AMESBURY — The city will again be offering summer programs for Amesbury youth, ages 3 to 15 years old. Last year, Amesbury's Youth Programs served over 1,300 youth. This year, there will be 10 new programs offered in addition to the 35 programs offered last summer.
New this year will be a Cheer Camp and a Dance camp. DeAngelis Studio of Music will offer Voice Camp, Rock Camp, Create a Music Video Camp, Guitar Camp and Songwriting Camp. As for Building, Digging and Engineering, Hyper Peppy Robotics, Building Rubber-Powered Model Airplanes, Can U Dig It-Discovering Dinosaurs, Rocket building, Engineering with Legos, Crime Scene Investigation, Computer Game Design, Making a Pirate Movie and an Amazing Art Program have been added.
The Preschool Program for 4- and 5-year-olds will be held in three, two-week sessions. It will meet Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to noon under the new shade structure at the Town Park. It will include arts and crafts, playground games, fun co-operative games and more.
The Park and Teen programs have been redesigned. The Youth Park Program, located at the Town Park on Friend Street, serves 6- to 11-year-olds Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. There is also extended day component (hours extended from 2 to 5 p.m.) and early start (8 a.m. to 9 a.m.). This will be offered on Fridays as well. The park program will have three, two-week sessions and one, one-week session. Field trips will be on every Thursday and may include trips to a water park, zoo, beach trips and more. Every Friday will have entertainment such as jugglers, magicians and animal shows. Tuesdays are special theme days.
The Tween Program, formerly the Teen Program, will now serve ages 11 to 14 and parents will have a choice of the Park or Tween for age 11. This program has also been redesigned to hold seven, one-week sessions. It will meet at the middle school cafeteria on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Wednesdays will be theme days and Tuesdays and Thursdays will be field trips. Teen enrollment will be limited to 50, while the youth program will have unlimited enrollment.
The Summer Environmental Program located at Camp Kent Environmental Center serves about 180 youth in grades 1 to 8 each year and offers six, one-week sessions. The program will run from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Participants will be in small groups and will participate in a variety of environmental science, outdoor skills and adventure learning activities. In addition, programming includes a low elements challenge course, archery, kayaking, fire-making for some ages, dutch oven cooking, GPS navigation, geocaching and a small critters week for grades 1 and 2. Call Camp Kent at 978-834-0359 with questions or e-mail: Campkentcenter@netscape.net.
In addition to Camp Kent, other programs held on or near the water include a fishing program that will travel to local watering holes. The Youth Boating Program will continue to teach sailing on a sunfish, rowing with a Lowell Boat Shop Dory and kayaking on the Powwow River. Stand-up paddle boarding will be added. Swimming instruction will be back at Lake Gardner and will have two sessions starting at age 3.
The STAR (Summer Theater Arts Recreation) program serves grades 5 to 9 and will meet four days a week for three weeks from noon to 3 p.m.. During the third week, there will be performances for various audiences of the community. The "Shooting Star" program returns this year for grades 1 to 4, where they will learn the magic of theater through games, skits, improvisation, make up and costumes.
The U.S. Sports Institute with all European instructors will be back to offer the Multi-sports program for ages 6 through 14 in both June and August. In addition, the Sports Squirts program for ages 3 through 5 will be offered in June and August. US Sports Institute instructors will also offer lacrosse and golf. New this year will be Squirts Golf, Squirts T-Bal, and Squirts Tennis for ages 3 to 5.
Other programs include tennis, basketball, soccer, Run4Fun cross-country program, archery with recurve bows, flag football from MVP flag football, piano lessons and golf with a pro at Murphy Garrison's Golf Course.
The Counselor in Training program is offered for 14- to 15-year-olds in the Preschool, Park, Theater, Swimming, Boating and Camp Kent programs. CIT's offer assistance to staff and will receive community service hours and training. CIT's will need to provide a reference letter and will be interviewed for positions. See the Youth Recreation director for an application.
Multisports and Sports Squirts will start June 25 and all other programs after July 2. Registration is available by mail or drop-off. There will be open enrollment throughout the summer for the Youth Park Program. All other programs have limited enrollment. The Preschool, Park and Tween programs will be open to Amesbury residents only. All other programs will be open to out-of-town residents after April 1 for an extra charge. For questions about the programs, call Kathy Crowley, the Youth Recreation director, at 388-8137 or e-mail at Kathleen@amesburyma.gov. All brochure and registration information was mailed to Amesbury homes and may also be obtained online under "forms and documents/government/youth programs" at the town website: www.amesburyma.gov. All programs and fees are subject to change pending Municipal Council appropriation.