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Air Force offering youth summer camps, programs for all interests

Many residential, specialty and summit camp opportunities are available for Air Force youth this year. Myriad programs offer participants valuable leadership experiences and an opportunity to learn new skills. (Air Force photo)

Many residential, specialty and summit camp opportunities are available for Air Force youth this year. Myriad programs offer participants valuable leadership experiences and an opportunity to learn new skills. (Air Force photo)

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas -- With camp deadlines fast approaching, Air Force Services Activity officials are encouraging families to think about summer plans and consider one of the many programs offered through Air Force Youth Programs.
 

“We have something for everybody. From our three residential camps, to our specialty camps at the installation level, to the teen summits for Guard and Reserve dependents, our programs offer great experiences and leadership opportunities for our military children,” said Con Fisher, AFSVA chief of Youth Programs. 

Residential Camps
The deadline to apply to one of the Air Force’s three residential camps is April 15; officials will notify selectees May 1. Families are responsible for travel expenses, but most other costs, including lodging and meals, are covered.  The three residential programs offered are:

Teen Aviation Camp
The Air Force Services Teen Aviation Camp is held at the Air Force Academy, Colorado, June  6-11. Teens entering their sophomore or junior year experience Academy life in Colorado Springs. They also enjoy activities aimed at helping them determine if aviation or the Academy is a good career choice, including flying in a Cessna 145, a ropes course, a tour of the campus and team-building activities. 

Teen Leadership Camp
The Air Force Teen Leadership Camp is being held in San Antonio July 13-17. This camp is a five-day residential program giving youth a glimpse of university life while developing their leadership skills.  Participants experience college campus living and participate in many activities, including team building, rope courses, conflict resolution, public speaking and more.

Space Camp
At the Air Force Services Space Camp in Huntsville, Alabama, July 26-31, students experience the excitement of space exploration at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama. The six-day program includes simulated space shuttle missions, rocket building and launches, scientific experiments while students learn about the past, present and future of space exploration. 

Installation Specialty Camps
Each installation youth center will offer specialty camps this summer as well. Specialty camps expose children to different skills they might not experience in school or at home, said Kim Gillman, a youth specialist with AFSVA. Youth centers will offer two of the following camps:

Missoula Performing Arts Touring Camp: A performing arts camp for youth of all ages where  daily sessions culminate in two shows at the end of the week complete with music, lights and costumes. 

Sideline Sports: Sideline Sports Camp introduces and teaches youth non-traditional sports. Participants gain an appreciation for these sports as facilitators encourage lifelong-skill building. Previous sports include water polo, fencing, badminton, lacrosse and bocce ball.

Soccer Camp: With a little twist to a traditional soccer camp, participants learn an array of acrobatic and athletic moves performed with a soccer ball.
Zumba: Zumba Camp is a high energy camp that introduces youth to Latin rhythms and easy-to-follow moves to create a one-of-a-kind fitness program that will have attendees moving.

Music Recording: Music Recording Camp introduces participants to choreography, singing, videography and music making. Daily instruction culminates in a final video performance aired on a private channel on YouTube.

Science: Science Camp includes exposure to a variety of science fields under a role-playing context, giving youth a chance to play with science through hands-on experiments that will appeal to all youth. Each science field introduces concepts, tools and a team initiative leading to clues. Games and other initiatives are interspersed throughout to keep the time fun and fast paced.

Technology: Technology Camp participants learn and demonstrate the ability to successfully participate in a variety of activities such as: music recording using Garage Band, digital photography using iPhoto, video production using iMovie and much more.

Paintball: Paintball Camp participants learn how to work as a unit in developing tactical game strategies, stealth techniques, leadership skills, teamwork and a lot of fun. Throughout the week, players also focus on the importance of character, honor and integrity through life lessons that parallel the sport.

Archery: Archery Camp participants become certified in Level 1 Archery. Youth develop their skills in archery, overcome distractions and obstacles, improve eye-hand coordination, learn safety skills and learn to target shoot.

Air Force Reserve/Air National Guard Teen Summits
Now in its eighth year, teens at the Air Force Reserve/Air National Guard Teen Summits will have an opportunity to explore and develop their leadership skills, build self-confidence and build lasting friendships. Open to family members of Air Reserve and guard members ages 14 – 18, two summits are offered this year: in Dahlonega, Georgia, July 12-17, and Estes Park, Colorado, Aug 11-15. The deadline to apply for one of these teen summits is May 31.

For more information about camps offered, including application information and eligibility requirements, visit www.myairforcelife.com/Youth/YouthCamps.aspx. For specific dates, times and location of installation specialty camps, contact your local youth center.