Cenla Summer Camps: Keeping kids busy during break

We have some ideas for parents on how to keep their children busy during summer break.
Published: May. 8, 2023 at 4:32 PM CDT|Updated: May. 31, 2023 at 8:08 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - With the school year ending in a few weeks, the countdown to summer has arrived. We have some ideas for parents on how to keep their children busy during summer break.

From sports and manufacturing camps to summer school, there are plenty of places to let kids develop and grow new skills while making new friends. YWCA offers a 12-week camp for kids ages four to 12. The camp features both indoor and outdoor games, daily swimming lessons, arts and crafts and several field trips throughout the summer. Program director Morgan Wampler said there is no doubt your camper will be tired when you pick them up in the evenings.

“We really pride ourselves on being a fun, positive, inclusive, safe place to bring kids,” said Wampler. “I think one of the coolest things is you have 150 to 200 campers walking through the front doors that first week, and they do not really know each other because they go to different schools. Then they all come together, and they are friends by the end of it.”

While summer camp at the YWCA is a little more laid back, Louisiana Central is offering high school sophomores and juniors a chance to hone their manufacturing skills. For an entire week, students are exposed to manufacturing careers available in Cenla, as well as local educational partners that can prepare them for the careers. Manufacturing Camp begins June 5 and runs through June 9.

Javonti Thomas from Louisiana Central previews Manufacturing Career Camp

“Our goal is to really create some sort of workforce pipeline,” said Javonti Thomas, program coordinator at Louisiana Central. “A place where students can become interested in careers and then the next summer maybe they can learn a little more about that track and then the summer after that, maybe they can have an internship or an apprenticeship. When they graduate, they can actually enter the workforce or go to a local community college to gain some additional education.”

Here is a look at some other programs across the area:

Louisiana Athletic Club Kids Camp

  • Where: 1135 Expressway Drive, Pineville
  • Website: louisianaathleticclub.com
  • Call: (318) 487-1000
  • When: June 6-10; June 13-17; June 20-24, June 27-July 1; July 11-15; July 18-22; July 25-29
  • Time: 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
  • Cost: $150 per week for members. $175 for non-members. $25 deposit a week per child to reserve a spot.
  • Ages: 5-12

Summer Camps at Midstate Strong

Arts & Crafts Summer Camp

  • Where: The Happy Heart Art Studio, 1815 Macarthur Dr., Alexandria
  • When: June 12-26, June 19-23 and June 26-30
  • Time: Morning session: 9 a.m.-noon for ages 5-10. Afternoon session: 1-4 p.m. for ages 7-11
  • Cost: $200 per week. $50 non-refundable sign-up fee to insure spot. Fee will be applied to weekly camp cost.
  • Registration: des@thehappyheartstudio.com

YWCA Summer Day Camp

  • Where: 5912 James St., Alexandria
  • When: May 22-Aug. 11
  • Time: 7 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
  • Registration: Now open. Registration fee is $105. March discount of $15.
  • Weekly tuition: $100 with $5 discount per child.
  • Call: (318) 442-3397
  • Website: wcaalexandria.org

T.R.E.E. House Children’s Museum Summer Camps

  • Where: T.R.E.E. House Children’s Museum, 1403 3rd St, Alexandria
  • Ages: 4-12
  • Cost: $85 for members. $95 for nonmembers.
  • Time: 9 a.m.-noon
  • Registration: Open for members. Nonmember registration opens on March 31.
  • Call: (318) 619-9394
  • Website:kidtreehouse.org
    • Rainforest Camp
      • When: May 30-June 2
      • Learn about the rainforest, its ecosystem and inhabitants.
    • Space Camp
      • Explore the moon, stars and planets.
      • When: June 6-9
    • Dinosaur Camp
      • When: June 20-23
      • Learn about different kinds of dinosaurs, dig for dinosaur bones and make dinosaur tracks.
    • Summer Fun Camp
      • When: June 27-30
      • Crafts, games and more at this camp.
    • Art Camp
      • When: July 11-14
      • Learn about different artists and create your own art.
    • Pirate Camp
      • When: July 25-28
      • Learn about pirates, their culture, stories and their role in history.

Summer Arts Studio “A Magical Summer of Whimsical Tales”

  • Where: River Oaks Arts Center, 1330 2nd St, Alexandria
  • Time: Classes are 1-4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • When: June 5-16. Session 1 “Tall Tales.”
  • Cost: $285 Art Camp Only or $470 Art Camp plus all day
  • When: June 19-30. Session 2 “Fairy Tales.”
  • Cost: $285 Art Camp Only or $470 Art Camp plus all day
  • When: July 10-14. Session 3 “Legends.”
  • Cost: $185 Art Camp Only or $275 Art Camp plus all day
  • When: July 17-28. Session 4 “Fables.”
  • Cost: $285 Art Camp Only or $470 Art Camp plus all day
  • Registration: Forms available at riveroaksartscenter.com. Mail to: River Oaks Arts Center, 1330 Second Street, Alexandria, La. 71301 or drop it by the office. No refunds after April 28.

Jane in June Camp

  • Where: Kent Plantation House, 3601 Bayou Rapides Rd, Alexandria
  • When: June 26-30
  • Time: 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
  • Registration forms available at the Kent House Visitor Center from 9 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. Monday thru Saturday.

Buddy Camp 2023

  • Where: First United Methodist Alexandria, 2727 Jackson Street
  • When: 8 a.m.–2 p.m., June 5–9, 8 a.m.–2 p.m.; 8 a.m.–2 p.m., July 24–28.
  • Ages: 5-11.
  • Register:fumca.org/buddycamp/
    • Teen Buddy Camp
      • When: June 26–30
      • Time: 2:30 – 7:30 p.m.
      • Teen Buddy Camp is for ages 12-19, both with and without special needs. Activities will take place on the church campus and off-campus.

AMoA Summer Art Camps

  • Where: Alexandria Museum of Art, 933 2nd St, Alexandria
  • When: Session 1: July 10-14
  • “Young Minds Wanna Know” with Carolyn Scalfano
  • When: Session 2: July 17-21
  • “Gallery Grooves” with Cindy Blair
  • Time: 9 a.m.-noon for ages 6-9. 1-4 p.m. for ages 10-12.
  • Cost: $100 for AMoA members and $130 for non-members
  • Register:themuseum.org/summer-art-camps/
  • Sessions limited to 20 campers each. All camps are half day. Early drop off is 8:45 a.m. and 12:45 p.m. Latest pick up is 12:15 p.m. and 4:15 p.m.

Get to the Point Ballet Academy

  • Where: 1705 MacArthur Dr. Alexandria
    • Summer classes
      • When: June 6-29 and July 10-27
      • Ballet, pointe, contemporary and combo classes
    • Ballerina Dance Camp for ages 4-10 for new and existing students
      • When: May 29-June 2; June 5-9; June 12-16
      • Time: 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Register: gettothepointeballetacademy.com

Just Dance Summer Camp 2023

Youth with Purpose

  • When: June 29 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Where: Westside Library, 5416 Provine Place, Alexandria
  • Meet and greet
  • All games and snacks will be provided
  • Ages 5 to 19
  • Contact: Laquestajones6403@gmail.com, Connie - (310) 365 7207

Day Camps 2023 Ol’ Mel’s Farm

  • Secure your spot here: https://ol-mels-farm-llc.square.site
  • When: June 5-9 June 19-23
  • Ages: Pre-K and up
    • 9a-5p M-F Day Camp is $200 with a $100 nonrefundable deposit due at booking. (Remaining balance due the first day of camp $100)
    • Kids must bring their own lunch. They will provide morning snack, afternoon snack, frozen treats and water.
    • Camp activities will consist of fun, fun, and more fun! Care for farm animals, how to ride a horse, arts and crafts, play games, water activities and fishing.

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