Courtesy photo Pictured are campers Jimmy Aayden Hayes and Orlandis Mercer. Also pictured are Grayson County Deputy MacGregor Wright, his wife Diane Wright and Ranch Head Counselor Andrew Moore.

Courtesy photo

Pictured are campers Jimmy Aayden Hayes and Orlandis Mercer. Also pictured are Grayson County Deputy MacGregor Wright, his wife Diane Wright and Ranch Head Counselor Andrew Moore.

Staff report

The summer camping program at the Kentucky Sheriffs' Boys and Girls Ranch officially opened to campers for their 45th camping season on June 9. The camp runs throughout June and July, serving both boys and girls on alternating weeks.

The Boys and Girls Ranch is a non-profit organization that serves children in Kentucky through a camping program designed to build children's self-esteem, teach them respect for themselves, others and law enforcement.

The camp is free for the children to attend due to the dedication of the sheriffs involved, members and contributors of the program.

The cost of serving the children is $500 dollars per week for each child.

According to a press release from the Kentucky Sheriffs' Boys and Girls Ranch, continued donations and support will help them continue to reach Kentucky's youth, with 100 percent of donations going directly to the camp.

"In addition to our regular camp activities, such as arts and crafts, nature, sports, swimming, fishing and archery, we've added a few things to our playground and updated the climbing wall," said Executive Director Jerry Wagner.

"The campers also enjoy visits from local volunteer organizations, which include a fire safety program by the Gilbertsville Fire Department, K-9 Fox and drug awareness education program by the Marshall County Sheriff's Office, and the McCracken County Child Watch Program," said Wagner. "It is a week filled with fun and learning and our hope is for the campers to create a lifetime of memories during their stay, as well as learn the values of respect and other life skills."

Wagner said, "On behalf of the campers and staff, we send our heartfelt thanks to all who have helped -- not only this year, but since its inception. Were it not for all of you, we would not be able to continue to make a difference in the children's lives and your support is greatly appreciated."

For more information about the Boys and Girls Ranch or how you can invest in a child's life and help build Kentucky's youth, call the Ranch at (270) 362-8660.