If you’ve ever wanted to go camping, but were held back by the unknowns of where to go or what to do, keep reading! The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has exciting news for people who have never experienced the joys of camping. DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos recently announced that the First-Time Camper Program will return to the Adirondack region for the 2023 camping season.
A Free Getaway in Nature
This popular program aims to introduce New Yorkers to the wonders of the great outdoors by providing fully stocked campsites at select DEC-operated campgrounds. Each campsite will contain a tent, sleeping bags, sleeping pads, firewood, a lantern, and camp chairs.
Campers will also be met with a Camping Ambassador to assist with setting up their campsite. Over the course of the weekend, campers will have the opportunity to learn how to hike, fish, paddle, bird watch, and more from industry experts.
This program is the perfect opportunity for families and individuals who have never camped in the area (or ever!) before to “test out” the experience before purchasing their own camping equipment and reserving a campsite. The First-Time Camper Program is available to New York residents only, and one of the goals is to introduce camping to people from underserved communities.
To take part in the First-Time Camper Program, interested individuals should complete a survey by 9am on Monday, June 26, 2023, to enter a lottery. After entering the lottery, participants will be randomly selected to fill camper slots.
While filling out the survey, you can choose one facility from a range of eight locations in the Adirondack Park and Catskills region. The program offers designated weekends throughout the summer, starting from July 7.
More information on the program and the link to the survey can be found on the DEC’s website at https://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/109909.html.
- New York State DEC: DEC Announces First-Time Camper Weekend Program for 2023 Season