Unique Summer Camp On Tap

Unique Summer Camp On Tap
Students are pictured taking part in an environmental lesson during the school year. Submitted Photo

POCOMOKE – A group of students from Pocomoke Middle School will broaden their environmental experiences with a new summer camp.

In July, members of Pocomoke Middle School’s Surfrider Club will have the chance to participate in a summer program highlighted by an offshore boat trip.

“My personal goal for this camp is to get the kids to see themselves as scientists,” teacher Karen McCabe said. “That can take on many forms but I want them to see that they can succeed in a variety of local industries that preserve our natural resources rather than deplete them.  It’s also been a tough year and this group has worked hard to keep up with the expectations of membership.  This is a celebration of all that we’ve accomplished.”

McCabe said 17 kids applied for membership in the school’s Surfrider Club in the fall of 2020. They spent the rest of the school year helping with environmental initiatives on campus.

“We’ve recycled paper, bottles and cans that are equivalent to the weight of a humpback whale since September,” McCabe said. “They’ve also been instrumental in maintaining our native flower beds, assisting with Earth Day and doing outreach for other things around the school.”

When the Ocean City Surfrider chapter helped raise funds for the school to purchase a water bottle filler, students in Pocomoke Middle’s Surfrider Club created a video to educate their peers about the benefits of reusable water bottles.

When school administrators asked for summer program ideas, McCabe presented plans for a four-day camp built around an offshore fishing trip. That camp is now set for July 12-15 with a trip aboard Mark Sampson’s Fish Finder as the highlight.

“’Shark School’ will give the students a positive first-hand experience with the sharks found in our local waters,” McCabe said. “Captain Sampson focuses on the ecological importance of sharks and the efforts necessary to conserve these animals.”

The Surfrider camp will include a variety of other coastal activities.

“We will also be visiting Go Green OC to learn about industrial composting, Tom’s Cove Aquaculture to learn about the importance of filter feeders for water quality, doing marine species surveys on Assateague Island and conducting our own beach cleanup with the OC chapter of Surfrider International. The kids and I are so excited.”

McCabe said the club had been sanctioned by Surfrider International and that members of the global group would be featuring the camp on their social media pages. Community members will be able to get a glimpse of the campers’ adventures by following #SurfriderCamp2021 on Twitter.

About The Author: Charlene Sharpe

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Charlene Sharpe has been with The Dispatch since 2014. A graduate of Stephen Decatur High School and the University of Richmond, she spent seven years with the Delmarva Media Group before joining the team at The Dispatch.