This summer, area youth stepped back in time and experienced life in Aberdeen during the 1880s thanks to the Dacotah Prairie Museum’s Kids History Camp. Campers spent the day at the Brown County Fairground Centennial Village exploring historic buildings and partaking in old-time chores and games. We stopped by to visit the history camp for the morning, and participants told us about their favorite activities, including popping popcorn and cooking over the campfire, attending ‘school’ in a country one-room school house, and of course making ice cream by hand the old-fashioned way.
Museum Curator of Education Sherri Rawstern said this year marked the 20th anniversary of the camp taking place in Aberdeen. Sherri has led the camp since the very first year. Even though the camp is geared towards youth ages 7 to 13, they also keep older kids busy who volunteer to help out as camp counselors. Most of the current camp counselors attended history camp at one time and enjoyed it so much that they chose to stay involved and help current campers learn all they can.
Centennial Village is the perfect spot for the history camp. The site is home to some original buildings from the 1880s and also to replicas made to look like the era, including an old jailhouse, fire station, barber shop and post office, to name a few. Volunteers from local businesses donate their time to help clean, fix and paint the structures so that kids and visitors can take a peek into Aberdeen’s history. // — Jenny Roth
For more information on the Kids History Camp, call the Dacotah Prairie Museum at 605-626-7117.