Local youths can go to camp to escape the winter doldrums when school lets out for break, thanks to Gahanna's Park & Recreation Department.
Beth McCollam, parks public-information coordinator, said winter camp and a program called Creating Opportunities through Recreational Experiences will be broken into two sessions later this month, allowing maximum flexibility in planning.
Session I will be held Dec. 19-21, and Session II is scheduled for Dec. 26-28. Both will be held from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Registration is ongoing, but space is limited. Parents may register youth for either or both sessions, and families who register for both will receive a $20 discount. The resident rate for camp is $110 and CORE is $115.
Camp is geared to ages 5 to 12, and CORE is for ages 12 to 14.
Janene Giuseffi, parks recreation specialist, said she's excited to continue the partnership with Gahanna schools to run winter camp.
This is the first year it will operate from Lincoln Elementary School, 515 Havens Corners Road, providing additional indoor space to allow more youth to participate.
The first session includes ice skating and a day at the movies with youth making their own props and popcorn. The second session will feature a visit from the Columbus Children's Theater troupe.
The parks-rec department has added winter CORE for youth ages 12-14, Giuseffi said.
"Our summer CORE program was so successful and so well-received by families that we decided to have a winter CORE, as well," Giuseffi said. "There are a lot more volunteer-oriented projects the kids are involved with. We work with GRIN (Gahanna Resident In Need) and the Faith Mission."
Youths participating in CORE also have more input in planning. For example, winter CORE Session I participants will help choose and plan their field trip for Session II.
Parents and youths should expect to see many of the same faces they saw at Camp Friendship over the summer, making it an easy transition into winter camp.
Youths in winter camp also will be treated to field trips to The Chiller and Columbus Museum of Art.
Scholarships are available for both winter camp and winter CORE. For more information, call 614-342-4250.