Environmental Education Programs

The vision of the Centennial Forest Environmental Education Programs is to have fun while connecting kids to the forest and the natural world. Campers gain the knowledge to teach others about environmental stewardship, land ethics, and forest health and experience the world in a new way. Not only do kids learn about forestry and environmental science, they also learn about exciting career opportunities managing and caring for our nation’s natural resources.

All of our counselors and staff are alumni of or are currently attending Arizona universities specializing in such diverse fields as forestry, education, environmental science, parks and recreation management, communications, and health professions. Each counselor is trained in CPR/First Aid and is specially selected to serve as a good role model for campers. Our incredibly low ratio of adults to campers (1:7) allows for increased quality of supervision and learning experiences. In addition, a camp nurse is on site every day to monitor the health of campers, administer medications, and provided that little extra TLC when needed.

Goals and Objectives

The overall goals and objectives of our programs are to:

  1. Introduce kids to the wonder, beauty and importance of forests and how our natural world influences their current lives and career paths.
  2. Provide integrated, hands-on lessons and activities that incorporate math, reading, writing, art and critical thinking skills that lead to creative and thoughtful discussions.
  3. Teach kids strong land ethic and stewardship skills by "putting them in the shoes" of a professional forester, scientist and outdoor leader.
  4. Develop a spirit of community service by integrating community service and critical forest health projects into the learning experience.
  5. Provide a fun and engaging learning experience that encourages kids to become active in their communities and schools.

Our weekly session prices have been reduced to $495 for the 2016 summer camp season! We will continue to offer full, half, and partial scholarships to campers exhibiting financial need. Register now, because spaces will fill quickly at this new, reduced price!

Children ages 9-16 welcome!  

What people are saying about our camps

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“The Centennial Forest camps are the number one thing my son says are the best part of his summers. Without the scholarships offered for Centennial Forest my son would not have been able to attend. As a single parent who works full time I find it difficult to keep him engaged in healthy and supervised activities, especially as he gets into the teen years. My son is excited at the end of every school year for the possibility of going to the Centennial Forest camps. Over the years his interest in forestry has grown and his knowledge is amazing! His initial interest only went as far as hoping to be a firefighter and maybe fighting forest fires. With the help of Centennial Forest his interest now includes the possibility of attending a school of forestry. My son has also come home from camp with more confidence in public speaking and more willingness to volunteer when either helping someone or providing a new idea or perspective. Cheryl Miller and the rest of the staff have ensured year after year that all the kids make friends, learn new skills, gain a knowledge and love of our natural world, and always want to come back!”
- Parent of 2015 returning camper from Flagstaff, AZ

“This was an amazing experience for my daughter. It was the highlight of her summer. Thank you so much for making it possible for her to experience this camp!”
- Parent of 2015 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

“Loved having my son disconnect from electronics and enjoy the outdoors!”
- Parent of 2015 camper 

“My son was concerned about what to expect, and whether there would be enough to interest him. He truly enjoyed himself – he was made to feel welcome by the staff. The counselors were knowledgeable and enjoyed sharing information and inspiring the campers. He loved all the different areas you explored – the stream, meadow – he had great stories and information from them all and really involved himself in the activities.”
- Parent of 2015 camper from Maricopa, AZ

“My son did a variety of summer camps this year. By far, the Junior Forester Academy was his favorite! He is already talking about going back to camp next year!”
- Parent of 2015 camper from Phoenix, AZ

“The boys had a fantastic time at camp. Thank you so much for making it possible for them.”
- Parent of 2015 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

“Dear Cheryl, the Centennial Forest staff, and all those who were a part of my daughter’s Junior Forester Academy,
Just wanted to say that my daughter had the best week in memory. She loved her time at camp and came home full of great stories to share.  Thank you for giving her the opportunity to participate in such an incredible experience.    :-)
This is from my daughter:
"To ALL the camp counselors in general, camp was just AWESOME and I can't wait to go again next year. The camp cook made the best food ever and was great on the guitar at the camp fire."
- Parent of 2015 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

“All the subject areas and activities my child experienced during camp were way better and more detailed than I expected. I was thrilled by the level of involvement from the campers. They were not mere observers. My child learned so much from all the hands on experiences.”
- Parent of 2015 camper from Maricopa, AZ

“My child loves coming to camp and making new friends and loves all the activities the camp does.”
- Parent of 2015 returning camper

“Just a statement from my child on the way home was: “I want to go back next year!””
- Parent of 2015 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

“This was a great outdoor experience for my son. He speaks often about the camp and his experience. We are extremely grateful for all the personal help and assistance Cheryl and the team provided him. It made a huge difference. Thanks and see you in 2016!”
- Parent of 2015 camper from Phoenix, AZ

“This was the second time my kids attended the NAU Centennial Forest camps. First as Junior Foresters, now as Senior Foresters. They enjoyed every bit of time at camp. When they get picked up, they are so excited to tell about all their experiences. The kids learned a lot about the outdoors and the wildlife (baby blue birds). They always look forward to next year’s camp. Thanks to the scholarship program, my kids get to enjoy a wonderful outdoor experience with NAU Centennial Forest.” 
- Parent of 2015 returning camper from Flagstaff, AZ

“My son had so many stories to tell after camp. He was enthusiastic, and continues to show confidence and interest in the natural world. The Staff was wonderful as well. There were two male staff members (medic & chef) that my child bonded to especially well. Having joyful, interested men in his life proved to be powerfully positive. Thank you!!!”
- Parent of 2015 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

“Great Camp!”
- Parent of 2015 camper

 “My children would not have been able to attend if it was not for the scholarship program and generosity of Cheryl Miller reducing my co-pays. She made it financially easier for us. Both the kids were sad to leave camp, giving hugs to camp staff when saying good-bye. They both immediately asked if they could attend the next week’s camp! Even though there was few kids that were at camp, they expressed how much fun they had, and all the outdoor information and learning they had. I look forward to sending them next year, and many thanks to ALL that make this a great camping experience.”
- Parent of 2014 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

“Thank you so very much for having my son and for the partial scholarship. He had a BLAST! He still talks about camp. We are so very thankful and grateful for the assistance. Thanks for making a difference in his life!”
- Parent of 2014 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

“My son loved camp! It was such a positive thing for him! He came home so very thrilled and is already talking about next year! Thank you for helping with his confidence! We will for sure be back! Thanks also for the help with funding!”
- Parent of 2014 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

I know he loves this camp & it's because you guys make sure it's great.
- Parent of 2014 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

My son loved being a CIT and going to the OLA. He is very knowledgeable about our native plants. Without scholarship assistance my son would not have been able to have this wonderful experience. NAU Centennial Forest Camp Rocks! Thank you so much!!
- Parent of 2014 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

My son had a great time and already looks forward to going back next year!
- Parent of 2014 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

Thank you my son had a great time! Can’t wait for next summer!!
- Parent of 2014 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

“My child is SO excited about the forest. He tells me of the beauty and is interested in protecting it. He wants very much to have a future that includes the forest. THANK YOU.”
- Parent of a 2012 return camper from Flagstaff, AZ”

“This was our daughter’s third time with you. I am so grateful for this camp! It has developed her confidence and will (I imagine) be one of her top childhood memories into adulthood.”
- Parent of 2011 return camper from Flagstaff, AZ”

“My son was very excited when he came home from camp. I can’t remember him talking so animatedly or so much about anything before. The counselors/teachers/experiences definitely sparked something in my son. It was a very valuable experience for him. Thank you!”
- Parent of 2011 camper from Phoenix, AZ

“Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! My son had such a great time and is still talking about things he learned at camp. We appreciate the opportunity and are thankful for the amount of time you all invested in him!.”
- Parent of 2011 camper from Flagstaff, AZ”

"My daughter loved camp. She is a total nature loving nut and she was in heaven. She talked non-stop for about two days about all the cool things she learned. She really liked and admired all the counselors and truly enjoyed the “camping” experience. This was her first overnight camp experience and it was awesome. I think she matured a lot form this experience. Thank you for nurturing and education young kids with this awesome program. We will definitely be back next summer!"
- Parent of 2010 camper from Flagstaff, AZ

"This is an amazing program! My son had not had any camping experience in the past before he attended the Junior Forester Academy last summer. He really enjoyed the program and was very excited to have the opportunity to come back this year and be a part of Senior Forester Camp. He definitely excelled at skills he learned at the outdoor NAU Challenge Course. He accomplished feats he would never had tried on his own or with his family. The program and staff are simply wonderful. Thank you for the opportunity!"
- Parent of 2010 camper from Mesa, AZ

"We can’t thank everyone enough, our son had such a great time, he is looking forward to next year already. Again, thank you Cheryl and everyone that was involved with making the camp possible."
- Parent of 2009 camper from Mesa, AZ

"Upon their return, they were so excited to tell us about everything they learned, so much so that we had to create a ‘take your turn’ system so each of them could tell us their favorite moments! When we asked them to rate their experience on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being the top) out of ALL the experiences they have ever had (including Disneyland, Magic Mountain, etc.), they ALL gave summer camp a 10! Needless to say, when you can get four teen and pre-teen boys to agree on anything that, in itself, is simply amazing!"
- Parent of four 2009 campers from Phoenix, AZ

"Thank you so much for a fulfilling and rich camp experience! We are lucky to have this program available!"
- Parent of 2009 camper from Chino Valley, AZ

"Thank you for attending to my son's dietary needs in such a thorough and personal manner. He also appreciated the attention and care from your camp nurse!"
- Parent of 2008 JFA camper from Mesa, AZ

"Raved about the whole camp experience, the counselors, and has shared with many people all the cool stuff he learned! He can't wait to return next year! Thanks for a great experience - you were all awesome!"
- Parent of 2008 JFA camper

"I was pleasantly surprised they worked on public service segments and exposed her to video recording.
- Parent of 2008 OLA camper from Flagstaff, AZ

"Kudos to all who helped my son achieve great things, become a positive thinker, appreciate beauty and nature. You are all great & awesome teachers and mentors."
- Parent of 2007 SFA Camper from Prescott, AZ

"Thank you again for affording this experience to my daughter. She came back with a greater sense of self and higher self esteem. She has continued to share knowledge she learned at camp. My daughter also continues to share her experience with others and believes (as I do) that JFA and SFA are a must for all children. Thanks again to all staff and their ongoing dedication and effort"
- Parent of 2006 SFA camper from Flagstaff, AZ

"I enjoyed making walking sticks, roasting s'mores, and listening to guest speakers. Not only did I have fun and felt safe during my week at camp, but I learned a tremendous amount. With that knowledge I took my family out on my property and showed them how to read a map and compass."
- Camper of 2005 SFA from Williamson Valley, AZ

"Experiencing your camp has literally changed their lives and made them both more focused in terms of what their goals are for the future. They both are environmentally aware now. They talk in terms I can't understand about nature, fire, animals-thank you. I can only teach them what I know and I thank you for the exposure you gave them to a world that is not only new but wonderful. Every single day some idea, thought or experience from camp is recalled and shared with us all. Thank you very, very much for the joy you shared with my children."
- Parent of 2005 campers from Glendale, AZ

"I just want to let you know that my daughter really enjoyed the camp! You guys did a fantastic job! She learned a lot and made some new friends too."
- Parent of 2004 JFA camper from Flagstaff, AZ

"I just want to tell you that I cannot explain how much he loved the camp and the counselors. His face continues to light up when he talks to family and friends about the camp."
- Parent of 2004 JFA camper from Flagstaff, AZ