100 Kids in 100 Hours
When I was 12, my ‘nature’ was a sizeable drainage ditch that cut a straight line through the middle of a sharecropper’s field, draining to lowlands beyond the edge of town. It’s headwater source was a large culvert across the street from my home. Family lore has it that I caught a crawdaddy out of a pool of water at the base of that culvert when I was, like, three. But at 12, I was queen of the world: out there at the edge of a ditch, surrounded by budding goldenrod, waiting for the last wild blackberrys to ripen, chewing a sourweed, stem, ordering corn to stand back in orderly rows, surveying my kingdom..
This week, on behalf of all our 12 year-old selves, Jocassee Wild Outdoor Education is asking for financial help in getting kids into the Jocassee Gorges, a place that holds way more wonder than a drainage ditch in the middle of a cornfield in eastern North Carolina. We’ve spent a decade learning this place, and it’s time to share it in earnest with local children. Thank you for responding. I do believe every one of us wishes we’d had a Jocassee Gorges experience when we were 12.