Eighty-four youth attended Pocahontas County 4-H Camp in Camp Thornwood during the week of June 18-22.
Chiefs and Sagamores of the tribes were as follows: Cherokee Tribe – Austin Sharp, Justin Jackson; Delaware Tribe – Logan Burks, Kevin Bennett; Mingo Tribe – Sage McLaughlin, Hannah Carper; Seneca Tribe – Kolton Alderman, Bill Hardesty; Big Feet – Kathy Irvine, Garima Agarwal.
Campers were welcomed with the “Go for the Gold with 4-H” theme as they arrived Monday evening. Tuesday afternoon they showcased their talents of singing, dancing, gymnastics, instrument playing and standup comedy in a camp talent show.That evening campers learned about Monarch butterfly migration from the camp’s STEM Ambassador Garima Agarwal as they made milkweed “bombs” and played games. On Wednesday, campers learned about various reptiles and porcupines from a Luray Zoo presentation. The fun continued that evening as campers used stencils on wooden plaques in an art project provided by WVU Art Professor Dylan Collins. On Thursday afternoon two West Virginia Highland Dancers, Gabby and Elias Pealer, entertained the camp with Scottish dances to the sound of Extension Agent Don Dransfield’s bagpipes. Don also provided a history on Scottish and Irish heritage. That night campers snacked on homemade pizza as they danced to music provided by DJ Nicholas Irvine. On Friday, campers enjoyed a slideshow, Olympic games and received tribal colored T-shirts for the annual camp photos. Each evening concluded with Council Circle.
The campers participated in a variety of morning classes. These included Air Rifles, Archery, Basic Sewing, Basketball, Black Powder Basics, Bottle Rockets, Bubble Bubble Toil and Trouble, Charting/Pre-Charting, Coding at Camp, Colorful Crafts, Council Circle Blankets, Crypto Club, Fabric Photobooks, Fishing, Folk Dancing, Gold Medal Recipes, Jigsaw Puzzles, Melted Crayon Art, Metal/Leather Stamping, Nature Walking, Outdoor Cooking, Photography, Rock Painting, Shotgun, Softball, Spa Time, Tie-Dye Party, Yarn Wreathes, Woodburning and Yoga/Zumba.
Camp awards were presented to the 4-Hers during the final council circle on Friday night. Allie Luikart was selected as this year’s “Spirit of Camp” and was presented the spirit stick, which was carved by each of the tribes during camp. The following campers were chosen as those best representing the four Hs of 4-H at camp: Head H – Sage McLaughlin; Heart H – Logan Burks; Hands H – Justin Jackson; Health H – Kevin Bennett.
Victoria Rose received her 4-H Pin as a result of her successful completion of the 4-H Charting project and classes.
Outstanding first year camper scholarships were presented to Riyan Gladwell and Chase Green. The Cool Camper Scholarship was presented to Robert Jordan. Conner Spencer received the Harold Carpenter Scholarship. The Bee Gladwell Scholarship was presented to Scout Tankersley. Eden Lester, Caitlin Mallow and Declan Gravely received the Shooting Sports Scholarships.
The seven first year campers receiving “Lucky Penny” awards were Morgan Beverage, Riyan Gladwell, Chase Green, Ramona Hardy, Eden Lester, Jordan Nutter and Abigail McClure.
Tribes were judged throughout the week on camp spirit, sportsmanship, attitude and how they exhibited the four Hs. The Mingo Tribe was selected as the overall winning tribe.
Camp staff and class instructors for the week were: Greg Hamons and Connie Burns (Extension Staff); Karlee Edmonds, Zach Phillips (ECIs); Garima Agarwal (STEM Ambassador), Kathy Irvine, Pam McLaughlin, Cathy Mitchell, Heather Simmons, Kristie Smith, Becky Spencer, Susan Wilkins, Gray Beverage, J. W. Cheek, Randy Irvine, Aaron Pugh, Josh Shinaberry, Michael Simmons, Sherman Taylor, Arlene Cheek, Matthew Barkley, Lauren Bennett and Bob Simmons. Kitchen staff included Doris Arthur, Kay Blackshire, Loretta Irvine and Dawn Workman. Carl Greathouse served as Camp Caretaker.