Some of our young men recently held a photo exhibition at the boys campus where they shared photographs and stories about their experience at Yellowstone National Park this summer.

Nine of our young men, along with their youth care workers, took this weeklong trip to Yellowstone, where they stayed in a cabin and experienced the many views and activities the national park had to offer. The attendees had some say in what sights they would like to see and chose the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone as one of their destinations.

While there, the young men saw bison, elk, hot springs, geysers, took a long hike through the woods, and enjoyed some stargazing.

“The whole trip itself was so peaceful, so calm,” Octavio said. “I just wanted to spend time outside enjoying the view most of the time.”

Each young person was given a camera to take pictures of the trip while there, and they were excited to display their photos at this event. DeJohn chose to share a picture he took of a sunset.

“It was like the most awesome sunset,” he said. “It was the perfect moment. I don’t know how I got it but I got it.”

The group also had the chance to learn more about how to conserve and protect national parks on their trip and shared some of that information at the exhibition as well.

Of course, at the end of the day, our boys also got the chance to just be kids and enjoy the open space when returning to their cabin each evening.

“We would cook dinner and the guys would just get to run around like crazy, chasing each other, waiting for the elk to come out with their binoculars,” Theresa, a Mercy Home therapist who chaperoned the trip, remembered.

“It was really nice to see the experience through their eyes and watch them be kids,” Lindsay, one of the youth care workers who traveled with the boys, added.

DeJohn said he hoped to take his kids to Yellowstone one day and relive the trip.

Octavio also said he would recommend a trip to Yellowstone to everyone.

“If you have a chance [to go], you should go and take it,” he said. “It’s an amazing view, something you’d never get to see in the city It’s just really open space. You just feel free. It’s really just amazing, kind of gives you the chills when you think about it.”

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