Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center announces its upcoming summer camps, called Eco-Rangers, for students entering third through ninth grades. Eco-Rangers sessions will take place on select dates in June, July and August, and are scheduled for different dates based on different age groups.

Eco-Rangers introduces students to different concepts of nature, art and science, and it gives students the opportunity to explore different ecosystems, study a variety of animals, complete art projects and engage in many hands-on activities and active games. Several of the camps are presented in partnership with the Stark Museum of Art

All camps have a low student-to-teacher ratio, which enhances hands-on learning in the classroom-style environment. Advanced application is required, and all applications must be fully completed and signed with payment made in full in order to be processed. Each session will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis.

Applications are currently available for download under the Education, Summer Camps tabs on the Shangri La website at Applications may also be picked up in person at Shangri La’s Admission Window during open hours. Completed applications are due no later than June 1,  by 4:00 p.m.

The fee for each class is $25 per participant for STARK Cultural Venues members at the Family level and above, and $50 per participant for non-members and for SCV members at the Individual, Dual and Couple SCV membership levels.

The Eco-Rangers camp schedule is as follows:

Flocks of Feathered Friends, in partnership with Stark Museum of Art, June 24 – 28 (For students entering grades 7, 8 and 9),8:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Experience the art and science of birds in this hands-on class. Learn to identify at least 26 bird species at Shangri La while learning great techniques to illustrate them. Encounter the famous naturalist-artist John James Audubon, whose artistic impressions of birds have provided information to thousands of scientists. Try your hand at Audubon’s printmaking process, journal sketching, sculpting and more.

Got Water? July 1 – 5  (For students entering grades 7, 8 and 9), 8:30 a.m. ­- 2:30 p.m.Less than 1% of the Earth’s water supply can be used for drinking. Grab your waders and join us to explore this precious resource at Shangri La. Get a little wet while surveying the biodiversity of swamps, lakes and bayou. Learn to build river systems, reconstruct watersheds and create a topographical map.

What is your Element? July 8 – 12,  (For students entering grades 3 and 4), 8:30 a.m. ­- 2:30 p.m.

Explore the elements of earth, water, air and fire and learn about the length of time it takes to make an inch of soil. Participants will also discover the origins of wind and the size of the sun. Find out more about the water we drink that may have been the same water available to dinosaurs before their extinction. Join us to find your element.

Tree-ology: Secrets of the Tree, July 15 – 19 (For students entering grades 3 and 4), 8:30 a.m. ­- 2:30 p.m.

Prepare to be amazed while uncovering the secrets of the forest. Explore the life cycle of trees, learn to identify their parts and discover their importance in the environment. Play exciting games, sing songs and become a tree artist.

Plants in Perspective, in partnership with Stark Museum of Art, July 22 – 26 (For students entering grades 5 and 6), 8:30 a.m. ­- 2:30 p.m.

Combine science in art while exploring botany through the observation, drawing, painting and sculpting of flowers. Participate in experiments and microscopic studies that will reveal the fascinating science of plants. Enjoy making artistic creations that will bring the beauty of plants to life. Join us to investigate and illustrate plants in perspective.

Nature Paparazzi: Snap to It,  July 29 – August 2 (For students entering grades 5 and 6), 8:30 a.m. ­- 2:30 p.m.

Take part in an adventure in nature photography while capturing the magic of Shangri La’s trails and unique nature treasures. Learn how to use a digital camera and how to consider lighting, composition and color to create a striking photo. The class will culminate with a photo contest and an exhibition of student’s work for family and friends. Sending personal cameras is not necessary as this class will have the ability to use digital cameras loaned by Shangri La.

Located at 2111 W. Park Avenue, Shangri La is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. For more information, call 670-9113, or visit

Located at 712 Green Avenue in Orange, Texas, the Stark Museum of Art is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. For more information, call 886-2787, or visit

Admission to Shangri La and the Museum is free for STARK Cultural Venues members. Admission fees for all others are $6 for adults; $5 for seniors (age 65 and up), students (with ID), and youth (age 10-17); $2 for children (age four -nine); and free for toddlers (age 3 and under). Shangri La outpost tour fees are in addition to Gardens’ admissions, and visitors are reminded that participants of an outpost tour must be four years of age or older. Group tours are available by advanced registration.