Idyllwild Arts Academy suspending summer program until it's safe to return to area

Threat of Mountain Fire forces more than 400 campers to leave campus

Marc Blaine, KESQ News Channel 3 Anchor & Reporter, mblaine@kesq.com
POSTED: 07:50 PM PDT Jul 19, 2013    UPDATED: 11:19 AM PDT Jul 20, 2013 
Idyllwild Arts Academy
RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. -

With the Mountain Fire moving in the direction of Idyllwild, campers and counselors obeyed a Wednesday night evacuation order and were transported to an American Red Cross evacuation center at Hemet High School.

Some of those campers could be seen Friday morning walking to breakfast after spending the night at a Rancho Mirage motel.  They all live outside of Southern California. 

"It was like the best night's sleep ever, because we were at Hemet High, we all slept on cement floors, and now we have real beds and pillows," said Idyllwild Arts Academy counselor Kelly Hudson.  "It was great.  I don't think I am going to complain about an uncomfortable bed again."
     
About 450 kids and their counselors were forced to leave the arts academy.  The majority of the campers were picked-up by their parents at Hemet High School.

The Idyllwild Arts Academy summer program is scheduled to run through next Saturday.