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Ilan's Story

Sky Center

                My favorite experience at Earth Camp was going to the Sky Center on Mt. Lemmon. There we learned about space—constellations, asteroids, comets, star clusters, galaxies, and more. I found this fascinating because it showed me how vast space is and how small the Earth is. This makes me want to help change the world by getting friends and others to be more interested in space (by making a get together on Mt.Lemmon with telescopes and fun info brought by my the prople who come), therefore seeing that our planet is not the only one out there. They will then see that Earth is important enough to start fixing it. Some things that I would do is to lower my light pollution(by using timed florescent lights) and help lower others’ and work to lower the amount of carbon emissions I and others produce (via carpooling, public transport, biking, etc.).


No Impact Lunch

                Another fun thing we did at earth Camp was the no impact lunch. In our teams, we went around town find a place to go to lunch that had little or no impact on the environment. Our team went to BK Mexican restaurant for Sonoran Hotdogs. They make the hotdogs right outside the restaurant and the food comes in reusable plates. We also asked for no straws and no paper on the plates. After that, we went to The Grill downtown and did the same thing.   


Bikes

                On the fourth day of Earth Camp we biked all around town. As we biked we visited several locations that are working for a better environment.  We went to a solar panel installation center, a bike shop that teaches kids how to fix their own bikes, a garden area to have lunch, a shop that sells recycled and eco friendly house materials (such as bricks, tiles, and flooring), and U of A garden. Though these were interesting, I enjoyed just biking with the class. It also gave me a bigger respect for getting around without carbon emissions.


Dendrochronology

One my favorite activities at Earth Camp was coring trees to see how old they were, or “dendrochronology”. Our instructor showed us how to use a Swedish Increment Bore, which is a drill that you use to take a cylindrical core out of a tree (without harming it). We saw that by looking at the rings of a tree (shown in the core) you could tell when there was a draught, when there were heavy rains, and, of course, the age of the tree. Most of the trees we cored wee in the 100 year range, mine being 109 years old.  


Nocturnal Animals

                We were shown a few  nocturnal animals at Earth Camp, focusing on their adaptations to living at night. We met animals such as a Barn Owl (it has silent wings, big eyes, and sensitive hearing for finding pray in the dark), a Ringtail (the white around its large eyes helps it see better at night and it can face its feet backward in order to easily climb down trees), and a Tarantula (it has irritating hairs on it so as to repel predators). This was very fun as I enjoy meeting the animals at the Desert Museum.