Arts & Culture Deal Family Spotlight Fara Illich May 18, 2010

Since the official start of summer is right around the corner, many parents who live and work in Downtown Phoenix might want to consider day camps for their kids. There are several activities–from very wet to very wild–taking place in our urban core along the light rail.

Science_CampIs your teen interested in being a doctor or doing scientific research in a lab? The Arizona Science Center is offering a week-long summer course where kids can learn what it’s like to work with doctors and researchers at the Biotechnology Medical Institute of Barrows Neurological Institute. The first session starts July 12 and tuition is $200 for Science Center members. More information can be found here. Barrows is located on the St. Joseph’s campus, just a short walk from the Thomas and Central light rail station.

The Children’s Museum is teaming up with the Phoenix Theatre (McDowell light rail station) to offer workshops for kids ages 4-18. A storybook or fairy tale workshop is available for the younger kids, while the older kids have options like musical theater and dance workshops. The first session starts June 1st through June 25 and the second session runs July 6-30. The workshops range in price from $300 to $600 per four week session, or a weekly tuition is also available. For more information on the classes and location click here.

The Chase Field Camp Experience (July 7-9) is probably the ultimate urban summer camp. As the name suggests, the three-day workshop is held at Chase Field and involves an on-field clinic in addition to batting practice in big league batting cages. Arizona Diamondbacks personalities will also be on hand during parts of the camp and tuition includes two tickets to a game. More information on the $350 camp for kids ages 6-12 can be found here. Chase Field is located at the 3rd Street and Jefferson light rail station.

Probably one of the most important life lessons you can teach your kid is how to swim! The Lincoln Family Downtown YMCA offers summer camp swim lessons for kids ages 5-12 starting June 7 and ending July 29. Tuition starts at $10 per three-day session. Hint: to help fill the day, parents may also want to pair the swim lessons with one of a variety of YMCA activities also held at the facility. The Y is located directly across the street from Central Station. Information on this and all the summer camps at the YMCA can be found here.

If your kid is an animal lover, then they will love Camp Zoo at Phoenix Zoo (Priest light rail station). The summer camp is geared for kids entering kindergarten through 8th grade. Sessions for older kids include activities like Discovering What It’s Like To Be an Animal Presenter where kids will put on a show for parents! Younger kids get to do activities like getting to know the zoo animals and other behind the scenes experiences. Camp fees start at $153 for half day sessions. After camp care is also available. Information on Camp Zoo can be found here. Keep in mind, there is a bus transfer at the light rail station in order to get to the zoo.

Valley Youth Theatre (Central Station) offers acting workshops for kids during the summer months. VYT provides two types of fun-filled educational camps: one in theatre basics ($300) and the other involving musical theatre ($630). The theatre’s summer camp is a four-week long program that includes a final day performance. The theatre also offers before and after care for an additional fee. Information on the classes, which start on June 7, can be found here.

Information on how to ride to summer camp can be found on my blog which is here.