ALBANY — The Albany Area YMCA will host a number of summer activities for youngsters when area schools end the 2017-18 school year.
The Y will host a weekday summer camp between May 21-July 27 from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. Special-needs kids are welcome to attend the YMCA/Easter Seals (YES) Summer Camp located at the Easter Seals of Southern Georgia facilities on Palmyra Road.
Teresa Manning, the Y’s child care director, oversees the Youth Development Department and the camp. Staff will be available to provide more information and answer questions at a parent orientation open house planned April 14 for Albany camps, May 28 for Lee County camp and May 5 for YES Camp. Registration is now open.
Additionally, multiple events are planned for children throughout the summer months. Kids ages 4-14 can swim, bike and run at the SuperKidz triathlon on June 2. A four-week training program is also available to help participants train for the event. This event aims to teach kids the rewards of dedication and hard work.
Donnette Kline-Lewis, the YMCA’s fitness director, is organizing the triathlon. Registration for this event is happening now.
If swimming lessons are on the list of parents’ summer goals, the Y’s Aquatics department now offers Itty-Bitty Swim Lessons for babies as young as 6 months up to 2 years old. Along with staff supervising the program, parents must also be present and in the water in order for their child to participate. Interested parties can contact Y Aquatics at (229) 436-0531 ext. 209 for more information.
For individuals who already know how to swim, a new outdoor pool is set to open at the YMCA Sports Park, located at 4508 Gillionville Road. The 50-meter Olympic-sized pool is located alongside soccer and baseball fields, a picnic pavilion, a playground, a sand volleyball area and a shaded walking trail. Y membership includes access to the sports park and discounts on the above-mentioned programs and other activities.
Asked which summer event is the most popular, Albany Area Y Chief Development Officer Kenneth Douglas, responded that different events correspond best to different times and community needs.
“(The answer is) probably summer camp, especially right now,” Douglas said Tuesday. “Parents are gonna be at work, and the kids need somewhere to go. When people come here, they’re in the pool beside someone that they don’t know or that they wouldn’t know from across town. Or they go to the SuperKidz triathlon and compete against people that they would not have met.
“[It’s] the same thing at summer camp. And that’s the thing I always like to talk about. Bringing people together, that’s what the Y does.”