Curiosity Camp - A preschool-type format for young campers: four unique weeks in rotation, feature different animals, experiments, habitats, games, snacks, and crafts. Campers will experiment with water, bubbles, gak, color, light, sound, movement, and more; get messy with kitchen chemistry making snacks and other concoctions; dig in the dirt, pick up rocks, take a close look in the grass, smell leaves, and look under bark to learn more about our natural environment.
Back to the Past Do you think that you could survive without cars, TVs, computers, and stores? Find out how people who lived here years ago used things that they found, hunted, or grew for food, fun, clothing, and shelter. Try out Native American and pioneer tools and games and make some of your own. Learn how to grow food and find native nuts, berries and leaves.
Dinosaur Discovery - Find out how dinosaurs moved, ate, and lived on the ground and in trees. Learn fascinating facts about dinosaurs and other prehistoric life by studying clues hidden in fossils.
Feathers, Fur, and Scales - Investigate different animals, such as how snakes slither on their bellies and how owls see behind themselves. Examine bones, fur, feathers, claws, teeth, scales, and skeletons.
Habitat Hunt - Search the creek, forest, fields, and underground and make amazing discoveries about the animals and plants that live in a habitat. Help design a habitat for one of YSI’s animals!
Life as a Bug - Hunt for bugs in the air, on the ground, inside logs, underground, and in the creek, then examine them up close and find out what they do and how they live. Meet YSI’s live insects, spiders, and other arthropods.
Radical Reptiles - Meet and touch live reptiles and examine skeletons, skins, shells, and fossils. Learn how snakes, lizards, turtles, and dinosaurs used these adaptations to survive. Hike and search for wild reptiles in the park.
Science Sleuths - Search for clues, gather evidence, and discover how science can help solve mysteries and uncover myths. From taking finger prints to tracking animals, find out how detectives use the secrets of science. Use your new sleuthing techniques to solve a mystery!
Water World Explore the watershed and discover the mysterious properties of water. Investigate water by dropping, spraying, heating, freezing, and mixing it. Visit the creek and search for critters that live in or near water. Take a close look at YSI’s live aquatic animals.
Bike Hike - Learning physics, biology, and ecology is as easy as riding a bike! Learn basic bike repair, riding skills, and safety while you explore Vasona Park's paved trails. Also explore our watershed, learn about local history and trail etiquette.
Bugology - Discover what makes these hard-shelled creatures unique! Learn how scientists find and study insects using transect lines, pooters, magnifying glasses, and microscopes. Use your new skills to examine YSI’s live bugs!
Creek Critters - Explore our waterways from top to bottom and get to know the critters that live in them. See where creeks come from, where they go, and what happens along the way. Learn how life in moving water is difficult and why it is important to respect and protect it.
Crime Solving Science - Learn how police, firefighters, rangers and other law enforcement people use science to solve crimes. Examine evidence under a microscope, use chemistry to identify mysterious substances, and see how they find the facts. Then use your skills to solve a “crime.”
Curious Chemistry - Investigate the chemicals in the food we eat, the water we drink, and the natural world around us! Create tie-dye t-shirts and concoct slimy substances. Examine the differences between solids, liquids, gases and plasma.
Earth and Space Explorers - Explore and discover the causes of landslides, volcanoes, and earthquakes. Find rocks, examine minerals, and build a volcano. Go beyond our small planet to visit our Solar System neighbors to learn about the moons, planets, and stars visible in the night sky.
Fishy Fun - Explore our watershed and examine how its health affects the fish that live here. Take a look at real fish inside and out. Learn how to fish, fishing safety and etiquette, and then go fishing! YSI provides fishing poles.
Phunky Physics - Learn physics while making music, creating and flying airplanes and rockets, and experimenting with magnetism, electricity, and more! Amaze your friends with physics magic tricks.
Scaly Sensations - What hatches from an egg but has scales instead of feathers? Take an in depth look at reptiles and their amazing adaptations. Examine and compare the anatomy of reptiles with other animals. Study local reptiles and their habitats.
Bike Explorers - Explore our park and beyond; sometimes leaving the bike for closer investigations. Practice and improve your biking skills and learn how to fix common problems. Examine the inner workings of bicycles and biking physics.
Chemistry Inside and Out - Explore the world through the safety goggles of a chemist. Learn the science behind making ice cream, growing crystals, and concocting gooey polymers. Extract DNA and explore the chemistry of living things.
Creek Week - Find, identify, and study insects, snails, fish and crayfish and explore their roles in the aquatic environment. Test creek water to find its acidity, oxygen content, and temperature and learn how these affect creek life.
Deep Earth, Deep Space - Explore our universe and how it works from deep inside Earth to outer space. Learn what Earth is made of, how it moves, tour our solar system and uncover the mysteries of asteroids, meteors, and comets.
Green Tech - Work on an eco-wise garden plot and learn how to grow your own food. Harness the sun’s energy for cooking and heating water. Explore earth-friendly technologies such as natural cloth and dye making, composting, biodiesel, wind-power machines, and more.
Innovative Engineering - Build and test your own inventions, including small-scale bridges, towers, and simple machines. Investigate sound, flight, magnetism, and electricity while making musical instruments, a high-flying foam glider, and other great gadgets.
Rockin’ Robotics - Design, build, and test LEGO® Mindstorms NXT robots on our obstacle course. Use YSI’s natural resources and Lego’s kits to learn how animal and human characteristics are incorporated into robots.
Something’s Fishy - Explore the aquatic environment, perform water tests, search for critters, learn to fish, and dissect a fish. YSI provides fishing poles.
Wild Wonders - Use binoculars, microscopes, and other scientific tools to explore the park’s wildlife habitats, perform field experiments, learn about conservation, make tasty snacks, make animal track replicas, photograph wildlife, and more!