Augusta Family Magazine April 2021

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APRIL 2021


AP R I L 2021

on the cover

As shown below: Anslie Thorp (15) Photo by Randy Pace

w w w.a u g ust afa m i l y. co m


Ashlee Griggs Duren


Aimee Serafin


Michael Rushbrook


ADVERTISING SALES Doressa Hawes Mary Porter Vann



CONTRIBUTORS Dr. Naesha Parks Cammie Jones Dustin Turner

A Publication of MCC Magazines, LLC A division of Morris Communications Company, LLC | 725 Broad St., Augusta, GA 30901 Morris Communications Company, LLC William S. Morris III, Chairman MCC Magazines Tina Battock, Executive Director Scott Ferguson, Director – Finance & Operations Sherry Brown, Director of Manufacturing & Production Cher Wheeler, Publication Services Manager Veronica Brooks, Accounting Manager Michelle Rowe, Circulation Business Manager

Augusta Family Magazine is published 8 times per year and distributed throughout the Augusta and Aiken area. Send press releases, story ideas or comments to the editor at aimee.serafin@ or mail to 725 Broad Street, Augusta, Ga., 30901. For advertising information, call (706) 823-3702. For circulation/ distribution, call (706) 828-4391.

Is your child ready for their “close up?” If you think you’ve got a “cover kid,” submit their photo and information on our website or to t.aimee. and they may grace the cover of Augusta Family Magazine. 4 � AUGUSTA FAMILY | APRIL 2021 augustafamilymagazine


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2021 Summer Camp Guide Augusta Family’s Annual Camp Guide —Aimee Serafin



Summer Camp, Covid-19 and Fun Expectations!

Rooted and Growing

—Dustin Turner

—Dr. Naesha Parks



Sweet Summer

APRIL 2021 8

Editor’s Page





The Hurried [and Happy] Home Maker The Practical Packing Guide

Family Matters

The Modern Perspective

—Cammie Jones

—Aimee Serafin

—Aimee Serafin




A World of Regal Influencers

Khaleel Pratt


editor’s notes by Ai mee Seraf i n


righter days. Longer nights. Afternoon bursts of rain called sun showers — the kind Elvis sang about in the back of tour buses crossing the Georgia-Florida state lines. Late July’s steamy pavement and lazy lounging around the pool. These are the memories of Augusta summers we have come to love and know so well. This summer has us peeking around the corner in anticipation of those things, longawaited, and a little more fun (together) in the sun compared to last year. No one can say for sure if summer 2021 will bring back all our event favorites, but it is sure encouraging to sense more normalcy in day-to-day life. Healthcare workers are diligently administering vaccines (huge thanks to you!), the Augusta Market opened on March 20, spring sports are in full swing and it appears that the garden city may get another chance at downtown renewal. We can certainly hope for a summer full of ready-to-make memories. Summer camp is one of those experiences that kids remember all year long. It’s been over a year that many camps in the area had to shut down due to virus restrictions. Although things will look a little differently this year with protocols in place and limited attendance, most businesses are opening their doors so that children can enjoy a fun and familiar summer. There will be plenty of camps: princess-themed dance, archery, Family Y (day and overnight), cooking and theater, and even a sailing camp with the Augusta Sailing Club. The April issue of Augusta Family magazine holds the best resource in town with a guide of more than 75 camp listings in a wide variety of interests. The guide includes all the standard favorites plus a few news camps like VOCE Augusta, Camp Woodie’s Great Outdoors and a ukulele camp offered by the Aiken Center for the Arts. If your child needs help packing this year, we have you covered! Tear out our helpful packing list in the Tidbits section, page 12, or review the good old


basics in The Hurried [and happy] Homemaker’s “The Practical Packing Guide”. If your camper is curious about protocols or restrictions, our “Summer Camp, COVID-19 and Fun Expectations” feature will prepare you and your young adventurer for what to expect. In any case, break out the tents and binoculars, swimsuits, paint brushes and sports equipment — summer is sure to get us all back in the flow of good things because summer life is going to be so good! Hello Summer!

Aimee Serafin

Join us for Summer Camps at Augusta Christian Schools!

rooted and growing Dr. Naesha Parks

Sweet Summer


e are wrapping up another school year and the kids will be off for a few months. A break from: “Did you do your homework? Do you have your clothes out and ready to put on in the morning for school? What would you like me to pack for lunch tomorrow?” Not so fast… it’s summer break for schools, but who knew there were so many more educators waiting at bay to pick up the reigns and continue with learning?! Whether it’s summer school or summer camp, teachers have been preparing and waiting for this time of the year! It’s their Christmas in June. They’ll be arts and crafts, STEM activities, field trips, dance parties, scavenger hunts, movies, and course reading, writing, and math to keep our kids in learning mode, so they are prepared for the new school year. The first day of summer camp feels and looks much like the first day of school (minus the principal, of course). “Wake up, Reese, it’s time for summer camp.” “But mom… do I have to?” “Yes, son, you do.” And so, it begins…. We start the morning preparing breakfast and lunch for camp, packing his book bag and a few of his favorite things (mainly his phone and charger), and off we go. As soon as he arrives, his “Mom, do we have to?” turns into “Wow! They have a jumping house, and we get to go swimming on Wednesdays.” Instantly, he’s sold on what they are selling: a summer filled with fun, challenging activities and meeting new friends, all while making unforgettable memories. As the summer progresses, I can see him maturing more and more each day. Instead of me dragging him out of bed, he’s up in the morning with his lunch packed, towel and swimming trunks ready, and so is he. “Mom, hurry, I want to get there in time to play with Jackson!” Jackson is a friend he met who lives in another state but is here with his grandparents for the summer. Not only is my son actively learning and having fun, but he is also meeting new people and learning to create and nurture new friendships. Summer camp is an excellent opportunity to keep children engaged and build their confidence to form friendships, all while having fun! A native of Thomson, Dr. Naesha Parks received her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and her Specialist and Doctoral degrees in Educational Leadership. Dr. Parks is the author of the book, “The Heart Feels First”, which chronicles the near-death experience that left her with a deep faith in a big God. Currently, she is principal of Evans Elementary School and serves as an administrator in the Columbia County School System. She is married to Keenan and mother to Chandler, Sydney, Chance, and Reese.


SUMMER CAMP CHECKLIST PERSONAL ITEMS/CLOTHING r Shirts r Pants/shorts r Raincoat/poncho r Underwear r Water shoes r Extra socks r Bathing suit r Masks (bring extra!) r Hair ties

r Bandana/buff r Deodorant r Toothbrush/ toothpaste r Lotion r Soap r Comb/brush r Flip flops/ shower shoes

MISCELLANEOUS r Earplugs r Medication r Hat r Swim towel r Bug spray r Sunscreen r Lip balm r Flashlight r Hat

r Sunglasses r Camera r Earbuds r Ziplocks r Water bottle r Pillow r Antibacterial gel

OPTIONAL r Camera r Books for reading r Journal, pen, stamps r Stationary, paper (pre-addressed envelopes for home) r Money, if needed

tidbits APRIL 2021





= 90


= 80

= 20

Did you know that the Eiffel Tower grows every summer? Due to thermal expansion , when an object expands in extreme heat , the Eiffel Tower can grow up to 15 centimeters (6 inches) during the hottest days of summer.

= ?? See page 14 to view the answer for the riddle.

Fun Joke!



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of the Day


Beach ball = 30 (30 + 30 + 30 = 90) Watermelon = 50 (2 watermelon slices + 30 = 80; two slices of watermelon are 50.) One slice of watermelon – 1 sunglasses = 20; 1 watermelon is 50/2 = 25; the watermelon – 5 = 20. The sunglasses equal 5.


SAFE KIDS TIPS FOR A HAPPY CAMPER “Heading off to camp is a joyful child ritual and the opportunity for a test at independence and self-confidence. According to results from a Healthy Camp Study, 50% of camp-related injuries occur when protective equipment is not worn,” says Renée McCabe, RN, Injury Prevention and Safety Program Manager at the Children’s Hospital of Georgia. Here are some tips to help your child stay safe at camp and ensure that the memories made are happy ones! BE SUN SAVVY The intense heat and humidity of the summer can be dangerous. When we sweat, our bodies lose water so children must drink plenty of fluids, even if they aren’t thirsty. This is particularly important for children playing sports or games that involve running or physical activity. Children should carry a water bottle (or two) at all times. Sunscreen is a must! The sun is most intense between 10am and 4pm, but it’s best to make a habit of applying sunscreen when dressing in the morning. Choose a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher and reapply at least every two hours and every time the child dries off after swimming. Teach your child the signs of heat exhaustion. Heat exhaustion occurs when the body heats up faster than it can cool down. Symptoms include fatigue, feeling overheated and weakness. Heat exhaustion can escalate rapidly. If your child begins to feel ill, he should take a rest indoors or in

the shade and the camp nurse should be notified. CHECK FOR TICKS Lyme disease is spread by tiny deer ticks living in tall grasses or wooded areas. Symptoms include a bulls-eye rash and flu-like symptoms within a few weeks of the tick bite. It’s a good idea to wear long sleeves and tuck pant legs into socks when hiking and stay in the middle of the trail. Always check the entire body for ticks following time spent in wooded or grassy areas. Finally, if a child finds a tick on their body, they should have it removed by the camp nurse or another adult using tweezers and pulling the tick straight out of the skin. APPROPRIATE FOOTWEAR AND CLOTHING Flip flops offer young feet no support, can lead to poor foot and leg position when running and jumping, and can pose a tripping hazard, especially on uneven ground. Children should wear sturdy, lace-up shoes for running in games and sports. Loose-fitting clothing should be worn on hot days to allow the body to cool, and hats will protect children’s heads and faces. GEAR UP Make sure safety equipment is provided and mandated for sports activities. Helmets should always be

worn for biking, horseback riding, football, zip-lining and challenge courses. DON’T PUSH THROUGH PAIN If your child is injured, it should be addressed right away. Injuries as small as a blister or mild sprain can have a significant impact if ignored. Pain is the body’s way of telling us that something is wrong. Injuries should be reported to camp staff, nurses and coaches when they happen so they do no worsen. We don’t want a child to miss an entire sports season for an injury that, if addressed immediately, could be resolved within a day or two. A helpful tactic is to remember the principles of RICE: Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. BUCKLE UP When traveling in a vehicle, everyone needs to be buckled up in an appropriate car seat, booster seat or seat belt. Children under age 13 should ride in the back seat and remain in a booster seat until they are at least 8 years old and 4’9”. Safe Kids Greater Augusta, led by the Children’s Hospital of Georgia, works to prevent unintentional childhood injury, the leading killer of children ages 1 to 19. Safe Kids Greater Augusta is a member of the Safe Kids Worldwide network. To find out more about the local Safe Kids program, call 706-721-7606, or visit Check out more safety tips and the Ultimate Car Seat Guide at

Columbia County Parks & Recreation PEDIATRICS LOCATIONS AND PROVIDERS Interstate Parkway 1299 Interstate PKWY Dr. Jose Acevedo, Dr. Tito Sobrinho, Dr. Maya Ingram and Ashley Dahlman, NP

Registration Open Now!!! Most Camps Run From 8am until 1pm

Belle Terrace 2467 Golden Camp RD Dr. Kathryn Williford and Dr. Sonali Harshman Garredd 1111 Garredd BLVD Dr. Halbert Capuy and Dr. Valerie Ertle Garredd 1113 Garredd BLVD Dr. Mary Lou Fernando

$100 Per Camp 706-863-7523 | Summer camp registration link:

Toll Free Number 1-877-205-5006 AUGUSTA FAMILY | APRIL 2021 � 15

the hurried

[and happy] homemaker

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C a m m i e Jo n es


The Practical Packing Guide


acking for camp sometimes feels like you need a doctorate to know what is needed and what is not. Camps usually provide packing lists that help but they don’t necessarily answer every question that comes up. Does she need a raincoat? Does he really need to bring a bat and baseball? Will there be any specific needs due to Covid protocols? Although packing lists may look a little different, the basics are the same. Without that magical packing list to guide your son or daughter in what they will need, below is a practical guide for you and your camper to tackle packing this year.

CHECK THE WEBSITE Check the camp’s website for packing lists. This does not mean you need absolutely everything on their list, but it will have items specific to that particular camping experience. Also, check to see if there are any Covid-related restrictions or new protocols that may affect your list as compared to years prior (pre-COVID). I am sure the camps are also providing plenty of hand sanitizer, soap and other precautions to keep your little ones healthy. LABEL IT! If you want to see that favorite t-shirt or water bottle again, you may want to label it. You can purchase laundry and dishwasher safe labels from many websites. Name Bubbles ( and Mabel’s Labels (— currently running 40% off popular products) are two that come to mind. When my girls went to summer camp, I even labeled their toothpaste and shampoo bottles.

undergarments, socks and comfortable shoes. Although our local community includes many fashionistas, camp may not be the place to lug along vogue shoes and designer brand outerwear! Also, the most important items of the camp’s packing list tend to be at the top. As you go down the list, the items become less essential. Remember, there is not a ton of room in your bag or cabin so try to keep the items simple and useful.

What NOT to pack for summer camp Valuable items or jewelry/a large amount of cash Water balloons Food or candy (unless you want ants in your cabin!) CD player Electronics/iPad/iPod Firecrackers Game Boy/Playstation/video games Television/DVD player Weapons Drugs/alcohol Cell phones Lighters/matches Cigarettes/vape devices/JUULs

SHOWER-TIME ESSENTIALS Most camp showers define the meaning of roughing it so a good pair of flip flops or shower shoes are a must. Throw in a mesh toiletry bag or plastic bucket to tote shampoo and soap to and from the showers. And… label it! As for towels, you may want to pack more than you think your child will need. Try to send quick-drying towels and disposable face cleansing wipes instead of washcloths. COMFY BEDDING Sheets, a blanket and a favorite pillow are important for a good night’s rest. Invest in an egg crate topper if the mattresses are a little hard. They are not too expensive and can be used year to year. And… label it! STATIONERY AND STAMPS After a quick lesson about how to address a letter and where to put the stamp, do send some stationery with your son or daughter so they can write home. Include an address list of close family and friends.

Drones If you have inadvertently left something PACK EARLY Set up a designated area in your home out of the camp trunk that your child or child’s room to start your packing needs, it will be okay. Keep on scanning piles. Make sure all the items are labeled those daily camp photo posts to make you (see #2 above) and as you do laundry or feel better that even though you packed purchase camp clothes, add them to this area. This is a great way six t-shirts for your son, he is wearing the same one every day! to see what you still need and understand what you can weed Or, as you anxiously await a letter at the mailbox from your out. Print a copy of your child’s packing list to go by. daughter, the pictures show her smiling and laughing with her new friends. STICK TO THE BASICS It’s likely your child is going to want to bring his new Patagonia or Time to get to packing, campers! her Lululemon sport shirt but if you want it to stay nice, leave it at home. However, if they insist, slap a label on it! Try to encourage Cammie Jones is an Augusta freelance writer and mother of three. your child to stick to the basics—shorts and t-shirts, plenty of


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2021 Summer camp


2021 Summer camp

202 2021 1

Augusta Family magazine recommends our readers visit websites or call numbers provided for the most up-todate information for summer events. See important updates to the 2021 guide in red.


2021 Summer camp

DAY CAMPS BIG BLUE MARBLE ACADEMY Limited attendance. Childcare Camp. Ages 4-12. Weekly-themed camps: water play, reading programs, special field trips, dramatic play, art projects and teaming up with teachers to research different activities and planning for a group/class activity. Locations: 1209 Augusta Avenue, Augusta 706-222-7288 4124 Madeleine Drive, Augusta 706-222-7070 925 Steven’s Creek Drive, Augusta 706-222-7224 7100 Evans Town Center Blvd., Evans 706-222-3769 1001 Grove Landing Way, Grovetown 762-800-0670 Call for complete details or visit,

AIKEN CENTER FOR THE ARTS Limited attendance. Masks and social distancing required. Art Camp, Aiken. Unleash the inner creativity in your child with a variety of offerings. Discovery Art Camp: Ages 4-6 Art Camp: Ages 7-10 Theatre Camp: Ages 7-10 (July 12-16 only) Art Studios: Ages 11-14 Ukulele Camp: Ages 4–6 Fiddle Strings Camp: All ages. Night School: Ages 15+, 5-8pm singular or two-day rates Art & Music Camp for Special Needs: Ages 14–adult. 10am – 12pm and 1 – 3pm. Two sessions: June 7–11, 14–18. This camp is free but pre-registration is required, link on the summer camp website. See website for specific details and pricing. Members receive 10% discount. Scholarships available based on merit and need. Call 803-641-9094 or visit,

Call 706-432- 6396, 706-723-5914 or visit, www.

ELIM BAPTIST CHURCH Summer Camp. Two locations and sessions, Augusta and Martinez. June 14–July 2, July 12–23; 8:30am – 3:30pm.

ART NOOK SCHOOL AND STUDIO Call for information. Art Camp, Aiken. Time to wake up your child’s imagination and let them produce something amazing from scratch.

The 2021 G.R.O.W.T.H. Camp includes cheerleading, dance, sports, water activities, academic enrichment and space for special needs children. Hot lunches and snacks provided.

Call 803-760-7710 or visit,

ART AND SOUL PAINT PARTIES Call for information. Art & Crafts Camp. Ages 5 and up. There will be a different session each week Monday -Thursday from 11am — 2pm. Cost is $100 and includes all supplies for two canvas paintings, a wooden cutout project, and rotation of pastels/watercolors/charcoals for fourth project. Parents can register using a link on the FB page or by email: Call 706-220-8654 or visit,

COLTON BALLET SCHOOL Dance Workshops. The focus of summer workshops is on developing and enhancing a student’s technique in a relaxed, fun and creative environment. Students tackle new challenges, taking their technical and physical abilities to the next level. Call 706-733-5511 or visit,

AUGUSTA CHEER ACADEMY Call for information. Cheer Camp. Your athlete will learn cheers, tumbling and stunting, do daily crafts, watch movies and more!

AQUINAS HIGH SCHOOL Call for information. Enrichment Camp.

Call 706-364-1138 or visit,

Call 706-736-5516 or visit,

AUGUSTA CHRISTIAN SCHOOLS Enrichment Camps. Science camp: Motion Commotion, Fun in the “Son” summer camp, study skills workshops, math workshops, athletic camp, and more. Registration start March 8. Camps start June 7.

ARTSY ME Art Classes. Seven weeks of back-to-back camps of painting pottery, glass fusing, clay, canvas and more. Registration starts April 1.


Call 706-310-5154 or visit, www.elimeverywhere. org.

AUGUSTA JEWISH COMMUNITY CENTER Summer Day Camps. Check Facebook for information: Call 706-228-3636 or visit,

AUGUSTA PLAYERS Limited attendance. Musical Theatre Camp. Ages 6-16. In business since 1945, The Augusta Players, a nonprofit theatre, loves to teach kids how to have fun onstage. During these camps, emphasis is placed on learning the skills and craft of creating musical theatre! Each group has classes in music, dance, technical theatre and acting. Classes are limited to 20 campers so sign up soon! Call 706-826-4707 or visit,

AUGUSTA PREPARATORY DAY SCHOOL Limited attendance. Day Camps. Ages 3-18. Augusta Prep offers eight weeks of camp in June and July in and around their beautiful campus. You do not have to be an Augusta Prep student to enjoy summer camps. Camp Cavalier is open to all children! Daily sports and recreation, creative arts, structured and exploratory activities and more. There are 83 different camps running throughout the summer. Classes are limited to 12 students so sign up soon! Call 706-863-1906 or visit,

Call 706-863-2905 ext.136 or visit,

AUGUSTA RECREATION, PARKS AND FACILITIES DEPARTMENT Call for information. Day Camps. Ages 4-12. Games, sports, arts and crafts, field trips and swimming. Call 706-796-5025 or visit,

2021 Summer camp

AUGUSTA ROWING CLUB Rowing Camp. Spring season for juniors (ages 13-18) is offered until Mother’s Day. Juniors required to row in singles or in team boats if they are from the same household. Summer season for juniors and adults starts after the spring season. Adult row 6 - 8pm all summer. Open row 8 10am Saturday mornings. Certain requirements for safety, call for more information. Masks are required inside, not required outside.

AUGUSTA WEST DANCE Dance camp for ages 3 to 7 with instruction in ballet, tap, and jazz. Limit of 10 children per week.

Call 734-904-6685 or visit,

Call 706-860-0999 or visit,

AUGUSTA SAILING CLUB Sailing Classes, Appling. ADVENTURE SAILING (Learn to Sail). Ages 8-17. The “Adventure Camp” is designed to get your child engaged in sailing and feeling comfortable on the water. This camp teaches the basics of water safety and sailing. We are excited to offer a class that provides first-time sailors (or returning sailors) a chance to get their feet wet in a fun and relaxed atmosphere! Students will learn knot tying, parts of the boat, water safety and sail rigging. In addition, they will experience the thrill of sailing an RS Tera, RS Quest, Hobie Wave, Sunfish, or JY15! All instructors are US Sailing certified, including SafeSport, CPR/First Aid. Limited to 12 children for each week.

PULSE DANCE CENTER Dance Classes. Jazz, tap, ballet, arts & crafts and more! Jazzy Tweens camp for ages 9+, Twirling Rockstars camp for ages 6–8, and Princess Ballerinas camp for ages 3–5.

SAILING CLINICS - BOAT HANDLING, TEAMWORK, AND TACTICS (Sailboat Racing). Ages 8-17. These 1/2 day basic, intermediate, or advanced clinics are for sailors who have previously taken a course through the Augusta Sailing Club and wish to continue their education. Students will learn through classroom and on-the-water activities in the O’pen Skiff, Laser, C420, or RS Quest sailboats. Clinics improve skills in water safety, boat controls, sailing maneuvers, seamanship, wind direction, spinnaker, crew coordination, and tactics. All instructors are US Sailing certified, including SafeSport, CPR/First Aid. These are small classes and focus on individual needs. See website for dates of specific clinics. Limited to 7-8 children for each week. Kim Bagnoni, (706) 840-1338, summer sailing classes. Call 706-305-7357or visit, contact-us.

Two camps in June and July with different themes. June 14–18, Princess Party June 28–July 2, Disney Days July 12–16, Under the Sea July 26–30, Back to School Bash

Call 706-210-2552 or visit,

GIRL SCOUTS OF GEORGIA Weekly camp sessions include Fan Favorites, Mrs. Frizz Science Bizz, Wander-Must, Bear Necessities, Way-Finders, Explorers and Arts Day Camp. You Belong Among the Wildflowers - Camp Tanglewood June 6–11. STEMinist! - Camp Tanglewood, June 13–18. Boats Out at Sea - Camp Low, June 20–25. Elf Adventures - CMJ, June 27–July 2. Camp costs and discount opportunities are listed on the Girl Scouts of GEORGIA website. Call 1-888-689-1912 or visit, summer-camp.html.

BOYS AND GIRLS CLUB OF AUGUSTA Call for information. Call 706-504-4071 or visit,

AUGUSTA UNIVERSITY Day Camps. Pre-collegiate, middle school summer youth camps. Whether in health science, music, student leadership or athletics, AU Academy offers programs that provide hands-on learning opportunities to stimulate, motivate, and support young, inquisitive minds.

COLUMBIA COUNTY BALLET Dance Camp. Founded in 1985, CCB brings something new in performance ballet to the children of Augusta. We offer Princess dance camps where students celebrate the art of dance through the beauty of ballet. Registration Princess Summer Dance Camps begins April 26 for current students, May 3 for new incoming students. Camps running from June 7–July 23: Mermaid, ages 5–7. Moana, ages 3–4.

Call 706-721-3967 or visit,

Call 706-860-1852 or visit,

EDEN FARMS Horse Camp in Appling for ages 6 to 14 years old. June 7–July 30. All camps 9am - 12pm. Camp includes an hour-long riding lesson, hands-on horse saddling, along with a craft and snack time. Limited to 18 campers each week, activities will be mostly outside. Kids will be split up into three groups of six people for riding and grooming. Call 864-898-0043 or visit,

NORTH AUGUSTA SCHOOL OF DANCE Summer Ballet Intensive. This summer intensive will feature a week of classes focusing on conditioning, ballet technique, pointe work with daily coaching on repertoire. Royal Ballet Graduate and former Scottish Ballet soloist Luciana Ravizzi is the Ballet Master & Director for the week bringing her extensive international experience and ballet knowledge to intermediate and advanced students. June 14–18, intermediate and advanced. Friday Showcase. Registration deadline is June 18th. Call 706-592-8925 or visit, www.northaugustadance. com.

EPISCOPAL DAY SCHOOL Summer Camps. Six-week summer camp for children 3-12 years of age. Toilet training and preschool experience is a requirement for 3-year-old campers. Campers will explore, create, learn, and be active. Day Camp will run from 9 - 3:30pm, with half day (until 1pm), and extended day (until 5pm) options available. Each week will have an amazing theme and all projects and activities will revolve around the theme. Every day, students will participate in games, arts and crafts, outdoor play, technology, a weekly special activity, and additional rotations of activities. Registration for all camps is now open! Summer @ EDS camps will apply a variety of safety protocols, including temperature checks, mask wearing, social distancing where feasible, frequent hand washing, containment model of student groups, and regular cleaning and /or sanitizing of common areas. As we monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and take guidance from the local Department of Health and CDC, we may make changes to our structure, as necessary. June 7–11: Pinterest Fails (Spectacular crafts and experiments that don’t always turn out as planned, but always turn out fun.) June 14–18: Did that Really Happen? (Looking at historical transportation mishaps and misadventures.) June 21–25: The Olympics June 28–July 2: Wacky and Wonderful Science


2021 Summer camp

July 12–16: The Edible Garden July 19–23: Bottle Rockets and Things That Go ZOOM! For camp pricing and information, call 706-733-1192 or visit,

THE FAMILY Y Summer Camps. The Family YMCA of Greater Augusta offers day camp programs across the Savannah River Region at nine different locations. From arts and crafts, to swimming, to sports, there is something fun for all. Through our camps we offer a Summer Enrichment Program which focuses on S.T.E.A.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics) activities for campers. Your child will have a memorable summer and make lifelong friendships. Call 706-922-9622 or visit, under Programs to find and register for classes.


FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH Bible Camp Summer Programs. Weekday Tuesday/Thursday. Open registration starts March 15. Summer programs run June 15-July 22. Check website for more information. For details, call Patti Fowler, 706-731-5366 or email or visit,

FIRST TEE Call for information. Golf Camp. The First Tee is an international youth development organization introducing the game of golf and its inherent values to young people. Through after-school and in-school programs, we help shape the lives of young people from all walks of life by reinforcing values like integrity, respect and perseverance through the game of golf. For more details, call 706-364-4653 or visit,

VOCE AUGUSTA Music, Theatre and Vocal Training Camp. VOCE Studios (118 N. Belair Rd in Evans) is offering a wide variety of camps and seminars this summer for musicians of all ages. Dates and registration will be available after Masters Week. Do, Re, My Grown up and Me: Infant-Toddler and a caregiver Elementary Music Camp (Rising 1st-5th) Advanced Ladies Voices (Rising 6-12th grade) Spotlight Jr. (Rising 1st-5th) Musical Theatre Sessions Spotlight (6-12th) Musical Theatre Sessions Scenes (9-12th grade Singer/Actors) Vocal Performance Seminars (All Ages) Private Voice and Piano lessons for students of all ages Call 706-830-9517 or visit,

GREEN JACKETS BASEBALL Call for information. Youth baseball, dance camp and youth sports teams.

2021 Summer camp

Baseball Ages: 4-14 years Dance Ages: 4-18 years 3- day summer camp for ages 7–14, TBD. 2-day summer camp for ages 4–8, TBD.

so they can participate in each skill. Survival basics in the GYM and in LIFE. We know your child will build amazing skills at Haydens Summer Camp!

well as games that are dance-oriented and educational. At the end of each week, all dancers will participate in an endof-the-week demonstration for parents. Camps are held Monday-Friday from 9am – 1pm.

Call 706-868-0608 or visit, Call 803-349-9409 or visit,

For registration and more information call 706-447-9007 or visit

GYMNASTICS GOLD Gymnastics Summer Camp. Divided by age group; limit of ten kids per group. Ages 3-13.

JAMES BROWN ACADEMY OF MUSIK PUPILS Call for information. Music Camp. JAMP Summer Session. Students are inspired to learn and create music.

Call 706-650-2111 or visit,

Call 803-640-2090 or visit,

HAYDENS GYMNASTICS ACADEMY Gymnastics Camp. Ages 5 and up. Campers learn basic life survival skills each week in order to be a life champion. Each week a different community visitor will help with one part of the camper’s survival skills. Bring your child back weekly

KANE & CO DANCE PRODUCTIONS Dance Camp. Our summer camps will consist of daily dance instruction with our preschool camps focusing primarily on ballet, and our beginner camps focusing primarily on either Jazz or Hip Hop. All camps will complete theme-related crafts as

MACH ACADEMY Tennis Summer Camp. Ages 8–18. Beginner and intermediate camp will be held at the Flaming Tennis Center. The advanced tennis camp will be held at Diamond Lakes Tennis Center. June 7–July 30. We expose participants to the lifetime sport of tennis in a success-oriented and friendly environment. We encourage participants to use the game of tennis to help pave the way for tennis college scholarships. Call 706-796-5046 or visit,


2021 Summer camp

MUSICAL THEATRE WORKSHOP Acting, Voice & Music Camp. Summer Camp is here, and registration is open! This year we are partnering with Augusta Prep and taking our summer camps to the Hull Fine Arts Center on the Flowing Wells campus! M-F from 9am - 12pm, for children in grades 2–8. June 7–11: The Little Mermaid June 14–18: Mary Poppins June 21–25: Beauty and the Beast June 28–Jul 2: Seussical July 12–16: Frozen July 19–23: The Lion King July 26–30: Annie To register call 706-231-1759 or visit,

MY BEST FRIEND’S SEWING ROOM Sewing Summer Camps. Camps run from May 24–July 29. 10am – 3pm. May 24-27: Magical Creatures June 1-4: Dolls and Stuffies June 7-10: American Girl Sewing Camp June 14-17: Bedroom Accessories June 21-24: Fashion Design July 13-16: Superhero July 19-22: Back to School July 26-July 29: Harry Potter Your kids will have “sew” much fun this summer, building confidence while learning a life skill. Open to ages 8 and up. Beginners are welcome. Sewing machines and supplies are provided. Bring a sack lunch. Call 706-993-8819 or visit,

NEWMAN TENNIS CENTER Check website for details. Tennis & Swim Camp. NTC Junior programs, private lessons, clinics, homeschool lessons and summer camps. Call 706-821-1600 or visit, Newman-Tennis-Center.

PETERSBURG RACQUET CLUB Call for information. Racquet Ball Camp. Call 706-860-9288 or visit,


PHINIZY CENTER FOR WATER SCIENCES Science Activities. All camps run from 9am – 3pm and there will be different themes and topics each week. Before and after care is available for an additional fee. June 7–11 June 14–18 June 21–25 June 28–July 2 The Phinizy Center’s Education Staff welcomes all rising 1st through 6th graders (ages 5-11) to come join us for a fun-filled week of outdoor exploration for our Swamp Explorers Summer Camp! Our camp themes include: Adventure in the Forest, The Amazing Food Web, Swamp Critters, and Bees, Birds & Butterflies. Included in the weekly camp price we will provide daily snacks and drinks, as well as a reusable water bottle and a camp T-shirt. Parents provide a packed lunch and a curious little camper! Camp is following required guidelines to provide a safe and educational environment for campers. Call 706-396-1413 or email, or visit,

ROBERT SAPP BASEBALL CAMP Baseball Camps, Sweetwater Park, Thomson. As of March 1, 2021, Robert Sapp staff and management team has not made a decision regarding baseball and softball camps for the summer. If the camps run, they will be the same locations as 2019. Call or text if you are not on the mailing list. There will be no brochures sent out, rather all information will be via email and text messages. The decision to hold camps this summer will be made by late March or early April. Campers ages 6-14 attend camp from 9am — 3pm each day. Fundamentals are in the morning and games are in the afternoon. Call 770-287-3309 or visit,

RUTH PATRICK SCIENCE EDUCATION CENTER STEM Summer Camp, Aiken. Camp Invention is a STEM Summer Program that turns curious students into innovative thinkers. Our Innovation Ecosystem—a network of programs influenced by inventors—provides an authentic, hands-on opportunity to experience the invention process first-hand. Led by local certified educators, our programs offer equal access to STEM education while positioning inventors as role models. Camp Invention Connect are at-home and offer hands-on fun for kids K-6. Innovator’s ToolKits are mailed directly to your home and include all the camper needs to do the workshop with daily options for virtual coaches and fellow

campers. Call 1-800-968-4332 or 803-641-3474 or visit,

SAIL Call for information. Enrichment Camp. School for Arts Infused Learning. Columbia County’s only Charter School, the School of Arts Infused Learning (SAIL), is offering an incredible opportunity to all students in the Savannah River Region. For more information please visit,

THE SALVATION ARMY KROC CENTER Day Camps. Camp Kroc is an ACA accredited day camp program in which children can play and grow in a safe and positive environment. Campers enjoy swimming, arts & crafts, group games, sports, bible lessons, and other fun activities. Make sure to register early as spots are filled on a first-come first-served basis! Summer Camp Registration Form is required for complete registration at at the Welcome Desk. Campers need to bring snacks and a lunch each day. *No Camp May 31 or July 2 Our camp is for children ages 5-12, 9am – 5pm. Call 706-364-5762 or visit,

SEIGLER’S KARATE CENTERS Call for information. Karate Camp. Programs Kids Martial Arts, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Mixed Martial Arts, Teen Martial Arts. Visit,, for multiple area locations and phone numbers.

ST. JOHN UNITED METHODIST CHURCH Call for information. Kindermusik Summer Camp. Call 706-724-9641 or visit, music/kindermusik-of-augusta.

TRANQUILITY STABLES Horse Riding Camps, Appling. The summer camps at Tranquility stables offer a unique way for your child to take a break from school and make

2021 Summer camp

new friends while horseback riding, playing games, creating crafts and making memories for a lifetime. Ages 6 and up. Children will learn horse grooming, tack, nutrition and riding. Camps run from June 7–July 23. Space is limited, so call today 813-714-2456 or visit,

UNVERSITY OF GEORGIA CENTER FOR CONTINUING EDUCATION There are a variety of summer camps for middle and high school students being offered in an online environment. Visit or call 706-542-3537.

activities. Each camp culminates in an exciting showcase! Applications for interview are being accepted right now! June 7-25; 10am - 3pm July 5-16; 10am - 3pm Call 706-828-7768 or visit, www.jessyenormanschool. org/summer-camp.

WARREN BAPTIST CHURCH Sports Camps. Contact the Family Life Center for more information. Summer camps for basketball, baseball, soccer and tennis. Registration begins late April. Call 706-860-0454 or visit,

UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA EXTENSION Summer Academy Camps, Appling. An exciting series of specialty summer camps for middle school and high school students looking to explore their passions, make new friends and learn along the way. Whether you dream about becoming a film director, doctor, scientist or artist, we have a summer camp just right for you! Live out your dreams. You can immerse yourself in any world you choose from photography to video game design to culinary or comic book art. Participants work with experts in the field to get practical, hands-on experience, and receive helpful advice on how to get where you want to go. The 4-H camps will be held at Rock Eagle only and offer limited participants, reduced capacity for social distancing and we have shortened the camp experience to a 5-day, 4-night week. Please visit for more information. Call 706-541-4011 or visit,

VERY VERA Cooking Camp. Very Vera develops a sense of home economics in the next generation by teaching culinary skills, etiquette, and home management while fostering a sense of entrepreneurship. Get a taste of Summer Camp by registering now! Drop off at 8:45am. Pick-up at 1:00pm. Call 706-922-4646 or visit, or @ veryveracamp.

JESSYE NORMAN SCHOOL OF THE ARTS Summer Camps. Two FREE Summer Camps for students 5th through 12th Grade! Campers spend three weeks working in a variety of artistic disciplines, as well as STEAM and fitness

WESTMINSTER SCHOOLS OF AUGUSTA Summer Camps. Our summer programs are open to surrounding students in the greater Augusta area. We offer over 30 programs for ages 3-18 that include academic and technology courses, enrichment classes, fine arts and sports camps, a general day camp, and driver education. Each of our classes extends Westminster’s mission, which is to glorify God by providing an excellent education that equips students to live extraordinary lives for Jesus Christ. Camps run June 7–July 19. Online registration is open until June 4. Call 706-731-5260 ext. 2212 or visit, or

WILLIAM AVERY BASKETBALL CAMP Call for information. Basketball Camps. This camp is open to all boys and girls ages 6-15 years old. Call 706-294-0767 or visit,

VALLEY HILL FARM Call for information. Horse Camp, Matthews. Established in 1990 by Tom and Barbara Lee. Barbara trains hunters for foxhunting and Tommy is an American Saddlebred trainer. They work together on summer camps and day care field trips. The Lees believe in a safe, fun, family atmosphere in which people learn to become total horsemen and horsewomen. Call 706-829-0981 or visit, for available dates.

AUGUSTA UNIVERSITY MUSIC CONSERVATORY PROGRAM Music Lessons Online. Rising 6–12 graders. All instruments and voice. $31/30-minute lesson, $46.50/45 minute lesson and $62/60-minute lessons. Call 706-731-7971 or visit, music/conservatory.

MEAD HALL Summer Camp, Aiken. Full and half day camps for rising 3k-4th graders. For more info call 803.644.1122 or visit, SPECIAL NEEDS CAMPS CAMP IVEY, FAMILY Y Overnight Camp, Lincolntown. Ages 7-18. A camp for children with developmental challenges. Camp IVEY’s mission is to promote communication, develop self-care skills and coordination, and create life-long memories through outdoor education and recreational fun in a safe, supportive environment at beautiful Camp Lakeside. Child assessments will be completed prior to registration. 6-day/5-night overnight camp! Call 706-359-2152 or visit,

ALL ABILITIES SOCCER CAMP Call for information. Various Sessions, Arsenal Soccer Park. Family-run special needs soccer camp. Kids have fun participating in creative games of soccer for every level of disability. Call 706-830-4908 or visit, pages/category/Sports/All-Abilities-SoccerCamp-1702788233148990.

CAMP TO BE INDEPENDENT Overnight Camp, Rutledge. Camp TBI is a scholarship-based overnight summer camp environment for children and young adults, ages 6-18, with traumatic brain injury. Camp TBI staff provides one-on-one care, which increases the campers’ level of independence in the areas of personal hygiene, following a schedule, making friends appropriately and just having fun. Campers enjoy horseback riding, a ropes course, group games, sporting activities, swimming, fishing and arts and crafts along with social activities such as dances,


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2021 Summer camp

karaoke and talent nights. The camp will run for summer 2021 with COVID guidelines and limited spaces.

Day Camp, North Augusta. 6 weeks–5th grade.

Call 706-823-8584 or email Camp Director, Vicki Greene, at or visit,

Call 803-279-6370 or visit,

LITTLE ONES CAMPS TRINITY ON THE HILL METHODIST Preschool Camp and Summer Fun! 6 months–5 years. Call 706-738-8822 or visit, Preschool.

COVENANT PRESBYTERIAN Bible Activities. Themed weeks, art activities, music, playground time and MORE!! Ages 3 months to rising 3rd graders. Let’s make a splash this summer! For registration, visit the website below. Call 706-733-8102 or visit,

REID PRESBYTERIAN Call for information. Preschool Camp. 3–5 years. The hours are 9am - 1pm daily. Each session will run Monday through Thursday. We will not operate on Friday.

AWAY CAMPS ATHENS Y CAMPS Summer Camp, Tallulah Falls. Paradise of Youth Camp. 600 beautiful acres in the North Georgia mountains. Athens YMCA Camps for boys and Camp Chattooga for girls both is tucked between Tallulah Falls and Lake Rabun. Many third, fourth and even fifth generation campers have attended. Come be part of the tradition. There are brother-sister camps located adjacent to each other. All camper staff and campers will follow COVID guidelines for cabins, activities and food service. Call 706-754-6912, 706-754-3329, or visit,

CAMP GRAVATT Summer Camp, Aiken. Camp Gravatt offers boys and girls from 1st–11th grades a Christian-centered, community-based summer camp experience, focused on demonstrating God’s unconditional love to every camper. All camper staff and campers will follow COVID guidelines for safety, activities and food service. Call Ellen Grbic at 803.648.1817 or visit,

Call 706-737-4414 or visit, ministries/mdo-preschool.

FIRST BAPTIST OF AUGUSTA Preschool Camp. Babies to rising K and 1st graders. For more info, call 706-731-5366.



CAMP LONG Overnight 4-H Camp, Aiken. Camp Long has no shortage of outdoor opportunities for groups of all sizes, ages and skill levels. Get out of your comfort zone on our rappel tower, giant swing, or our new 35-ft climbing tower. Build community and collaboration by testing your organization’s skill at our outdoor team challenge course. Start a pick-up game of basketball, softball or football and then cool off lakeside. Our highly trained staff will create a custom itinerary fit to achieve your recreational goals. Call 803-649-9512 or visit,

CAMP WOODIE Wildlife/Outdoors Camp, Pinewood South Carolina. Camp Woodie was established by the South Carolina Waterfowl Association in 1995. Camp Woodie is achieving its mission with the help of expert staff and instructors who deliver hands-on, fun-filled education to the next generation of outdoorsmen and women. Campers will take part in activities like shotgun sports, rifle shooting, archery, fishing, canoeing, swimming, and so much more! Camp Woodie hosts week-long sessions for junior campers, ages 7-11, and senior campers, ages 12-16. Campers age 10 and older have the opportunity to obtain their SCDNR Hunter’s Safety Certification while at camp at no extra charge. Call 803-460-8525 or visit, camp-woodie.

FAMILY Y CAMP LAKESIDE Summer Camp, Lincolnton. Tucked away on the shores of Clark’s Hill Lake, Camp Lakeside offers a refreshing escape from everyday life. We provide a variety of enriching outdoor recreation programs just a short drive away from the heart of Augusta, Aiken, and surrounding communities. Camp Lakeside offers activities like swimming, hiking, fishing, archery, sports, canoeing, kayaking, arts and crafts, disc golf and more! Overnight Camp runs Sunday–Friday. Team building skills, games, outdoor skills and character values. Day Camps are offered across the CSRA in nine location. One-week sessions run May to August. Art, crafts, swimming and sports. STEAM activities. Adventure Base Camp is a 3-day, 2-night overnight camp at Camp Lakeside. The perfect introduction for a young camper to the Lakeside camp experience. Camp Ivey for children with special needs or developmental delays is held at Camp Lakeside and promotes independence, life skills, activity, leisure and confidence for campers. Camp Ignite is a new camp for 2021 for churches and youth groups! Call 706-359-2152 or visit, camp-lakeside.

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CAMP 2021 DATE: JUNE 14-18 TIME: 9AM-1PM COST: $135









Photo by Anna Samoylova on Unsplash





Summer camps are where kids go to create art, learn about the great outdoors, play sports, explore academic subjects and more. Even though many public places are opening up and reducing COVID-19 precautions, summer campers should still expect to wear masks, wash their hands frequently, get their temperatures taken and practice social distancing. When the COVID-19 pandemic started last spring, summer camp organizers rushed to figure out the best way to proceed. Some made plans to proceed with safety measures in place. Some went online for virtual camps, and others canceled.


Caroline Gwinn, the executive director of Aiken Center for the Arts, said she never considered canceling the camps. “Even last year, the first time dealing with COVID-19, we knew we were going to do the camps. We just had to figure out what was safe for us to do,” she said. “Everything had been shut down for a few months, and we knew it would be important for children to have that outlet. It’s still important for them to create art together with in-person instructors.” The Family YMCA of Greater Augusta set guidelines for COVID for last year’s camps and had a

found at positive response from the community. Westminster Schools of Augusta is offering a variety “We have never been short on interest in the camps,” of camps for children from 3 years old to high school, said Anna Coffey, the Family YMCA’s communications including weeklong camps for baking, photography, specialist. “The camps were full last summer, and we’re music, art, Legos, sports, math, history and more. Safety expecting the same this year.” is the first priority for Kaitlyn West, the school’s summer Most organizers rely on guidance from the Centers for programs coordinator. Disease Control and Prevention when planning their camps. “We want to offer as much as we can for as many kids “The CDC is really good about putting out content for as we can and give them a safe opportunity to get out of summer camps,” Augusta Players office manager Jeannie the house this summer,” she said. “We are capping most Butler said. “They have a whole section on the website of the classes at about 15 so there is plenty of space. We’ll dedicated to summer camps, and that has really been be cleaning a lot and trying to get outside and spread out helpful for us.” as much as possible.” The CDC Toolkit for Summer Camps includes The Augusta Players held its musical theater summer downloadable and printable posters on everything from camp virtually last year, but Butler says parents are ready washing hands and covering sneezes to social distancing to get their kids back to in-person activities. and wearing masks. Organizers also have access to videos, “Kids have been going to school, ball games and public service announcements and fact sheets. The free dance recitals—all with COVID guidelines—so they are information is at used to going out and following safety guidelines,” she Perhaps one of the most common guidelines involves said. social distancing. The CDC recommends And if parents are still worried: “Most staying 6 feet apart. Gwinn said that at “WE ARE STRIVING of our instructors are schoolteachers who Aiken Center for the Arts last year, they TO HAVE FUN AND have been vaccinated.” marked circles on the floor 6 feet apart For Gwinn at Aiken Center for the for students to work in. She will follow GIVE THE CAMPERS Arts, there’s no substitute for in-person CDC recommendations again this year. SOMETHING TO DO. arts instruction. “We will follow whatever guidelines “When you learn via Zoom, you’re the CDC deems appropriate to ensure WE WANT THEM TO still isolated. With the camp, you can everyone’s safety,” Gwinn said. “We are BE ABLE TO JUST grow and learn collectively and feed off really blessed with the gift of space. We each other,” she said. “So much of art is are using all the space and reducing the GET OUT AND DO sharing. You’re getting your perspective number of students in the camps. We are FUN KID STUFF.” out there and expressing yourself. You restructuring to be in a spaced-out, safe just can’t do that in a virtual setting.” framework where they can still come, West agrees with the importance of in-person create and have a normal routine.” summer camps. “I think we need to give students ability The Augusta Players, on the other hand, must rely to socialize and see their friends in a safe way,” she said of on rented spaces for summer camps, and that is taking a the camps at Westminster. “We want to show them that little longer than usual. we love them and care for them, and it’s very difficult to “We generally rent space from churches, but many feel that in a virtual setting.” are still figuring out how to reopen and are not allowing Coffey said the YMCA wants to give campers some big groups in,” Butler, the office manager, said. “But we normalcy in the often-crazy world of COVID. will get that figured out. We’ve already talked to several “We are striving to have fun and give the campers facilities about using larger rooms than we usually do so something to do,” she said. “We want them to be able to we can spread out.” just get out and do fun kid stuff.” The Family YMCA will enforce social distancing during its summer camps. Its official summer camp Dustin Turner is the Communications COVID-19 policy states: “Campers will be advised to keep and Content Manager for Alison South 6 feet of distance between themselves and other campers. Marketing Group. He lives in Aiken with his Maintaining at least an arm’s length distance always. amazing, beautiful and very patient wife of 22 years, Jamie, and their artistic, sassy and Face masks should be worn when campers are walking fierce daughter, Abigail, 12. Dustin enjoys through the branch or congregated in an area where they writing, shooting and editing video and are unable to social distance.” The full guidelines can be acting and directing in community theatre.


family matters Ai m e e Se raf i n

A World of Regal Influencers


hildren gather support and form identities from the people around them in their young lives. One of the most important circles providing value to children is the circle of family. Family life is where children develop the tools and training to deal with real-life situations inside the realm of community. Additionally, kids have many different role models or influencers outside the family that deeply affect their future lives, goals, discoveries and inspirations. For local author and poet, Tacardra Rountree, those influencers came not only from her loving family, but she was given “deep dream tissue” for her aspirations as a writer from her elementary and high school teachers. Rountree’s love for writing first started in the 2nd grade


when one of her teachers introduced her to poetry. It was love at first reading. “I remember reading a poem entitled ‘Be the Best at Whatever You Are’ by Douglas Malloch and then having to memorize ‘If’ by Rudyard Kipling’ in the 4th grade. Those experiences introduced me to the world of poetry,” says Rountree. A young student at Terrace Manor Elementary, Rountree says the power of having to stand in front of classmates and present a lengthy poem had lifelong meaning for her. “It was there in elementary school that reading aloud in front of an audience and sharing that love of poetry began for me,” she explained. Years later as a junior at John S. Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School, she was given a literature assignment to write a poem about herself beginning with the words

Author Tacardra Rountree

Audrey “Sala Adenike” Jeter-Allen

her first book and Jeter-Allen was selling her artwork. “When “I am”. The assignment laid the foundation, unknowingly to I saw her artwork and the African motifs and colors she used her at the time, for the future idea of a children’s book. The I thought they would represent the girls and women I wanted first line of her poem read, “I am an African Queen.” The lines to capture for the book,” explains Rountree. Jeter-Allen agreed that followed became an affirmation of who she was and what to create one-of-a-kind illustrations that mirrored the world kind of influence she could have one day in the world. Based of young women and girls at the center of on encouragement from a librarian at the Rountree’s literary work. Augusta Library, Rountree submitted the THE TIME IS NOW! The last piece of the adventure poem in a contest and it became featured THE CHOICE IS MINE! by Tacardra Rountree arrived from a serendipitous meeting with in the Treasured Poems of America, a passer-by outside the Mann-Simons fall edition, 1996. She then continued to The time is up for playing around. Site in Columbia, South Carolina, in share her poetry at readings through the Now it is time for me to stand my February 2018. While Rountree read an Upward Bound program of Paine College ground. informational marker for the historic site, and Bethel AME Church where she was an a gentleman walked past and said, “Hello active member. It is time for me to stand out from the rest, Queen.” Responding to his salutation, Rountree’s creative enjoyment Rountree recognized the title of her first and growing interest in writing forged By showing that I can do my children’s book: Hello Queen. She explains a path and a four-year full ride in Early very B-E-S-T, Best! that the chance remark had roots in a Childhood Education at Fort Valley State Yesterday is of the past and tomorrow larger life application. “Always answer to University as a Presidential Scholar. Later, may be too late. So I will choose Now on what you’d like to be called. The gentleman in graduate school, Rountree started this very date. called me ‘Queen’ and I answered to that. reviewing children’s books and literature. I choose to be different, honest, and wise. He confirmed what I already knew—that She came across “Honey, I Love and I choose to shine like the stars in the skies. I am intelligent, beautiful, determined,” Other Love Poems” by Eloise Greenfield. I choose to give others a hand up says Rountree. Her second book, Hello She remembers the moment something when they are in need. For I know the Queen, is an invitation for young girls to inside of her clicked. “When I discovered importance of doing good deeds. believe in their worth and valued position the picture book of ‘Honey I Love’ I knew I choose to be respectful and kind. in the world and to realize they are “queens right away what I had to do. I knew I Because if I’m not, I will get left behind. in a world of other queens.” Rountree wanted to turn ‘I am an African Queen’ appreciates and recognizes the dignified into a children’s illustration book.” For I have the power to decide, women in her own life that encouraged Rountree, the task of writing the book was For the Time is Now her writing and creativity from a tender the easiest next step since she already had and the Choice is Mine! age such as her mother and grandmother. the content in the form of her poem. But Copyright © 2013 “Queens are the everyday people around what she lacked was a good illustrator and by Tacardra Rountree us. They don’t have to be someone in a a catchy title. faraway country. They are our mothers, The next step circled her back to her our lawyers, our doctors, our teachers. They are the ones who past. Rountree remembered Audrey “Sala Adenike” Jeter-Allen inspire us, encourage us, and empower us on an everyday as someone in the Augusta dance community. Jeter-Allen has basis,” affirms Rountree. “There is a queen in each of us, even choreographed pieces for Davidson students. The two had regardless of age, color or profession.” also been vendors at the same event where Rountree was selling


Photo by Gabe Pierce on Unsplash


calendar APRIL 2021

As more and more events start to happen around town, make sure to keep the Augusta Family calendar close by for all the information. Tear out the calendar, toss it in your car or let the kids hang it up in their rooms — these weekly ideas for getting together as a family will keep everyone in the loop and engaged in the community! Visit for continued updates.





























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RECURRING EVENT INFO DAILY - Civil War Tours at Augusta Canal Discovery Center. $14 adults, $12 seniors 60+, students and military. Starts at 1:30 p.m. Learn about Georgia’s role in supplying Southern troops during the Civil War. Additional tours available. www. DAILY - Sculpture Trail Scavenger Hunt, downtown Augusta. The Trail features 10 sculptures by nationally renowned artists on City of Augusta sidewalks. Access a digital walking tour by downloading Otocast to your smartphone. www. MONDAYS - Hopelands Concert Series, Hopelands Gardens. Starts at 6:30 pm. Free. A variety of outdoor performances this spring and summer. Bring your lawn chair and a picnic dinner. Event parking at the Green Boundary Club. MONDAYS, WEDNESDAYS AND FRIDAYS - A

Day at the Farm, Hope for Hooves Rescue.

Free. 11am-1pm. Farm tours include animal interaction with horses, donkeys, mules, rabbits, roosters, pigs, dogs and cats. Call to schedule an appointment at 803.292.0496. HopeforHoovesRescue.

play, inflatables, arts and crafts. Children must be potty trained (those four and under will not swim).

Center when The Branford Marsalis & Joey Calderazzo Trio take the stage. 7:30pm, $40-$50.

SATURDAYS - Saturday Market at the River, 15 8th Street in downtown Augusta. Free entry. 9am2pm. Vendors set up along and near the River Walk.

APRIL 10 - Bring toddlers to age 8 to Phinizy Swamp for a Children’s Hike with Story Time, designed with them in mind. Pre-registration required. www.

Learn about historic homes and churches, equestrian sites, the Civil War’s Battle of Aiken and much more on an Aiken Historic Trolley Tour. Departs the City of Aiken Visitors Center & Train Museum at 10am Saturdays. Tours are two hours long and take place on a climate-controlled trolley. $15. Masks required on the tour.

APRIL 10 - Catering to small businesses, local artists and crafters, The Edgefield Market brings you “local goods by good locals,” showcasing 4050 vendors from all walks of life. 10am-2pm, Piedmont Technical College in Edgefield. www.

THROUGH APRIL 17 - Westobou Gallery on 1129 Broad St. presents Honduran artist Franklin Delgado’s “In the Image of God.” event/in-the-image-of-god.

APRIL 14 - Head outdoors with man’s best friend during Yappy Hour, at the SPCA Albrecht Center for Animal Welfare at 199 Willow Run Road in Aiken. There’ll be a grill out, cash bar, live music, kids games, raffles and free SPCA Dog Park access. 6-8pm. Masks required.

THROUGH APRIL 30 - Watercolorist Dwight Rose explores the “common side effects of light” in “Grounded,” an exhibition that celebrates the Friends of Hopelands and Rye Patch 50th anniversary.

EVENT INFO TUESDAYS, THURSDAYS AND SATURDAYS - Get fresh local produce, baked goods and crafts from Aiken farmers and makers at the year-round Aiken County Farmers Market. 7:30-11:30am, or until sold out. 115 Williamsburg St. in Aiken, between Park Avenue and Richland Avenue. detail/aiken_county_farmers_market. SECOND TUESDAYS - Puddle Ducks: Kids and Caregivers Club, Phinizy Nature Swamp. $5, through age 5. Starts at 10am. Story time and crafts.

APRIL 1 - Support each other at the Moms Club of Evans meeting at Norwood Park, 10-11am. www. APRIL 1 - Celebrate Easter with the help of the Aiken County Visitors Center. Stop by for the Easter Bunny Hop-In and pick up a goodie bag for the kids (while supplies last). Goodie bags include a craft, coloring page, candy and other fun stuff. 9am-4pm. www.

THURSDAYS - Veggie Park Farmers Market, Mill Village Trailhead at 109 Eve Street. Free entry. 4:307:30 pm. Shop your favorite local produce, meat and dairy. Health screenings and heart-healthy education on site.

APRIL 1-2 - Join Lewis Memorial United Methodist Church in Walking the 14 Stations of The Cross at 5555 Hereford Farm Road in Evans. Available from 8am-sunset. Each station will contain a scripture telling of Christ’s passion, as well as a brief meditation.

FRIDAYS - RecTeqTM Movie Nights. Gates open at 6pm. Movie starts at 7:30pm. Visit www. for movie information.

APRIL 3 - Visit Patriot’s Park in Grovetown for an Easter Egg Scramble for all ages; see website for times. Event lasts from 10am-1pm. There will also be photos with the Easter Bunny, a magic show and vendors on site.

FIRST FRIDAYS - Kids Night Out, Parents Night In! Kroc Center of Augusta. Pre-register for $15 per

child rate; $20 day-of rate. 6-10pm. Swimming, gym

APRIL 6 - Live music comes to the Etherredge

APRIL 17 - Build early literacy skills for children five and under with parents and caregivers. Read & Play Day at the Kroc Center focuses on stories, arts and crafts and games, and parents receive additional info to continue this development at home. www. APRIL 22 - Back by popular demand is the Pandolfi/Deutsch Duo Classical Crossover, in which the music of Bach and Beethoven meets that of Frank Sinatra, Elton John and Billy Joel. At the Burke County High School Auditorium, 7pm. APRIL 23 - Head to Steed’s Dairy Farm and walk or run a moderately hilly 5K course in the “Til the Cows Come Home” 5K Trail Run. All participants receive a custom race medal, and winners in each division receive a cowbell trophy. For those who don’t wish to participate in person, there’s also a virtual 5K. Starts at 7pm. Early registration (before April 12) is $25; on-site registration, $30. SteedsDairy. APRIL 23 - Join a storyteller and singer-songwriter from the Ozarks in Dawn Larsen—Corn Under Canvas: An Evening with a Tent Show Actress. Look forward to an evening of Americana music. 7:30pm, $20. APRIL 24 - A family-friendly event at the Harlem Library Commons, the 6th Annual Bloomin’ Arts Festival is a beach bloom-themed festival with food vendors, live entertainment, works from CSRA artists and a children’s area. 10am-4pm. Free. www. AUGUSTA FAMILY | APRIL 2021 • 37



When did your interest in baseball start? My parents tell me that I began playing tee ball at 3 years old, but I remember taking the game seriously when I was 7 years old. That’s the year I became a player on a travel baseball team.

Who do you think is the GOAT in baseball and why? I think Barry Bonds is definitely the GOAT. He could do it all. He hit for power while maintaining a very high average. He was fast, stole bases, and was a stellar defender with a big arm. He’s the most featured hitter of the game by far!

What is your proudest moment or memory in the sport? I’d have to say that was when I was 11. I played in a Perfect Game Showcase (PG Series) in Fort Myers, FL. I played with and against some of the best kids in the US and Puerto Rico. I won the MVP award for the East Coast team of the showcase.

What coach or person has been your greatest mentor? I’ve had many great coaches and mentors, but I’d have to say that my greatest mentor is my dad. He has done so much for me. From the time I was 7 and I told him I wanted him to teach me how to play until now, he still mentors me and helps me train and improve. He has been there every step of the way to push me to be the greatest I can be. I owe all my success to him because without him I wouldn’t be able to do any of the things that I can do. He always finds a way to keep me motivated and working hard.

Khaleel Pratt is a 15-year-old student athlete at Greenbrier High School. He plays varsity basketball and junior varsity baseball while continuing to maintain a 4.86 GPA. He is a member of the Columbia Chapter of the Kappa League, a youth social action/community service organization under the direction of the Columbia Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Incorporated. He enjoys time with family and friends and playing video games. Khaleel aspires to become an orthopedic doctor.


What is your favorite baseball movie and why? I’d say The Bad News Bears is probably my favorite. It is the funniest baseball movie I’ve ever seen and I like how the team is very bad to start off but ends up winning the championship.

Do you have any pre- or post-game habits or foods? I don’t eat any junk food before games. My mom is awesome at making sure I eat proper foods to fuel and energize me. On game days I always eat a lot of fruits, whole grains and I drink a lot of water. By not eating 2 hours before games, I am able to stay agile and feel lightweight. I also nap before games to have more energy.

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