Athens Oconee Parent Magazine June18

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A Re s o u rc e f o r F a m i l i e s i n A t h e n s, O c o n e e C o u n t y a n d t h e S u r ro u n d i n g A re a

June 2018

Building Families... Building Businesses


Now In Our 20th Year!

Star Gazing

Summer Camps



Lessons on Leading Mom Power! The #1 Rule Mama Dreads Summer

“Building Families...Building Businesses” May/June 2018 • Vol. 20 No. 4 LOCALLY OWNED AND OPERATED


A.W. Blalock


Sarah Danis


Anniston Howell Hanh Nguyen WEB DESIGN/CALENDAR

Chris Parsons FOUNDER


Wendy Clements, Liz Conroy, Sarah Danis, Amy Lasseter, Anna McArthur, Chris Parsons, Jonathan C. Robinson, Ph.D., Laura Whitaker Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine is published six times a year. Reader correspondence and editorial submission welcome.We reserve the right to edit, reject or comment editorially on all material contributed. No portion of this magazine may be reproduced without express written consent of the publisher. Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine reserves the right to refuse any advertising for any reason. The opinions expressed by contributors or writers do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this magazine. Distribution of this product does not constitute an endorsement of the products or services herein. Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine P.O. Box 465,Watkinsville, GA 30677 Advertising: Editorial: Office & Production: Calendar: Website: PUBLISHED BY

on the cover Shane Simon Photo Illustration by Debra Simon 3

first words...


ummer may not have officially started on the calendar, but it’s pretty much here! School’s out for the summer, so whether you have exciting plans to travel or if you plan to just have fun staying close to home, there’s so much to do in our community. Please take time to check out the calendar in this issue and online as well at We update the online calendar frequently! We have a great issue in store for you! We will share part two of our summer camp guide, so be sure to make plans for your kids. Liz Conroy shares with us the magic that is the night sky. We have several advice gurus for you to hopefully learn from – Dr. Jon Robinson answers your parenting questions, Amy Lasseter shares a rule for having fun in life, and Wendy Clements reminds us to take time for ourselves. Laura Whitaker discusses how ESP helps camp staff to grow in their experiences and Anna McArthur reminds us to remember what really is important to us when it comes to our kids. Have a fabulous summer and we’ll see you when school starts back! Our next issue is a combination of “Baby” and “Back to School,” so please let me know if there’s anything in particular that you’d like to see! I want to remind our readers that we are a magazine funded through the businesses that advertise with us. If there’s a business that you visit that you see advertised here, please let them know how much they are appreciated! We love our community and are so grateful to everyone who supports our endeavor here with Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine!

contents Summer Camps

Guidebook PAGES 20-29


8 Family Stargazing 12 Mom Power: Are you in last place? Plus ... Having More Fun 14 Honors Night 18 Lessons on Leading



Sarah Danis


6 Trey, Michael, Oliver, and Sarah during spring break in Florida

Like us on Facebook!


6 Show & Tell 10 On Your Mind: “Is it too much to ask?” 16 Calendar 30 ’Til We Meet Again

read us online!

Read Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine anywhere, any time ... online! Visit and click “read online.” Also, check out our online calendar for up-to-date, family-friendly events.

Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine 5



snack on this!

wild animal mix


nack mix is a fun way to allow your kids to be creative and try new things! You can mix and match foods you pull from the pantry or things at the grocery store you want to try. Grab some animal crackers (or Teddy Grahams) and add what you have on hand: raisins, Chex cereal, Cheerios cereal, yogurt raisins, pretzels, dried blueberries, popcorn, peanuts, roasted pecans ... maybe even M&Ms or marshmallows! It’s an easy snack to take on car rides too! Check out for this and other easy snack mixes!


Compiled by Sarah Danis

get out!


rab a bike and friend and enjoy the recently opened Firefly Trail. With the trailhead located downtown off of Broad Street, the Firefly Trail is the perfect way to get some exercise and enjoy the outdoors. The trail is built on the historic Georgia Railroad and is considered a “Railto-Trail” project. The ultimate goal is to eventually have the trail follow the old railroad tracks, extend 39 miles, and end in Union Point, Ga. The Firefly Trail is also great to explore on foot and connects to the North Oconee River Greenway.You’ll definitely want to spend a portion of your day enjoying the new Firefly Trail.


Photos and text courtesy of the Athens Convention & Visitors Bureau’s “Athens Life Unleased” at blog/post/top-10-things-to-do-inathens-this-summer/


ake a break from the heat and stop by the UGA Special Collections Library to explore Georgia Heritage. This library is dedicated to preserving material related to the history and culture of Georgia. The library has three main areas that include the Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, the Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, and the Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection. The library offers interactive exhibits and an oral history project.You can also schedule tours and appointments to dig deeper for special interests and to expand your knowledge through archived records of Georgia history, heritage, and culture.


Turn your old camp t-shirt into a camp pillow that you can use at this year’s camp, or use at home while you dream about the good times you had! Nothing feels so good as t-shirt fabric, and this is a perfect way to repurpose that drawer full of t-shirts. Just stitch the sleeves and neck first, then fill with pillow stuffing (found at any fabric or craft store), and finally stitch the bottom. You’ll have a pillow like no other!

Send your ideas & photos to P.O. Box 465, Watkinsville, GA 30677 or e-mail 6 Athens-Oconee Parent


Not all those who wander are lost.” J.R.R. Tolkien


read these!

raveling this summer? The award-winning National Geographic Kids United States Atlas is a great addition to keep kids busy on any roadtrip. It features lively maps and graphics; updated statistics; thematic map spreads on topics such as immigration, natural hazards, the water crisis, and the “greening” of America; vibrant photo essays on each region and state; more than 350 full-color illustrations; 80-plus pages of National Geographic maps; geo-whiz facts; state flags, birds, and flowers; comprehensive place-name index with coordinates for easy reference; and glossary of geographic terms. While on those car trips – or on a rainy day at the beach or at home – bring out the Summer Brain Quest series. These graded activity books from Workman Publishing help to put the skids on the “summer slide” by keeping kids engaged in learning all summer long.

use this! Traveling this summer? CarGo 2-in-1 Travel Booster Seat is a new way for kids to travel that simplifies parents’ lives at the same time. CarGo allows kids to carry their own booster seat and pack essentials for the trip like books, crayons, and snacks inside of it. Plus it’s overhead-bin-friendly and has rollers for easy transit.

try these! Liven up the dinner table with a Chinese-style meal and these easy-to-use chopsticks made just for kids (and clumsy adults)! These fun animal-themed chopsticks by Marcus & Marcus use “hinges” to help keep the chopsticks in line, while you learn and have fun! The food grade, soft silicone handle keeps the chopsticks together for easy learning. Wash with soapy water or put into the dishwasher for even easier cleanup. Made from BPA-Free, PVC-Free and Phthalate-free materials.

Troy Tastes... Restaurant: The Traveling Hobo Cafe Troy’s Score: 5 napkins


went to The Traveling Hobo Cafe in Watkinsville. It was a fun experience and the food was good. I would recommend the build-your-own hamburger with a side of tater tots. I had one that had cheese, bacon, pickles, and lettuce. The burger was juicy and savory. I really enjoyed the bun it came on. I also liked how they had a sign in the cafe showing the markings of hobo codes of the 1930s which was really interesting. Through reading the markings, I learned that hobo codes helped hobos communicate with each other. They would write these markings in hidden areas and the traveling hobos would read it and know what to do in that area. For example, they would know if it was a safe place to camp ... or a good place to eat!. Troy Aldrich is a local 9-year-old who enjoys food and is over the kids menu at most restaurants – but not everywhere. His Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine reviews appear here in each issue and will guide parents on great places to take their kids to eat – from a kid’s point of view. Each restaurant is given a rating on a scale of 5 napkins. For more kid’s reviews go to 7

family fun


By Liz Conroy


In 1986, my husband and I lived in rural Jackson County along Bear Creek. Neither street lights nor city glow invaded the night sky, so celestial bodies stood out against the blackness of space. We pointed out constellations and planets to our two little girls and enjoyed watching comet Hale-Bopp in 1997, a year before we moved to Athens. Today, families in the Athens area have many opportunities to learn about stargazing. Dr. Robin Shelton (RS), Professor of Physics & Astronomy, UGA Observatory Director, answered questions for Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine (APM) to help families stargaze this summer:

APM: Why is watching the night sky worthwhile? RS: It is fun and free for families to do together. It gives us a sense of wonder about the magnificence of the heavens. APM: What conditions are needed? RS: The darker the sky and the less cloud cover, the better. We can see stars and planets from the cities, but in the countryside, away from the lights of the city, you get a better view. In some places, you can see the Milky Way, the band of light made by stars in our galaxy. APM: How can adults prepare children for stargazing? RS: For very young kids, teaching your children the song “Twinkle, 8 Athens-Oconee Parent

Twinkle Little Star” would be good. For older children, you can read Wikipedia pages about the Moon or some of the planets, and talk with your children about these things before you go out to look at them. APM: What websites and apps are helpful? RS: “Sky and Telescope” (http:// ) is a magazine for star gazing. It points out which stars and planets to look for each month, when to look for them and how to find them. It also has articles about telescopes and the underlying science of astronomy. “Stellarium” is a free and downloadable program that shows you the sky at any time of day or night from any location on Earth. The software can overlay the constellations, which helps you learn how to identify them. The user can also set the date, so as to see the sky in the future or the past and see how the stars move as time goes by. There are many apps that can be put on a cell phone or tablet that will show the part of the heavens that your phone or tablet is facing. APM: What is an easy constellation to find? RS: The Big Dipper is technically part of a constellation, but it is fairly large and easy to spot. It is used as a sign-post to other stars and constellations.You can “take the arc to Arcturus” which means to notice the curved handle of the Big Dipper, and then follow the

direction of the last two stars in the handle until you get to a bright star named Arcturus. Or, you can follow the direction of the two stars on the right side of the bowl part of the Big Dipper until you get to the North Star (also called Polaris) in the Little Dipper. APM: How do planets move in our solar system and how best to find some of them? RS: All of the planets in our solar system make paths around the sun. These paths are called orbits and are well mapped.Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn are very bright. How to tell if you are looking at a star or a planet? Stars twinkle, planets don’t. From our point of view, most of the planets, moon, and sun follow similar paths across the sky. Sometimes there will be a couple of planets in the night sky at the same time as the moon, and you will be able to see them lined up, although they may be fairly far from each other. Often, soon after the sun sets, you can start to see a bright planet not far above the western horizon. That is probably Venus. Sometimes you can see Venus just before sunrise.Venus cannot be in both the evening sky and the morning sky on the same day, so checking the internet for where and when to look would be a good idea. APM: What are the basic names for the phases of the moon? RS: Crescent, quarter, gibbous,

and new. The crescent moon is the name for the phase when you see an arc. Quarter moon is the odd-seeming name for the phase when the moon looks like a hemisphere. Gibbous moon is the name of the phase when the moon is between quarter moon and full moon. New moon is the phase when the moon is in the same region of the sky as the Sun. A fun thing for parents and kids to do would be to point out the moon during the daytime. How to find it? Stellarium or one of the phone or tablet apps will show you where the moon is at any time. Find out which phase the moon is in, so you know what shape to look for. Avoid looking for the moon during the new moon phase, because it would be so close to the sun that looking for it would be bad for your eyes. n Liz Conroy is a freelance journalist in Athens and appreciates a dark night for watching stars.



r. Maurice Snook, local amateur astronomer, encourages families to attend stargazing events: “There are programs at Sandy Creek Nature Center (SCNC) and Sandy Creek Park (SCP) throughout the year that should be of particular interest to youngsters and their parents.” He helps SCP host their quarterly program, “Star Watches,” and whenever special astronomical events occur. “Several area amateur astronomers and I bring telescopes and allow the public to view the night sky. I usually give a short talk on the mythology of the constellations that are visible. Many parents bring their children to these events especially for the August Perseid Meteor Watch. They bring blankets and lay on the ground watching for meteors and enjoy the night sky,” he adds. Snook also notes, “We have no limit to participants at our SCP Star Watches. Usually, if there is inclement weather, they will have a lecture.”

Star Watches at Sandy Creek Park scheduled for this

year (with descriptions of objects that will be visible) include: n Sunday, Aug. 12, 2018 • 9-11:00 p.m. “Planets Galore and Perseid Meteor Watch” On parade will be (west to east) Venus, Jupiter, Saturn, and Mars just past opposition. In addition, one of the year’s best meteor showers peaks this night.Venus will be at half phase. This is the closest Mars will be to earth in many years and we may be able to see its polar cap. n Friday, Sept. 14, 2018 • 7:30-9:30 p.m.

(Possible watch) “Good-by to Venus” Venus is fast heading for inferior conjunction (passing between the earth and the sun) and appears tonight as a slender 30% lit crescent. The moon will also be a 30% lit crescent; the contrast between them will be striking.

n Friday, Dec. 14, 2018 • 8-10:00 p.m.

“Geminid Meteor Watch” Last year everyone at the Star Watch saw two or more meteors.

The best starter telescope for kids is an Orion 4.5” FunScope table top reflector. They retail for $100-120 and are much easier to use than the tripod mounted refractors. They can even hold the scope in their hand while looking at land objects. - Dr. Maurice Snook

Sandy Creek Nature Center offers planetarium shows

on the third Saturday of each month with shows geared for children. Their website lists these programs, times and fees. Time: 10:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m. Fee: $2 ACC resident, $3 Non-resident Registration: Online registration is required. Location: Sandy Creek Nature Center, 706613-3615 n Saturday, June 16, 2018

Summer Skies Learn what constellations, stars, and planets are visible in the summer night sky! Register for this program

n Saturday, July 21, 2018

Summer Under the Stars Get familiar with constellations seen below the equator. All participants must pre-register. No children under 5. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Register for this program

n Saturday, August 18, 2018

Meteor Shower and Planets Galore Enjoy a view of what August skies hold with concepts about meteors and the planets. Register for this program

The University of Georgia’s Physics & Astronomy Dept. hosts an

open house monthly at their observatory situated on top of the Physics building. Call 706542-STAR for information on when they are open in the summer. (Registration is required for these programs due to limited space.) n


on your mind

By Jonathan C. Robinson, Ph.D.

d Dear Dr. Robinson,

“Is it too much to ask?”

With summer upon us, my kids are already singing the song, “No more school, no more books, and no more teacher’s dirty looks.” Kids look forward to summer break, while parents (moms in particular) dread it. The child care adds more expense to our budget. Having to account for our boys all day, letting them have more fun, but still help out and keep up with school expectations – it’s all overwhelming. Help?! Signed, Mama dreads summer Dear Mama Dreads, My heart goes out to you, MD.You know you should be excited for your kids and their summer freedom, but you just see more work for yourself. Guess what.You are not alone. Studies show that summer off from school can be expensive for families (think summer camps, family vacation, extra meals and food at home, extra gas for multiple run-around trips). For families living on a shoe string, it’s about trusting our kids to local transit, arranging day care, signing up for YMCA, county leisure programs or other recreation, and teaching our kids the safeties and responsibilities of being latch-key. I don’t know your circumstances, but consider these things: First, start with a pre-emptive family meeting, where you lay out concerns and options. Get feedback from your kids, spouse, and any extended family available. Second, list your expectations for each child. Make and post to-do-lists for chores. Create opportunities for your children to earn extra money for extra projects. Post recreational activities on your family planning calendar (you have one of those, right?). Engage help from available extended family (grandparents?) where possible, with ample gratitude. Third, keep your child busy with chores as well as with fun activities. Find freebies where available (!) and age

10 Athens-Oconee Parent

appropriate, such as various church Vacation Bible Schools, free programming at your local library, and club and service options. Be creative and include your children in exploring these and other options Finally, try to keep your child from withdrawing to their bedroom or couch for extensive gaming and other on-line pursuits. Electronics should be limited to 2 hours per day and balanced with 2 hours per day of pleasure reading. When you get home from work, take time with each child to de-brief about their day and plan for tomorrow. These and other ideas will help you feel more productive, confident, and relaxed, so you can enjoy your summer as well.

Dear Dr. Robinson,

My husband got a new job in another state early this spring. It’s great for him in his career advancement and more money for us. He moved there in late March, but we decided to let our three children, ages 8, 11, and 15, finish their school years here. We’ve bought a home in our new location and the kids and I have spent several weekends with their Dad there. School is now coming to a close. Our summer vacation will not be very fun or relaxing because we’re moving. Got any ideas? Signed, Frantic Dear Frantic, Congratulations on your husband climbing the corporate ladder. There will be benefits in the long run, but, of course, you all need to deal with the transition and the short run. Good for you for finding a new home and getting in some weekends at your new digs before making the big move. The familiarity will lessen some of the grieving in transition. And, yes, this kind of move involves actual grieving. Feeling sad about what you are losing

in a familiar school, friends, and neighborhood. Not knowing just how things will work out in the new place. Some anger and resentment about having no choice over the move. Lots of worry about making new friends and getting used to new surroundings. Make time for each child to “dump” their feelings on you. Don’t take it personally. It’s part of the transition process. This is where active listening is your best friend. Help them understand what they are feeling, without judgment, without giving solutions, and without minimizing what they are feeling. As you see their emotional fever coming down, enlist them in the moving process. Assign age-appropriate duties, with your oversight, and give them praises as they help out. When your moving van arrives, decide if you or your husband will supervise the off-loading. The other of you gets to take the kids exploring their new surroundings. Find the schools, the parks, the recreational sports sits, the movie theatres, the playgrounds. If your new neighborhood has a community center with pool, take time to go for a swim and let your kids mingle with their new peers, under your watchful eye. Of course, eventually come home with pizza and drinks for dinner as a family. Assign your children to unbox their respective bedrooms. Expect a week to a month before everything is in its place. Don’t overdo the unpacking. Use a variation of an 8-hour work day, with start and stop times, but spend the evenings doing something fun either as a family or within new peer groups. This will be an atypical summer for all of you, but you are laying the groundwork for a smooth transition to your new location. Good luck. n 11

m mom power

By Wendy Clements

Mom, Are You In Last Place?

MY SON IS A decathlete, so I’ve spent a lot of time at track meets. As a mom, you are usually running in multiple directions. In sports, the goal is to come in first place, yet life works a little differently, and you tend to voluntarily put yourself in last place. Sometimes that’s necessary, but not always.You take care of everyone else, and if there is time or energy left, you might consider doing something for yourself. Sound familiar? Whether in a race or in life, however, always being last can lead to burnout, discouragement and other problems. If you happen to be a single mom, which was my experience for a very long time, you probably always come in last, and on top of everything else you had to deal with all of the emotional, mental, and physical stress of “single mom life” with little or no support for you or your children. Time for you definitely feels like unattainable luxury you can only dream about. Though pouring all of our time, money, and resources into others can be very rewarding, it’s utterly exhausting. It’s hard. It’s time consuming. It definitely doesn’t leave much for YOU – no money, no time, and certainly, no relief. This needs to change! “Isn’t that selfish?” you ask? No. I’m not suggesting we always put ourselves first. Let’s just do what we teach our kids – take turns. Sometimes, we need to put ourselves first. We’re not neglecting our children, we’re just putting ourselves in the game. “Yeah, yeah,” you say. “Easier said than done.” Very true. Nothing in life worth having is easy. However, both you and your kids will benefit if you take care of your needs so that you can run the race well and finish strong. You worry about your child’s development. What about yours, Mom? It’s time for you. It’s time 12 Athens-Oconee Parent

for you to stop neglecting your needs.You can’t keep pouring out and running on empty. The glass isn’t just either half empty or half full – it’s refillable. What are you doing to refill your children’s most valuable resource – YOU? First, there are the basics of self-care that everyone talks about – eat healthy, exercise your mind and body, and sleep , which became a higher priority for me when I learned there was a correlation between sleep and weight gain.YIKES! You know to do all of that, but do you actually do it? If so, GREAT! Keep it up! If not, it’s time! Second, what about your emotional, mental, and spiritual health? These also affect your physical health. When was the last time you met with a mentor, a counselor, or spiritual leader? Are you setting a good example for your kids when it comes to your own personal development, discovering and developing your strengths, skills, talents, interests, and dreams? You’re probably great at encouraging your kids. What message are you sending when you don’t set the example that these things are important in your own life? Are you telling them that you don’t matter? But you do matter. When is there time for you? After all, you’ve followed the culture and centered your life around making sure your children get to be and do all they want. Unselfishly, you put everyone else first. And that puts you in last. That may work in the short term, but the long term effects are significant. Are you teaching your kids to put you last because that’s what you do, or are you teaching them that everyone is important, including you? You must make the time, even if only a little. Spend less time on social media comparing everyone else’s highlight reel to yours.

Carve out a few minutes each day to take an online course (you can find many that are free) or watch YouTube videos to learn a new skill, and you will feel more knowledgeable and empowered. Take small steps that will make a big difference in the long run – a difference in your knowledge, your mindset, your confidence, and your life. Don’t neglect this important “four letter word” that you may have avoided – HELP. In his book Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen R. Covey suggests that we should begin with the end in mind. I agree. I help clients consider the kind of adult they want their kids to be, then work backward to teach them responsibility and help them develop those qualities as they grow. But do you think about it when it comes to yourself, or do you focus so much energy on your kids that you barely have enough to finish the race? If this is the case, when they get to be teenagers, will you be surprised when they disregard you and treat you as if you are unimportant? Kid-centered parents (very popular these days),

y By Amy Lasseter

allow their world to revolve around the kids. Since kids are more likely to do what we do than what we say, they’ll expect the world to revolve around them and you could be left realizing they’ve graduated high school with a sense of entitlement. Most of us find a way to get the things we really want. What have you always wanted to do but haven’t? What it is you think you can’t do? What interests would you like to explore? Make your plan. Ask for help. Work the plan. Stop playing defense and play offense. Maybe your question isn’t can you, but will you? Make a commitment to yourself.You’re worth it! As the clock in my office, says, “The time is NOW!” n Wendy Clements is a Christian Life Coach who is part of a blended family residing in Oconee County. She helps people reinvent themselves, helps people thrive after divorce, and helps moms raise responsible kids they can actually enjoy living with. She is also certified in several pre-marital, dating, and parenting programs.

The #1 Rule May Surprise You!

Having More Fun

YOU SAY YOU WANT to have more fun in life and business, yet what are you doing to cultivate that in your life? How do you try to create more fun in your business? You have a ton of rules on what NOT to do…well, I know I do. I bet you have a whole list of “don’t-do-that” for yourself and for your kids. • Don’t wear a hat inside the house or while eating a meal. • Don’t get in a car with someone who has been drinking. • Don’t hit or be mean to your brother. • Don’t watch too much TV or stay up past 11pm. • Don’t eat after 9pm.

I realized last year my whole life is structured around what “not-to-do” and “don’t do that.” This isn’t a fun way to live your life. Truthfully, it gives me real insight into the frustration and pressure levels our kids experience every single day. A whole list of “nots” and “don’t-dos” when all they want to do is explore, have fun, and celebrate.You and me? We have so much to learn from our kids… Kids are full of life and curiosity (and hear me on this- curiosity isn’t something you want to squelch out of any child or adult! It’s the core ingredient for learning!). They can take a simple task and create a whole, new, fun game out of it. My son was helping us take away the trimmings while my husband and I were cutting back some bushes around our house.You know what my son did? He took a sled and a stick, pretended he was a knight with a sword, and he was taking the prisoners (the cut branches) to the dungeon (the woods behind our house.) He was having the best time…and it doesn’t get better than that, my friend! There is such a sense of purity in a child’s play because he or she isn’t interested in anything else. It’s all about exploring and celebrating their thoughts and learning. Even though it can certainly be messy (and loud) there’s an inherent beauty in it if you are willing to slow down, watch, and learn from them.

The Beauty of Celebration


I mentioned above how kids are so great at celebrating the moment due to their natural curiosity and how you want to encourage these two things. What does this mean or look like for adults? How do we help (or not help) ourselves and our kids in this area? Let’s take a quick look at a few brief examples: 1.Your son comes home with an “A” on their report card and you say, “That’s awesome! So proud of you!” 2. You run onto the court after your daughter’s basketball or soccer team wins the big game and you’re hugging her and shouting, “You did it, I’m so proud!” 3. “Heck, yes, you closed that deal!” 4. “Happy 40th birthday!” These are the moments you think about when people at work or your friends start talk about celebration. As you grow older, and hopefully wiser, you start celebrating the “big” birthdays such as 16, 18, 21 and 40. This trend keeps going and the length of time stretches out a little more as you keep moving the bar out and higher. As you keep moving out the celebrations, we start missing all the wins that have to occur in between…and this, my dear friend, is where life happens. When you start dismissing the in between wins, or the “small wins,” you start dismissing the areas where life and learning happen.You start missing the reward that comes with each step. This means, you start missing the single most important part of life: life isn’t an event, it’s a journey. Dismiss the “small wins” and you dismiss the joy of your journey and the whole point of your life (and business). You have to stop waiting for the big event or “the more” you are expecting from the big win because “the more” is never going to come.

Stop Waiting for the BIG Event You keep waiting to celebrate, to have fun, to open the bottle of wine, or to eat at the fancy restaurant because you’re waiting for the big event to come, for “the more.”

The truth is, there will always be a next event after the big event, after you hit the milestone, after you reach the bench mark or goal. That’s what high-achievers do…they achieve and forget to celebrate all the wins that come with each step, all the steps that lead to the big event or win. A step is a step and it all leads to the same destination, the same place, the same end, the same goal. If you keep waiting for the big event, you’ll always be waiting. This is because there will always be another goal to reach for. So, by all means, go ahead and open up the bottle of wine, book the babysitter to go the fancy restaurant, “the more” will be there when you’re done…the moments, experiences and fun you’re creating with those you love the most won’t be. You and I have forgotten the number one rule when it comes to life and business…

#1 Rule

The rule to having more fun in life and business is this: You make the rules around fun. Yes, you.You get to choose if, and when, the rules apply – and when they don’t.You’re the one who decides if you’re going to: • be brave and tell your loved one you don’t agree with their actions. • play four-square outside. • schedule dinner at the fancy restaurant. • ignore the text you received because your kids just got home from school. • call your friend and celebrate the win or milestone you experienced. • splash in puddle with your son or daughter. • skip to the mailbox when you get the mail. • sit outside when you write reports (or articles for local magazine!). You write the rules for fun because you’re the adult now! As I’ve pushed my growth zones, struggled through my own fears, and have come face-to-face with my own storylines, what I’ve learned every single time is this: I’m the one who stands in my own way when it comes to experiencing more fun, or anything else for that matter, because of the rules I choose to listen and follow and which ones I don’t. Ideally, your life is a reflection of your values and when your values get out of sync all kinds of things can start to happen in your life and business.You worry more, you sleep less, you fight more with your kids and partner and you struggle to find balance and a place of calm. You make the rules, dear one. So, when you feel stuck, unhappy, dissatisfied, or like you’re always being told “no,” it’s time to get curious and learn what rules you’re applying to your life and how you do or don’t want to continue to follow those rules. It’s time for more fun, friend. Go ahead, you’ve earned it! n

Amy Lasseter is a Psychotherapist + Growth Mindset & Business Strategist.You can learn more about her at 13

parent talk


By Anna McArthur

Honors Night

“SO, YOU DIDN’T GET invited to honors night….” Towards the end of the school year, social media was upsetting me. I wasn’t proud of this, but all of the honors nights and academic awards made me sad. I know it is completely appropriate that parents are proud of their excellent students and want to post about their achievements. They didn’t do anything wrong. It was just that I hadn’t even heard of most of the awards. Warrior scholar? No idea what that is. EPOCHS awards? I don’t even know how you get one of those. I don’t think my kids cared that much that they weren’t invited to any academic awards nights. My big kids got some extracurricular awards for sports and drama and we were all pleased with that. I do have to wonder, though, if I’m doing my job if we aren’t even getting invited to these things. I think it’s fair to say that I’m a recovering grade-a-holic. I took a class in seminary during my last semester that I loved. It was called “Women’s Spirituality” and was taught by three wonderful professors. I didn’t know that it was a pass/fail class until the very end of the semester. I was upset because I’d worked hard. In a moment of ridiculousness, I asked one of the professors, “So, if you were giving grades, I would get an ‘A’, right?” This was a big clue that someone so hungry for approval might not fair great in the church. Those of you who seek gold stars in your life, even as adults, know what I’m talking about. If you’ve spent a good part of your life affirmed by how you did in school, then it’s hard to figure out how you are doing once there

14 Athens-Oconee Parent

aren’t report cards anymore. I have found this to be especially true as a stay-at-home mom. We are not getting job performance reviews or promotions or raises. For some moms, they determine their worth by their houses or their attractiveness. Some over-emphasize their children’s academic prowess or college acceptances. It’s really easy to slip into your children becoming walking report cards of your abilities, sacrifices and worth. This is dangerous stuff. This is not our children’s job, to make us look good. Last winter, I was reminded that we shouldn’t pat ourselves on the back about our children’s behavior unless we want to take full responsibility when they mess up. Caro received the “Warrior Award” from her JV Basketball teammates for her work ethic and integrity. I was really proud of her and felt like some of the character traits we’d been emphasizing to our kids were starting to pay off. The very next day, Elizabeth, who really is a sweet child, showed out after gymnastics. We’d missed a winter performance where they’d handed out medals to the girls for working hard all semester. Elizabeth’s teacher told her that she’d get Elizabeth her medal after class, but they couldn’t find the fancy medals. Instead, they handed her a little dinky plastic medal that someone found in a drawer. Elizabeth had her heart set on bling. I made her say thank you, but I could tell she was really disappointed. Once we were in the parking lot, she threw her medal across the asphalt like a less-noble Muhammed Ali. My first thought was, “Great arm!” and my second was, “You

really shouldn’t throw your medal unless your reason for protesting is bigger than wanting better bling.” This tantrum was not a parenting win. Once I got her in the car, I explained to her that we don’t do things just to get awards, trophies or medals. I explained, once again, that all I want for my kids is for them to be kind and hard-working. I told her that we don’t do a good job so that people will reward us. We do a good job because it’s the right thing to do. I realized that I was mostly talking to myself. I know from experience that social media doesn’t show the whole story. I know that most families have the same challenges that we do, but that only the good stuff gets publicized. The author and theologian, Frederick Buechner, wrote about the importance of being authentic long before social media was a thing. In Telling Secrets, he said that we need to tell one another the secret of The McArthurs: Caleb, Caroline, Bryan, Anna, Katie and Elizabeth

who we truly are, “Otherwise … little by little, we come to accept instead the highly edited version which we put forth in hope that the world will find it more acceptable than the real thing.” “Highly edited versions” of ourselves don’t move any of us closer to being free or being loved. It makes us feel like we are the only ones who aren’t at honors night and the only ones whose child throws a tantrum about a medal and the only ones who worry that we are failing our children. As a mom, I’m finally buying into the pass/ fail system. I’m hopeful that this will free from the competitive parent culture that requires promoting and micro-managing our children. If the kids are growing and being kind and working hard, then we’ve all passed. That should be enough. n Anna McArthur is a mother of four kids who lives in Oconee County. She and her husband Bryan are always outnumbered and often outsmarted by their kids, but they are doing their best to keep calm and carry on. 15


Compiled by Chris Parsons


June 2018

n Be sure to check out the summer reading programs offered at area libraries.

6 Curious Critters with Ranger Nick

n Summer Kid Shows June-July: Enjoy your favorite movies Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 10am. $1.50 admission, $1.50 drinks, $1.50 popcorn, features begin at 10am. Doors open at 9:15am, GTC University 16 Cinemas, 355-9122, list of movies and dates available at n Brown Bag Movie Bring your lunch and watch a family movie on our big screen. We’ll provide the popcorn! All ages. Oconee County Library, noon, 769-3950 May 21 - Coco June 4 - My Little Pony The Movie June 18 - Sing July 2 - The Princess and the Frog July 16 - Zootopia July 30 - Wreck-It Ralph n Crafternoon Every Thursday in June and July. Drop in for a fun, self-directed “Make it and Take it” craft. Check our Facebook page on Mondays to find out what we’re making. Oconee County Library Children’s Section. All ages. 2:304:30pm, 769-3950 n Farmers Markets Enjoy locally and naturally grown food, crafts, art and sometimes music and cooking demonstrations at these weekly events. Athens: Saturdays at Bishop Park, 8am-noon; Wednesdays at Creature Comforts Brewing Co. on Hancock, 4-7pm, Watkinsville: Saturdays at Oconee County Courthouse. 8am-1pm, oconeefarmers

Join us at the Oconee Civic Center to learn about all kinds of curious critters with our friend Ranger Nick! You may know Ranger Nick from the University of Georgia and the Georgia Farm Monitor television show. All ages. Hosted at the Oconee Civic Center and sponsored by Oconee County Library. 10:30am, 769-3950,

6 Watercolors from Apples to Zebras

This workshop allows individuals to have hands-on experience with watercolors. After a demonstration of techniques and examples, each group member has the opportunity to sketch, complete a contour drawing and paint a simple still life. Students also learn the secrets to painting animals. Open to those in 6th-12th grade. Athens-Clarke County Library (in conjunction with Georgia Museum of Art), 2pm, 613-3650

7 Todd Key’s Flying Debris Extravaganza Juggle-Palooza at ACC Library! Are you looking for some amazing juggling and magic fun? Todd Key is a one man club-throwing, ball-spinning, ladder-balancing, hilarious extravaganzpalooza! For children of all ages and their caregiver. Athens-Clarke County Library, 10:30am, 613-3650

7 Rebecca Ross – Author Event

Join us for the Young Adult author, Rebecca Ross for an author talk followed by a book signing and reception. All ages welcome! Athens-Clarke County Library, 6pm, 613-3650

9 Star Wars Saturday

Do you love Star Wars? Come to the library and meet Star Wars characters, practice your trivia, and make amazing Star Wars 16 Athens-Oconee Parent

Some events, dates and times are subject to change. Please call individual event organizers to confirm schedules. All area codes are 706 unless otherwise noted.

crafts! Bring your cameras! All ages. Oconee County Library, 11am-1pm, 769-3950

12 Dinosaur STOMP!

I hear there’s a stomp, down at the swamp! Dinosaurs of every shape and color are invited and so are you. Wear your favorite dinosaur costume or gear, and join us for an afternoon of musical stories, fun, and games. For children ages 2-8 and their caregiver. Athens-Clarke County Library, 2:30pm, 613-3650

13 Teen Leadership & Volunteer Program

Interested in getting involved within your community? Open to those in 6th-12th grade. Athens-Clarke County Library, 3pm, 613-3650

14 Kitty KaPow and Professor Whiskers at ACC Library

From a far-away planet come the most super-awesome-rock-starband you’ve ever encountered – Kitty KaPow and her faithful sidekick Professor Whiskers!

Get prepared to be dazzled with kid-friendly, dance-party tunes. Wear your favorite costume and join in the fun. For children ages 2-11 and their caregivers. Athens-Clarke County Library, 10:30am, 613-3650

19 The Seeing Stick Shadow Puppet Show

Once upon a time, in beautiful China, there lived a little girl who could not see. Join us for a special puppet show featuring the beautiful tale of The Seeing Stick, plus crafts and activities. For children ages 4-11 and their caregiver. Athens-Clarke County Library, 2:30pm 613-3650

20 Kitty KaPow and Professor Whiskers at Oconee Civic Center

Get prepared to be dazzled with kid-friendly, dance-party tunes. Wear your favorite costume and join in the fun. For children ages 2-11 and their caregivers. Oconee Civic Center, 10:30am, (sponsored by the Oconee County Library)

22-24 AthFest Music & Arts Festival

A 3-day Festival supporting music and arts education. KidFest features live music and activities. 6/22 6-9pm, 6/23 10:30am5:30pm and 6/24 12:30pm-5pm, Downtown Athens, visit

25 Become a DJ

Ever wondered what it takes to become a DJ? Join Ms. Mary from UGA’s WUOG Radio Station as she shares tips and tricks on how to become a successful DJ! Teens will get an opportunity to participate in hands-on activities such as learning how to mix music. Open to those in 6th-12th grade. Athens-Clarke County Library, 3pm, 613-3650

27 Todd Key’s Flying Debris Extravaganza Juggle-Palooza at Oconee Civic Center!

Todd Key is a one man club-throwing, ball-spinning, ladder-balancing, hilarious extravaganzpalooza! For children of all ages and their caregiver. Oconee Civic Center, 10:30am (sponsored by the Oconee County Library)

30 Star Spangled Classic

Family-friendly Independence Day celebration. Activities begin at 5pm and includes live music by Cosmic Charlie, children’s activities, and food trucks. The festival area is located on Washington Street and College Avenue in downtown Athens. Fireworks scheduled for approximately 9:30pm, 613-3620,

July 2018 4 Oconee 4th of July Fireworks! Epps Bridge Centre, 9:30pm, 7693965, Special-Events

12 Drumming for Success with Dr. Arvin Scott

Arvin Scott from UGA. Learn the basics of drumming in a vibrant hands-on drum circle. Dr. Scott is a multi-award winning percussion artist and youth educator with over three decades of national and international experience. For children ages 4-11 and their caregiver. Athens-Clarke County Library, 10:30am, 613-3650

25 The Pied Picker Puppet Show by David Stephens

Peter Picker travels to the town of Hamlin seeking fame and fortune as a banjo picker. However, he finds the town has been taken over by a hoard of silly roaches! This amazing puppet show will have kids and adults of all ages rolling on the floor with laughter. All ages. This special Wednesday summer show is hosted at the Oconee Civic Center and sponsored by Oconee County Library. 10:30am, 769-3950

26 Pete the Cat –LIVE!

Come and meet Pete the Cat from the James Dean and Eric Litwin books! Dress as your favorite book character, hear amazing stories, make awesome crafts, and get your picture taken with Pete the Cat. All ages. ACC Library, 10:30am, 769-3950 (Also at the Oconee County Library July 27, 10:30am)

27 End of Summer Reading Program Party!

Join the teen services staff for our end of summer (reading program) party! We’ll have games, food, prizes, and giveaways! Sign-up is required to attend this event. Open to those in 6th-12th grade. Athens-Clarke County Library, 6pm, 613-3650

31 & Aug. 1 Back-to-School Storytimes

Join us for special “Back to School” storytimes! Come for stories, songs, movement, crafts, and fun! Oconee County Library, 10am and 11am, 769-3950 n

Explore the power of rhythm and drums with Athens’ very own Dr. 17

a ttention campers


By Laura Whitaker


AS AN EAGER FRESHMAN at the University of Georgia, I sought out opportunities to volunteer for organizations whose purposes were meaningful to me. Extra Special People (ESP) immediately caught my eye as a nonprofit serving youth and adults of all ages with special needs. I was trained as a summer camp volunteer and, after just one year of service, I was tapped to run programs when our founder lost her short battle with cancer. At age 19, I was training and equipping my peers whom I was serving alongside. Thirteen years later, Extra Special People has grown to provide after-school programs and summer, day, and overnight camp expe-

18 Athens-Oconee Parent

riences for hundreds of children and young adults with special needs across Northeast Georgia. I’ve had the privilege and perspective to serve not only as a volunteer, camp staffer, and coordinator, but also to lead in training eager young university student volunteers and staff much like myself. As time has passed, I’ve seen a shift in the behaviors, attitudes, and expectations of volunteers; I have had to adjust and innovate our training programs to continue engaging and inspiring young adults so that they can serve children of all abilities and give them the best camp experience of their life. My staff and I do not take this responsibility lightly. We are caring for young boys and girls with disabilities ranging from autism to traumatic brain injuries to Down syndrome and other severe physical and developmental disabilities, but we recognize that these children deserve the chance to experience camp just as every other child in America does – without restrictions, limitations, or boundaries. Those opportunities to give our campers the experience of a lifetime come with the heavy responsibility of training up our staff and volunteers to serve each and every need while simultaneously offering a fantastic camp experience. Since I am no longer running the programs on the ground as I did in my early years at ESP, my aim now is to train and motivate the Millennial generation to maintain the quality of our programming. I firmly believe that while collegiate volunteers need to enjoy their jobs and the camp experience, it is a job. It is employment. So, by teaching good practices – articulating insubordination, Human Resources-related issues, expectations, and ethics, I aim to provide leadership training

that goes beyond their work at camp and into their lives as adults in society.


When training students, a tried and true tactic for the start to a successful session is food. College students are always happy to be fed and a favorite among the Millennial generation is brunch. So, as we feed their bodies in our breakfast training sessions, I aim to also feed their souls. By developing their character, I believe we are setting them up for success in life, and not just as a camp employee. The caliber of student is extremely high at our recruiting field of the University of Georgia. Kids are very book smart, but they are still kids. In order for camp leadership to expect them to both be passionate and empathetic while also great employees, we are responsible for teaching expectations in a way that they can metabolize. In our case, that includes interactive sessions and brunch foods.


The first session, entitled “Get Grit,” focuses on endurance, work ethic, and HR-related terms such as time theft and insubordination. While the HR topics are not the most fun to discuss, the expectations laid out ahead of time give employees the understanding they need to be successful with their responses and their time. We discuss social media and personal time, and I calculate if every camp counselor was on Facebook for five minutes every day during paid hours what that cost to donors would be, as well as the cost to campers. Millennials in this age range see social media as an appedenge and often do not realize that personal time is a cost to the campers as well as the overall organization. The time and effort topic leads to the discussion about grit. Camp life is difficult, taxing, often hot and emotionally, physically, and mentally draining. The definition of grit is, “a positive, non-cognitive trait based on an individual’s passion for a particular long-term goal or end state, coupled with a powerful motivation to achieve their respective objective.” Camp staff by nature are passionate, but the ability to hold on to that passion for a long-term goal (throughout the summer) is the mark of

Volunteers love to learn on a full stomach! Waffle House caters the training session “Leggo My Ego,” a lesson on pride, humility and mentorship.

a person’s character. Talking through scenarios when it could be easy to give up and lose passion helps counselors prepare themselves for those moments.


The second training session, “Leggo My Ego,” includes waffles and focuses on a discussion of ego, humility, and growth. Pride prevents us from seeing our own mistakes. I stress the importance of recognizing, admitting, and learning from mistakes in improving ourselves. We ask that every employee owns his mistakes: when you mess up, fess up. This humility is vital to understanding our own shortcomings and therefore empathizing with the shortcomings of others. Our campers have abilities and disabilities of every kind. By understanding our own weaknesses, we can better understand the weaknesses of others – those we work with and those we serve. Without pride, we are better able to approach situations with a willingness to learn. Accepting that they do not know everything about leading campers with special needs gives them the chance to open their ears and their minds to our training. Mentorship is an important aspect of growth and we encourage staff to begin the lifelong practice of finding and learning from mentors. If they soak in everything like a sponge, it miraculously creates a team that is bonded from the beginning. Blame and belittling have no place at ESP, nor, I imagine, at any other camp in America. If employees and volunteers think they don’t have to take responsibility for their actions or must degrade co-workers in order to feel secure in themselves, the culture becomes toxic. It may sound utopian, but we want to build a culture at ESP that creates “the best you,” so that children and young adults can be served well. Finding a solution instead of placing or avoiding blame and being a mentor instead of belittling others offers growth and leadership for all. It cultivates not only a positive camp environment but a productive society beyond our campgrounds.


In Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t, author Simon Sinek reminds us that selflessness is important, but taking time to care for one’s self is equally vital so that you can pour into others. Being a counselor can leave you exhausted both mentally and physically. In order to feed the soul, I try to teach our employees and volunteers to carve out alone time to refresh and revitalize their tired bodies and minds. This is important for both the employees to

implement, but also for camp leadership to value and lead by example. Learning from another recommended read, The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor, I encourage our team to find joy in everyday moments. The first day of camp is overflowing with excitement and adrenaline. By day five or six though, even the most enthusiastic and well-intentioned staffer can become depleted. Intentionally seeking out joyful moments, even in the mundane tasks and taking time out for oneself, can make or break a camp staffer and their overall work experience. We implemented “Give 5” as an intentional practice of finding joy in the moment. Anyone can ask a staff person or volunteer at any time to list off five things for which they are grateful. They can be small, “My shoes are really comfortable/I had a really good lunch/Rey smiled at the pool today.” By introducing this concept at training and practicing it throughout the summer, we find it teaches everyone to keep joy and positivity top of mind. I also urge our trainees to seek out constructive feedback and ask, “What could I do better in this situation?” Learning from other, more experienced staff and asking for feedback is a sign of maturity, not lack of ability. I think it’s important to stress that our young people should not be embarrassed of mistakes or questions. Rather, use them to grow their capabilities and experience, so that one day they, too, can be a mentor to others. We have an incredible opportunity to train up tomorrow’s leaders as we guide campers through the best summer experiences of their lives. That is our ultimate goal - to train staff and volunteers to serve with success so that each and every camper experiences the fruit of that work in the form of an incredible week of camp. Training up the heart as well as the mind and body provides a transformative experience for our friends with special needs. Cultivating a love of service and selflessness opens the window to a world that I want to live in, and one that provides experiences and memories of a lifetime for campers of every ability. n Laura Whitaker began as a volunteer at Extra Special People in 2003.With her passion for enhancing the lives of children with developmental disabilities and her specialized education in this field, Laura was selected as the Executive Director in 2006. As Executive Director, Laura uses her leadership and management strengths to manage staff, oversee year-round programs and summer camps and raise millions of dollars for the organization. Her favorite part of the job is getting to hug the many children who walk through the ESP doors. For more information, visit Extra Special People and Camp Hooray. 19

20 Athens-Oconee Parent




Consider these great camps that Athens and Oconee County – and throughout Georgia – have to offer children of all ages during the summer! We have tried

Guidebook Part 2 Alice DePass Studio of Dance 706-769-1177 June 4-6: 9:30-11 Belle’s Dance and Acting Camp, ages 4-6 June 11-13: 9:30-11 Tinkerbell’s Ballet Camp, ages 2.5-3.5 June 18-20: 9:30-11 Cinderella’s Dance and Acting Camp, ages 3-6 June 25-27: 9:30-11 Elsa and Anna’s Dance and Acting Camp, ages 3-8 July 9-11: 9:30-11 Rapunzel’s Dance and Acting Camp, ages 3-6 July 16-18: 9:30-11 Moana’s Dance and Acting Camp, ages 3-8 July 23-26: 9:30-11:30 Poppy’s Pop Jazz Dance Camp, ages 5-8

ARTini’s Afternoon ARTcamp 706-353-8530 At ARTeeniess ARTcamp your child will not only get to explore their creative side, but they’ll learn terminology & technique, as well.Your children will have a great time and take away from ARTcamp artwork they created, fun memories & art knowledge. We’ll be doing canvas painting, wood crafts, ceramic painting, and polymer clay. Ages 7 & up. $175 per child per week. $150 for each additional child per week. All supplies are provided. *A light & healthy snack will be provided. All sessions are 1pm to 4pm. Doors open at 12:45pm. 1st Session: May 21-25 2nd Session: May 28-June 1

3rd Session: June 4-8 4th Session: June 11-15 5th Session: June 18-22 6th Session: July 9-13 7th Session: July 16-20 8th Session: July 30-Aug 3

to iclude the important information for each camp. However, due to changes that may have occured after press time, please call individual camps or visit their web sites for the most up-to-date details.

Athens YMCA Camp Kelley 706-543-6596

Registration takes place online at beginning Saturday, April 7 at 9:00 a.m. for ACC residents and Monday, April 9 at noon for Non-residents.

Is your child ready for the best summer ever? Camp Kelley is the longest running day camp in our area and we are proud to say that camp has served many generations over the past 82 years. We are excited to offer your child an unforgettable summer experience. We have carefully designed our camp to provide age appropriate activities that are sure to help your child(ren) develop both mentally and physically. Join us for an amazing summer!

Athens Little Playhouse

Camp Southern Ground

Athens-Clarke County Leisure Services Camps

706-521-4454 Information: Registration: Choice of 9 weeks from May 21-July 27. Theater day camp for kids ages 5 and up. Week concludes with a performance for families. Siblings discount.

Athens Summer Bible Camp 706-369-8630 Athens Summer Bible Camp provides four weeks of adventure and fun in the study of God’s Word! We will be hiding God’s Word in our hearts through memorization and meditation on the word. Activities include music, singing, praising, crafts, cooking, reading, games, physical education, and more. June 4-29, Monday-Friday 8 AM-4 PM Ages 5-12, $70 Per Week/Per Child

678-561-9600 At Camp Southern Ground we believe in helping to grow more good into the world. We also know that families all across America want their kids to grow into good people. Yet today with our kids stuck behind screens, being bullied in schools, or just struggling to fit in and be themselves, goodness can seem hard to find! Camp Southern Ground wants to be the place where your child can have good fun, eat good food, connect with good friends, and learn the confidence to go put more good into the world. During summer, Camp Southern Ground hosts campers for week-long residential camps from June 17July 27. As an inclusive camp, we serve children ages 7-16, from all socioeconomic backgrounds, races and religions, with programs that challenge, educate, and inspire.

Continued on page 22 21

Summer Camps

Guidebook Canopy Studio 706-549-8501 Information: ann@canopy Unique trapeze and art camp for rising kindergarteners through teens. Weekly starting May 21-July 27 (no camp week of July 4). No experience necessary. 9am-12pm daily. $175 per week, $149 per week for additional child from family or multiple weeks. Aftercare from noon-3pm also available some weeks for additional $100. Registration form at camps/.

22 Athens-Oconee Parent

Classic City Karate 404-643-5531 Our summer camps are funfilled adventures designed to expand your child’s imagination and creative energies while also teaching important skills like team building, self confidence and muscle control. Padded Weapons Camps: Our most popular camp! Each day students learn about a different type of weapon, watch demonstrations featuring that style of weapon, then design and create their own padded version. Students build SAFE and unique padded weapons and learn how to use their creations. At the end of the week, students will

have created at least 5 different padded weapons that they can mix and match for team challenges. Parents are invited to watch a demonstration on Friday afternoon. Ninja Olympics: Ninja Olympics focuses on teamwork, agility, balance, memory, and dexterity. Each day students will test their skills in safe and engaging games designed to improve all aspects of physical and mental growth. Students will use safe, child friendly padded weapons, learn to work with a partner to accomplish goals, and participate in martial arts games of skill. • PADDED WEAPONS 1: June 4-8 $250 • NINJA OLYMPICS: June 11-15 $250 • PADDED WEAPONS 2: June 18-22 $250 Ages: 7 - 11 years old No martial arts skills necessary (Children who are not Cuong Nhu students may participate, minimum age is 7 years old) Drop off time: 8:30 am Pick up time: 5 pm Children must bring a bag lunch every day except Friday (fridge available.) Pizza party on Friday (included in cost of camp.) Free T-shirt for each child. All camps held at our Dojo facility located at 1050 Baxter St., Athens Ga. 30606

Club Spark! Summer Art Camp June 4-7, 11-14, 25-28 and July 9-12, 16-19, 23-26 Each session is 4 fun-filled days of making art, painting, ceramics, arts & crafts, and jewelry.Taught by Valerie Johnson and Lisa Backs. Monday-Thursday, 9:30am-3:30pm, for boys & girls ages 6 and up. Included: instruction, art supplies, free camp t-shirt, snacks and a pizza lunch on Thursday’s (bring your own lunch Mon-Wed). $300/session or discounted price of $250/session if preregistered by April

1st (sibling discount of $25). Register at Ann Peden store or via email annpedenstore@ Payment must be received to reserve spots.

Double Helix STEAM School 706-521-5477 https://doublehelixsummercamp.word • CAMP TALLASSEE June 4-8 Suitable for campers age 9-15, this week long venture is a deep-dive into the summer woodlands: fundamental camping skills; earth studies; and campcraft and games along with traditionally inspired archery. The session concludes with an overnight campout. Some camping supplies required. COST: $275. • JOURNALISM CAMP June 11-15 Students will learn how the news works (media literacy) and then become reporters themselves to produce written articles, photojournalism, and short broadcast news pieces. COST: $275. Appropriate for rising grades 5th-9th. • STRANGER THINGS CAMP June 18-22 Campers will design and create a giant demogorg puppet then bring it to life, taking at least 6 to 8 campers to operate. They will learn to code Christmas lights to spell out messages and exercise their green screen skills in an updated AV club. COST: $275. APPROPRIATE FOR RISING GRADES 2ND TO 9TH. • COOKING CAMP June 25-29 Learn how to cook in our commercial kitchen. Students will learn new recipes and techniques and have plenty of outside time so they can balance healthy and delicious eating with lots of movement. COST: $275.

APPROPRIATE FOR RISING 2ND TO 9TH GRADES. • CHOCOLATIER CAMP July 2-6 Hand temper and make chocolates, sample chocolates from various regions and learn about their farming practices and climates. Experiment with techniques such as molding, dipping, and making centers. Registration fee includes all supplies needed. COST: $240 - NO CAMP 7/4. APPROPRIATE FOR RISING GRADES 4TH TO 9TH. • HARRY POTTER CAMP July 9-13 Teaching muggles how to be wizards! House sorting ceremony, Defense Against the Dark Arts, Potions, Herbology, and Care of Magical Creatures classes. Dress as your favorite character every day or wear your Harry Potter inspired clothing. COST: $275. APPROPRIATE FOR RISING GRADES 4TH TO 9TH. • IT’S ALIVE! CODING CAMP July 16-20 We will begin with the basics of coding, then use a problem solving model and our coding skills to teach students that they can use their devices to be creative instead of passive consumers. COST: $275. APPROPRIATE FOR RISING GRADES 2nd to 9th.

Continued on page 24 23

Summer Camps

Guidebook • SCULPTURE CAMP July 23-27 Visit public and private sculpture studios, museums, and art galleries.You’ll sketch as individuals and execute a group project on the grounds. Registration fee includes all supplies. COST: $300. APPROPRIATE FOR RISING GRADES 5th to 9th. • ADVENTURE CAMP July 30-Aug 3 All field trips, all the time! It’s the last week before (most) schools start, so we’re going to cram every day full of adventure. We will take day trips to museums, swimming pools, Sweet Olive rescue farm, and more. Registration fee includes admission to all sites and a camp t-shirt. COST: $300. APPROPRIATE FOR RISING GRADES 3rd to 8th.

Exploring the Earth Summer Camp 706-224-4495 • exploring1earth Exploring the Earth is a nature-based visual and performing arts STEAM program for kids ages 5-12. Our mission is to foster a connection and appreciation for nature, science, art and folklore from around the world.We conduct science experiments, wildlife and environmental studies, engineering challenges, perform plays, engage in games and create artwork to explore the world around us and beyond! June 4-8 or July 2-6: Lovely Land! The week includes animals, their nests and tracks, local plant and tree identification earthquakes and seismology, painting with nature brushes, soil, caves and more! June 18-22 or July 9-13: Wonderful Water! Activities include the water cycle, salty and freshwaters, Suminagashi Painting (Japanese technique of floating ink in water), oil and water painting, Archimedes’ Screw, and water currents. Design, build and test a mini raft from natural resources. Make an Ocean Layer Flip book...and more! June 25-29 or July 16-20: Super Sky! Activities include clouds (Cloud in a Jar Experiment), the sky, building your own rubber band-powered helicopter, make your own sundial, sun print art, constellations, torna24 Athens-Oconee Parent

does (design and build a model house to withstand our fan)... and more! All Camps are Monday-Friday, 8:30-2 pm, $200 per week @ Little Rose Nature Adventures (2421 Elder Mill Rd, Watkinsville, GA)

Girl Scouts of Historic Georgia Few things are as memorable for a girl as going away to camp for the summer. While she may not remember exactly how this rite of passage made her more responsible and independent or how it gave her an appreciation for nature, she’ll know it did. And she’ll remember sleeping under the stars, making s’mores around the fire and singing silly camp songs in the warm breeze with her new friends for years to come. • HORSE DAY CAMPS Mon June 4, 8 am-Sat June 16, 5 pm Girl Scout Little House, Columbus, Ga. • SUMMER CAMP SESSION 1 Mon June 4, 3 pm-Fri June 8, 3 pm Camp Tanglewood, Augusta, Ga. • SUMMER CAMP SESSION 2 Sun June 10, 3 pm-Sat June 16, 3 pm Camp Tanglewood, Augusta, Ga. • SUMMER CAMP SESSION 3 Sun June 17, 3 pm -Fri June 22, 3 pm Camp Low, Savannah, Ga. • HORSE DAY CAMPS Mon June 18, 8 am-Fri June 22, 5 pm Girl Scout Little House, Columbus, Ga. • SUMMER CAMP SESSION 4 Sun June 24, 3 pm-Fri June 29, 3 pm Camp Martha Johnston, Lizella, Ga.

Harmony in Motion Summer Performing Arts Camp Camp runs weekdays from May 29-June 8 from 9am to 5pm for all kids ages 9-18. During these nine days, we spend our mornings learning choir, dance, drama, and a musical instrument. In the afternoons, we will be rehearsing the Kids version of a Broadway musical, to be performed at the end of camp on the evening of June 8th! The cost of camp is $300 per child for the two weeks. Each child can bring their own lunch or lunches can be added for an additional $45 per child. To register, or for more information, go to We’ll see you at camp!

Karate Oconee 706.548.2178 Each day is full of safe and fun activities designed to challenge and educate. During the week, campers will take part in a variety of activities, including: Taekwondo, Games & relays , Arts and crafts, Movies and Group activities. Camp hours are Mon-Fri from 7:30 am - 5:30 pm. Full Day, Half Day, and Single Day options. Session 1: JEDI Camp - June 4-8 Prepare for a fierce battle to find out who really is a Jedi Warrior! Session 2: NERF Wars Part I June 25 - 29 Let the Battle Begin! Our Most Popular Camp so RSVP quickly! Session 3: Ninja Turtle Camp July 9 - 13 Learn each Turtle’s weapon of choice and learn the art of Turtle Power!

Continued on page 26 25

Summer Camps

Guidebook Session 4: NERF Wars Part II July 16 - 20 Let the Battle Continue! Our Most Popular Camp so RSVP quickly!

Lego Engineering Day Camp with Robotics

5pm. Contact Cindy Jones at 706-310-0013 to register.

OCAF Summer Art Camp 706-769-4565 •

Our Engineering & Robotics Day Camp using LEGO elements will ignite your child’s engineering capabilities using the Lego bricks they already love! Milo the Science Rover will take them on an adventure to the moon. They can program a rescue helicopter to save an endangered species. Learn about pollination, seismic waves, and programming a smarter world! June 11-14th TWO SESSIONS: 1st-7th grades, 9 am-noon and 1-4 pm Location: Watkinsville First United Methodist Church, 1331 New High Shoals Rd., Watkinsville, GA 30677 Registration and more info:

SUMMER ART CAMP: Three 2-week sessions beginning June 4, June 18, and July 9. Designed for children ages 5-12 with a keen interest in art and a desire to learn more. Each session consists of one week of clay and one week of painting & drawing. Camp is held Mon.-Fri. from 9 am - 12 pm, Mon.- Fri. at the School Street Studios facilities in Watkinsville. Campers Exhibit at the end of July. $230 members, $240 non-members. (includes materials, t-shirt & light snack.) TEEN ART WORKSHOP: Three week-long sessions beginning June 25, July 9 and July 16. For ages 12-18. 9am-12noon, Mon.-Fri. Study under advanced artists. $100 members + $20 materials, $110 non-members + $20 materials.

New Moon Summer Adventure Camp

Oconee County Parks and Recreation

Travel to different locations throughout Georgia and South Carolina. Activities include hiking, swimming, boating, ropes course, trips to museums, farms, zoos and much more! Ages 6-12. $175 per week covers all activity and travel expenses. Operating weeks of June 11-15 and June 18-22 and July 9-13 and July 16-20; from 8:30am- • 706-769-3965 “Around the World in 10 Weeks” - Summer day camps, sports camps and so much more! Registration begins Mon., April 16. Camps run from May 22July 27, 7:30 am - 6 pm.Visit for details. Live Active!

You’ll always find family-friendly things to do at

26 Athens-Oconee Parent

The Preschool Academy 706-353-8183 May 21 - August 10 Ages: 4-12, Cost: $140/FullTime and $120/Part-Time. Activities Include: water play, field trips, special visitors, cooking activities, science experiments, archery, valley games, gardening, music classes, and more!

Prince Avenue Christian School 678-726-2320 summeratprince Join the fun this summer at Prince Avenue Christian School where we learn to work and play The Wolverine Way... by honoring God, pursuing excel-

lence and discipling students! We offer 12 different camps for rising Kindergarteners through 12th grade.Visit http://www. for more details and to register.

Pump It Up STEM Camp www.mathmind

We have another amazing STEM summer! MathMind Workshop has 8 years of experience in exciting, engaging, exploration-based STEM camps written and taught by certified teachers with STEM experience and training. Our camps deliver the highest quality STEM program you will find in the greater Athens area. Our curriculum is aligned to the Georgia Math and Science Standards (GSE) and provides over 180 minutes of STEM activities a day. We conduct science experiments, build

engineering projects, apply math skills, and experience the science of bounce as we investigate topics such as force, motion, gravity, elasticity, energy & transfer of energy, magnetism, rebound angles, anti-gravity, and more. With open jump time built in, this week will ignite your child’s love of science. Join us for a week of active, educational, playful FUN! Space is limited, register today. June 4-8 and June 25-29 9am-2pm, $200, rising 1st 4th graders. For a grade exception, please contact Vonae Tanner at 678-718-8068 To register, contact Pump It Up at 706-613-5675

Pump It Up Camp 706-613-5675 bogart-ga/ Discover, explore, invent and imagine! Pump It Up camps are

high-energy, fast-paced and just fun for kids. Themed camps run by local teachers. Call the store for our summer schedule. Check our website for Open Jump times for ages 11 and under or 5 and under.

Rush Athens STEM Camp 706-548-4470 Enjoy jumping at Rush while you learn STEM - Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.

Treehouse kid + craft www.treehousekidand 815 W. Broad St., Athens, GA 706-850-8226 June 4-8 DOLLHOUSE DESIGN, 10am-

Continued on page 28 27

Summer Camps

Guidebook 1pm, ages 4-6, $180 ANIMAL VILLAGE + ACCESSORIES, 2-5pm, ages 6-8, $170 June 11-15 BLABLA ANIMAL CAMP, 10am-1pm, ages 4-6, $170 NATURAL DYEING AND TEXTILE EXPLORATION, 2-5pm, ages 8-12, $150 June 18-22 FAIRY AND NATURE ART,10am-1pm, ages 4-6, $150 STEAMSTER CAMP, 2-5pm, ages 6-8, $160 June 25-29 MODERN ART, 10am-1pm, ages 4-6, $150 PERRY HOTTER AND THE TREEHOUSE OF FIRE, 2-5pm, ages 6-8, $160 July 2-6 CAMP & SHOP BREAK July 9-13 LATIN AMERICAN ART,10am1pm, ages 4-6, $150 WOMEN IN ART, 2-5pm, ages 6-8, $150 July 16-20 STEAM KIDS, 10am-1pm, ages 4-6, $160 SUSTAINABLE SEWING, 2pm5pm, ages 8-12, $160 July 23-27 CREATIVE CREATURES, 10am1pm, ages 4-6, $150 DOLLHOUSE DESIGN, 2-5pm, ages 6-8, $180 July 30- August 3 EXPLORER + ADVENTURER CAMP, 10am-1pm, ages 4-6. $150 PHOTO CHALLENGE CAMP, 2-5pm, ages 8-12, $160

Summer at Athens Academy 706-549-9225 There’s something for everyone ages 4 to 104 when you spend Summer at Athens Academy! From six weeks of day camp to special camps in the arts, athletics, technology, and more, this is the place to be!

United Team Sports Center Summer Sports Camp 706-850-3100 May 21-July 27 Sports Camp - basketball, baseball, volleyball and other team sports. Ages 7-14 Years. Developmental thru advanced skills and development of team sports. May 23-July 27 Sports Sampler Camp - basketball, football, gymnastics, baseball, soccer, and more team sports. 7:50am-4:00pm.

Wild Intelligence 706-614-7818 Wild Intelligence Forest School offers a variety of summer camp nature connection options for ages 4-17. ■

More Summer Camp Details and Updates at

28 Athens-Oconee Parent 29

’til we meet again

Bentley, 3, and William, 5

Kids love to see their picture, and you’ll love the keepsake! Send your photos and info to facebook at Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine

Callie, 7

Carter, 3

Collins, 6

Hannah, 5. Clifton, 10, and Joseph, 7

Elijah, 20 months

Canaan, 4

Kelsey, 4, Eli, 7, Cale. 4

Ellie, 9 months

Connor, 7, Brady, 9, and Trevor, 11

Brooks, 5

Please support our advertisers who make this FREE family resource possible! ACC Leisure Services 22

Clarke County School District 14

NE Georgia Public Health Departments 11

St. Mary’s Health Care System 2

Alice DePass Studio of Dance 25

Children First 15

Newell Orthodontics 11

Strong Rock Camp 29

Athens Academy 25

Classic City Karate 26

Oconee County Parks & Recreation 24

Treehouse kid + craft 24

Athens Dentistry for Children 3

Double Helix STEAM School 22

Preschool Academy 28

United Team Sports Center 28

Athens Family Vision/Dr. Springer 17

Funopolis Family Fun Center 32

Prince Avenue Christian School 27

Waugh & Allen 19

Athens Little Playhouse 23

High Shoals Fun Run 27

Pump It Up 4

Women’s Center of Athens 3

Canopy Studio 23

Linder & Linder Family Dentistry 15

Rush Trampoline Park 31

Women’s Healthcare Associates 11

Manning Brothers 17

Southern Ground Summer Camp 21

30 Athens-Oconee Parent

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