Milwaukee Magazine

Make this Summer Totally Awesome

Find a camp where your kids can learn while having fun.


Once sunlight stretches into the evening, and outdoor temps warm up, a bunch of fun events emerge. Looking for activities to keep kids busy and engaged so they don’t fall into a lazy slump during their summer break? Whether it’s a day or overnight camp – or something the whole family can enjoy – here are some options.

“Enrolling your child in a summer camp will still enforce a sense of structure and rules to be followed,” says Lakiesha Russell, a counselor with a private practice (The EVOLVING Chair) in Milwaukee who sends her own kids to day camps each summer. And you can’t put a price on social interactio­n, which all camps provide. “Being able to interact with children will also increase your child’s ability to be self-aware on how others are feeling,” she says.

Not sure what day camp is best? Start with your child’s interests. “Have a conversati­on with your children about their interests and strengths and look for a summer camp that can increase their confidence in what they enjoy,” says Russell.

Focused on the intersecti­on between art and nature, day camps at the 40-acre Lynden Sculpture Garden – 50 outdoor sculptures woven into a natural landscape

– are for ages 20 months to 15 years old. “We have several guest artists this summer at Lynden, including choreograp­her Reggie Wilson and textile artist Arianne King Comer, who will be working with campers during their residencie­s,” says executive director Polly Morris. Kids will hatch and raise chickens, build rafts to float across the pond, and record discoverie­s in accordion books, prints and sculptures. Camps are as short as three days and as long as five.

The Milwaukee Art Museum’s summer camps are also very hands-on. Every week is a different topic – perfect for kids or teens who already have a passion when it comes to creating art. For example, the week of June 25-28 is “Photograph­ing Nature,” while July 23-26 is “Exploring Printmakin­g” and clay art is the focus July 30-Aug. 2 (“Creating With Clay”). The weeks are broken up into half-days, with 6- to 10-year-olds meeting from

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