Homer Alaska - Letters

Story last updated at 7:21 PM on Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Funds provide camp scholarships

The Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies (CACS) would like to thank the Daisy Lee Bitter Marine and Coastal Education Fund, a donor advised fund at the Homer Foundation, for the recent support of our Wynn Winter Family Camp program. The funds provided by this support gave CACS the opportunity to award six camp scholarships for the very first residential overnight winter family camp program conducted here in Homer.

Winter Family Camp is a new and innovative environmental education program offered by CACS. The program is designed for families who will be participating in two days of residential field science and winter survival skill classes on the snowy bluffs overlooking Homer and Kachemak Bay. Families are introduced to the winter ecology of boreal eco-systems through hands-on activities that include day and evening guided snowshoe hikes, animal tracking, building snow structures and shelters, avalanche safety, winter astronomy, outdoor Dutch oven cooking, and more. Families stay overnight in heated and insulated yurts at the Ageya Wilderness Education facility near Homer's Wynn Nature Center. Food and snowshoe instruction are provided.

Residential programs provide unique and effective environmental education for children and adults invaluable "real world" experiences that boost academic achievement and raise awareness about natural resource management. Our Alaska Coastal Ecology (ACE) field trip in Peterson Bay has been the only one of its kind for 28 years in Alaska, providing a residential program in one of Alaska's most diverse coastal areas in Kachemak Bay. This exciting new Winter Family Camp promises to have a similar impact.

Mike Allen, executive director

Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies