A Backpack Journalist

2018 – Summer Camp Adventures in Photography and Writing

Dates for our summer camps, please scroll down for description for each camps’ content and focus.  

Photojournalism – “photos” tell the story, and guide the writing of  the script!

Plus we use documentary photography to learn from, and create amazing stories.

Adventures are ahead! Details below


June 11-15 

June 18-22 

June 25-29  

July –  16-20 &  July 23-27

back to school July 30-August 3

9 am to 4 PM  – each week.


Columbia, SC:  June 11-15 and July 9-13, 2018 only

9 to 4 PM – during the week.

Columbia City Hall

Please send an email to [email protected] for registration information.  

To reserve a place in any camp offering, a deposit of $75 is required on line via our STORE CAMP link on this website.

PLEASE note – purchase for more than one camp, receive a 10% discount.


Each week we spend time exploring the various museums, the SC State House and parks.  Columbia has history and we will be gathering it and creating short films.



June 18-22, 2018  – Harbor Pilots/Charleston Harbor

July 16- 20, 2018- Charleston Seaport/SC Port Authority

Charleston, SC location

(Basics of filmmaking/The Harbor Pilots/Charleston Harbor)

This is a STEAM week, filled with observation, writing, reporting and photography to include a final short film. (4th to 11th grade please)

Overview:  A week is spent studying the Harbor Pilots organization to include:  SC Port Authority locations, the nautical history of the harbor that dates back 300 years, the dredging and the US Army Corp of Engineers, and the Coast Guard.  This week is filled with field trips to different locations, using IPADS loaded on Iographers, for ease in taking photos and notes for later producing short films.  Limited Seating, with a pre-interview with a parent/teacher.

Photojournalism – “photos” tell the story, and guide the writing of  the script!

Deposit of $75 required/total weekly cost:  $250.  We provide all the field trip transportation.  Bag lunch required. 9 to 4 daily


June 11-15  (The Horse and the Cowboy, working with Cowboy Poets, writing stories and short plays and then filmmaking).  

Orange Grove Elementary Charter School

This is a STEAM week, filled with observation, writing, reporting and photography to include a final short film. (4th to 11th grade please). Exception below re: rising 1st graders, 2, & 3rd!

Imagine a week filled with learning about the Cowboy, the western part of the US and cattle drives.  Native Americans and the important role that they played with the settlers.  We combine history of the western US, with fun inspiring stories, while focusing also on the animals such as the horse that made it all possible.

Special guests include real actors that appear in Westerns, Native American Chiefs and Cowboy Poets that write about the history of the west, and work on a ranch!  Did we mention a horse as well! During the week all students learn how to write Cowboy Poetry (and it’s a combination of history and prose) and then will compete on the weekend for prize money!

UPDATE:  just added in – Michael Martin to come in for a day or so, to help those wishing to sing their words  ie create lyrics for a song!  

Deposit of $75 is required.  Total id $250 per week. Bag Lunch. (PLEASE read on – as all students have the option to participate in a Cowboy Poetry competition to win prizes.)

EXCEPTION: we welcome in rising 1st graders to 3rd graders for a special experience learning about the Cowboy and the Horse, from their eyes! Includes his or her first “film” using an ipad/IMOVIE. ($200)

At the end of the week, we travel to Johns Island for a tribute to the Horse and Cowboy, with Cowboy Poets and Cow Camp Cooks.

A celebration of the Horse and Cowboy Life! – Fundraiser to benefit:

Charleston Area Therapeutic Riding & Team Backpack Journalist, youth

Saturday, June 16, 2018 – from 10 am to 3 PM

FREE to students and their families (only fee is for dinner prepared by the COW CAMP COOKS.  Come see the chuck wagons as they form a circle!

At Brickhouse Equestrian Center, 2669 Hamilton Road, Johns Island, SC

SPECIAL PERFORMANCES BY:  Jerry Warren, Georgia’s Cowboy Poet

  • Scotty Sparks, “bad guy” actor from The Magnificent Seven with Denzel Washington.
  • Jim Dunham, PBS/Cowboy actor/expert on roping and speaking to the Cowboy Life, from the Booth Museum, Cartersville, Georgia.

Cowboy Poetry Recitals/Competition (lowcountry youth to compete)

Photography Western Booth (by the Backpack Journalists)

Outdoor Family Activities & Western Arts & Crafts.

Local artists and merchants to display their works.

Tours of the Brickhouse Barn & demonstration of the CATR program.


Charleston, SC

June 25-29, 2018

Kids’ Guide to Charleston, SC

This is a STEAM week, filled with observation, writing, reporting and photography to include many locations in Charleston, SC just for kids.  These 5 days we spend about 80% of our time outside, and walking or riding on CARTA as we tour and capture our beautiful historic city by taking photographs or filming.

Day one, we gather to plan out our weeks’ field trips, and to review our writing, observation and filming skills.  Each day we travel the City of Charleston to gather the history found at the location, interview and then photograph and film.  We begin at the Museum Mile, and move to  Waterfront Park where we can cool off, the Farmers Markets, the Slave Museum, taking a Buxton Books’ Walking Tour, and always stopping off at City Hall, where the council chambers have walls filled with historic portraits of our forefathers. Not to forget, Charleston has many candy and ice cream shops, and a beautiful sea port.  For certain, we visit the SC Port Authority, and take a Charleston Harbor Boat ride, making sure we take photos and short films of our beautiful city!

PS The RiverDogs! We visit them during the week, and on Friday night – we have free tickets to the ballgame that closes with Fireworks!

Photojournalism – “photos” tell the story, and guide the writing of  the script!

 EXCEPTION: June 25-29 (9 to 4)– Kids Guide to Charleston, we welcome in rising 1st graders to 3rd graders for a special experience learning about the City of Charleston from their eyes! Includes a visit to the Waterfront Park with each student making his or her first “film” using an ipad/IMOVIE. ($200)

$75 deposit – $250 per week, Bag lunch.

9 to 4 daily



July 9-13, 2018

 Kids Guide to Columbia, SC

Come join in!  We take our Ipads/Ioographers and travel about Columbia, gathering the stories and creating short films.  Let’s see it is the South Carolina capital, with many great museums, and a zoo!  Lots of stories to capture!

We assemble  of all photos and short films onto storyboards first, and editing into final short films.  A 20-page book is the final outcome, as each student within weeks following the camp receives a copy.

To apply you must be in 5,6,7,8 grades.  For more information: [email protected] 


July 23-27 – Serious Theatre (2 weeks)

July 30-August 3,2018

(Details forthcoming)

Try outs may be required, as these two weeks will evolve into a traveling theatrical presentation.

Study with Randy Neale/Pure Theatre’s Youth Group as we prepare our fall presentations.  If you are interested, please email:

[email protected]


All of our camps focus on:

Learning about the lowcountry!  Become a photojournalist – taking photos and exploring certain locations. Reporting and having fun at the same time.  It’s photography and storytelling and filmmaking, with each week a new topic to cover.

Iographers! love them attached to a iPad!

A Backpack Journalist

2018:    Cover the Assignment projects:

Kids Guide to Charleston, SC & the community over the bridge: Mt. Pleasant

Charleston is known for its preserved architecture found in the gates and buildings, glorious gardens and the oldest museum in America, a rich history that dates back to the settling of the “states” and the Revolutionary War, The Civil War and up to present day, with Patriot’s Point and the coastline filled with nature and our homeland’s security! The city and surrounding area offer beaches, fishing and water sports and some of the finest restaurants America has to offer.

Charleston is also known for special events and activities just for “kids”. The museums have special art and history programs, national parks with wide selections of fun places to explore, and then there are the open air festivals and farmer’s markets that are ongoing throughout the year. Down Market Street there are more candy shops and open air merchants to enjoy!

Plus, just over the bridge is Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina. Filled also with parks and beaches, promises a lot of activities for the kids and their families. A simple walk over the Ravenel Bridge promises an experience not found in any other city in America.

Our Afterschool Programming and Saturday Fun Days focus on researching Charleston and the surrounding areas and reporting on great places for kids to visit and enjoy. It’s history at it’s best, as well as what’s fun for a kid.

  • Taking a walking tour of Charleston one learns of the cobblestone streets, and of ghosts that still remain hanging around.
  • Charleston is a city of many parks and lakes.
  • The port of Charleston. SC Port Authority is our state’s economic engine and daily large boats from around the world come and go!
  • Waterfront Park, with it’s fountains and park benches, allow all visitors to enjoy the Charleston Harbor, and by the way, encourage kids to take a walk through the waters!
  • George Washington spent time in Charleston and visited a famous church that sits on the Four Corners of Law. Imagine sitting in his pew?
  • Guess how many ice cream shops are around, and btw what’s Gelato?
  • Candy? Is it really homemade? Instead of buying a packaged brand, sample the Charleston homemade!
  • Plantations listed on the National Historic Register are plentiful.
  • Across the bridge: Mt. Pleasant. Beaches and lots to explore from the BIG TOY, to Daniel Island’s oyster restoration projects protecting the coastline by students.
  • In Mt. Pleasant, the annual Blessing of the Fleet (Shrimpers) and the waterfront park under the bridge.
  • Toy stores? Yes lots to learn also, as these stores have great educational sessions for kids.
  • Open air markets: Charleston Farmers Market/Mt. Pleasant Farmers Market and W. Ashley Farmers Market. Lots of fresh vegetables grown locally, as well as stands of crafts and local art.

The lowcountry of South Carolina has a strong military presence. Charleston Joint Base, where the Combat Photographers Squadron resides, servicing the US Air Force all over the United States.   The Coast Guard resides on S.Broad and is often seen patrolling the harbor from boat and air.

Higher education includes the College of Charleston and The Citadel, with campuses on the peninsula and filled with history to learn about. Friday at The Citadel, when in session, offers a glimpse of the Military parade. College of Charleston with their libraries and art galleries, again offer a lot to learn from.

All the research which includes field trips, interviews and photography and short videos on each location to be placed on the website:  www.kidsguidetocharlestonsc.com.  Researched and written by “kids for kids all over the world”.

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2018 – Summer Camp Adventures in Photography and Writing