The John Beltz Retreat Center of just over 100 acres is located at 4834 Harlem Rd, Westerville, Oh. Campers have access to a barn for shelter, basic restroom facilities and lots of outdoor space to play.
Two streams of water flow through the property and into the Hoover Reservoir. There are about 10 acres that are mowed and the balance is wooded area with lots of wildflowers, mushrooms and many other plants.
The wildlife on the property includes fox, deer, turkey, woodchucks, squirrels & many others. The streams have salamanders, snails & other animals.
Outdoor adventure activities are central, but free play, crafts and tools are frequent and age-specific:
- learning outdoor skills, such as fire building, fire safety, tool safety, knots, etc.
- sensory awareness hikes, night hikes, and star gazing (with Thursday overnight option)
- creeking (catching and identifying critters with the nature specialist)
- hiking, including orienteering for older campers
- outdoor cooking over an open fire, planning meals
- crafts and other quiet activities
- outdoor team building games
- songs, camp traditions, closing ceremonial fire, and much more!
Why Are ``Unplugged`` Outdoor Camps Important for Youth Development?
Today children are plugged in and don’t have many opportunities to play and explore the great outdoors. We are on a mission to get kids up and playing outside again! At Camp Otonwe, campers are given the opportunity to connect with nature through hands-on experiences, without distractions of video games, televisions, and computers. Connecting with nature enhances creativity, coordination, and concentration and it relieves stress! The campers are empowered to try something new and take a skill to the next level. Daily decisions are made as a unit which helps children learn to get along with others and creates a sense of belonging, an important aspect of day camp.
Our trained staff will make the most of this incredible experience and campers can look forward to a week of growth, learning, and fun!
Youth Leadership for Tweens and Teens
(Campers Grades 7-10)
“Weal” is a Native American word for helper. This leadership program is open to youth going into grades 7-10 who have previous camping and outdoor experience or who have a strong desire to learn! If you enjoy working with young children and possess a positive attitude, then this may be for you. Weals will learn leadership skills and participate in team building activities as well as work on advanced camping and outdoor living skills. Weals will also mentor younger campers on a daily basis. This program is an excellent stepping stone to the Camp Wyandot CIT Program!