Dirt seldom has any good use unless it was during a soap making class, Friday, at Maholic Child Development Center.

Dirt was one of several “fragrances” used during Soap Making Academy, which was offered through the Schools of Knowledge, Inspiration, Exploration and SkillsUnlimited to teach youth how to make soap as gifts or for personal use.

SKIESUnlimited is an educational enrichment program that is facilitated by Child, Youth and School Services. Other academies available to Fort Bragg youth this summer include acting, baking, bowling, dance, fencing, and golf.

Kristen Shore, 10, used the dirt fragrance to make soap.

What was her take on it?

“It stinks,” said the Holbrook Elementary School rising fifth grader.

Jolly rancher, clean cotton, lavender and basil, and peppermint candy were just a few of the other fragrances used during the academy, which was open to youth ages 7 to 18.

Johanna Groves served as the academy instructor. An Army spouse, Groves said she first learned soap making while living in Vicenza, Italy and thought youth at Fort Bragg would enjoy learning the skill as well.

“It’s a good hobby for the kids to learn and they can use it as a future business if they want to sell their soaps,” Groves said.

The process begins with a soap base that is melted almost like chocolate, fragrance is added and then poured into a mold to set.

Claire Benick, 8, seemed to enjoy Soap Making Academy for other reasons.

“I like that you get to be a friend and play with your friends and joke around,” said the rising third grader at Bowley Elementary School.

One of those playmates is Abigail Berlin, 10, who said the class is fun. She used green most often in her molds because it is her favorite color, and plans to keep the soap she makes in a bucket in her room.

“This class is fun, and I will give the soap to my Family and to myself,” said Marlena Warmack, also 10 years old.

To her, the best part of the class is, “seeing the finished product.”

For more information about SKIES Unlimited classes or academies, visit www.fortbraggmwr.com/cyss/skies-unlimited/ or call 396-8110.