School-aged kids across Ohio will have opportunities this spring and summer to take part in a series of Ohio State University Extension-sponsored day camps focused on farm safety.
Farm Safety Round-Up Day Camps are designed to offer youth real-world experience and emphasize farm safety with a goal of teaching kids how to avoid injury, says Kathy Mann, an OSU Extension program coordinator in agricultural safety and health.
The day camps seek to educate kids about the possible hazards they might encounter on the farm, whether they live on the farm or just visit one, Mann says.
"Farm safety is important year-round, but spring kicks off the Ohio Farm Safety Round-Up Day Camp season," she says. "Each year, the camps help some 1,000 youth statewide learn how to protect themselves and their family members from dangerous situations that can occur on or near farms."
Issues the day camps will examine include: all-terrain vehicle (ATV) safety; how fast equipment moves compared to how fast a human can react; working safely around livestock; and important safety rules for the farm.
The day camps are free, with some being open to the public while others are offered to school districts for class field trips.
The camps are as follows:
* Putnam County: April 9-10 at the Gerding Farm. The camp is open to school groups only. Contact Ruth Gerding, camp coordinator, at 419-523-5608 ext. 238.
* Auglaize County: May 18 at the Four Seasons Recreation Complex and Park. The camp is open to school groups only. Contact Don or Lois Baumer, Farm Bureau volunteers, at 419-628-3420.
* Wood County: May 27 at the Agriculture Incubator Foundation. The camp is open to school groups only. Contact David Little, camp coordinator, at 419-833-3611.
* Wayne County: June 8 at the Wayne County Fairgrounds. This camp is open to 4-H Cloverbuds in Wayne County, ages 5-10. Contact Mel Rehm, Wayne County 4-H program assistant, at 330-264-8722.
* Ross County: July 2 from 9 a.m. to noon at Hirsch's Fruit Farm in Chillicothe. The camp is open to the community, with ages to be determined. Contact Mary Fleming at 740-272-6313 for more information.
* Monroe County: Date to be determined. The camp will be open to school groups only. Contact Bruce Zimmer, OSU Extension educator, at 740-472-0810 for more information.