So far so good, or at least where our summer camp season sits, with new and diverse ones happening every week. I peeked into the art and yoga camp a couple weeks ago, which had a fair number of kids busily creating art objects of rare and unparalleled beauty with artist Brandy Dyer, then heading off with outstanding yoga instructor Gary Smith to learn some relaxation, calming and stretching techniques (which are cleverly disguised as animal poses, such as tiger, eagle, cobra, whale — you get the idea). Check the leisure guide, which is online as well at rdck.ca, as several of our camps have repeat sessions later; art/yoga runs again Aug. 2-5.
Other cool camps include farm to table cooking, stitch and zumba, nature and craft, carpentry, martial arts, volleyball and soccer, and a few of those are broken into different age ranges to accommodate the varied abilities you see as our young ones develop. There are still some cool camps for teens available, and there is always stuff to do around here for adults, as well, even if it’s sitting in the hot tub watching the kids bounce around on Wibit Wednesdays or Tuesday Fun Patrol.
Speaking of watching young ones, we had a visit a few weeks ago by one of our kids, wife and two-and-a-half-year-old granddaughter. Hard to believe, I know, since I look so incredibly young, but frankly I don’t remember the part where if you took your eyes off them for three seconds, they disappear and somehow get a hold of the camp fuel, road flares and throwing knives you had left laying around your un-babyproofed home. I guess you blank that parenting memory out as you get older, including the energy it takes being at DEFCON 2 for 23 hours a day, although I do remember being very tired for maybe half a decade.
Later, in a quiet clean house, Heather remarked that as grandparents, you get the opportunity (or luxury) to observe rather than watch a child and perhaps see what might truly motivate a particular action. Case in point: This grandchild seems to possess the ability to run like Carl Lewis despite the eternal parental cries of, “No running!” or, “Slow down!” So grandma, having lived the same experience with the father (go genetics!) takes her out to the field and lets her fly, where the worst thing that can happen is bouncing off a tree rather than the corner of the coffee table. While she is running, she is chanting some phrase which doesn’t really make sense until later, while watching a Shrek movie, a scene comes on where Shrek is running somewhere and we hear the same quiet chant — “Shrek run!” Aha! The good thing is that here is some screen time that actually influences a child into physical activity. The bad thing is that I did not know that they made so many different Shrek movies and specials, all of which had regular showings in our living room.
The most recent screen influence on physical activity would most likely be Pokémon Go — a smartphone app based on the ’90s Nintendo video game — that now has you walking around while staring at your screen (much like texting) while collecting Pokémon characters. It will probably be classified as a phenomenon as it had something like 7.5 million downloads a week-and-a-half ago and will most likely fade away or morph into something else in a relatively short time. The good thing is that people are getting out and walking or being active. The bad thing is that on occasion they are walking into buses or the ocean, and now we have even more people staring at their screen while hiking around.
Neil Ostafichuk is the recreation supervisor at the Creston and District Community Complex.