"Farm Camp" in Michigan helps kids learn about agriculture


Falmouth, Michigan - Missaukee County Farm Bureau’s recent Farm Camp provided scores of area children a great experience learning about life on the farm. Hundreds of local elementary school students learned about agriculture and enjoyed opportunities for some up-close contact with goats, horses and donkeys.


“The children especially liked all the farm animals. You could tell many had never been on a farm before,” said Ellen Vanderwal, Promotion & Education chair for the Missaukee County Farm Bureau.


“I really enjoyed watching the children in the barns and outdoors with the goats. Watching them learn to feed a baby goat was priceless!”


The children learned about honeybees, potting flowers, the water cycle, growing vegetables and making bird houses. They enjoyed vegetable and cheese snacks from the farm and made agriculture-related items during a crafting session.


On the last day of camp children received a t-shirt and goody bag to take home.


While most attendees were from various parts of Michigan, kids from as far away as Texas, Missouri, Ohio and Indiana also attended this year’s event.


“I thought it was pretty neat there were so many children from all over Michigan and various states,” Vanderwal said. “They were in the area for summer visits with grandparents and other family members, heard about Farm Camp and signed up to join the fun!


“The smiles, the laughter, the excitement in their faces was awesome!”


This was the fifth year for Farm Camp altogether, and the first since the covid pandemic. Hosting the event was Jeanne Suggate’s Maple Leaf Farm & Creamery near Falmouth.


Farm Camp takes place over the course of three weeks spaced out from mid-June to mid-July, with two or three-day camps welcoming one of three groups: pre-K and Kindergarten, grades 1-3 and grades 4-6. All three sessions this year reached their maximum capacity of participants.


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