MDC Cape Nature Center invites 7 to 11 year olds to learn outdoor cooking

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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center will host an outdoor cooking program for 7 to 11 year olds, Saturday, Nov. 15, from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. This event is part of the Snappers program, which features monthly programs designed for the 7 to 11 age group. MDC Naturalist Angela Pierce said children should be ready to cook and try some good food.

The Snappers Outdoor Cooking program covers the basics of cooking around a campfire or with charcoal outside. Pierce said participants will get a chance try a variety of cooking methods like cooking on a stick, making foil meals, and cooking with a backpack stove.

"Cooking outdoors is a great skill to take home with you; whether you use it while you're camping or just in your backyard, it gives you an opportunity to discover nature," Pierce said.

Pierce said outdoor cooking programs are held at the Cape Nature Center about one to three times per year. She said parents should remind their children to dress for the weather, as the program will be held outdoors.

Pierce also said she hopes this program will be a catalyst to many outdoor cooking experiences for those that attend.

"Cooking around a campfire is fun for the whole family. I encourage people to try cooking at least one meal a month outdoors together as a family," she said. "Not only will it bring you closer together as a family, but it will also give you a chance to learn more about the plants and animals living around you."

Capacity is limited for this program, so the Cape Nature Center will begin taking reservations on Nov. 1. Like all programs at the Cape Nature Center, the Snappers program, is a free program for all participants to help them discover nature and learn more about conservation, due to the 1/8 of 1% Conservation Sales Tax.

Snappers is just one of several children's clubs at the Cape Nature Center, which are divided by age. "Tadpoles" are shared nature experiences for infants through two-year olds with attending adults. "Mudpuppies" are 45-minute programs for 3-6 year olds with attending adults, and "Snappers" are programs for ages 7-11. For more information on these or other programs at the nature center, call 573-290-5218, or go online to