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Minnesota National Guard
Columbian gets a taste of new culture at Youth Camp

"There's nothing like it back in Columbia" That's what Julian Andrade Franco said about his experience at the Minnesota National Guard Youth Camp Julian, the nephew of Capt Fernando Franco, 1st Combined Arms Battalion, 194th Armor, attended the week-long camp at Camp Ripley with his cousin, David. The cultural differences took a while for him to get used to, but the fact that Julian could speak English made the transition easier.

Youth Camp provides a unique and enjoyable opportunity for dependents, grandchildren, brothers, sisters, nieces and nephews of active and retired members of the Minnesota National Guard. The camp activities include biking, swimming, canoeing, orienteering, rifle marksmanship, archery and navigating through the confidence course�  The campers stay in barracks and are taught how to march. Patriotism and flag etiquette are also large part of the camp

"The team-building experiences were great," said Julian "The food was different than I'm used to, but I really liked it."

Julian arrived in the US a week before camp started and was able to spend some time with the Francos. Capt Franco said the families usually get together once a year, either in the US or in Columbia.

"It was a great experience for Julian," he said." Both boys want to go back to Youth Camp next year."

Written Sgt. 1st Class Rich Kemp,
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs
Aug 22, 2008

More information on the Minnesota National Guard Youth Camps can be found at:

Columbian gets a taste of new culture at Youth Camp - Low-Res

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