Home News Local news Nelson Positively Ready for Easter Children's Camp

Nelson Positively Ready for Easter Children's Camp

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March 18, 2008 — Imagine having the sky as your roof and stars to light your path at night, or getting lulled to sleep by the sound of waves gently lapping in the distance.
"It is a feeling that has to be experienced," said Sen. Terrence "Positive" Nelson of what has been an Easter camping tradition for him and the scores of children that he cares for through his Positive Works Inc. Camp.
Nelson, a former teacher, founded the group long before he became a senator. The non-profit organization sponsors an annual summer camp and has hosted Easter camping at Cramer's Park.
Beginning Thursday, children as young as five years old will take part in the annual four-day camp during the Easter holiday, which begins Thursday with the observance of Holy Thursday and runs through Easter Sunday. The camp is normally held through Easter Monday, but a scheduled activity at the site will shorten the stay, Nelson said.
"We would accept those younger than five if their parents come with them," he said.
It is the 11th year that Nelson has held the camp for the children on the eastern side of the beach, with the help of several other adults, including members of his family.
Children can pre-register by contacting his office, but those who do not pre-register can show up on Thursday. Participants will need a tent, personal snacks for those late-night hunger pangs and a change of clothes, he said.
"We ask them to bring a tent in case what we provide are already filled," Nelson said. "We provide food, but we ask that they bring snacks in case they get hungry after meals are served."
The camp is closely guarded, with activities to keep participants busy. They include hiking, fishing, kite-making, taking part in morning exercises and swimming. For safety's sake, Nelson said, participants cannot arbitrarily go for a swim.
"We want to make sure that they are supervised and so we will have specific times when they can swim," he said.
Participants are also charged with doing various chores, such as washing dishes or serving as prep cooks during meals.
"They do stuff like wash dishes or help peel potatoes," Nelson said. "They get to work and play. It's a good time for them to get in some relaxation and also learn some values."
Last year the camp registered its largest turnout, with 70 children participating. He expects more this year.
"It seems to be growing every year," Nelson said.
While the camp is focused on children, adults should feel free to show up for camping, he said. But there's one caveat: They will be charged with a supervisory role. And he had one cautionary note for parents after some children had a little trouble following all of the rules.
"Parents, please explain to your children that they will be under the authority of the organization," Nelson said.
This means that children won't be allowed to wander off as they please. There will be routine checks to make sure that all children are where they are supposed to be, Nelson said.
To register, call 772-2210.
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