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The City of Petersburg, Department of Cultural Affairs, Arts and Tourism, will sponsor a two week long history camp, “Week of Wonder” (WOW), from June 22 – 26, and from June 29 – July 2, 2015 from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Thirty Petersburg area children (rising fifth and sixth grade) will spend the two weeks learning about Petersburg’s rich and diverse history, culture, and architecture. Petersburg has partnered with FOLAR (Friends of the Lower Appomattox), the City Museums, Historic Petersburg Foundation (HPF), the National Park Service (NPS), Fort Lee Museums, Willcox Watershed Conservancy (WWC) and the Petersburg Public Library. Each organization will have a day with the children, offer hands-on workshops and activities and provide a lunch. The cost of the camp is $50. Applicants will be accepted on a first-come-first-serve basis.
Monday, June 22: “RIVER FUN, FRIENDS, and FOLAR” - Enjoy a day of discovery on the beautiful Appomattox River with FOLAR. The adventure begins with hands-on activities at Hopewell Riverside Park where children will explore the river ecosystem and learn how scientists work to safeguard the quality of the water we all use on a daily basis. Campers will gain an understanding of how they can be a “friend” of the river including what they can do to help protect and conserve the natural areas for the plants and animals that live there. After a picnic lunch at the park, they will cap the day off at the Hopewell Marina with a river cruise on the Spirit of the James (a 40 foot pontoon boat) hosted by the James River Association.
Tuesday, June 23: Petersburg Museums - Young, old, black, white, rich or poor; what was everyday life like for the citizens of Petersburg before, during, and after the American Civil War? Would their experiences be similar to modern times or very different? Through fun and interactive programming campers will explore and discover what city life was like long ago in Petersburg. At Centre Hill Museum, campers will learn about the daily lives of well-to-do families and how children would have spent their recreational time. Blandford Church and Cemetery will offer an art and history lesson, a cemetery “Symbols and Sentiment” treasure hunt and a “make and take” craft project. At Pocahontas Island, campers will visit the sites of where the largest free black population in the south lived and worked.
Wednesday, June 24: Day at Fort Lee: Students will spend the day at Fort Lee exploring many aspects of Army life from the past to the present. The day begins at the US Army Women’s Museum with a history program called "So You Want to Build an Exhibit?" Students will learn to analyze artifacts and primary sources and then they will use their new knowledge to create a museum exhibit. Students will then go to the US Army Quartermaster Museum for an interactive
gallery exploration. With Army history under their belts, students will spend the afternoon seeing the Army at work!
Thursday, June 25: The Historic Petersburg Foundation, Inc., “Where Commerce Began”, will again host children from this area at Peter Jones Trading Station, at the corner of Market Street and Grove Avenue, for an educational day of tours, photographic presentations, and hands on activities sure to excite everyone! Special guests will entertain and delight our W.O.W. campers as they learn about the rich history of Petersburg, Virginia.
Friday, June 26: "Lee Park Outdoor Classroom" - The students will go "kayak krazy" when they hear Scott Flaherty with Eco Trek Adventures teach about boat and water safety at Willcox Lake. “What’s a Herp?” Master Naturalist, Kate Short will make the herpetology class fun while you learn about reptiles and amphibians and how they help humans with environmental changes. Have you "hugged a tree" lately? If not Master Naturalist, Kay Snavely will help you identify which trees to hug while you learn about tree identification and how they impact our watershed. The afternoon class will be a blast with paleontologist Dr. Lauck Ward guiding us to the Eastover Formation (6.5 million year old marine deposit) for a fossil dig. "Can you dig it!!!" Camp picnic for parents, grandparents and Campers at noon.
Monday, June 29: Richmond Field Trip Day – 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Campers will enjoy a full day in Richmond visiting the Capitol and the Science Museum.
Tuesday, June 30: Petersburg Public Library - Come and discover the wonder at the Petersburg Public Library! Enjoy the wide array of experiences that the library offers. Your day will include a fun workout session in our wellness activity center, a hands-on computer activity, and a chance to create something that is beautifully and uniquely YOU in our Imagination Station. Browse through the books in our children's department, get lost in a wonderful story, or discover a new interest! Learn about the history of the previous library and explore the new library, which is barely a year old!
Wednesday, July 1: NPS - Petersburg National Battlefield: “Step Back in Time"- Take a step back in time to learn about the life of a Civil War soldier. Petersburg National Battlefield offers a hands-on approach to history as participants sign enlistment papers and prepare themselves for a Civil War adventure. As soldiers, campers will dress in uniforms, tour an encampment area, perform marching drills, build communication towers, shoot tennis ball cannons, and create flags. There will also be plenty of hand-on crafts and projects.
Thursday, July 2: NPS – Petersburg National Battlefield - City Point. During the siege of Petersburg General Grant's headquarters was at City Point, Virginia, eight miles behind Union lines. A small port town at the confluence of the James and Appomattox Rivers, City Point had been connected to Petersburg by railroad prior to the war. Campers will tour the historic Appomattox Manor and its grounds, home of Dr. and Mrs. Epps, visit Grant’s Headquarters where Grant and Lincoln met and spend some time exploring the waterfront and engaging in some fishing on the historic river.
The campers will receive a T-shirt and a water bottle. Transportation will be provided. Parents should drop-off their children between 8:30 am - 8:45 a.m. and pick them up at 3:15 p.m. in the parking lot at the corner of Cockade Alley & River Street across from the Farmers Market. All
children must be dropped off and picked up on time – no exceptions. On Monday, June 29, campers will have a Richmond Field Trip Day from 8:00 am until 4:00 pm. The campers must be on the bus by 7:45 am. We will return to the parking lot by 4:00 pm. For additional information, please contact Anne Thomas at 733-2402. Registration forms will be available at the Siege Museum, 15 West Bank St.