The University of ArizonaCollege of Agriculture and Life Sciences

James 4-H Camp at Mingus Springs

About

Photo of a creek at the James 4-H Camp

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Through a number of generous donations, the Arizona 4-H Program is pleased to have been given the opportunity to purchase and operate its own 4-H Camping facility, the only one of its kind in the state.

The Harold and Mitzie James 4-H Camp & Outdoor Learning Center at Mingus Springs is located on a secluded 55 acre wooded site at an elevation of 6500 feet on Mingus Mountain in the Prescott National Forest. Schools and universities, governmental and educational institutions, as well as religious and special interest organizations have found the isolation and beautiful surroundings ideal for many types of programs. Prior to becoming a 4-H Camp the Mingus Springs Camp & Outdoor Learning Center, owned and operated by the Dahlberg Foundation, offered camping and outdoor education to groups since 1950.

The 4-H Program, traditionally grounded in university and research-based learning, allows youth to reach their full potential through experiential learning, leadership and life skill building. By definition, 4-H Camping is cooperative group living in a natural environment that focuses on hands-on learning and developing life skills by providing a framework for mentoring and role modeling. At 4-H Camp youth learn how to take care of themselves and become more independent while enjoying a variety of classes and socializing with peers, teen leaders and adults from differing backgrounds.

4-H Camping Programs have the unique opportunity to reach a variety of audiences, bringing together those from limited income, underserved families as well as those with access to a variety of services; youth living in both urban and rural areas; and those who participate in other aspects of 4-H in a club or school enrichment activity.

Camps

2015 Camping programs

These are some of the exciting 4-H camping opportunities being offered around the state of Arizona and at the James 4-H Camp at Mingus Springs.  Camping programs held by other youth organizations are also listed this year. Registration Forms can be downloaded by clicking on the links. To register for an event, be sure to return the form to the appropriate office provided in the information below. 

Statewide 4-H Family Camp - April 17 - 19, 2015

To provide a 4-H Families in Arizona a quality resident camping program that focuses on natural resource education.  This is a resurrected concept from 40 years ago when 4-H families would come together to do camping programs and camp as family units.  Campers will be sleeping as a Family unit, in the same room.  Campers must be in the same family or extended family, Parent, Grandparent, Guardian etc.

The program will include, evening campfire, wildlife and natural resource education, crafts, canoeing, fishing, science programs, recreation and positive leadership and socialization skills, Sing A-Longs, and MORE!!!

Registration, @ $35.00 per camper, registration Due April 3, 2015

Family Application              

  • Youth Forms
  • Adult Forms

Camp applications will be posted to the web on March 1st and available on a first come basis for the first 11 families for Family Summer Camp to be held in April  2015, and we will expect to have approximately 50 Campers/Parents signed up for camp in 2015.

This 2-day camp will focus on natural resources education with programs on wildlife, natural resources conservation, soil and water conservation and quality, recycling, safety and first aid. The mornings and evening will be structured programming with the afternoons open for Family adventures and activities, Hiking, Fishing, Crafts, Sports and Games.

Applications are online! Start Planning NOW it’s going to be a GREAT summer!!!!

For more information contact Gerald Olson.

Statewide 4-H Camp - July 17 - 21,  2015

Camp will soon be here!  Camp will be held, this year in the cool, tall pines of Mingus Mountain near Prescott. 4-H Camp is open to all 4-H members, ages 9 to 19. The Camp Committee is planning the program which will include variety of activities. Swimming, canoeing, Art’s & Crafts, Archery, Nature Hikes, Campfires, Camp Skills, Gun Safety, New Games, Sing A-Longs, and MORE!!!

Early Bird Rate the cost for Camp will be $200.00 for the first member of the family, and $180.00 for each additional member, for the five-day event. Because of the popularity of Camp, and the limited space, applications will be taken on a first come, first serve basis and limited to 80 spots. We anticipate filling all 80 camper slots very quickly.

For this reason camp applications will be for 4-H members only unless space permits. Applications will be placed on a first come basis. Camp applications MUST BE RECEIVED BY FRIDAY, JULY 3, 2015 at the County Extension Office, 101 E. Beale Street, Suite A, Kingman, AZ 86401. Start Planning NOW it’s going to be a GREAT summer!!!!

Registration information

For more information contact Gerald Olson.

Facility Rental

Smiling 4-H campers at James 4-H camp

We are taking reservations for the spring, summer and fall of 2015.

Our facility is generally open between April 15th and October 1st, depending upon the weather conditions on Mingus Mountain, and is available for day-to-day use or overnight camping. It is our goal to accommodate the needs of all groups interested in camping at the James 4-H Camp at Mingus Springs.

Our camp has a capacity of 100 people. Do not overfill.

Complete a Facility Reservation Request and return it via email to Sandra Saad to reserve your spot! Sandra can also provide you with information about our camping season rates.

Sandra Saad
Events Coordinator, Senior
520-626-4086
ssaad@ag.arizona.edu

Resources

Camp History

Camp Outdoor Learning Center sign

From its earliest iteration as a residential camp, the spirit of Mingus Springs Camp embodied positive interaction with the natural world. It has since inspired many groups and organizations with similar mission to enjoy and appreciate the space within and surrounding the camp as it is conceptualized today.

The earliest buildings on the Mingus Springs Camp property date from 1899 when several prospectors patented 25 contiguous claims of over 500 acres along Ash Creek. The land was conveyed to the state for back taxes and sold twice before it became a summer camp in June, 1950.

In 1956 a 17,000 acre fire burned a great deal of Mingus Mountain. As camp life centered on horseback riding and hiking, and many trails and favorite places had been damaged by the fire, the owners decided to close the camp after the 1957 season and it remained closed until 1968. In 1968 Dr. Henry Dahlberg and the Dahlberg Foundation decided to purchase the Mingus Springs property for $75,000 to again rebuild a camping program.

The Easter Seal Society was the first user in 1969 and spearheaded much of the fundraising to develop the camp. During the seven years that they were at Mingus Springs, the bathhouse and cook's cabin were built, the dining hall was expanded and additions were made to the kitchen, Anasazi and Havasu cabins. Improvements have been continuous over the years. Mohave Cabin was added in 1982; all underground utilities were replaced in 2001. The pump house and power house were added in the '70s and '80s. The dining hall deck and southern addition were constructed in the past decade and the kitchen break room was built in 2004. And almost everyone has offered ways to "give back to the mountain" by building gabions and one-rock dams, raking pine needles away from buildings and other conservation and fire prevention activities. Today, donations are graciously accepted for a variety of sponsorships and facilities.

Camp cabin

During its time as a camp, the facility has been used as an outdoor learning space by a number of groups and organizations, many of whom have camped at Mingus Springs for a number of summers. A variety of on-going natural resources research projects sponsored by the Dahlberg Foundation and other donors are continuing in an effort to support conservation and resource management. There are miles of hiking trails, meadows and forests, extensive riparian areas and a two-acre pond. More traditional recreational facilities include softball, basketball, volleyball, horseshoes, fishing, swimming, Frisbee golf, orienteering and a challenge course.

Today Mingus Springs provides a spectacular arena for outdoor learning. With its rich history and focus on camping and program collaboration, Mingus Springs is an ideal location for groups to meet, host workshops, learn about and experience the natural world as well as participate in the essence of leadership and research. The Arizona 4-H Program is excited and honored to have the opportunity to continue offering these experiences to youth and adults in the spirit of the camp's history, the 4-H Program values, and the Cooperative Extension mission and vision.

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