By Alicia Dziak
Summer vacation is almost here, and if you haven’t already started lining up the boredom busters, now’s the time to look into all the summer camps available. Whether your kids are looking to develop new skills, explore other interests, or just meet new friends and be outdoors, there are plenty of fun camps to choose from.
For the sporty set, there are plenty of places to get their game on.
Springville Youth Inc. (SYI) offers golf camp, basketball camp, tennis camp, soccer camp and volleyball camp throughout the summer months. For dates and to register, visit syionline.org.
The Royal City Soccer Club of Buffalo is celebrating its annual summer grassroots soccer day camps. Open to boys and girls ages 5 to 13, they offer six locations during July and August. Visit www.royalcitysoccer.com for more details or call (888) 488-4188.
Every year, nearly 3500 students entering grades 1-12 attend summer camps at Houghton College. Summer sports camps include soccer, basketball, equestrian, tennis and volleyball. For more info, visit www.houghton.edu/summer-camps.
Darien Lake Residential Soccer Camp, July 31-Aug. 4, aims to create the ultimate camp experience by combining 30 hours of Global Premier Soccer professionally coached soccer tuition with all the thrill and fun of a Darien Lake vacation. For more info, visit www.gps-newyork.com.
Take the short drive to Dunkirk, where Camp Directors and Licensed Coaches Mike and Kelly Hanes and Todd Schiffmacher lead a sleepover soccer camp Aug. 6-12 for kids entering grades 3-9. This camp also includes lots of time for hiking, swimming and campfires. For more info, visit dunkirkcc.com/youth-summer.
For the creative types, consider an art-related camp. SYI and the Springville Center for the Arts are once again teaming up to bring a variety of workshops to students in grades K-12. Visit www.syionline.org for more info.
Hyatt’s All Things Creative in Clarence offers several weeklong camp programs. Separate sessions are designed for kids ages 5-8 and 9-12 with special one day workshops for teens. Classes are taught by experienced art teachers and the number of students is limited to 12 so that kids can get personalized attention. Each class will involve getting messy in the choosen art area and snack time (which is provided). At the end of each week long session, kids will take home a bag full of art supplies to continue the fun! For more info, visit www.hyatts.com.
If your kids hope to reconnect with nature this summer, there are several options.
Beaver Meadow, located in North Java, offers nature camps for kids entering grade 2-12. Weeklong camps are broken down into small age groups and give participants the chance to experience live animals, shelter building, hikes, crafts and much more. For more info, visit www.buffaloaudubon.org.
Reinstein Woods in Depew offers day camps for kids in grades K-8. Connect with nature and explore the great outdoors with friends old and new. For more info, visit www.reinsteinwoods.org.
Camp Wyomoco in Varysburg, is open to any boy or girl ages 8-16. It is not necessary to be a 4-H member to attend camp. Activities offered are Aquatics, Archery, Ecology, Nature, Horsemanship, Outdoor Skills, Performing Arts, Sports, Visual Arts and Counselor-in-training. Camp Wyomoco is open to all children, ages 8-16. The Wyomoco Resident Camp Program addresses the developmental needs and interests of campers within the goals and objectives of 4-H Youth Development and Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wyoming County. The program intends to help campers’ ages 8 through 16 grow and learn in a healthy, positive environment; give them a wonderful, fun-filled week at camp, and provide a safe place for both these things to happen. 4-H Camp Wyomoco is fully owned and operated by Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wyoming County. For more info, visit wyomoco.cce.cornell.edu.
Camp Turner, located inside Allegany State Park, is a resident summer camp for boys and girls, from 7-16 years of age. It is available for group rental. The fully winterized cabins and dining hall make a great venue for your retreat, reunion, or outdoor conference. Camp Turner is located inside Allegany State Park about 80 minutes from Buffalo. Operated by the Department of Youth and Young Adult Ministry of the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo, Camp Turner is open to all regardless of affiliation. For more info, visit www.campturner.com.