Summer in the city

It was January when my neighbor started asking me what my kids were doing for the summer. Parents like me who couldn’t bear the idea of filling out summer camp applications while the snow was still flying can rest assured that their procrastination has not caused irreparable harm to their child’s summer fun. Here are just a handful of local day camp possibilities for kids with all kinds of interests.
Young thespians can act up at Live Arts’ Summer Theater Institute. Three two-week sessions offer a variety of performance, design, and technical opportunities for the dramatically inclined at all levels of skill and experience. Sessions include “Feed Me: Theater Smorgasbord,” “Let’s Get Vocal: Musical Theater,” and “No Holds Bard: Lattehouse Meets Comedy of Errors.” Each all-day session includes two age levels, 8-12 and 13-18. Cost is $300 for members, $350 for non-members. Former Lattehouse participants can join No Holds Bard for $250.
Treehouse Summer Camp offers two enchanting opportunities for kids ages 8-13 to spend a week being creative in the garden. McGuffey Art Center artist Rosamond Casey leads the fun in the delightful surroundings of a private residence in town. Session one, “Treehouse Book Arts,” runs June 17-21. Participants will harvest materials from the garden to create handmade paper they will use for writing poetry, painting and drawing, and making a book. Session two, “Treehouse Garden,” takes place June 24-28 and allows kids to spend time outdoors with the fairies and the flowers to learn to paint and draw from nature. Each day-long session costs $195.
Nature lovers are the target audience for programs at the Virginia Museum of Natural History at UVA. Four week-long programs are offered for two different age groups. Rising 1-3 graders can explore crawling, flying, leaping, and hopping critters in “Entomology in Action” (July 15-19) or look into the characteristics of and creatures that live in “Water, Water Everywhere” (July 22-26). Rising 4-6 graders can meet “Nature’s Night Life” (July 8-12) or hook up with the “Lewis and Clark Expedition” (July 29-August 2). Cost for each half-day session is $105 for museum members, $115 for non-members.
The Virginia Discovery Museum offers a variety of mini-camps for explorers in several age groups. Fearless 4-6 year-olds can don pith helmets and join the “Charlottesville Safari” July 23-26. “Art Talks” invites 5-8 year-olds to explore ways in which artists communicate with one another (June 25-28). Young archeologists ages 8-10 can “Dig, Dig, Dig” July 16-18. And innovators ages 8-10 can take the “Junk Challenge” to build workable objects out of junk. Cost varies from $50-$90 for each half-day session.
Live Arts is at 608 Market St. Contact Jennifer Peart 977-4177 ext. 100 or  HYPERLINK "" For information on Treehouse Summer Camps, contact Rosamond Casey at 293-8733 or  HYPERLINK "" Virginia Museum of Natural History at UVA is at 104 Emmet St. 982-4605. Virginia Discovery Museum is on the east end of the Downtown Mall. 977-1025

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