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McCarty Center camp in Norman offers unique experience for disabled children

Camp ClapHans in Norman will wrap up its summer program this week after serving a total of 60 children with developmental disabilities in five camp sessions.
FROM STAFF REPORTS Published: July 22, 2014

Camp ClapHans — the only camp in the state specifically designed and built for children with developmental disabilities — will wrap up its summer sessions this week.

The camp for ages 6 to 16 is an outreach program of the J.D. McCarty Center. Five camp sessions were held this summer, with the final session to end Wednesday. Camp ClapHans has a one-to-one camper to staff ratio and serves six boys and six girls at each camp session, for a total of 60 children.

Camp ClapHans is named in memory of Sammy Jack Claphan, former University of Oklahoma and National Football League tackle, who earned his degree in special education. He died in 2001 at age 45.

The camp treats participants to activities such as swimming, horseback riding, canoeing and a ropes course. The camp is built around an 11-acre lake and is unique in that everything is designed for accessibility by children with disabilities and in wheelchairs.