Campers practiced weaving plates from palm fronds. 

Campers practiced weaving plates from palm fronds. 

Sanibel Sea School ended its 2017 summer camp season with Going Coconuts Week, a week of learning about these rather large fruits and celebrating the island lifestyle they represent. Campers enjoyed activities like cracking coconuts, planting coconuts, and floating like coconuts, and discovered a few coco-nutty facts along the way.

Coconuts travel along ocean currents, sometimes moving all the way from one continent to another before growing into a coconut palm tree. Campers released coconuts and followed them in canoes. 

Coconuts travel along ocean currents, sometimes moving all the way from one continent to another before growing into a coconut palm tree. Campers released coconuts and followed them in canoes. 

Coconuts are dispersed by water, so when they fall from their tree, they float in the ocean until favorable germination conditions are met. Sometimes they float all the way to a different continent, which is why coconut palms are found along tropical coastlines all over the world. Going Coconuts Week participants dropped their own coconuts in San Carlos Bay and followed along behind them in canoes. They didn’t cross any international borders, but they were surprised by how far a coconut can travel in just a few minutes.

A coconut ready for its journey. 

A coconut ready for its journey. 

Campers figured out how to crack open coconuts, then sampled the refreshing milk and tasty meat inside. They practiced weaving plates and building shelters from palm fronds, painted coconuts to look like their favorite creatures, and even mailed coconuts to friends and family. They also gathered around a coconut-fueled campfire one evening to make delicious s’mores.

Doc Bruce demonstrated how to crack a coconut open. 

Doc Bruce demonstrated how to crack a coconut open. 

As usual, there was plenty of time for snorkeling, seining, surfing, and spending time with friends. Sanibel Sea School is a 501c3 nonprofit whose mission is to improve the ocean’s future, one person at a time. To learn more, visit sanibelseaschool.org. 

Participants released coconuts into San Carlos Bay. 

Participants released coconuts into San Carlos Bay. 

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