Sunday, May 21, 2017

Camp Bayou This Summer

Monthly one hour programs cover a special topic on the first Saturday of each month.

June 3: Becki will take visitors on a photography themed walk to help celebrate National Trails Day.

July 1: Beat the heat with some nature crafts indoors. Wreath making, paint sticks, weaving, and more.

August 5: Back to School-Back to Nature- our free summer event gets kids outdoors, learn a bit about nature then receive a free school supply item- 9am to noon. Registration online at

All programs begin at 9:30am, unless noted, and are free but donations are always appreciated!

Third Saturday canoe day tours continue this summer. Paddlers should arrive at Camp Bayou by 8:45am. Our special night paddle will be held on June 2 starting at 8pm. Canoes are available for rental for just $25 each or bring your own canoe or kayak for a small donation of $5 each. Register for all paddle trips by calling the office at 813-641-8545.

There are still days available this summer for youth nature programs for your summer camp. Check out Camp Bayou's online calendar to see which days might work for your group.

Throughout the year, Camp Bayou will have special activities related to various nature-themed, nationally recognized days. See what's in store for: June 3 (National Trails Day), June 10 (National Get Outdoors Day), June 17 (National Fishing Week) , June 24 (National Pollinator Week). Check the Camp Bayou calendar for special days throughout the year.

For those who are interested in helping with registered groups, Camp Bayou is looking for enthusiastic volunteers who love the outdoors and want to pass along that passion to others through hands-on activities, walks and canoe tours. Contact Jeri at 813-641-8545 or email We are mainly looking for folks to help teach school groups K-6 but there are other opportunities as well.

Camp Bayou Outdoor Learning Center is neither a campground nor a summer camp. It was an RV park before the County's ELAP program purchased the land but it is now open for day use only, open to the general public. Through volunteers, donations, supporters and grants, the managing non-profit- B.O.L.D. - offers pre-registered programs to schools, youth groups, adult groups and families. Monthly canoe tours are now available by reservation only. Check the online calendar for trip dates. The Center is open from Thursday- Saturday from 9am-2pm for passive recreational pursuits such as wildlife watching, nature photography and trail walks. General admission is still FREE.

The Camp Bayou Outdoor Learning Center is a public- private partnership between Bayou Outdoor Learning and Discovery, Inc. (B.O.L.D.), and Hillsborough County Parks, Recreation and Conservation. Camp Bayou is located 3 miles south of SR674 at the end of 24th St SE in Ruskin. Check out the Camp Bayou Facebook page and for more information visit the webpage at or call 813-641-8545.

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