TROY — One hundred and fifteen campers between the ages of 8-12 played games and hung out with police officers on Wednesday at the 14th annual Miami County Sheriff’s Summer Youth Camp.
The theme of this year’s camp was “Knock Out Cyberbullying.” Brock Wysong, the head counselor for the event, said officers gave presentations on how to stop bullying and kids played team-building games.
“We’re trying to do games that allow the kids to work together and be nice to each other,” Wysong said.
Wysong said the most meaningful part of the camp to him was “seeing the kids’ interactions with police officers and seeing the positive side of that with everything else that’s going on.”
The camp included demonstrations of K-9 police dogs, CareFlight, EMS and police vehicles, speakers, games, food and, at the end of the day, prizes.
Megan Wood, a fifth grader from Bradford who attended the camp, said the police dogs were her favorite part, but added the theme was important to her.
“I think it’s really good for some of the stuff that’s going on in today’s world,” Wood said. “A lot of people are getting bullied and we need to put a stop to it.”
Miami County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Jim Wysong said the most important part of the camp, regardless of the theme, was “giving the kids a positive day that they can spend and they don’t have to worry about getting in trouble or getting bullied.”
Wysong said more than 1,400 campers have attended the camp since its inception in 2003. This year there were 115 campers, and at last year’s camp there were just under 100.
According to a press release by the Miami County Sheriff’s Office, the camp’s mission is to allow youth to learn to interact with police officers in a positive way.
Wood encouraged other children to attend the camp in the future.
“It’s a lot of fun,” she said. “Don’t be nervous, because you’ll be able to fit in really well.”
Deputy Will Roberts and his K-9 partner, Bear, from the Miami County Sheriff’s Office conduct a demonstration during the Sheriff’s Camp Wednesday at the Redman’s Picnic Grounds in Troy.
Reach Bennett Leckrone email@example.com