Week 3: July 19 – 23 Wild Harvest & Trees Week
The woods, fields, and wetlands of Maine are home to a variety of magnificent herbaceous and woody plants. This week we will embark on a journey to explore and celebrate the edible, medicinal and practical uses, ecological magic, and mystical lore of plants. Campers will engage with the green world around them through stories, sacred harvest, and more all while sharpening their naturalist and wilderness skills.
Week 4: July 26 – July 30 Piney’s Survival Skills Week
Have you ever wondered what it would take to survive a week in the Wild? Wonder no further: spend a week with skilled wilderness mentors and learn how to make your own shelter, use a compass, tie knots, make tree tea and collect supplies for a successful tinder bundle. This is just a touch of what we will be working on this week, but if you’re up for the challenge to become a Piney Survivor join us.
Week 5: August 2 – 6 Junior Wildlife Tracking Week
It’s not often that we get to see wildlife when we are in the CRES woods, BUT they sure do like to leave signs that they’ve been there. This week we will be diving into the art of tracking and looking for signs that we are not the only wild ones in the woods. Using field guides, track casting materials, and other tracking tools we will hope to ID those that walk and frolic in the night.
Week 6: August 9 – 13 Wild & Wet Wetlands Week
Join us and dive into some of the murky parts of the CRES woods. With curious minds and exploration we will discover in a week’s time the ponds, streams, vernal pools and swamps that await young naturalists. We will get muddy searching and learning about creepy crawly amphibians, record the living plants, flowers and trees that grow along these waterways and perhaps even meet the resident craw fish that may live among the logs and rocks of “Little River”.