willowell foundation

Romp Outdoor Mentoring Program 


Come join us outside on the Willowell land for the second Saturday of each month from September until June! We will be practicing our outdoor knowledge and survival skills, while allowing children to have a great time exploring for a full day of fun and learning! Each month will have a different focus area (like species identification, survival, artistic creation, etc.) while the program as a whole teaches overarching themes of respect and connection to the natural world and those around us.

Romp features structured elements that give children concrete knowledge of their natural world, as well as plenty of unstructured play, allowing for students to use and develop their creative minds. We will culminate the year with an overnight trip in June, where the children will be able to showcase the skills they’ve developed throughout the year.



First Saturday of every month (9/7, 10/5, 11/2, 12/7, 1/4, 2/1, 3/7, 4/4, 5/2, 6/6-6/7)

Please note that enrollment for this program is rolling and tuition will be pro-rated based on start date. It’s not too late to sign up!

Drop off at 9am // Pick up at 3pm


Stoney Meadow Lane
Monkton, VT 05443


7 - 12


Sliding Scale: $350-$500 (pay what you’re able) | Includes an overnight stay in June

Enrollment is rolling and tuition will be pro-rated.

Scholarships available, no one will be turned away due to lack of funds.


Complete the online registration form by clicking below



I. Make checks payable to the Willowell Foundation, and mail to PO Box 314, Bristol, VT 05443.

II. Pay through PayPal. Please add a $10 processing fee to tuition total when paying online. Enter child’s name and “Romp” in the description.



Zack Smithwood

Zack is an AmeriCorps State member serving with the The Willowell Foundation. Zack was born and grew up in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire along the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee. He spent many summers attending and working at summer camps on the lake. Zack graduated from Saint Michael’s College in Colchester, Vermont in 2017 with a B.S. in Environmental Science. While at St. Mike’s, Zack enjoyed running the college’s intramural sports and playing on the Ultimate Frisbee team. Zack became a mentor with the college’s Little Brother/Little Sister program and expanded his passion for youth development and mentorship.

After college, Zack started his service with AmeriCorps at the Farm at the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps in Richmond, Vermont. He spent one season on the farm before starting a year-long service job as the Youth Activities Coordinator with the Recreation and Parks Department in Winooski, Vermont. While in Winooski, Zack enjoyed running many sports programs for the city’s youth like basketball, football, and tennis.

Today, Zack is thrilled to be mentoring the youth at Willowell. He can’t wait to help in the Willowell garden next Spring, and he hopes to bring some gardening projects to Wren’s Nest Forest Preschool. When Zack isn’t serving with Willowell, you might find him working on an alpaca farm, or exploring a new river bend with his fishing pole.

Karianne Shetter

Karianne grew up in York, Pennsylvania, but was drawn north towards the mountains. She currently resides in Richmond, Vermont, where she enjoys hiking, biking, and skiing local trails. Over the years, Karianne has found herself continually drawn towards work with youth. She’s found herself in kindergarten classrooms, as a dance instructor, and at a summer camp, where she has truly enjoyed helping youth grow and learn.

Karianne graduated from Saint Michael’s College in Colchester, Vermont, in 2017 with a B.S. in Media Studies, Journalism, and Digital Arts. She minored in Computer Science and Philosophy. After college, Karianne moved to Alaska for three months to work as a guide on the Matanuska Glacier. Karianne spent her time on the glacier sharing her passion for the environment by explaining the effects of climate change to tourists.

Since her return to Vermont, Karianne has served as an AmeriCorps member at the Farm at VYCC, where she was able to grow and distribute food for local families. Currently, Karianne works for Skida Headwear & Accessories in Burlington, Vermont, as a Graphic Designer. She hopes to bring her knowledge of gardening and her passion for the earth to the Romp Winter Mentoring Program. When she finds time for leisure, Karianne enjoys playing Ultimate Frisbee, doing crossword puzzles and attempting to teach herself to knit.