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OFA News: Cutting News

2019 Camp Canopy Wraps Up

Monday, June 24, 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Gayla Fleming
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Another season of OFA’s forestry and wildlife conservation camp, Camp Canopy, concluded  on June 14. With the exception of a couple afternoon/evenings with rain, and a couple untimely power outages, it was another great week of Camp. 100 students attended this year, up in numbers again for the 4th consecutive year, and 40+ different resource professional showed up throughout the week to instruct the great variety of classes. 

The students were quite interested in learning, as evidenced by their attendance at voluntary study sessions during their recreation break periods. It paid off for several of them, as over $8,000 in college scholarships were handed out at the closing ceremony to the week’s top performing campers. A big thank you goes out to Hocking College, Ohio State University, Ohio University, Zane State College, and the Northeast Ohio Forestry Association for these scholarships. 

Camp Canopy has also always been supported by various divisions of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), especially the Divisions of Forestry and Wildlife. This year, we were paid a visit on Tuesday by several new members of the ODNR team, including; Mary Mertz – ODNR Director, Steve Gray - ODNR Assistant Director, Dan Balser – Chief of Division of Forestry, Kendra Wecker -Chief of Division of Wildlife, and Alyssa Sarko – ODNR Youth Coordinator. They spent some time observing classes and eating camp food for lunch with the students and instructors. I think I even saw a picture somewhere of Director Mertz using a Biltmore Stick to measure a tree in class. I have no doubt that they were impressed with what Camp Canopy is all about and will continue their strong support. 

We were also fortunate this year to have a visit from Gordy Mouw from the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI). Camp Canopy received a $5100 grant from SFI this year to help offset the costs for the next 3 years of printing Learning Manuals for the students and for renting buses to take students on field trips. Gordy joined the 2nd, 3rd and 4th year campers on a field trip to a furniture manufacturing company, riding in one of the buses their grant paid for, attended an SFI State Implementation Committee meeting, and joined me for a visit to a local sawmill, before eating dinner with several of the camp committee members and instructors.

Once again, OFA wants to sincerely thank all the contributors that make this great Camp a reality. This includes the volunteer Camp Committee members that give of their time and hearts to put this together, the many volunteer instructors that relay their knowledge and expertise to the campers, the camp staff that keeps the facilities running smoothly, the parents that encourage and bring their kids to this great opportunity, and the colleges and many student sponsors that financially make this camp a possibility for so many. Thank you!!

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