If you've ever been camping, you know how much fun it can be. Getting away from it all, sleeping under the stars, getting back in touch with nature, and actually feeling yourself de-stress. But what if you've never gone camping, there's a lot of unknowns. Will you like it, what do you need, how should you prepare for the trip?

As a first time camper, you have enough on your mind without worrying about the cost of trying something out for the very first time. At least that's what the New York Department of Environmental Conservation thinks, and we agree.

That's why they are introducing the free, First-Time Camper program throughout this summer. Before you spend a ton of money on buying gear for you and your family, first time campers will have the chance to experience camping at a fully-stocked campsite at select New York state campgrounds for a weekend from July 7 through August 25.

Not only will these campers have all the supplies they need, they will also have the help of a Camping Ambassador to greet them and get all set up for the weekend. There's also opportunities to learn how to fish, hike, and bird watch from experts. These are going to go fast, so reservations are a must and will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis beginning Wednesday, May 17 by calling 518-474-6718.

For the complete list of participating campgrounds and for more information on the First-Time Camper Program, click here.

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