A group of nearly 40 children from both sides of the border spent last week learning about local history at Camp Kino, an annual bilingual summer program offered at no cost by the Pimeria Alta Historical Society Museum in Nogales. 

“We’re teaching them the history of the entire area, starting with the Indians 10,000 years ago and moving forward,” said Kathleen Escalada, board member and summer camp organizer, prior to the start of an activity last Thursday in which program leaders and campers shared their family trees.

Subsequent hands-on activities that day included making hats, boats, figures and airplanes from paper, as well as grinding corn and washing laundry using traditional tools and methods.

The children, ages 7 to 12, also had a chance to learn from special guests each day. Community member Pepe Wise shared his experiences living on a rustic ranch, and taught the kids how to make whistles out of clay. Last Thursday, rangers from Tumacacori National Historical Park were on hand, with a promise that Pancho, the park’s giant vermillion flycatcher mascot, would make an appearance as well.

Approximately 10 volunteers, including Girl Scouts, parents and young adult helpers, lent a hand during the July 8-13 camp, and the participants were treated to free snacks and lunches.

A field trip to the Tubac Presidio State Historic Park was one of the highlights of the week.

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