The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

June 25, 2013

From Barbies to Nerf, robotics to running, summer camps offer activities for everyone

From staff reports

— As the children in the classroom worked studiously Tuesday on their clay creations, Amber Baker called them to attention.

“Class, class,” Baker called out.

“Yes, yes,” was the response from her students, whose eyes were immediately on their instructor.

“Now that you have your heads attached to the bodies, we’ll now put in eyes and a beak,” said Baker, using an overhead projector to show the youngsters how to use the modeling tools to add features to clay owls.

Parrish Dodson watched the demonstration and prepared to complete his owl.

“It’s really fun,” the 9-year-old said of working with clay. “You can make anything.”

Baker said the purpose of the three-day Clay Camp, which began Tuesday at Spiva Center for the Arts in Joplin, is to teach youngsters the basics of working with clay. They will be creating a slab, pinch pots and coils.

“But also, they’ll learn that it takes a lot of practice and patience when working with clay,” she said. “Not very many people know how to pick it up immediately.”

While Clay Camp is giving children a chance to stretch their artistic abilities, across town at Missouri Southern State University’s Leggett & Platt Athletic Center, girls have been honing their skills on the basketball court this week.

Spiva and Missouri Southern are just two of the local organizations working to help youngsters pass the time this summer with educational and fitness activities, and even camps designed to just let kids have fun.

There’s something for everybody: Barbie Camp or G.I. Joe Camp, volleyball and basketball camps, Lego and robotics camps, and more.

Here’s the rundown on some upcoming camps.


The Joplin Family Y’s Day Camp 2013 continues through Aug. 14.

Weekly themes are American Heroes, July 1-5 (closed July 4); Adventures Through History, July 8-12; Wacky Recreation, July 15-19; Mysteries of Science, July 22-26; Fitness Frenzy, July 29-Aug. 2; Wild Water, Aug. 5-9; and Bon Voyage, Aug. 12-13. Meals will be provided.

The cost is $95 per week for Y members and $125 for nonmembers, for children in kindergarten through fifth grade. The sixth- through eighth-grade day camp is $60 for members and $80 for nonmembers. Scholarships are available. The daily program fee is $25 per child.

Details: 417-623-4597 (downtown branch), 417-781-9622 (south branch) or


Spots are open for the third week of the 2013 Children’s Summer Workshop set for July 15-19 at Joplin Little Theatre.

Participants will learn basic theater techniques, costumes, makeup and stage combat amid a theme that will include a castle, princes, princesses, knights and dragons.

Two workshop sessions will offered: 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m. The cost is $55 per child per session.

Details: 417-623-3638 or


Camp Wildcat will be offered July 23-26 at the Wildcat Glades Conservation & Audubon Center in Wildcat Park along Shoal Creek in south Joplin.

Children ages 7 to 12 will meet from 8 a.m. to noon each day to explore habitats and learn about different groups of animals. It is requested that participants be in good physical condition and be able to hike in summer weather.

The cost is $100 per child for members and $125 for nonmembers.

A second camp will be offered that week at the nature center. Young artists may participate in the Nature’s Artwork Summer Day Camp, set for 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. each day.

Children ages 7 to 12 will create original sketches, paintings, collages, and clay and wire sculptures.

The cost is $125 per child.

Details: 417-782-6287 or


British Soccer Camp will be offered next month in Joplin and Pittsburg, Kan., to allow players of all ages to hone their skills.

The camp will be held July 8-12 at the Joplin Athletic Complex. First Kicks, for ages 3-4, will meet from 9 to 10 a.m.; Mini Soccer, for ages 5-6, will meet from 10:30 a.m. to noon; half-day sessions will be held from 9 a.m. to noon for ages 7-9 and from 1 to 4 p.m. for ages 10-14.

The coaching staff will offer drills, practices, scrimmage games and a daily tournament.

Prices are $75 for First Kicks, $90 for Mini Soccer and $116 for half-day sessions.

Details: 417-625-4750 or

The soccer camps also will be offered July 15-19 at the Pittsburg State University soccer fields.

First Kicks will meet from 9 to 10 a.m. and costs $77. Mini Soccer will meet from 10 a.m. to noon and is $97. The half-day sessions will be from 9 a.m. to noon and 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., with a cost of $118.

Details: 620-231-8310.

Basketball, Volleyball

Missouri Southern State University is putting on a variety of camps yet this summer, including the following.

• Boys basketball:

Grades 1-6 day camp, July 8-10. Sessions cost $125 per person, and run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday and Tuesday and 9 a.m. to noon Wednesday. Campers are to provide their own lunches. The cost of the camp covers a souvenir basketball and T-shirt.

Grades 10-12 individual camp, 5:30 to 8 p.m., July 8-9. The cost is $50 per person, which includes a T-shirt.

Grades 6-12 shooting camp, 5:30 to 8 p.m., July 10-11. The cost is $50 per person, which covers a T-shirt.

Grades 7-9 day camp, July 10-12. The cost is $125 per person. The camp runs from 1 to 4 p.m. Wednesday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday and Friday. Campers are to provide their own lunches. The cost of the camp includes a souvenir T-shirt.

• Volleyball:

Summer attack camp and summer setter camp, July 15. They are open to students in grades seven and up. The cost is $100 per person. Check-in is at 8:30 a.m., and the camp runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The cost includes lunch and a T-shirt.

Summer defense camp, July 16, open to those in grades seven and up. The cost is $100 per person. Check-in is at 8:30, and the camp runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The cost includes lunch and a T-shirt.

(Arrangements can be made to stay overnight between the camps for an additional fee.)

Team instruction/competition camp, July 22-23. Check-in begins at 10:30 a.m. on July 22, and camp ends at 6 p.m. on July 23. The cost is $150 per person (if housing and meals are provided on campus) and $100 per person for commuters. Coaches who commute are admitted free; coaches who need housing and meals are to pay $45 each.

College prep camp, July 26-27. The cost is $150 for commuters, which includes meals and a T-shirt, and $175 for those needing overnight accommodations. Check-in begins at 8:30 a.m. July 26, and camp ends at 4 p.m. July 27. The camp is for players in grades 9-12.

For information about costs, sign-up sheets and other details about sports camps, people may visit the MSSU athletics department website at and click on “camps,” or call the media relations office at 417-625-9317.

Barbie, G.I. Joe

The Joplin Parks and Recreation Department has scheduled a number of camps beginning in July. All camps cost $100 and run from 9 a.m. to noon at the Joplin Athletic Complex, 3301 W. First St.

Barbie Camp, July 8-12, will include crafts, games and makeovers, as well as movies, snacks and playtime. Each camper will get two different Barbie dolls to take home during the week.

G.I. Joe Camp, July 15-19, will include games, crafts, movies, snacks and playtime. Each camper will get two different G.I. Joe action figures to take home during the week.

Nerf Camp, July 22-26, will include games and competitions such as Capture the Flag. Snacks and playtime are included. Each camper will get a Nerf gun and glasses.

Lego Camp, July 29-Aug. 2, will include Lego games, movies, building time and snacks. Each camper will get two new Lego sets.

Details: Joplin Athletic Complex, 417-625-4750.

Runners Camp

The Southwest Missouri Running Camp will be held July 22-26 at the Sagmount Summer Camp, south of Saginaw on old U.S. Highway 71.

The camp is $130 and is open to all runners entering sixth grade to exiting 12th grade. Scholarships are available; the application deadline for scholarships is July 9.

The registration deadline is July 12.

Jake Holt, the cross-country coach at East Newton High School, is the camp director. Training will be geared to different running levels.

More than 200 campers are expected from 50 schools around the region and as far away as Texas.



These are the droids you’re looking for. Or, at least they will be when participants finish up the Adventures in Robotics workshops at Pittsburg (Kan.) State University.

The workshops, for children ages 9 to 14, will offer hands-on experience as campers learn robotic basics, teamwork, and programming and construction techniques.

Adventures in Robotics I will be offered from 9 a.m. to noon July 22-26, and Adventures in Robotics II will be held from July 29-Aug. 2.

The cost for each of the workshop sessions is $90 per person.

Details: 620-235-4350 or

The university also will offer youngsters the chance to learn about the construction industry during Construct Your Future workshops.

The workshops, for ages 9 to 14, will look at materials, processes and design methods used in industries. Level I will meet from 1 to 4 p.m. July 22-26, and Level II will meet from July 29-Aug. 2.

The cost for each session is $90.

Details: 620-235-6555 or


A variety of artistic courses are planned for the SpivaKids summer camps. Separate activities are offered for two age groups: 3 to 5, and 6 to 12.

For ages 6 to 12, Spiva will offer Fiber Arts Camp, July 9-11; Painting Camp, July 16-18; 3-D Camp, July 23-25; and Drawing Camp, July 30-Aug. 1. All camps will be held from 12:30 to 5:30 p.m. The cost is $75.

For ages 3 to 5, Spiva will present Finding Nemo (kids will learn about the underwater world), July 9, 10 and 12; Let Your Garden Grow, July 16, 17 and 19; Superheroes and Princesses, July 23, 24 and 26; and African Safari, July 30, 31 and Aug. 2. Each camp will meet from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and will cost $45.

Details: 417-623-0183.


The Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College Development Foundation is teaming up with the Miami (Okla.) Arts and Humanities Council to put on “An Affair of the Arts.”

The weeklong summer art academy will be held July 15-19 on the NEO campus in Miami.

Area youths will get exposure to a variety of art forms during the camp. Hours will be 9 a.m. to noon for kindergarten through second-grade students, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for students in third through 12th grades.

The cost is $75 for kindergarten through second grade, and $125 for third grade and up. The deadline for registering is Friday.

Details: 918-540-6250, 918-540-6115 or