Gone ‘camp-in’

U.P. Children’s Museum event features indoor camping activities

Dante Hill, 4, of Gwinn, above, creates his own special star during Thursday’s “Camping In Fun Night” at the Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum in Marquette. A variety of camping-related activities took place. Below, a tent is set up for the event. Bottom, Evan Wernholm, 4, of Marquette creates a “pine cone critter” at the event. With him is his grandmother, Rose Van Linden of Marquette. (Journal photos by Christie Bleck)

MARQUETTE — You didn’t need a real campfire to enjoy S’mores Thursday night.

That’s when “Camping In Fun Night” took place at the Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum in Marquette as the theme of this month’s Second Thursday Creativity Series.

Activities included painting “pine cone critters,” an “air scavenger hunt” in the airplane area, and inventing “camp gadgets” in the Innovation Station.

The purpose of the evening was not to camp outside, but simulate the experience by camping “in.”

Making S’mores, then, was the focus in the kitchen area, with UPCM staff member Melissa Piscopo in charge of that culinary activity.

“I’m adding popcorn for brains, so we have a face,” said Piscopo, who later added a “banana hat.”

Other activities on the agenda were “In the Forest” campfire songs and guardian skits, and “Under the Pond” spooky stories.

A tent complete with stuffed animals was set up in one section of the museum, while in the toddler area, youngsters could make stars for their rooms at home.

Evan Wernholm, 4, of Marquette created a custom pine cone critter.

“He’s been putting in all the dots here,” said his grandmother, Rose Van Linden of Marquette.

Two self-described “wandering musicians” — Roscoe Schieler and Allen Dupras, also known as the Fun Day Friends — provided some of the music for the event.

The two musicians, both of Marquette, sang “off-the-cuff” campfire songs.

“We sang a song about blackberries, S’mores, so just basically things that are going on,” Schieler said.

In fact, he might have been in just the right mood for the “Camping In Fun Night.”

“I just came here from being a counselor at a summer camp for the week, so that was appropriate,” Schieler said.

The next Second Thursday Creativity Series is set for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Sept. 9, with “Entrepreneur Night” the theme. The event is free with admission or membership. Admission is free for children age 1 and under, $6 for children ages 2 to 17, and $6 for adults age 18 and older. The family admission rate is $25. A family membership is $135, with other membership rates available.

“Literacy Night: All About Books” is set for 5:30 p.m. Sept. 16. There will be free admission as well as free books and snacks.

The Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum is located at 123 W. Baraga Ave., Marquette. For more information, call 906-226-3911 or visit upchildrensmuseum.org

Christie Bleck can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 250. Her email address is cbleck@miningjournal.net.