• 72°

Summer camps abound

By Alyssa Branch


Now that summer is officially here, parents who already find themselves pulling out their hair and losing their sanity can still make some last-minute arrangements for local summer camps for their children.

Many organizations in Suffolk offer various camps for all age groups throughout the summer. These camps offer learning experiences, creative activities, new friendships and fun. From art to sports to robots — there are camps for every child’s interests.

Suffolk Public Schools offers two Career and Technical Education Summer Enrichment Camp sessions. These camps are for current fifth- to eighth-graders interested in science, technology, engineering and math — sometimes known by the acronym “STEM.”

Building with STEM Structures will be held July 11-14, while Get a Grip on STEM with Robotics will be Aug. 1-4. These camps will help students to further understand science, technology, engineering and math through hands-on activities and teamwork.

Campers will build various structures in the first camp and test them for destruction. In the other, they will build their own robotic arm.

Building with STEM Structures is $100 per student and limited to 20 students. STEM with Robotics is $150 per student and limited to 16 students.

Each camp will be from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. with a lunch break. The camps will be held at Forest Glen Middle School. Registration and payment is due by June 23. For more information, contact Cheryl Lassiter at 925-6750.

The Suffolk Center for Cultural Arts is offering two camps this summer — theater camp and S.T.E.A.M. (back to school boot camp). Theater camp will be Aug. 1-5 and S.T.E.A.M. will be Aug. 29 to Sept. 2.

Campers will get a sense of the theatrical world, eventually bringing it all together for the whole family to see. S.T.E.A.M. will allow children to discover exciting topics while developing important learning skills.

Theater camp will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., while S.T.E.A.M. is from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Both camps cost for the week is $225 for SCCA members and $250 for non-members, with lunch and snacks included.

The Suffolk Art League is offering multiple classes over the summer. “We will have two different locations for summer camps this year, which is something we have not done in the past,” says Beth Netts, education coordinator.

Sandee Darden, King’s Fork Middle School art teacher, will be instructing the two Art Detective classes held on July 18-22 and Aug. 8-12. The theme is “mystery” — children will explore a variety of mediums and create new projects each day to discover the mysterious world of art.

The class in July is for ages 8-12 and will be held at the C.E.&H. Ruritan Hall in Eclipse between 10 a.m. and noon. The August camp has two times — 10 a.m. to noon for 6- to 9-year-olds and 1 to 3 p.m. for ages 8-12. This class will be held at the Suffolk Art Gallery.

Registration for both camps is $50 for art league members and $60 for non-members. The registration deadline is July 8. For more information visit suffolkartleague.org or call 925-0448.

The Suffolk Art League’s Art Days will take place Thursdays from June 30 to Aug. 4 from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. for ages 5-8 and 1 to 3 p.m. for ages 9-14. The event is first-come, first-served and is $1 per day. It will be instructed by King’s Fork High School art teacher Alicia Johnson.

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy is offering a summer program for ninth to 12th graders called the Summer of Innovation. The program will educate students about computer programming, coding, sensor development, human-centered design and service learning.

These camps include Let’s Make Smart “Things” (June 20-24), STEAMpunk — Let’s Make Electronic Fashion (June 27-July 1) and Let’s Lend a Hand: 3-D Printing, Prosthetic Design and Service Learning (July 11-15). These weekly sessions are from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at NSA. The camps cost $350.

The YMCA offers many camps from day care to adventure activities. Camp Arrowhead in Suffolk is an adventure camp offered for school age children (grades 1-5) and teens (grades 6-9). These day camps are full of exploration, adventure, friendship, and education.

For more information on the YMCA summer camps or to register visit www.ymcashr.org.

Suffolk Parks and Recreation offers many different camps throughout the summer for all different age groups. Their camps include golf, soccer, basketball, adventure camp and day camps.

For fees, dates and more general information on these camps, visit www.suffolkva.us, call 514-7250 or view the latest edition of their program guide.

The Montessori Academy of Virginia offers an eight-week summer program for mainly preschoolers (ages 2-5).

“Each week is a different theme week, so we do activities and academics pertaining to that theme,” said Donna Hernandez, office administrator.

The first week of the camp this year will be Disney week, where children will do activities related to Disney while learning the history of Walt Disney. The next will be festival week.

The importance of the summer program is to “keep children in the structured routine of the school year as well as introducing children and families coming to the school in the fall,” Donna adds. The program will be from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and will cost $150 per week. Registration is now open. For more information, visit www.montessoriva.com.