2018 Summer Fun Guide


With the school year winding down, parents are preparing for the summer, seeking out answers to the perennial question of how to keep the kids entertained. Luckily, there’s always something to do on the First Coast! From the academic to the adventurous, a variety of summer camps will be offered this year by local businesses, helping kids to be kids and moms and dads to stay sane until school starts again.


Sports and Adventure


Jacksonville Basketball Academy

Led by Providence High School Basketball head coach Jim Martin, Jacksonville Basketball Academy summer camps focus on teaching boys the fundamentals of basketball, including ballhandling, shooting, passing and defense and helping to bring their game to the next level. Offering various camps for boys in grades three through 12, the camps cover a range of skill levels, from beginner to elite. Morning and afternoon sessions will be offered Monday through Friday, running from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., respectively. For more details, visit www.jacksonvillebasketballacademy.com.


Jax Surf Camp

Jax Surf Camp, hosted by Jax Surf & Paddle in Atlantic Beach, will host surf and paddleboard camps to kids ages 6 through 16 throughout the spring and summer months. The camps will include surf fundamentals and instruction, as well as paddleboarding, yoga, beach sports, races and more. A pizza party will also be held on the last day of camp, and all surf camp graduates will receive goody bags.

Kids have the option of attending half-day, full-day or single-day camps. Snacks and refreshments will be provided at all camps, and lunch will be included with full-day camps. Registrants must already know how to swim. Visit www.jacksonvillesurfandpaddle.com for more details.


Girl Scouts of Gateway Council

This summer, Girl Scouts of Gateway Council will offer two different summer camp experiences to girls in Northeast Florida. From Camp Kateri near Gainesville to North Fork Leadership Center in Middleburg, campers will have a range of day and overnight camp offerings to choose from.

At Camp Kateri’s resident camps, girls will participate in activities such as swimming, kayaking, outdoor skills, arts and crafts, canoeing and archery. At the North Fork campsite, day camps will also offer campers the chance to enjoy canoeing and archery, with the added option to explore STEM-centric activities like robotics, photography, astronomy and more. North Fork also offers campers the option of a two- to three-night stay, which will include traditional camp activities and experiences such as swimming, boating, shooting, campfire cooking and sleeping in a log cabin. For registration and additional information, visit www.girlscouts-gateway.org.



Creative and Performing Arts


Summer Musical TheatreCamp

Elementary, middle and high school students from across the country make their way to St. Augustine each summer to participate in this musical theater camp. Now in its 24th season, the camp offers kids ages 5 to 18 the opportunity to take part in a full-scale musical production. Starting in June, this summer’s lineup will include productions of “Les Misérables” for high school students, “The Pinocchio Show” for ages 5 to 11 and “Seussical” for middle and high school students. For registration and additional information, visit www.summermusicaltheatrecamp.com.


Camp Cummer

Kids entering first through ninth grade with a passion for the arts can now register for Camp Cummer 2018 at the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens in Jacksonville. Participants will learn about various methods and mediums for creating art in a hands-on environment. For grades one through six, there are three weeks of camp to choose from in June and three in July. There will be one week available – July 30 through Aug. 3 – for kids entering grades six through nine. To learn more, visit www.cummermuseum.org.


Jax Cooking Studio

For budding young culinary chefs, Jax Cooking Studio will offer two weeks of cooking camps this June. A total of four camps will be offered—two for kids ages 7 through 12, and two for teens ages 13 to 18—and students will choose between the themes of “International Street Food” and “Food in the Movies.”

Throughout this week-long camp, kids will learn basic cooking skills while working in a team-oriented environment. At the end of each day, kids will be able to eat their creations, and at the end of the week, they will also have the opportunity to take part in a cooking competition, preparing meals using their newly acquired knowledge and skills. For more information about Jax Cooking Studio’s two summer camps, visit www.jaxcookingstudio.com.


Learning and Life Skills


MOSH Discovery Camps

Throughout summer 2018, Jacksonville’s Museum of Science and History (MOSH) will host Discovery Camps to encourage K-8 students’ curiosity through exploration of the museum. Kids will learn about the ocean and its inhabitants, experiment with their senses, explore the inner workings of the human body and become architects, engineers, astronauts and more.

Camps will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and all camps will offer before and after care. For registration and additional information, visit www.themosh.org/educate/discoverycamps.


WinShape Camp

In partnership with Chick-fil-A, WinShape Camps offer kids around the country all the fun of traditional summer activities, while also building character and encouraging personal and spiritual growth. From athletics to the arts and sciences, WinShape Camps offer a variety of activities for kids to enjoy, including archery, gymnastics, team sports, cooking, painting, musical theater and more.

First Coast kids will have the opportunity to experience WinShape Camp this summer at either Crosswater Community Church in Ponte Vedra, or the Church of Eleven22 in Jacksonville. For additional information, visit camps.winshape.org


YMCA Super Summer Adventure Camp

Winner of Jacksonville.com’s 2017 Bold City Best “Best Summer Camp in Jacksonville” title, First Coast YMCA’s Super Summer Adventure Camp will return this summer with more fun activities for kids to enjoy. With each week of camp featuring a different adventure, kids will use their creativity and imaginations to go on journeys through space and time and visit enchanted kingdoms, all while learning the importance of honesty, responsibility, fairness, respect and caring for others.

This camp will be available at various locations throughout Duval, St. Johns, Nassau, Clay and Baker Counties. YMCA members will receive a 20 percent discount on summer day camp pricing. For all locations and additional information, visit www.firstcoastymca.org.