August 12, 2013- San Diego, CA- Military kids had the adventure of a lifetime on Wednesday when they had the chance to meet a famous artist who has been all over the world. This very special artist is little different however, as she is a two ton Asian elephant named Mabel. On August 7, 15 participants from the Armed Services YMCA San Diego‘s Camp Hero program joined Mabel and trainers from Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® for an art lesson and educational fun.
Mabel, the unit’s youngest elephant on tour, drew her best Picasso portrait, while also entertaining on-lookers. Camp Hero participants watched as the seven year old elephant painted on an easel with her trunk before creating masterpieces of their own featuring their favorite animals. They also watched some of Mabel’s favorite exercises like kicking a large inflatable ball and dunking a basketball with her trunk. After the show, campers had the opportunity to ask questions of the circus animal trainers and learn more about elephants and their lifestyle.
“It was a very good opportunity,” said 11-year-old Dillian Smith. “She has a very active imagination.”
This exciting outing is just one of the many field trips that military kids will get to enjoy during the ASY’s four week long Camp Hero program. This week long day camp serves as an outlet for military youth to share their common experiences and receive academic enrichment all while making friends and having fun. The curriculum is designed to help children find practical ways to address the challenges of military life, provide tools to help them succeed in school, and improve social and communication skills. Each new set of campers will enjoy a week of activities and field trips that allow them to learn more about themselves and their community. ASY Camp Hero participants will not need a memory of an elephant to remember this event forever.
View the Fox 5 San Diego video of the event below: