Driving down Oak Grove Drive between La Cañada High School and Hahamongna Watershed Park, most would never guess deep within the park is a mini-army of 400-plus kids enjoying an old-fashioned summer.
For the past 84 years, Tom Sawyer Camps, originally located in Laguna Beach, has been inviting kids to "unplug," immerse themselves in nature and spend their summer outside the vast reach of technology. The camp's two current locations are in Arcadia and here in La Cañada's own backyard.
Anyone in Hahamongna Park between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. can find kids hiking, swimming, building forts, rock climbing, horseback riding, kayaking or working their way through a rope course.
"It's all simple stuff that kids like to do," said four-time camp veteran McKenna Cassidy, 12. "You don't miss TV or anything like that when you're out here. There is something everybody likes to do."
Campers learn how to appreciate and protect the environment through baking cookies with a solar oven and get their hands dirty digging into nature without an electrical socket in sight.