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Ages: 12–14

Investigators offers a different program each year to participants, focused on building naturalist skills. This year our topic is Fungi! Starting with the identification of fungi, we will learn how to safely and consistently identify a number of local species. The week’s program culminates in the cooking and eating of different dishes involving the fungi identified and learned about during the week.

COVID-19 Information

In accordance with all University health and safety stipulations concerning youth programs, Shaver’s Creek has constructed a plan to keep everyone safe during summer camps. Please familiarize yourself with the plan’s practices

Changes beginning July 13

Due to updated regulations from Penn State and youth programs, optional programming for families will be available for camps beginning July 13 or later.

Registration Information

Four-Day Camp Sessions

$385 for nonmembers (save 15% with membership)

Tuesday–Thursday: 9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
Friday: 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Optional family programming: Friday, 5:00 p.m.–Saturday, 8:00 a.m. (See schedule below for details)

June 22–25, 2021
July 13–16, 2021
July 27–30, 2021

Registration is now open

Five-Day Camp Sessions

$435 for nonmembers (save 15% with membership)

Monday–Thursday: 9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
Friday: 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Optional family programming: Friday, 5:00 p.m.–Saturday, 8:00 a.m. (See schedule below for details)

June 28–July 2, 2021
July 19–23, 2021
August 2–6, 2021

Optional Transportation for 5-day Sessions:
Bus transportation will be provided for an additional fee from the Spikes Stadium at Medlar Field, 701 Porter Road. Drop-off (Monday–Friday) will be from 8:00–8:30 a.m., and pick-up (Monday–Thursday) will be from 4:30–5:00 p.m. Pick-up on Friday will be from 5:30–6 p.m. at Spikes Stadium. You must register for bus transportation separately during the registration process in order to secure space. Space is limited.

Registration is now open

Daily Schedule
Day Activity


9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.:

On the first day, we will begin with an introduction to the topic of the year: fungi! Starting with the different parts of fungi, we will learn how to identify different groupings of this incredible kingdom. This foundation will allow us to become more comfortable and familiar with a specific set of groups and species. Nature journaling will be introduced as a record-keeping method for identification and increased understanding of our subjects. We will also take time to become familiar with the other members of our group.


9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.:

Building upon our identification skills, we will harvest mushrooms to be used in kitchen creations. We will also delve into an investigation project to be presented on Friday evening to families.


9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.:

Utilizing the mushrooms gathered yesterday, we will cook, eat, and enjoy different mushroom-based dishes!


9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.:

Branching out beyond the species we focused on thus far, on this day we will learn about additional species.


9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.:

Mushrooms offer a vast array of benefits to the entire forest and to humans. Today we will explore the connections between humans and fungi. We will also travel to Whipple Dam to enjoy some time in the water and on the beach!  (Weather permitting) 

Friday evening–Saturday morning

Optional Family Programming (for camps beginning July 13 or later)

Friday, 5:00 p.m.: Claim your camper and stay with your family to enjoy the rest of the optional activities throughout the evening. Start with your own self-provided dinner on the front lawn!

  • With no cooking facilities available, bring something that is easy and quick.
  • We are striving to be a zero waste facility. Please bring reusable plates and utensils if possible.
  • Families may “Adopt-A-Naturalist” by bringing food for them and enjoying the picnic together! A signup sheet will be available starting Wednesday afternoon on a first-come basis.

6:30 p.m.: Ice cream from Meyer Dairy provided.

7:15 p.m.: Campfire program. Campers and staff will present a myriad of songs, poems, skits, stories and adventures from the camp week. Bring along a blanket/chair or sit on the giant rocks in front of the stage.

8:30–9:30 p.m.: Night activities, including night walks. Please bring warm layers and wear closed–toe shoes. Flashlights not needed.

10:00 p.m.: Settle into your tent for the night!

Saturday, 6:30 a.m.: Coffee!

7:00–8:00 a.m.: Breakfast is served. Featuring freshly made pancakes and coffee, plus juices, and pancake toppings!

What do I need to wear and bring each day?

Investigators will need to wear a dual-layer mask, outdoor clothes that can get dirty, and closed-toed shoes. You should also bring a small backpack for carrying the following things: a zero waste, nut-free lunch, a full water bottle, a raincoat or poncho, a hat, and sunscreen. Optional daily items include drawing pencils, a notebook, a camera that can tolerate the conditions at camp/outdoors, and a favorite plant ID guide.