Many of the spring break camps and classes this year are twice as long and packed with twice the activities. Organizations are approaching the new two-week break for Oklahoma City Public Schools in different ways.
The district doubled the length of spring break as part of a new academic calendar that shortens summer vacation.
Offerings from the Boys and Girls Club of Oklahoma City required more planning than usual, President and CEO Jane Sutter said.
“It adds extra time for us to figure it out, but it also gives us the opportunity to spend some extra time with the kids,” Sutter said.
The club opens its gym, game room and technology center to members after school every weekday, but with two weeks of long days to fill the staff scheduled a wide array of field trips and activities ranging from golf lessons to animal demonstrations and technology lessons.
How the extended break will affect turnout is a major unknown factor. Parents may be more likely to take longer vacations with their kids, but it's also possible there will be higher attendance than when school is in session. This year is a test run, Sutter said.
The Oklahoma City Museum of Art is stretching its classes to two weeks, spokeswoman Leslie Spears said. After some Oklahoma City students were unable to attend the week of fall break classes, the museum worked with the school district to add a second week of classes for spring, although the total number of classes remains the same, Spears said.
Robin Huston, deputy director of programs at City Arts Center, said having kids around for a couple of weeks can be tiring, but it's always rewarding in the end.
“Truly, the weeks when we have the kids are the most intense weeks in my job,” Huston said.
Nonprofit organizations are offering camps and classes covering a wide range of activities including arts and science. Some classes are full, especially for the second week of break, but most still have spots open. Here's a sampling:
Boys and Girls Club of Oklahoma City: Themed activities and field trips in addition to the usual after-school programs at 3535 N Western Ave. March 12-16 will be sports week with a different game featured each day on the court, in the field and in the technology center. Some participants will take golf lessons at a local course. March 19-23 will be animal week with daily field trips. A tech camp and cheerleading camp also will take place. The club is open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., but there is a fee before 11 a.m. Students 6-18 will be grouped by age. Membership is required and costs $10 annually. Go to www.bgcokc.org or call 521-9292.
Camp Fire USA: Two sessions of outdoor activities and science will take place at Camp DaKaNi at 3309 E Hefner Road. Campers will see physics and natural science demonstrations while hiking, fishing, rock climbing, canoeing and doing other outdoor activities. This is the third session of a new yearlong program designed to fit with the Oklahoma City Public Schools schedule. Hours are 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. daily with care available before and after March 12-16 or March 19-23. The cost is $75 per week. Go to www.campfireusa-ok.org or call 254-2080.
City Arts Center: Two weeks of classes at 3000 General Pershing Blvd. will focus on the art and culture of Mexico. Participants will explore “Miradas,” the center's current exhibit, and then go to the classrooms to create their own art. Classes for different age groups range from mask making to painting and sculpting. The center is open to ages 5-13, and before and after care is available for a fee. Different classes will be offered each week from March 12-16 and March 19-23. The cost is $150 per class. Go to www.cityartscenter.
Oklahoma Children's Theatre: A few spots are still available for aspiring entertainers at this one-week camp. Children ages 5-7 will help create and perform a play, and campers 11-13 years of age will learn sleight of hand and other magic tricks for their own show on the Oklahoma City University campus. Camp is 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 19-23; the fee is $150. Go to www.oklahomachildrenstheatre.
Oklahoma City Museum of Art: For ages 11-13, stop motion animation and beginning video production will be among the two weeks of classes at 415 Couch Drive. Children ages 5-10 will create art for a show at the end of each week. The museum is closed Mondays. Classes will be offered from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 13-16 and March 20-23, Cost is $130 per class for nonmembers. Go to www.okc
Science Museum Oklahoma: Two weeklong sessions of science camps will take place inside the museum at 2100 NE 52. Campers will explore different branches of science by asking questions and doing activities. Open to first through sixth graders, lunch and admission to the museum are included in the price, which is $250 for nonmembers. Call 602-3760.
techJOYnT: Students can build robots, practice graphic design and learn about food safety at 8328 N Glade Ave. Campers ages 11-18 will combine science with engineering, math and art to create robots that do everything from food processing to lifting items. Classes last for a half day every day and cost $280 to $350, March 12-16 and March 19-23. Go to www.tech joynt.org for a full list.