Archive for Thursday, May 6, 2004

Day camps to provide Baldwin youth educational activities

May 6, 2004

Some Baldwin children will have a chance to discover down under, explore space and travel back in time -- all in one summer.

The Baldwin City Recreation Commission is offering its third Summer of Discovery day camp this summer.

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The summer-long program, which begins June 1, is divided into nine one-week camps, each week with a different theme.

"We come up with educational topics we think they'd like to explore," Jamie Peterson, recreational specialist, said. "We try to make it educational. We want the kids to learn all summer long."

Some of this summer's themes include space, history, movie and theater special effects, art and sea life. She said children participate in activities throughout the week including games, arts and crafts, skits and magic shows.

"Almost everything we do is related to the week's theme," she said.

Throughout the week, the children will also have an opportunity to go swimming and to the library to participate in the summer reading program.

"They don't get much time to sit down," Peterson said. "They're moving constantly."

At the end of each week, camp participants take a field trip. Some of the trips planned this summer include Science City, Worlds of Fun, Kaleidoscope and the Kansas City Zoo.

The program, which is licensed by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, is open to children who have completed kindergarten through those who have just completed fifth grade.

She said participants can sign up for one week or just a few weeks or even all summer. Children can also choose whether to attend the entire week or just half of the week.

"They can mix and match it for whatever they want," Peterson said.

Space is limited, she said, and each camp costs, the fee depending on the registration option chosen.

Peterson said camp scholarships are available and must be applied for by May 15. But in order to provide all of the scholarships that will be necessary, she said, BCRC needs help from Baldwin.

Currently, BCRC only has about $1,600 in scholarship money, much of which has been donated by Baldwin organizations and businesses. But Peterson said in order to grant all of the scholarships, at least $3,000 is needed.

"I don't think we will have enough by any means," she said. "I really hate the idea of turning kids away."

She said BCRC has lowered the cost of the camps each year to make it more affordable, but would still like Baldwin businesses and organizations to help provide camp scholarships.

Those who need more information about the camps or would like to donate a scholarship can call the BCRC at 594-3670. Camp registration forms, which include information about each week's theme, are available at the office at 820 High St., as well as several businesses around town.

Peterson said the camps were a good opportunity to give children a chance to continue learning throughout the summer while providing fun activities and trips.

"It's outdoors, you're doing, you're moving," she said. "We try to make it fun learning, real hands on."

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