BEETS Go Camping!

“I got to put up a tent. I got to make a fire. I’ve never done that before–I’m a City boy.”- Chris, 19 years old.

On Saturday morning June 16, 2012, the BEETS embarked on a weekend camping trip. For most, it was their first time overnight in the outdoors. And believe it or not, they didn’t even get out of the City! They went to the Presidio, which offers a great experience for city youth! Advised not to bring food (it was provided) or electronics, they were in for a great overnight experience.

After the seven youth and three staff arrived at the campsite, they were introduced to a park ranger from CAP (Camping at the Presidio) who supplied tents and utensils for their use.

They spent some time putting up the tents and then had lunch (prepared by Chris and Da’lyah), and a siesta. Then came an sunny, warm afternoon hike along the hills overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge.

Delvin, Quincey, Raven and Shontay cooked dinner, preparing the makings of burritos. Yum! So good! As the sunset, a campfire with smores rounded out the day with sharing wild and crazy stories.

Waking up at 7:30 AM was not their favorite thing, especially since over night the weather had changed to thick, wet fog. But the good sports they were, they made a wonderful breakfast of pancakes (prepared by Chris, Delvin, Candy and Chyna) before taking down the tents and cleaning up the campsite.

The Presidio CAP shuttle bus picked them up and drove them back to the Youth Center by noon.

Here are some comments from the trip:
“We have gone camping in one of the most amazing places I have ever been. In the Koshland garden I have learned so much. At Rosa Parks I get to work with kids. And at Hayward Rec Center I also get to work with kids. Over all I think its one of the best times of my life, and I am planning to go back to the Presidio. I really loved the hike. That was my first time ever seeing views like (that) in person. It was also my first time hiking and camping and I loved it.”-Raven

“It was really nice getting away from the city for a night. The food was good and I enjoyed everyone’s company. Telling stories at the campfire was very interesting. Although I didn’t eat smores, the chocolate was delicious. I learned about a couple new flowers like the sticky monkey and a blue flower that can be used as soap (I forgot the name of it). I learned that camping is very fun if you are with the right people. On the hiking trip we got to see the beautiful ocean and plant life. If I could do it again I would go in a heartbeat.”

“I have enjoyed going camping with (the) BEETS. It was my second time going camping in tents but it was a different experience. I liked how we all got along and I liked the food. It was a good experience. You guys made sure we were safe and sound. We had a nice hike even though my foot was in pain. I liked putting up the tent but I didn’t like taking it down. We had a nice camp fire and no one got burned. Sleeping in the tent was cool because I was able to sleep, but waking up was bad because I really don’t like people waking me up. But yeah, it was nice.”

“The trip to the Presidio was fun. The main thing I liked the most was hiking. I’m not sure why because I have asthma but working out and breaking a sweat is fun to me. Also I liked cooking for dinner and breakfast, the food was yummy. One last thing I can say is I got to know about the BEETS program, people, and peers more from the trip. The last and final thing that was fun to me was the smores we made. And Adrian was the camper of the year, he started the fire. Also keeping warm was funny to me.

“The camping trip field trip was fun. I liked the food that was prepared for us. I like the activities especially free time when we got to talk and play games. I liked sleeping in the tents. It was something new for me. The camping trip was fun. I like eating the s’mores over the campfire and telling scary stories. The hike wasn’t so bad but I don’t really enjoy walking but I enjoyed the view. The food was good, I like how we all cleaned and cooked for each other. I like learning new games and getting to bond with the other BEETS and staff.”

“When I first got to BEETS I was a little shy, but not that much. I enjoyed when we were playing games in the garden and getting to know each other more. I also enjoyed the camping trip we went on. I had alot of fun. During the BEETS camping trip I was a little freaked out because we were camping outside with no “shower” lol, but it wasn’t that bad. I think the best part for me was the hike because I thought it was going to be worse than what it was, but it wasn’t so bad after all.”

“I liked when we went camping in the Presidio. I liked the hike around the coast. Also I liked when we made the bridges. And the campfire was nice. My experiecne on the BEETS Presidio camping trip was great. I had a good time hiking around the coast. I had a fun time cooking the food. Also I had a fun time at the campfire when we had roasted the marshmellows in the fire and made s’mores. I like when we did the scavenger hunt before we left. And I liked when we made the breakfast in the morning that was my first time making pancakes.”