Young people’s interest in cooking has soared in recent years. The extensive line-up of cooking and baking shows has brought to life the fun, art, and creativity of spending time in the kitchen. Shows that teach basic cooking skills, all the way to intense competitions with master bakers at work, have created a whole new meaning to being in the kitchen. And being in the kitchen can greatly benefit kids of all ages. Teaching kids to cook and feel comfortable in the kitchen does so much more for them then just provide a great meal. Teaching kids to cook also boosts their confidence, teaches responsibility, encourages them to be more adventurous eaters, improves independence, inspires creativity, and teaches basic life skills. Teaching kids to cook also helps them understand what goes into food preparation, and may even give them a better appreciation for the meals they receive. And when the preparation is complete, gathering together for a home cooked meal or snack is time well spent, it’s quality time together.
Iroquois Springs gives campers of all ages a hands-on opportunity to learn to cook at Kitchen Stadium. Kitchen Stadium is a camp activity that brings campers together to learn basic cooking skills, try new foods, feel a sense of accomplishment and have a whole lot of fun. Lori Bright, who will be returning to IS for her tenth summer, is the director and heart and soul of Kitchen Stadium. Lori teaches fun and delicious recipes that kids not only enjoy at camp, but can prepare and share with their families all year long. From quesadillas, guacamole and hummus, to blue mountain milkshakes, cookies, and smores lava cakes, campers love their time in the camp kitchen.
At Kitchen Stadium, campers are preparing foods using fresh ingredients and making most recipes from scratch. Campers learn to measure ingredients, use the appropriate kitchen tools, learn the necessity of being organized in the kitchen, and the value of working together. Lori loves that campers are learning such important life skills in the kitchen. “Cooking gives kids a unique opportunity to create and explore. Kids gain independence and confidence as they try new flavors, learn basic culinary skill, and understand how math and science can be relevant in the kitchen.”
Lori is thrilled that Kitchen Stadium is a definite favorite among campers of all ages. The feeling of accomplishment and success that campers experience in the kitchen comes from Lori’s belief that flexibility is important in learning to cook. “I really stress that trial and error is part of the process. It’s ok to drop an egg, omit an ingredient, or forget to put the lid on the blender – whoops – there goes the blue mountain milkshake on the ceiling!”
Kitchen Stadium has also become a fun addition to camp’s friendly competitions of College Days and Color Week. It’s wonderful to see campers working together to come up with and execute creative and delicious recipes. But win or lose for their teams, the results are always fun and delicious. We can’t wait for Summer 2019, and another opportunity for campers to have fun in the kitchen, as they create, become more confident, and experience all the excitement of cooking.
“Cooking is fun and sharing food with family and friends is a great way to spend time together.” – Lori Bright, Director of Kitchen Stadium at Camp Iroquois Springs