Friday, December 1, 2023
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HomeNewsThird-graders experience living history at White Sulphur Springs Ranch

Third-graders experience living history at White Sulphur Springs Ranch

Every September, White Sulphur Springs Ranch in Clio hosts Living History School Days for third-graders from Portola and Quincy. Kids learn about the history of the historic property and what it was like to live in Plumas County back in the 1800s.

A total of 82 children participated this year, said volunteer John Jullo. Quincy Elementary School participated Sept. 20, and Portola’s C. Roy Carmichael Elementary School participated Sept. 21. A total of 22 teachers and chaperones attended and 18 WSSR volunteers guided the kids through the various activities.

“The kids loved getting out of the classroom for a day and getting hands-on experience of a day in old Plumas County, said Lullo. “There were many happy faces and the feedback from teachers was very positive.”

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On each day, students were organized in groups and introduced to the newly decorated ranch house before starting on a tour of four different outdoor stations. The children experienced frontier cooking, shepherding, Maidu life, and fruit box making. “It was a day of fun, life, and learning,” said Lullo.

Students learn what Native American life was like in Plumas County at White Sulphur Springs Ranch.

The idea for Living History School Days originated in 2009 when volunteers Janet Reihsen and Janice Cross visited the Bernhard Museum in Auburn, said Lullo. That museum complex features the historic building, Travelers Rest, which was built in 1851. The house is decorated in Victorian style and costumed interpreters give tours of the site.

Reihsen and Cross studied the setup at the Bernhard Museum and worked out the details for the first Living History School Days at WSSR. The first event was held in September 2009 on the historic site in Plumas County. Except for the two pandemic years of 2020 and 2021, School Days has been a yearly tradition at WSSR. “The dedicated volunteers at WSSR look forward to School Days 2024,” said Lullo.

Docent Judy Porep-Lullo, in period costume, shows Quincy Elementary School students the interior of the historic ranch house.

Living History School Days is partially funded by a grant from the Safeway Foundation, reports Lullo. “The foundation is dedicated to bettering the lives of people in the neighborhoods and WSSR is very fortunate to have their support,” he said.

The organizer for this year’s event was Jim Maul. School Days is an important outreach of the Mohawk Valley Stewardship Council, stewards of White Sulphur Springs Ranch. The current goal is to completely restore the old property for use by the community. MVSC depends on fundraisers, contributions, and grants. The group has more than 300 members and a large group of active volunteers. Those interested may learn more at

Information submitted by White Sulphur Springs Ranch

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