Camps offered for Thanksgiving week

Published: Wednesday, November 6, 2013 at 12:51 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, November 6, 2013 at 12:51 p.m.

Students in Alachua County Public Schools will get a full week off this year to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday, and to accommodate working parents, the city of Gainesville and the Florida Museum of Natural History will be offering camps for students.



* What: Thanksgiving week camps for students at city of Gainesville and Florida Museum.

* When: City, 7 a.m.-6 p.m. Nov. 25-27; museum, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. or 8 a.m.-noon or 12:30-4:30 p.m. Nov. 25-26.

* Where: City at Eastside Recreation Center, 2841 E. University Ave., and Westside Recreation Center, 1001 NE 34th St.; museum at SW 34th Street and Hull Road.

* Cost: City, $5.50-$8.40 each day; museum, $27-$50 each day.

* Information: City, 352-334-5067; museum, 352-273-2061.

Jackie Johnson, spokesperson for the school district, said students and teachers will have Pupil/Teacher Holidays from Nov. 25-27 only this year. "The Pupil/Teacher Holidays is based on a request from the teacher's union (Alachua County Education Association)," Johnson said.

She said a majority of school districts in Florida take the whole week off. Johnson said the Pupil/Teacher Holidays is just for this school year, unless the School Board decides to continue it.

Shannon Keleher, recreation manager for the city of Gainesville, said the Out of School Days camp will offer students in first through eighth grade an opportunity to enjoy recreation with an education component in a safe environment. The camp will be offered from 7 a.m.-6 p.m. Nov. 25-27 at both the Eastside Recreation Center at 2841 E. University Ave. and the Albert "Ray" Massey Westside Recreation Center at 1001 NW 34th St.

"The focus is on fun activities the children will enjoy while also learning," said Keleher, adding that the children also will have an opportunity to write letters to Santa Claus.

Paul Ramey, assistant director of marketing and public relations at the Florida Museum, said parents will have a choice to register their children in kindergarten through fifth grade for the School Holiday Camps, which will be offered in the morning, afternoon or for the entire day on Nov. 25-26 only at the museum at SW 34th Street and Hull Road.

"The camps give kids something different to do," Ramey said. "We try to make the camps educational and fun."

City camp

Campers will enjoy a host of activities that will include free play, arts and crafts, indoor and outdoor games, field trips and math and reading activities.

The cost per day is $5.50 for city residents and $8.40 for non-city residents. Snacks will be provided, but campers must bring their own bag lunch.

Proof of residency, which can be a GRU bill or a voter ID card, is required at registration, which is available in person from 7 a.m. 6 p.m. Monday-Thursday at the Thomas Center Building B, 3rd Floor at 306 NE 6th Ave.

For more information, call 352-334-5067.

Museum camp

Campers will explore "Nature Chemistry" and "Cooking Chemistry" through interactive activities, museum collections and exhibits. They will why some animals glow in the dark and the science behind baking, cooking and taste.

The camp will be offered from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. for full days, and either 8 a.m.-noon or 12:30-4:30 p.m. for half days. The cost is $45 for a full day for members and $50 for non-members and $27 for a half day for members and $30 for non-members.

Campers should come dress for outdoor activities and full-day campers should bring a lunch.

Camp registration is available online or you can download a registration form at

For more information, call 352-273-2061.

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