Looking for a guide to Athletic Summer Camps in the Tampa Bay Area? Then look no futher, If there's a camp out there designed for a particular sport, be it tennis, soccer, or bowling, we'll find it. Below we've listed several sports camps to assist you in keeping your kids active this summer. If you're looking for a summer camp designed for the Arts, we've got you covered there too. We recently wrote a blog about Arts & Music here: Summer Art Camps Tampa 2012.
There are a couple of nice sports camps at the Hillsborough Community College tennis courts complex at 3901 Tampa Bay Blvd. in Tampa. They are run by Tampa Tennis. One is a tennis camp, naturally. Players are divided into groups to address their skill level. The ages of the kids range from 4 to 16, and the camp is held Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to noon. You can pick a weeklong camp from June 11 through Aug. 17. During the same time period, Tampa Tennis also offers a sports jam camp, where attendees play golf, soccer, baseball, basketball and flag football, in addition to tennis. For more information go to: HCC Summer Camp 2012
The coaches at the University of Tampa have some great summer sports programs – boys' baseball camps, boys' basketball camps, girls' basketball camps, boys' soccer camps, girls' soccer camps, softball camps, volleyball camps. They are held at a variety of places. If interested, it's best to go to the website, which has links to the individual programs. The web site is: UT Sports Camp Summer 2012
Extreme Youth Sports has a summer sports camp, which you would expect with a company name like that. The interesting thing about Extreme Youth Sports camps is that the company has three locations, which we are going to give you, so you can decide which is closest to your home. The one in Tampa is at 4920 Newkirk Drive. The one in Brandon is at 1118 N. Parsons Ave., and the one in Riverview is at 13498 US Highway 301 S. It's our understanding that Extreme You Sports caters to specific neighborhoods. Included in the summer camp program is an array of offerings – karate, flag football, soccer, and kickball, among others. But there's also dancing and arts and crafts. The web site is: Extreme Youth Sports Summer Camp 2012 Tampa Bay
Okay, this is a sports camp of a certain kind. The Seal Swim School offers a program for children 4 to 12 years old that includes swim lessons. It runs from June 11 through Aug. 17, and you can either sign up for a week or the whole summer. We like this program because there are two counselors for every 15 kids. And there's extended care so you don't have to break your neck in traffic trying to pick your kid up by a certain time. The location is at 19501 Holly Lane in Lutz. Here's the web site: Summer Swimming Camp 2012 Lutz, FL
Now here are a couple of cool camps. Literally. They are run by the Tampa Bay Skating Academy. One is at the academy's Countryside facility at 27001 U.S. 19 N. and it's to improve your figure skating. There is one one-week camp in June, another in July. These are not for beginners; they are geared toward kids who are pretty good figure skaters to begin with. Now, to learn how to skate, you would have to go to TBSA's facility in Oldsmar, which is at 255 Forest Lakes Blvd. in Oldsmar. They have a cool ice skating summer camp for kids 4 to 12 and they welcome beginners for this one. It runs June 11 to Aug. 3, and the all-day camps are a week long. For more information, go to: Skating Camp Tampa Bay 2012
Speaking of skating, the Tampa Bay Lightning hockey team holds a summer camp in Brandon, at the Brandon Ice Sports Forum, from July 9 through July 13. It begins at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 4:30 p.m. Each day is devoted to helping both boys and girls improve their hockey and power-skating skills, and to become more physically conditioned. For more information, go to: Tampa Bay Lighting Summer Camp 2012
Bayside Gymnastics and Cheerleading, at 4400 34th St. N., in St. Petersburg, has gymnastics summer camp for children 5 to 13 years old. Sessions start June 11 and run through Aug. 17, and both half- and full-day camps are available, with post-camp day care. Among other things, the children are run through a slew of gymnastics exercises, which should leave them stronger and more flexible. For more information, go to: Gymnastics and Cheerleading Summer Camp in St Pete
Another gymnastics school offering summer camp sessions is the Apollo School of Gymnastics, at 2140 Range Road, Clearwater. Here, too, you'll learn gymnastics, plus arts and crafts and other cool stuff. There is a field trip every Wednesday, and every Thursday is Splash Day, which sort of stands for outdoor water play. Full- and half-day sessions are available. The Apollo's web site is: Gymnastics Summer Camp - Clearwater FL
Clearwater Christian College, at 3400 Gulf-to-Bay Blvd., has several sports camps, but it should probably be pointed out that the coaches emphasize these camps are in a Christian setting. Overnights are available. There is a one-week camp for girls' basketball (ages 8 to 17), for boys' basketball (8 to 17), and for soccer (8 to 17), and there are two one-week camps for female high-school volleyball players. For more information, and to register, go to the college's web site: Sports Camp in Clearwater
The Clearwater Community Sailing Center, at 1001 Gulf Blvd., in Clearwater has an excellent summer camp program with an emphasis on, you guessed it, sailing. Campers can be 5 to 17 years old, and at the end of the summer is a regatta, which is sort of appropriate. The weeklong camp sessions begin June 4 and end Aug. 10, and there's a week off in July. Windsurfing is also offered, as long as you are at least ten years old. There are a whole lot of other cool things about this camp. High-speed catamaran sailing is available. And there's a camp designed for disabled kids. Check it out at: Sailing Summer Camp
Eckerd College, at 4200 54th Ave. S., has one of the most impressive summer camp programs in the Tampa Bay area. Here you can receive instruction in sailing, water skiing, wakeboarding, kayaking, and saltwater fishing. The reason the college can offer such a stunning selection of water sports is that it is located on Boca Ciega Bay. Kids 6 to 17 can find something. Sessions run from June 4 through August 3, and they run in the afternoon or in the morning, but not both. For more information, go to: Watersports Summer Camps in St Petersburg FL
Get this. There is even a lacrosse camp in Tampa, though it lasts for only a week. It's run by GameBreaker Lacrosse Camps, a national company. There will be three groups of young lacrosse players – one group of kids in the third, fourth and fifth grades, another composed of kids in the sixth, seventh and eighth grades, and a third made up of kids in the ninth, tenth, eleventh and twelfth grades. The camps typically last from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Tampa's week-long camp is at Anderson Elementary School June 11 through June 14. There are separate camps for both boys and girls. For more information, go to: Lacrosse Summer Camps in Tampa
The Indian Rocks Christian School, at 12685 Ulmerton Road, Largo, has an impressive summer sports camp lineup and is one of the few, we believe, that has a wrestling camp. There are also a football camp, a cheerleading camp and a golf camp among the school's ten offerings. The camps last a week, and they start on June 11 and end on July 13. For more information, go to: Sports Summer Camps in Largo FL
Naturally, you would expect the Innisbrook Golf and Spa Resort, at 36750 U.S. 19 N., to have a golf clinic, and it does. It also has a tennis camp. They run from June 11 through Aug. 16. The tennis camps run Monday through Thursday, and there are sessions for children 3 to 10 years old, 6 to 10, and 10 to 18. The golf clinic is for kids 7 to 16. There is also an interesting session that incorporates tennis instruction, golf instruction and swimming. This one's for kids 7 to 14. For specific times and prices, go to the resort's web site at: Golf Summer Camps in Palm Harbor
For the aspiring martial arts practitioner, Martial Arts Advantage, which has two locations, has both half-day and full-day camps. One location is at 234A E. Bearss Ave. in North Tampa; the other, at 3311 S. Dale Mabry Highway in south Tampa. The first week of camp begins June 11, the last Aug. 13, and each week has a particular theme (we like ‘board breaking camp.'). You get a break in price if you register before May 11. For more information, go to the web site at: Karate Summer Camps Tampa
The Tampa Bay Rays are holding summer camps for baseball players, but not all of them are in the Tampa Bay area (one is in Port Charlotte). The camp that we know of that's local is the senior advanced camp, for children 14 through 17, that runs from June 18 through 22. It's at the Raymond Naimoli Sports Complex, at 7901 30th Ave. N., St. Petersburg, FL. For more information, go to: Tampa Bay Rays Summer Camp 2012
The University of South Florida has some great soccer camps and they're all over the place – at the USF campus, the West Chase soccer fields, the JC Handley complex in Brandon, the Wesley Chapel District Park, and the Fishhawk Sports Complex, among other places. There are also some outside the Tampa Bay area, but the ones in the Tampa Bay area run June 11 through July 25. For more information, go to: Summer Camps in Wesley Chapel
We're sure we missed some, but we think we nabbed more than we missed. If you know of any other great Summer Programs in the Tampa Bay area, feel free to comment below.
The following is a guide for Summer Camps in the Tampa Bay Area - more specifically summer art programs for kids. These summer programs geared toward the artistically-inclined child – a future Baryshnikov, a future John Coltrane, a future Marlon Brandon, a future Jackson Pollock. Now, there are weeks-long summer camps in the Tampa Bay area that include classes on the arts. We're going to leave those for another day. These camps focus on artistic activity exclusively. And here's the thing. While these don't start until June, you have to register pretty much now. In fact, one of them is already full. Go figure. So read, pick one, and sign up your loved one.
The Patel Conservatory at the Straz Center for The Performing Arts Summer Program in Tampa kicks off on June 11, with classes galore – including an intensive ballet class for children from the second through twelfth grades; musical theatre dancing, including tap, for children from the second through eighth grades; and a four-day class designed so children from second through fourth grade can explore all the instruments played in an orchestra and maybe decide to pursue one. For more information see: Patel Conservatory Summer Program 2012
The Tampa Museum of Art has a series of art classes for children ages 6 to 14, and the classes are all a week long. What's interesting about the series is that your child can go for either a half-day or the full day. Another thing that's interesting is that children close in age attend the same classes: One, for instance, is for kids 9 to 11, another for kids 6 to 8. These classes are for kids interested in drawing and painting, working with materials and mixed media. For more information, go to: Summer Art Classes at The Tampa Museum of Art
The Dance Center in Brandon has three interesting camps – the Ballerina Princess Camp for girls 4 to 6, Ballet Arts Camp for children 7 and older (for both the beginner and the experienced), and the Acrobatics Summer Camp. Registration has already begun, but the classes weren't full as of early April. The place is located at 161 East Bloomingdale Ave., Brandon. For more information, go to: Summer Programs at The Dance Center - Brandon FL
The Florida Academy of Performing Arts has an all-day camp for kids ages 5 to 9, from June 25 through June 29. Among the offerings are beginning guitar, beginning violin, and acting. There's a second camp for the same age group, from July 9 to July 13, with the same offerings. The academy also has two sets of all-day camps for 9 to 12 year olds. The first is from June 18 to June 22, the second from July 23 through July 27. The offerings are the same as they are for the younger set. The camps are held at the Music Showcase, at 402 Oakfield Drive, Brandon, FL. For more information, go to: Summer Camps at the Florida Academy of Performing Arts Brandon
The Florida Museum of Photographic Arts, in downtown Tampa, is offering photography classes this summer for two age groups – 7 to 10 years old, and 11 to 15 years old. Each is five days long. The two week-long classes for the younger group begin on June 25 and July 16; for the older group, June 18 and July 9. You should really call them at (813) 221-2222, and check with their web site, for further information. Here's the web site: Florida Museum of Photographic Summer Program
Aspiring actors in the 8th to 12th grade age group (that is, students who are entering those grades this fall) are encouraged to audition for the musical, "Thoroughly Modern Millie Junior," which is being produced by Stage Works in downtown Tampa. Auditions are on April 15, May 6, May 20, and June 10. For their auditions, students should prepare a musical number in the style of the show, have a CD to go with it, and also prepare a monologue. The camp is from July 9 through July 27, with performances of the show on July 27, 28, and 29. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Now, just to impress upon you how important it is to sign up your kid immediately, we're going to mention The Tampa Theatre Film Camp, where kids from grades three to seven go to a one-week camp to learn the basics of film-making. According to the program's web site, all eight half-day classes are sold out. Don't believe us: Check out the web site: The Tampa Theatre Film Summer Camp
The Hoffman Institute at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater also has a series of arts-oriented summer programs which also begins on June 11. These are designed for children ages 8 to 18. Some are for kids as they prepare to join their high school jazz band. For others, such as a theatre production, children have to audition. Some are modeled after popular shows, such as "Glee;" others after classics, such as "The Tempest" by William Shakespeare. For more information, go to: Ruth Eckerd Hall Summer Camps 2012
In St. Petersburg, there's a summer theater program run at First Presbyterian Church by American Stage. There is one set of classes for children 5 to 12 years old, including some concentrating on comedy, clowning and mystery theatre. Another is for children 13 through 17 years old: one class is a short week-long session on improvisation, another is a three-week class culminating in a performance of a version of "Fiddler On The Roof." There are many, many more for both age groups, spread out over the summer months. For more information, go to: American Stage Summer Camp at First Presbyterian Church St Pete
The Dali Museum in St. Petersburg has an interesting camp, and, apparently, a popular one. It's called the Junior Docent Program. Yeah, we didn't know what a docent was, either, until we looked it up. In the museum business, a docent is someone who helps others understand the works of art they are seeing. In this one-week camp, kids 9 to 12 years old are exposed to the works of Dali in the museum, then, after the week, they give a presentation as to what they've learned. Sound far-fetched? Well, last we heard, the program was sold out, with folks signing a waiting list. For more information, go to: Summer Camps at The Dali
St. Petersburg College has a lot of summer programs, but the one that focuses exclusively on the arts is a musical theatre camp for grades six through twelve. It begins July 9 and lasts until Aug. 3, and culminates in a performance of "Godspell." The program takes place every day from 9 am to 3 pm, at the SPJ campus in Clearwater at 2465 Drew St. For more information, please see the college web site at:
SPC Summer Camps for kids
We love the name of this one: the Abba Dabba Theatre Summer Camp 2012. One of the camps is at Perkins Elementary School in St. Petersburg, the other at Seminole High School in Seminole. They are for kids four to 18 years old, and typically last a week or two weeks. The offerings are pretty cool, and include improvisation, acting and musical theatre. For more information, please see: Abba Dabba Theatre Summer Camps
Here's another one with a pretty cool name, and an appropriate one, too, considering what kind of camp it is: The Bravo Center for the Performing Arts. It runs its summer camp at Oakhurst United Methodist Church, at 13400 Park Blvd. in Seminole. It's for kids 6 through 17. There are two three-week camps, and they last from 9 am to 3:30 p.m. Here's a special bonus – pre-camp and post-camp day care is available, so you don't have to break your neck in traffic trying to pick up junior. For more information, please see: The Bravo Center for the Performing Arts
This camp is for the prospective circus performer. BB's Dance & Circus Arts of Tampa Bay runs classes during the school year, too, but from June 11 through August 17, it holds what it calls summer intensives on such topics as contortion, juggling, hand-balancing and trapeze. Anyone from eight up can take these classes, which run one to three weeks (depending on what part of the summer you're interested in) from 9 am to 3 pm. The place is in Clearwater, at 1610 N. Hercules Ave. For more information, visit: BB's Dance & Circus Arts Summer Program
The Largo Cultural Center has some cool summer theatre camps. One, for children 8 to 13 years old, is called "Seussical Jr.," and centers around the character, Horton the Elephant. That one runs from June 11 through June 30, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The other is for children 12 to 18, and runs from July 16 through Aug. 4. This one's called "The Music Man Jr.," and it's about a fast-talking con-man who eventually sees the light. For more information, go to: 2012 Summer Theatre Camp at Largo Cultural Center
Competition is pretty stiff in the bounce house industry. So says Patti Anselmo, who with her husband owns Florida Fun Jump, that fun place at 11238 W. Hillsborough Ave. where your kids can jump around on inflatables without getting hurt.
In addition to Florida Fun Jump, there are two other bounce houses in the immediate area, and Anselmo heard through the grapevine that at least one of them had a massage chair. Anselmo likes to stay competitive in her field, so she got one, too.
This is how it works. Someone sits in the chair, inserts a dollar, and feels the chair giving her or him a massage about the neck and lower back for two minutes, Anselmo said. Florida Fun Jump gets 50 cents for each dollar.
It's hard to tell how many people have put that dollar into the chair, which was acquired roughly a month ago. The business that owns the chair has yet to come by and take the cash out, so Anselmo has no way of knowing the number of adults who have actually been massaged by the automated piece of furniture.
What she does know is that some people have tried using the massage chair as a place to sit, but an automated voice urges them to put a dollar in once their derriere has landed. Apparently there's no such thing as a free ride on the chair – or an uninterrupted sit.
The chair isn't the only thing Patti and her husband have brought in so parents have something to do while their children play. Florida Fun Jump also has a treadmill, stationary bicycle, and an elliptical machine. Unlike the massage chair, however, they don't cost anything.
On the other hand, a buck for a massage ain't a bad deal, especially in this economy.