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Cape Coral Art League to help kids get creative this summer

By Staff | May 29, 2015

For the first time in a few years, the Cape Coral Art League is offering a summer camp for youngsters that will help them tap into their creativity.

Michelle Williams, Cape Coral Art League camp director, said they are organizing a camp for 6 to 12 year olds. They chose those age groups to start off with because everyone is on a similar capability scale and they are used to organized activities.

“We usually shut down and have minimal activity after season is over,” she said. “They don’t have a lot of frequency through there so, for the most part, shut down.”

Williams moved to Cape Coral almost two years ago from Ohio where she organized summer camps for a private country club. Although her daughter, who is 8, has participated in summer camps at Cultural Park Theatre, she was looking for more camps for her to get involved with.

“I don’t have to drive to Fort Myers to get a good, quality cultural experience for my kids,” Williams said of the summer camp at the Cape Coral Art League. “I’m most excited for the kids to learn about a program and a place where they can go that is art centered and is very close, or next door to their neighborhood.”

The Cape Coral Art League is offering four weeks of summer camp, all from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., focusing on a different theme each week. The camp is $100 per week and includes snacks. The participants must bring their own packed lunch.

“We try to make it competitive with some of the other programs,” Williams said, adding that the Cape Coral Art League contributed supplies, which made it possible to keep the registration costs lower.

There are 20 spots open per summer school session.

The first camp, “Art LAB, a science and art mash-up” will be held Monday, June 22, through Friday, June 26. The camp will focus on such topics as recycling, biology, outer space and robotics colliding art and science using various art techniques.

“Destination Florida,” is the theme for the second camp, which will be offered Monday, July 13, through Friday, July 17. As the young artists learn about Florida’s wildlife, art museums and theme parks, they will express their creative art skills.

On Monday, July 20, through Friday, July 24, youngsters can participate in “Book Boot Camp for Illustrators and Cartoonists.” Youngsters will showcase their artistic and creative writing abilities through a Caldecott-worthy adventure through illustrations, cartooning and writing.

The final camp, “Build a World,” will be offered Monday, July 27, through Friday, July 31. Campers will build their own world using three-dimensional art, role-playing and teamwork.

Williams said the “Build a World” camp is sort of like Minecraft.

“I teach fifth grade and my students are obsessed with building these three dimensional characters,” she said.

At the end of each camp, parents are invited to a summer camp reception at 2:30 p.m.

“I try to look at it as what I would want as a parent,” Williams said of the reception.

She said when asking a child what their artwork means and what they learned from it, sometimes they might know, while other times they may not. Williams said they might not recognize the full academic meaning behind the artwork, which is why the reception is being held.

The reception provides the parents with the opportunity to see what their child created during the weeklong camp. It also provides an opportunity for the parents to continue the conversations from camp at home.

Teen volunteers are being sought for the summer camp to help mentor the youngsters. Organizers are looking for a few people who would want to volunteer a couple hours a day helping with lunch, some field games and group activities.

Williams said she is looking forward to the summer camp because the Cape Coral Art League is a well-kept secret. The art league sometimes flies under the radar for parents with school-aged children, she added.

“We missed it for the first couple of years,” Williams said of the league. “I’m excited for them to have the exposure for younger people and parents with school- aged kids to build some energy around art in Cape Coral.”

The Cape Coral Art League is at 516 Cultural Park Blvd.

For more information, call (239) 772-5657.