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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz County
Summer, Glorious Summer
May 13, 2013

Teen Wilderness BackPacking Is Life Transforming

Science Camps
Why Go to Camp?
Day Camps
Swim Lessons
Get Ready!
The Arts
Have a camp "film festival"
Unique Focus Camps
Choosing the Right Camp
Sports Camps
Overnight Camps
Family Camps
This Week
Click to view our Business Directory

(Graphics) CampingSilhouette.jpgYou don't have to go far in this county to find an amazing variety of summer camps and happily there is a camp for everyone's budget.  Mix and match programs to add balance and new experiences, throw in a little downtime and it can be a great summer.

For more May activities, check the Events CalendarBe sure to scroll down to all the summer festivals and mark your calendars!

Have fun finding the right camp for your children!  Parmalee


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  Teen Wilderness BackPacking Is Life Transforming

by Irvin and Diane Cornell,

When we were young if we played in parks, camped in the forests, fished in rivers, and sailed in boats, we learned to value nature and as adults encouraged the saving of open spaces. Our environment was a true classroom where we learned by doing: building shelters, making small boats out of sticks, or skipping rocks. Just writing about these activities brings back vivid memories and a feeling of enthusiasm, and a longing to get out and hike.

As Richard Louv says in his book Last Child in the Woods, "Our teenagers today grow up in a wired world and develop a know-it-all state of mind. If it cannot be googled it doesn't count." Parents may have been sold a bill of goods about how valuable computer based experience is. The world is not entirely available from a keyboard. In fact, Frank Wilson writes in The Hand that our learning comes from doing, making, and feeling with our hands.

It could be that all these new communication technologies take us away from human touch which perhaps contributes to violence. Physical touch may be essential to the peace-making process. Any natural place has an infinite reservoir of information that is the potential for inexhaustible new hands-on discoveries. The experience brings us into a grander, more mysterious world. What does your teenage son or daughter know about nature? Will summer activities enhance his/her experience of the real world?

(Photos General) OutdoorScience_Backpacking_Group.jpgMany teens and almost-teens are searching for a way to prove that they can be responsible, be away from parents, and do things on their own --with adult supervision. The many sports activities that we have in our county can help in this experience, but not everyone is skilled in a sport. There are many private camps, scouts, and non-profit groups that can provide experience in the outdoors. As the local 501c3 non-profit science education foundation doing summer day adventure field trips to parks and beaches for younger children, we wanted to add summer experiences into nature for teens. For the past 15 years we have led backpack trips that focus on developing responsibility and co-operation while learning geology, physics, chemistry, and sustainability in the "great outdoors."

The trip begins before we ever reach the trailhead. We become a group at pre-trip meetings with parents to discuss the trails and review the materials that will be needed: packs, sleeping bags, water bottles and filters, pans, cook stoves, and clothes. We must make decisions about weight versus necessity. A big question is about food and nutrition -- what is lightweight yet has the calories we will need for a hike of 6+ miles a day? And of course, will it taste good? Each student tries foods at home that are easy and quick to prepare yet taste good. Now the study of geometry, space and spacial relationships commences as we fill the pack. Physics: Where will the heaviest things be placed in the pack? We all became cartographers as we read the elevations on the map, study the contour lines, and use geologic features to find our location.

The weigh-in happens the first morning before we start on the trail as every ounce counts. We'll have to carry everything in the pack the whole way, and we want it to be comfortable, so adjustments of straps begin - and books, knives, phones, and Ipods get taken out of the pack.

Now we are ready to take off in our boots on the trail. Along our journey, we consider together the possibilities of activities, trails, when to stop for lunch, where to take a swim, and where to camp for the night. A decision like this allows everyone to have some input and then consider what is best for the group. After a day of hiking, relaxing after a good dinner are times of fun and connection with songs, guessing games, stories, and a sharing of the many experiences we have had during the day. It is also an opportunity to thank people who have helped us. Waterfalls, mountain peaks, sunsets, bears, marmots, deer, and glacial polish are some of the sights we may see along the way. On the trail we never tire of talking about food and the promise of pizza at the end of the trip.

One student described his experience of the backpack this way, "It was the most difficult thing I ever faced and the most fun." He returned the next year to go again. A parent described her son's experience by saying, "Backpacking with OSE last summer was a life transforming experience for my son. He learned valuable life skills studying the maps, preparing his backpack, and strategizing the weight for his daily needs. The entire group was positive and very helpful. He learned a lot about himself and his environment while having fun and making great friends! Finishing the 6 day trek ingrained a feeling of great accomplishment and he wants to go again this summer."

The teens write a paper describing their expectations before they go on the trip, and as some have said, "I want to clear my mind of all the video games, and breathe fresh oxygen, see the majestic mountains and roaring rivers full of clear water." An article in Newsweek Magazine states, "The natural world cannot be saved if people aren't willing to set foot in it." What about you? Are you willing to spend a week of your summer backpacking? A national camping association study reveals kids may get the most benefits out of camp just from being out of the classroom and running around outdoors-correcting "the nature deficit." A study by the association found that a week or more of camp accelerates key parts of kids' development, such as their social skills and self-esteem, more than other programs or even school.


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  Science Camps

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Camp SEA Lab Mad Molecule
Outdoor Science Fun
HOWL Science MakersFactory Camps Nature's Apprentice
IRIS Museum of Natural History Summer
Seymour Ocean Explorers
Life Lab Science WOLF (Web of Life Field) School
 SC County Science Classess

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  Why Go to Camp?

Summer Camp - Why Go to Camp?

Did you know that over TEN MILLION American kids go to camp every summer? Whoa!

Summer camp has been a U.S. tradition for over 150 years. Back then, before air conditioning was invented, hot city summers were miserable and even unhealthy for children, so escaping to the country for a few weeks became a popular trend. Today, kids have different reasons for making camp a part of their lives, such as: Read more!>>>>>


You don't have to go far to find an amazing variety of summer camps in this county and happily there is a great range of fees.  Also, you can mix and match programs to add balance and new experiences!  Throw in a little downtime and it can be a great summer.

For more May activities, check the Events Calendar!

Have fun finding the right camp for your children!  Parmalee

  Day Camps

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Aptos Academy Summer Adventure Kruz Kids Santa Cruz City Parks & Rec
Baymonte Summer Quest La Selva Beach Day Camp Santa Cruz County Parks & Rec
Boulder Creek Camps Live Oak Farm Camp Santa Cruz Montessori
Boys and Girls Club Montessori Scotts Valley Santa Cruz Waldorf
Boys In the Woodz Mount Madonna  SLV Quest
Camp Auxilium Mt Cross Springhill Summer
Camp Capitola Mt Hermon Redwood Camp Renaissance Camp
Camp Gateway Orchard Performing Arts Tara Redwood Inner Compass
Camp Kayetz Peaceful Valley Farm Camp Watsonville Parks & Rec
Camp Seascape Quail Hollow Time Travelers Watsonville YMCA Day Camp
Camp Wonderworks Quaker Camp Sammy Slug Summer Camp
Campus Kids Connection Redwood Christian Park Kennolyn Camps

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 (Ads Camp 2013) CampGateway_Camp_2013.jpg  (Ads Camp 2013) CampSeascape_2013.jpg
 (Ads Camp 2012) TaraRedwood_Summer2012.jpg  (Ads Camp 2013) CityofSantaCruz_2013_PR_SUM_Web_180x300.jpg  (Ads Camp 2012) SCMontessori_2012.jpg
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Summer Day Camp
Soquel Elementary School

Art, Science, Cooking
Sports, Music, Filed Trips

M-F 7am-6pm



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  Swim Lessons

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 Adventure Sports Unlimited  Santa Cruz State Jr. Lifeguards  Jim Booth Swim School
 Cabrillo Swim School  Seahorse Swim School SLV Swim Center
 Cougar Swim School  Simpkins Swim Center  SC County Swim Classes
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  Get Ready!

Day Camper's Backpack(Icons/Graphics) BeachGear.jpg
All items should be labeled with your camper's name.

Swimsuit, towel in "zip lock"
Sunscreen (apply first coat at home) & sunglasses
Swim goggles and/or earplugs
Light jacket
Spare shorts, t-shirt, socks & unders in a "zip lock"
Lunch -Ask if it will be refrigerated.
Water bottle
Ask about cell phone policy.

What to Wear
Dress for comfort and safety. Expect to get dirty; wear "old clothes" and
Sneakers -no sport sandals or open-toed shoes

A Typical "Do Not Bring" List

Expensive clothing
Cell phones
Pocket video games
MP3 players
Trading cards
Silly Bandz
(Icons/Graphics) NoCellPhone.jpgJewelry
Sports equipment
Other valuables

  The Arts

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All About Theatre Earth Art Studio Seven Directions
Aptos Academy of Performing Arts Hooked on Theater Steps Dance
Aptos Music Camp International Academy of Dance
Studio 501
Art du Jour
Kids on Broadway
Studio Sprout
Art Factory
Kimberly Hardin Art School
Susun Gallery
Be Natural Music
Music Preschool
MAH Art Camps
Coastal Vibe Dance
Motion Pacific Dance
Romanoff Music
Community Music School
Musical Me
Watershed Art
CYT Musical Theatre Summer Camp
Orchard Peforming Arts
West Performing Arts
Santa Cruz Mountain Arts
Young Actor's Theatre Camp
Kuumbwa jazz Camp
Cabrillo Youth Chorus
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Watershed Art

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  Have a camp "film festival"

(Books/Products) Movie_RaceforYourLifeCharlieBrown.jpgOne great way to mentally prepare yourself for going off to summer camp is to watch a classic camp movie! Try renting one of these fun flicks:

Meatballs (PG) Race for Your Life, Charlie Brown (G)
Heavy Weights (PG) Ernest Goes to Camp (PG)
The Parent Trap (PG) Addams Family Values (PG-13)
Camp Nowhere (PG) SpaceCamp (PG)

(Thanks PBSKids)

  Unique Focus Camps
Aux Tois Pommes Chartwell Summer New Leaf Cooking Camp
BasketBall Jones
Club Z Pediatric Therapy
Cabrillo Summer Youth Forest Farm Camp SPCA Camp
Camp SEALab Growing Social
(Ads Camp 2013) CampSeaLab2013.jpg (Ads Camp 2013) AuxTroisPommes_2013_ad3.jpg (Ads Camp 2013) NewLeaf_KidsCookingCamp_Summer2013.jpg

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  Choosing the Right Camp

Summer Camp - Choosing the Right Camp

There are so many different kinds of camps out there! For example:

  • "Traditional" camps that offer a little bit of everything
  • Academic camps that focus on science, math, or even creative writing
  • Adventure camps that are all about outdoor hobbies like rafting or mountaineering
  • Arts camps that specialize in theatre, music, film, or painting
  • Religious camps that focus on faith and worship
  • Sports camps that let you sharpen your skills in tennis, soccer, or baseball
  • Special needs camps that are especially for kids living with an illness, such as cancer or diabetes, or a physical disability
  • Day camps that offer the fun of camp without the sleepaway part

    Every camp is unique in its own way. Here are two IML readers who had very different experiences with the camps they chose: Read more>>>>>>
  Sports Camps

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 Adventure Sports  Kung Fu Kids  Santa Cruz Soccer Camp
 Aikido Santa Cruz  Luma Yoga  Santa Cruz Spikers Volleyball Camp
 Basketball Jones Hoop Camp  MB Horse Center  Surf School Santa Cruz
 BellaMar Horseback Riding Camps  Monte Vista Equestrian  Toadal Fitness Camps
 Bike Dojo Camp
 Monte Vista Sports Camp  UCSC Sailing
 Camp Flip  Paradigm Sports Baseball  Valley Sports Camp
 Catalyst Soccer  Pleasant Valley Horse Club  Santa Cruz Gymnastics Center
 Horse and Heart  Rod Sanford's Martial Arts  Horse 'n Around
(Ads Camp 2013) Seahorse_ad2_20133.jpg (Ads Camp 2012) SantaCruzSoccer_2012_180.jpg (Ads Camp 2013) JunebugGym_Camp2013.jpg

(Ads Camp 2013) CatalystSummer2013.jpg

  Overnight Camps
 Camp Campbell  Camp Winnarainbow Mt. Hermon Camps
 Camp Hammer  Frontier Ranch at Mission Springs Camp Unalayee
 Camp Koinonia  Monte Vista Horsemanship Camp SEA Lab

(Ads Camp 2013) MissionSprings-FrontierRanchCamp2013_728.jpg

  Family Camps

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Unalayee Family Camp

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  This Week

(BUILT IN) (Icons/Graphics) Text_Calendar.jpg(Ads) SantaCruzParentCamp.jpgA - Z Summer Camps




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 (Ads Camp 2013) SSCDC_logo.jpg

Summer Fun

Ages 2-4

Soquel Ave, Santa Cruz


(Ads Preschool) MusicalMe180x150.jpg

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Music Preschool

Sing, dance, listen, and really learn about music


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Santa Cruz Parent Education
Nursery School

Nurturing Programs
Await You!

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Aptos Yoga


Luma Yoga


Mama Yoga

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4th Annual Santa Cruz Rejuvenation Festival
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  4th Annual Santa Cruz Rejuvenation Festival
Rejuvenation Festival
Date: 05/17/2014 from 10:00am to 7:00pm
Details: Free Family Fun under the Sun!
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
click to view website
view all details >>
Free Movies at the Beach
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  Free Movies at the Beach
Beach Boardwalk
Date: Every Wed (Jun 20-Aug 15) at 9:00pm
Details: Bring the family and your blanket or low back chair and join us for these classic hits!
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
Artichoke Festival
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  Artichoke Festival
Castroville Artichoke Festival
Date: Every day (Jun 2-Jun 3)
Details: Artichokes fried, sauteed, grilled, marinated, pickled, fresh, and creamed in soup and much more!
City: Monterey Phone: 831-633-3465 view all details >>
Santa Cruz Blues Festival
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  Santa Cruz Blues Festival
Santa Cruz Blues Festival
Date: Every day (May 24-May 25) from 10:00am to 10:00pm
Details: The music is strong from start to finish
City: Aptos view all details >>
Santa Cruz Scottish Festival
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  Santa Cruz Scottish Festival
Loch Lomond Celtic Society
Date: Every day (Jun 15-Jun 16) from 8:00am to 9:00am
Ages: All
Details: Enter into a 16th century Scottish market fair in the Scottish Renaissance Festival...Over 40 Clans and Societies will welcome v
City: Watsonville Phone: (831) 457-6716 view all details >>
Redwood Mountain Faire
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  Redwood Mountain Faire
Valley Women's Club
Date: Every day (Jun 2-Jun 3) at 11:00am
Ages: All
Details: Dance the day away to live music with your friends and family while enjoying tasty locally made food, cold beer, cider, and wine
Special Instructions: Parking: $5
City: Felton Phone: 831/ 335-4484 view all details >>
The Gilroy Garlic Festival
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  The Gilroy Garlic Festival
Gilroy Garlic Festival
Date: Every day (Jul 27-Jul 29)
Ages: All
Details: "Ultimate Summer Food Fair"; three d9ys of incredible food, beverages, arts & crafts, live entertainment and
Special Instructions: Santa Teresa Blvd & Club Dr
City: Gilroy Phone: 408-846-6886 view all details >>
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view all details >>
Aloha Celebrity Races & Polynesian Festival
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  Aloha Celebrity Races & Polynesian Festival
City of Santa Cruz
Date: 08/20/2017 from 8:00am to 5:00pm
Details: Discover the excitement of outrigger canoe racing, taste of the tropics- fresh flower leis, Hawaiian shaved ice, Maori face pain
City: Santa Cruz Phone: 831-420-5273 view all details >>
Holiday Movies
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  Holiday Movies
Beach Boardwalk
Date: Every day (Dec 14-Jan 7)
Details: Free Christmas and Hanukkah movies
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 423-5590 view all details >>
Japanese Cultural Fair
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  Japanese Cultural Fair
Japanese Cultural Fair
Date: 06/09/2018 from 11:00am to 6:00pm
Ages: All ages
Details: Explore traditional and contemporary Japanese culture
Special Instructions: Japanese Theme
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 462-4589 view all details >>
The Gilroy Garlic Festival
click to view website
  The Gilroy Garlic Festival
Gilroy Garlic Festival
Date: Every day (Jul 27-Jul 29)
Ages: All
Details: "Ultimate Summer Food Fair"; three d9ys of incredible food, beverages, arts & crafts, live entertainment and
Special Instructions: Santa Teresa Blvd & Club Dr
City: Gilroy Phone: 408-846-6886 view all details >>
Fall Eco Monterey Home and Garden Expo!
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  Fall Eco Monterey Home and Garden Expo!
Monterey Home & Garden Expo
Date: Every day (Oct 19-Oct 20)
Ages: All
Details: Discover the best of the best of home, kitchen and garden!
City: Monterey view all details >>
Monterey Bay Strawberry Festival
click to view website
  Monterey Bay Strawberry Festival
City of Watsonville
Date: Every day (Aug 5-Aug 6) from 10:00am to 7:00pm
Details: Strawberries, music, food and strawberries every way you can imagine
City: Watsonville Phone: 831-768-3240 view all details >>
Scotts Valley Art, Wine & BeerFestival
click to view website
  Scotts Valley Art, Wine & BeerFestival
Chamber of Commerce Scotts Valley
Date: Every day (Aug 18-Aug 19) from 10:00am to 6:00pm
Details: Come enjoy fine art, wine & beer tasting, great food, and live entertainment in an open park setting
City: Scotts Valley view all details >>
Capitola Begonia Festival
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  Capitola Begonia Festival
Capitola Village
Date: Every day (Sep 1-Sep 4) from 7:00am to 8:00pm
Details: A Labor Day weekend filled with fun events for the whole family. Beautifully decorated floats, concerts, sand
City: Capitola Village Phone: (831)476-6522 view all details >>
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