Making Life Long Friends & Memories
The school year is winding down and students everywhere
are looking forward to enjoying the "lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer." Many parents, however, are not quite so excited because summer for them means finding ways to keep their children safe, active and mentally engaged. Camp Washington is the perfect solution for these worried parents. Camp Washington is an 8-week outdoor day camp for children ages 6-12 that runs from the beginning of June to the end of July. The goal of the camp is to provide an activity-based, fun, learning environment that is also safe for kids during the summer when they aren't in school.
At Camp Washington, children participate in swimming, games, sports, arts & crafts, field trips, and much more! At least two days a week, campers get to cool off at the public pool. They enjoy fishing in Lion's Lake and hiking on the trails at the park. The staff also arranges field trips to the bowling alley, skating rink and putt-putt golf course. Through these field trips and daily activities the campers are growing socially and making new friends from different communities they would not otherwise have the chance to make. Some of these summer friendships endure for a lifetime.
"I want to make this camp something the kids look back at when they get older as a great experience where they had fun and made new friends."
-Robin Peirick, Recreation Coordinator
Camp Washington was one of United Way's original eight member agencies back in 1953 when it was called Supervised Playground and United Way was Washington Community Chest. For over 60 years, United Way has provided funding to make a supervised summer day camp possible for families in the Washington area. United Way funding makes it possible for Camp Washington to offer a number of things they would not be able to offer otherwise, including guest speakers. The speakers last year included a representative from the Weldon Springs Conservation Area and a presentation about bullying - what bullying is, how to recognize it, and how to stop it. Several times throughout the summer, campers are treated to speakers who bring in live snakes, birds, and other small wildlife. These interactive learning experiences are the ones campers will never forget!
Another wonderful thing about Camp Washington is that it is not just great for kids - it is also important in the lives of the counselors. Recreation Coordinator, Robin Peirick, says this about the Camp Washington counselors:
"Camp Washington is also a great learning experience for our counselors. They are usually education majors in college and this gives them a lot of experience and something for their résumés in the future. They plan the daily activities for the kids, are training to deal with conflicts among the campers, and learn how to communicate with the parents. They learn a lot about communication styles, conflict resolution, and themselves when it comes to their leadership skills."
For more information about Camp Washington, please contact Robin Peirick at the City of Washington Parks & Recreation Office, 636-390-1080.