No more teachers, no more books, but still chances for fun and learning
Bulletin Staff Report
Schools may be out for the summer, but it doesn’t mean there’s a lack of things for children to do in Las Cruces and Doña Ana County.
No matter your child’s interests, there are abundant activities to provide a perfect remedy to the common childhood summer complaint of, “I’m bored.”
Athletic and Energetic
A great way to harness children’s boundless energy can be through team sports or sport camps. Several high schools hold sport camps designed to help develop skills in young athletes.
Gym Magic offers many activity-based camps for children, including two gymnastic camps and cheer and tumble camps.
Some camps find activity based on themed pop culture interests, such as a Star Wars Camp or Nerf games — the latter features tactical training, team building games, target practice and adventures through a mat maze.
Summer in Las Cruces will peak the mercury, so few things feel better in the sun-scald of mid-summer than a refreshing swim. The Las Cruces Aquatic Club offers 3-week summer swim program sessions.
Though the first has already started, the second begins Tuesday, June 16. New Mexico South Diving also offers lessons throughout the summer.
However, if you are looking to enjoy some pool time as well, a trip to the Las Cruces Regional Aquatic Center, 1401 E. Hadley Ave., will give the whole family a chance to keep cool and enjoy the water.
Your budding star won’t feel the heat when distracted by theater events and art classes.
The Doña Ana Arts Council sponsors summer arts programs that expose children and teenagers to a variety of artistic pursuits.
The Career Art Path is an immersive twoweek program for students who are entering fifth through eighth grades.
It is held June 15-26 at Alma D’Arte, and tuition is $100 per student.
The Missoula Children’s Theatre, July 6-11, is a one-week theater camp held at the Rio Grande Theatre, with training available for a range of ages — 50 to 60 students between first through 12th grade will be cast.
The program will culminate in two performances of “Little Red Riding Hood,” a creative re-imagination of the classic fairy tale.
Children interested in exploring opera can attend Opera Storytellers, a five-day opera camp for children entering third through eighth grades.
It is also held at the Rio Grande Theatre, and tuition is $100 per student.
All Doña Ana Arts Council summer art programs have partial scholarships available.
Educational and Reading
The New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum offers a series of summer day camps for children.
Appropriate ages vary based on topic, and the topics range from “Ropin’ and Wranglin’,” to “Let’s Sew!” to “Archaeology Camp.”
Doña Ana Community College also provides a series of classes, called Kids Kollege, for youths ranging in age from 5 to 18.
Topics include “App Adventures,” “Pirate Workshop,” “Pastel Drawing” and “Advanced Robotics.”
Every weekday the Thomas Branigan Library has activities for children, some for as young as babies while others cater to young adults from fifth through 12 grades.
Vacation Bible School
For the religious or religiously open, vacation Bible schools (VBS) can be fun social, learning and spiritual activity for children.
Most VBS programs take place over the course of a week, starting in the morning through early afternoon, though there are a few evening ones.
Most allow children who have completed kindergarten through those who have completed sixth grade, though the programs vary, so be sure to check with the sponsoring church.
For some upcoming VBS programs, check the Religion Listings on page B12.
This is only a small sampling of the summer programs and activities throughout the Mesilla Valley.
For more children’s activities to keep your young ones entertained, active and learning throughout the long summer days, pick up a copy of “School’s Out” at the Bulletin offices, 840 N. Telshor Blvd., Suite E.