Pixel Tracker

Thursday, December 13 , 2018, 1:35 pm | Fair 66º

 
 
 

Camp Natoma Helps Even the Most Wired-In Kids Make a Nature Connection

Outdoor activities, community bonds introduce campers to a refreshing and exciting experience

Archery is one of the many outdoor activities offered at Camp Natoma in San Luis Obispo County.
Archery is one of the many outdoor activities offered at Camp Natoma in San Luis Obispo County. (Camp Natoma photo)

It’s no secret that most kids are totally plugged in with technology when they’re not at school. While there are summer camps that have children working with the latest technology, Camp Natoma gives them the chance to reconnect with nature and people.

This camp, located between San Luis Obispo and Paso Robles, offers kids the quintessential traditional camp experience. Campers participate in outdoor activities like archery, swimming and fishing.

Director Emily Starkie Zbin raves about Camp Natoma Lake explorations along Franklin Creek, which runs through the 360-acre camp grounds.

“We take them on hikes along the creek and the kids get to see turtles, frogs, fish and bugs,” Zbin said. “We really try to let the campers take the lead. If the kids are interested in rocks, for example, our counselors will give the kids more background on certain rock formations.”

While nature hikes are a favorite, the most unique feature of Camp Natoma is that children get the chance to literally sleep under the stars during their week at camp. In cots set up under the shade of oak trees, campers get cozy with the outdoors each night.

“The weather is perfect for sleeping outside,” Zbin said. “In this area, the summer is usually around 90 degrees, and the evenings are cool and perfect.”

Along with its perfect weather, safety is guaranteed for your child. The camp is located in a protected valley and each group of cots, around six to 10 kids, are supervised by two camp counselors each.

“It really is a unique experience,”​ Zbin said. “We always want kids to feel comfortable outside and to not be scared. We try to give the kids a positive experience and show them that nature can be invigorating and calming.”

Zbin, a previous camp counselor, is celebrating her sixth year as Camp Natoma’s director. She hopes children also get the chance to connect with peers their age, as well as enjoy their time away from computer and phone screens.

And after participating in these exciting outdoor activities, your child will be refreshed and connected with a new community of people after their experience at Camp Natoma.

Click here for more information about Camp Natoma.

Connecting with a new community of friends is a goal of Camp Natoma. (Camp Natoma photo)
Connecting with a new community of friends is a goal of Camp Natoma. (Camp Natoma photo)

The pool at Camp Natoma is always a popular spot — especially when daytime high temperatures often reach into the 90s. (Camp Natoma photo)
The pool at Camp Natoma is always a popular spot — especially when daytime high temperatures often reach into the 90s. (Camp Natoma photo)

Making a splash at Camp Natoma. (Camp Natoma photo)
Making a splash at Camp Natoma. (Camp Natoma photo)

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Email
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership
×

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.