Registration for free summer camp at Hunter-Douglas Park filling up

By Wesley LeBlanc wesley@opcfla.com
Posted 6/17/21

MIDDLEBURG – Children can take CPR lessons, learn history about Middleburg, discover new ways to eat healthier and take part in STEM-based experiments at a new camp later this month.

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Registration for free summer camp at Hunter-Douglas Park filling up

Posted

MIDDLEBURG – Children can take CPR lessons, learn history about Middleburg, discover new ways to eat healthier and take part in STEM-based experiments at a new camp later this month.

The Hunter-Douglas Summer Camp will take place from June 21-25 at the Hunter-Douglas Park at 4393 Longmire Road. This is the first year for the camp, so the Clay County Parks and Recreation department, Ascension St. Vincent’s, the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is excited to welcome children aged 6-12 to the Middleburg campsite.

“Children who attend the camp can expect to have loads of fun,” Clay County Public Library System assistant director Lynn Capps said. “We’ve worked hard to pair educational lessons with activities that are engaging and memorable. Our goal is to ensure that the children in our community have a safe, exciting, and accessible place to learn and play this summer.”

Capps has been working alongside people like Ascension St. Vincent’s nurse manager and community outreach Willie Roberts and the other partners involved with the camp to ensure it’s a great time for every camper.

“In keeping in step with our organizational mission in supporting, serving and caring for members of our communities, we are excited to be the lead in the coordination of a one-week youth camp in collaboration with other Clay County organizations and agencies affording youth ages 6 through 12 a fantastic week of education enrichment, nutrition, physical activities and fun,” Roberts said.

What’s especially exciting about this camp is that it’s free, thanks to the many partners like the Parks and Recreation department, Ascension St. Vincent’s and others. In terms of what to expect, each partner involved is handling a different facet of the camp.

The Clay County library leaders will be teaching the campers about owls in a unique STEM lesson on June 22. This lesson will coincide with the Tails and Tales summer reading program happening this Summer and it will “incorporate fun, nature-based educational activities like identifying owl calls, dissecting owl pellets and a take-home activity that shows you how owls view the world.”

“The library is not just a place, but an opportunity for community members to learn and grow together,” Capps said. “By meeting people where they are, whether that’s a park, senior center, outdoor event or gathering place, we are able to reach a larger audience and have a greater impact on our community.”

Capps said the library loves opportunities to meet new people and share its wide variety of services, and participating in the summer camp gives the Clay County library system a chance to “inspire curiosity in our community’s children and remind them that learning can be a lot of fun.”

The UF/IFAS Clay County Extension will be teaching a “Soccer for Success” lesson each day.

“Soccer for Success is a program from the US Soccer Foundation which teaches kids about eating right and other ways to stay healthy while gaining important decision-making and relationship skills from their interactions with coach-mentors,” according to an IFAS representative.

Ascension St. Vincent’s is leading a “My Plate” nutrition program, according to Roberts, and campers will focus on and learn about a different food group each day of camp with fun, nutrition-based games. As you’d expect, all the hours around these special lessons and experiences will be filled in with fun events, experiences and more.

Space is limited for the camp in Middleburg, and those interested in signing should email the county at parksandrecreation@claycountygov.com.

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