More Gardens! free Environmental Summer Camping & Climbing in the Minnewaska State Park & Mohonk Preserve.

Our summer camp gives access to the great outdoors to families providing free outdoor education and environmental arts in local community gardens and parks every year in the month of July. The urban youth and their families who join our free summer camp live in Mott Haven, Bronx that has one of the highest rates of asthma, diabetes and poverty in the country. Our campers understand the impact of pollution and environmental destruction firsthand. They are given the opportunity to enjoy nature, and they also want to get a chance to advocate for a healthier neighborhood and planet. 


The youth will gain hard skills learned from adaptive rock climbing, hiking, and camping. They will also gain valuable skills such as communication, discernment, critical thinking and foresight to help them thrive in the challenging environment of the South Bronx.
The tactile dance with nature through rock climbing creates a portal for personal and community accomplishment, responsibility, and self-acceptance. Our program helps the campers to take this shared sacred state in the outdoors back to NYC to empower our urban communities.

The campers and their family members are taken for a 7 day camping trip upstate in the Catskill Mountains. The camp offers free tuition, use of camp equipment, as well as free organic lunch and snacks, and all meals included for the camping trip. We provide campsites, tents, sleeping bags, canoes, and gear for all our campers, as well as teaching tools, identification books, gardening and art supplies, creating the best possible safe, supportive adventure and learning experience. 

Campers, counselors, and parents teach and share what they learn with the wider community throughout the year at Padre Plaza community garden, sharing their love of the outdoors through plays and interactive presentations to hundreds of community members at the local farmer’s market.

Through games, creative arts and nature excursions campers, parents and junior counselors learn:

  • Nature awareness including plant, animal, and insect identification

  • Creative arts such as book-making, theater, and puppetry on environmental themes

  • Outdoor Education such as swimming in the ocean and in lakes, tree climbing, hiking and canoeing

  • Outdoorspersonship including tenting, fire building, wilderness first-aid

  • Cooking and learning healthy eating for and by campers, parents, & staff

Registration at Padres Plaza Community Garden from 3-5pm on Wednesday June 24th

First day of Camp to get ready for our trip is on Saturday June 27th at 9am - day ending at 4pm

Sunday June 28th - 9am the all family members going on the trip are invited to come and prepare for the next day's trip to the Catskill mountains.

Monday June 29th - Sunday July 5th  - Board two vans and head to our Upstate climbing destination in the Minnewaska State Park & Mohonk Preserve.