offers lists of summer camps
for area children
(March 2006) Eight years ago Cindy Johnson, of
Louisville, Ky., was interested in finding her three children summer
camps to attend. Because they had diverse interests and ideas about
what they wanted to do at camp, Johnson needed to find information about
several different camps.
She had a problem, though. There was no available resource at that time
that listed the different camps in Kentucky. After many frustrating
hours spent talking with schools, sports coaches, music teachers, looking
in newspapers and researching in the library, Johnson decided to put
together a resource to help parents like her.
She called the bookstore, Hawley Cook, which has now become Borders,
and asked if there was an interest for such a guide. The store immediately
pledged to purchase 50 books if she would put it together and then sent
her a purchase order. Thus, she created Camps for Kids,
which was first published in 1999.
The first book had around 50 pages of information about summer camp
programs in Kentucky. Now the latest edition has close to 200 pages
of information about available camps in the Kentucky area. Some Indiana
and Ohio camps are also listed.
Although the books central feature is information about all the
available childrens camps, Johnson now offers information about
Kentucky festivals and attractions as well. She said that her readers
enthusiastically asked for more information about such events because
most people just do not know what is available. Because her main reader
base is centered around Louisville and Lexington, Ky., many of her points
of interest are focused on those two cities.
In December each year, Johnson starts tracking down information for
the next springs Camps for Kids. She said she doesnt
just copy the previous years book. Every year she starts over.
She said that while most camp directors from across the state help supply
the information about their camps, she also spends countless hours emailing,
faxing, calling and researching information about camps and activities.
Johnson includes information about any and every camp she can find.
The topics, which are arranged alphabetically, range from day camps
to resident camps and sports camps to those devoted to the arts. There
are aquatic camps and pottery camps, writing camps, and music camps.
She also has a special section on camps for children with special needs.
Johnson said one of her passions is the camps for children with special
needs. She has included information about camps for many types of special
situations, including a heart camp for children with heart problems,
a muscular dystrophy camp, a hemophilia camp and camps for children
whose parents may not be able to afford to send them to camp. Johnson
stressed that many of the special needs camps are run by volunteers,
and there is always room for more volunteers to help. Most of the special
needs camps have medical staffs on hand for any problems that could
In every edition of Camps for Kids, Johnson has a list of
places to hold childrens birthday parties and a list of kids
eat free places. She also has coupons from a variety of camps
in the book. Many of these coupons are early registration discounts,
so she encourages parents to get a copy of Camps for Kids
well before camp season and start searching for the perfect camp for
Johnson also wanted parents looking for camps to know that there will
be two camp fairs in Kentucky this year. A camp fair is where parents
can meet many of the camp directors and get information about their
camps. The first camp fair will be held at 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday,
March 25, at River City Indoor Soccer in Louisville. For information,
parents can contact Nicole Clark at (502) 485-7004.
The second camp fair will be held Saturday, April 23, at Kentucky Indoor
Soccer and Sport on Reynolds Road near Meijers in Lexington, Ky. Parents
wanting more information about this camp fair can call (502) 223-1765.
Johnsons Camp for Kids will be available in March
at bookstores and many family friendly places around the area. She also
has a website for parents to visit: http://www.kycampsforkids.com.
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