Summer camps, activities and programs galore are available to local youths

Published on Friday, 1 June 2018 18:59
Written by Charles Paullin


NEW BRITAIN - Memorial Day has come and gone which means that school is coming to an end and summer break is upon us.

With the summer season comes free time for kids and there are many local camps, park and recreation activities and sports programs to fill the hours. Below is a rundown of some of the programs available.


Camp TotalRec starts on Wednesday, June 20 this year to coincide with the ending of the school year. The camp runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays for seven weeks until Aug. 3 at A.W. Stanley Park and Willow Brook Park. Breakfast, lunch and bus transportations are included in the camp. For residents only, students in grades 1-2 will be at A.W. Stanley Park while grades 3-5 will go to Willow Brook Park.

“It’s a great, fun experience for the kids throughput the summer,” said Stephanie Formato-Scalise of the Parks and Recreation Department’s. “It’s pretty affordable at $40 a week.”

Kids will be able to have swim lessons, swim daily, participate in sports, arts and crafts and other activities, as A group of specialists will periodically visit the camp for themed weeks like “Shark Week,” “Color Games” and “Shining Stars.”

Three field trips at each site for additional fees will also be available. Kids in grades 1-2 have optional trips to Auer Farm, Spare Time Bowling and Jump On In. Students in grades 3-5 can go to the Berlin Batting Cages, Flight Trampoline and Lake Compounce.

Campers can register for the whole summer or on a weekly basis.

For kids more art-oriented looking for activities in the summer, the Downtown Players Youth Theatre Camp is returning, running from June 25 to Aug. 3 for ages 6 to 18 years old.

Participants will engage in show rehearsals, theatre workshops and recreational activities as they work toward two culminating performances of this year’s play – Alice in Wonderland Jr. Following weeks of practice, campers will perform the show on Aug. 1 and Aug. 2 at New Britain High School.

“It’s a great program for kids that are interested in the arts … We have kids coming back year after year to participate,” Scalise said.

The daily schedule also offers free breakfast and lunch to campers and pool time at Willow Brook Park Pool, all with a cost of $475 total or $85 a week.

For more information about the department’s summer camps, the full summer brochure and details about registering, go to the city’s website at .

Also available are Junior Bees baseball three-day clinics put on by the New Britain Bees at several locations in the area with instruction coming from Bees players and coaches.

The costs of the clinics at different points throughout the summer range from $79 to $150, with full day and half day options for different age groups. The third day concludes at New Britain Stadium and participation includes a T-shirt, water bottle and a four-pack of Bees tickets. More information is online at

The Boys & Girls Club of New Britain is hosting their own summer camp from June 19 to Aug. 10 with all sorts of recreational activities including arts and crafts, swimming, sports and several more. The cost is $150 for the 8-week program that runs from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m, Monday through Friday. Registration is ongoing and for more information, call the club at 860-229-2865. 


In the town just south of New Britain, several different camps are available for children from all ages, from art, to sports to superhero training.

A Royal Academy camp for 4 to 8 year old princesses and princes in which singing, dancing and acting and all things regal runs from June 25 to June 29 from 9:15 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. for $95 for residents and $105 for non-residents.

Young superheroes can complete daily challenges through games, activities and the arts as part of a Superhero Training Camp from July 16 to 20 from 9:15 to 11:45 a.m. The cost is $95 for residents and $105 for non-residents.

Along with a fairy tale and pirate and mermaid adventures camp, the artistically inclined can take Painting with Peggy, a 5- day class with art teacher and painter Peggy Loehr.

From animals, to landscapes and other summer themes, participants in grades kindergarten through grade 5 will create at least 10 paintings.

At the Berlin Community Centrer, classes come in three different time options from Monday through Friday, June 25 to June 29 from 10 to 11 a.m., those same dates from 2 to 3 p.m. and July 9 through July 13 from 10 to 11 a.m.

The cost is $88 for residents and $98 for non residents, with fees including cost for materials. Bringing a smock is requested.

In addition to soccer, volleyball, lacrosse and multi-sports (soccer, baseball, basketball and flag football), camps and several Timberlin Golf Course camps, the Berlin Parks and Recreation Department has STEM Lego camps for 5 and 6 year olds, and 7 to 10 year olds.

For more information on the offerings, visit the department’s page on the town website, and look for the summer brochure.


Five different camps for different age groups comprise the summer offerings in Newington.

For 3 and 4 year olds, Summer Sunshine offers socialization, playing games, listening to stories, creating crafts, swimming, enjoying music and outdoor play, at 1075 Main St. on the lower level.

Participants can attend on a weekly basis or attend the full seven weeks from June 25 to Aug. 10, running from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., with extended care hours available for an additional fee.

The cost for all seven weeks is $1,000 for residents and $1,100 for non-residents. Any one week costs $185 and $205, for residents and non-residents, respectively.

Playground Pals at Mortensen Community Center Gymnasium and Mill Pond Park is for children entering kindergarten or first grade in the fall. From 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. between June 25 to Aug. 10, activities include field trips, cookouts, special events, swimming instructions, sports, theme days, music crafts and nature activities.

The cost is $743 for all seven weeks and $154 for any one week for residents and $908 for all seven weeks and $182 for one week for non-residents. A t-shirt is included and extended care is available for an extra fee.

For children completing grades 1 through 7, Camp RECreate runs from June 25 to Aug. 10 from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Children will participate in games, special events and field trips, with swimming, sports, arts and crafts and more at Mortensen Community Center and Mill Pond Park, John Paterson Elementary School and Churchill Park and John Wallace Middle School and Churchill Park, depending on age levels.

The cost is $903 for seven weeks and $187 for one week for residents, and $1,073 for all seven weeks and $215 for one week for non-residents, and a t-shirt is included.

Camps at the end of summer in August and for students completing grades 8, 9 and 10 looking for leadership training as a counselor and more are also available, along with several art, music and sports camps.

For more information, visit the Parks and Recreation page of the town’s website,


Although the main Playground Program in Southington is already booked up, there are several more camps available, including one for special needs students.

Camp R.I.S.E., is for boys and girls, who are Southington residents only, with special needs entering grades 2 to 12 in the fall. It meets Monday through Thursday from 12:15 to 3 p.m. in July, with dates varying by grade level.

The cost is $90 for children in grades 2 to 5 and $120 for children in grades.

From basketball to baseball to beach volleyball there are the traditional sports camps available in Southington, but also a solar-powered robots camp in partnership with Kids Corner, for boys and girls ages 7 to 11.

For $120 per resident child and $130 per non-resident child, kids will build robots that will walk, spin or roll, on Tuesday evenings from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., on July 10, 17, 24, 31 and Aug. 7 and Aug. 14. at the Southington Police Department’s education room.

For those looking for free evening entertainment, Southington also has on Tuesday evening from June 26 to Aug. 14 a Kid’s Entertainment Series. At the Community Pavilion at Southington Drive-In, two 45 minute, children’s entertainment acts, including juggling, magic and variety acts will run back to back, starting at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m.

“We have quite a bit of programs,” said David A. Lapreay, director of recreation in Southington.

Visit for more information.


The town of Plainville is offering three different types of camps to three different age groups.

A Day Camp at Norton Park Pavilion Area includes swim lessons and swim time, crafts and organized games for children ages 7 to 11 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Campers must be 7 years old or entering second grade in September. There’s also a Mini Camp at Norton Park in the Band Shell area in which attendees will receive crafts, organized games, snack time and swim time for 3-1/2 year to 6 year olds from 9 a.m. to noon, or 1 to 4 p.m. Participants must be 4 years old within the 2018 calendar year.

The costs and dates for the two camps are June 21 to June 29 and $98 for the day and $49 for the mini, and $147 for the Day and $74 for the mini camps for non residents; July 2 to July 13 - with no camp on July 4 -and $126 for the Day Camp and $63 for the Mini Camp, and $189 for the Day camp and $95 for the mini camp for non-residents; From July 16 to July 27 for $140 for the Day and $70 for the mini, and $210 for the Day Cam and $105 for the Mini Camp for nonresidents; and July 30 to Aug. 9 for $126 for the Day Camp and $63 for the mini, and $189 for the day Camp and $95 for the mini camp.

Both camps will be canceled in the event of inclement weather.

Along with several sporting camps, including gymnastics, table tennis and skateboarding, Plainville also offers a Camp Trumbull at PARC on Monday through Thursday between July 2 and Aug. 2 for students who have special needs. The deadline to register is Friday, June 8 and for questions or more information call 860-747-0316 and a fee is required.

For more information on offerings by the town of Plainville, visit


Across three different YMCA’s in the area, additional summer camps are available

The New Britain-Berlin-Meriden YMCA has several camps for several age groups, including kids entering kindergarten and first grade; second and third grade; fourth and fifth grade; sixth through eighth grade; and ninth through 10th grade, held at Mooreland Hill School in Berlin.

For $155 per week for members and $165 per week for non members, the camps meet on a weekly basis from June 25 through Aug. 24 for several indoor and outdoor activities including a science lab and arts and crafts building.

Each week is based around the themes of music and the arts, science and reading, and health and wellness, and every other week features a field trip. Before and after care is available. For more information, visit .

At the Greater Hartford YMCA, based in Plainville that covers Plainville, Bristol and Plymouth, there are camps for nearly all ages.

A Scamper camp is available for one week for $130 for children ages 3 to 5 on the weekly sessions from July 9 through Aug. 10. Activities include swimming, arts and crafts, stories, songs, nature and play time and different themes and activities vary each week.

For children in grades one through five, ages 5 to 10, Camp Kaleidoscope is available for $245 per each one week session from June 25 to Aug. 24 in a traditional day camp experience from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Activities include arts and crafts, nature, field games, swimming, team building, indoor rock climbing, archery for 7 to 10 year olds and a weekly choice activity. Theme days throughout the camp and spirit rallies will be a part, with children being grouped by age.

Teens entering sixth through 8th grade can partake in a teen camp that runs from June 25 to Aug. 24 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each week having different themes, including construction, water activities, cooking and film and photography, field trips at least two times per week. The cost is $325 per session.

Along with specialty sport and activity camps, a counselor in training camp for students entering grades 9 and 10 are available across three weeks from June 27 to July 15.

Visit for more information.

In Southington, the main and well-known camp is Camp Sloper with a large range of activities including arts and crafts, field sports, a climbing tower and baking for anyone from 3 to 15 years old. Running in two week sessions from July 2 to Aug. 24th from Monday to Friday and from 9 to 3 p.m. the cost is $430 for members and $480 for non-members for each session.

About 40 specialty camps from sports, to carpentry, to fishing and horseback riding ranging in costs from $450 to $510, as well as a counselor training program for students entering 10th grade for $480 for a member and $530 for a non member. Extended care and busing to and from the camp is available.

“We got a ton of activities,” said Justin Hubeny, outdoor center director for the Southington-Cheshire YMCA.

Visit for more information.


For those looking for a more academic summer camp, Central Connecticut State University has several Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math programs for youth in second through 12th grade.

Taught by CCSU Faculty, alumni and teachers, several classes include 3D CAD modeling, Android app and game programming, and robotics, from June 25 through August 10 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday for one week sessions.

The costs range from $375 to $1,195 and include host lunch in the CCSU cafeteria, a t-shirt and special equipment needed for the class.

Visit for more information.

Posted in New Britain Herald, Berlin, General News, Newington, Plainville, Southington on Friday, 1 June 2018 18:59. Updated: Monday, 4 June 2018 16:23.