April 2021

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APRIL 2021

Meet Manny T,

ZooTampa's New Mascot See what else is new at the Zoo page 10

G E T TO KNOW TH IS IN G EARTH -LOV S MALL B IZ: a b le s LU FK A Re fi ll S to re te s a Ze ro W page 14




New Location in Bloomingdale!

Closer to Care. Closer to Home. Now Accepting

Newborns and New Patients


Bloomingdale Office 901 E Bloomingdale Ave. Suite 501 Brandon, FL 33511 813.699.3995

www.pediatricassociates.com 2

TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021


Citrus Park 813.471.4445 Riverview 813.689.7571 Trinity 727.376.4040

Helping new moms become experienced moms. Take a deep breath and push all your other options aside. At BayCare, we do everything possible to make sure that expectant moms have the best labor and delivery experience possible. For starters, you can take free online classes to help you understand childbirth, breastfeeding and newborn care. And at the hospital, our labor and delivery nurses will coach, instruct and watch over you, one-on-one, every step of the way. Because when it comes to delivering your baby, BayCare knows best. Learn more about having the best labor and delivery experience: BayCareChildbirth.org

Register for BayCare’s free online childbirth class. Go to BayCareChildbirth.org to sign up. Our classes provide convenient learning from any mobile device or computer.


APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com



2021 summer camp GUIDE

EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Sarah Rigby CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Laura Byrne Anu Varma Panchal Kiva Williams Julie Tingley Lauren Gay Mark Heller Kelsey White Julie Nelson Tara Payor, PhD Sean Phillips Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital Staff



ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Ralf Gonzalez LAYOUT & DESIGN Sarah Rigby CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Howie Mac Photo Laura Byrne Kiva Williams Christina Jones Photo Lauren Gay BOOKKEEPING Employee of the Month, LLC TAMPA BAY PARENTING MAGAZINE 320 W. Kennedy Blvd. Ste. 220 Tampa, Florida 33606 Phone 813-949-4400 Fax 813-315-6688 info@tbparenting.com editor@tbparenting.com BECOME A FAN tampabayparentingmagazine @tampabayparenting @TBParenting

ARTICLES: 10 / COVER STORY: WILD TIMES AT ZOOTAMPA: What’s NEW at the Zoo 13 / SPRING FESTIVAL MUST-DOS AT OUR FAVORITE THEME PARKS: Our top picks at Taste of Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival and Busch Gardens’ Food & Wine Festival 14 / FOR THE LOVE OF EARTH AND FAMILY: Meet the Tampa family who created LUFKA Refillables Zero Waste Store 16 / DINING WITH KIDS IN TAMPA BAY: Kiva Williams, food blogger and mama of three, shares her top picks for kid-friendly restaurants 21 / CELEBRATING MILESTONE OCCASIONS WITH A STAYCATION: Lauren Gay of the OutdoorsyDiva.com recently turned 40 and dishes on how to celebrate milestones during a pandemic

22 / WRITING A NEW CHAPTER: Tampa Bay Parenting contributor and former network TV anchor, Maggie Rodriguez, embarks on a new journey in TV 26 / LIMITLESS OPPORTUNITIES: Success stories from Academy at the Lakes alumni 29 / MIDDLE SCHOOL AMBITIONS: Check out the unique programming offered by Hillsborough County Public Schools 30 / VIRTUES OF VERSE: How poetry helps improve literacy and self-expression 38 / THE CASE FOR CAMP: Corbett Prep shares the importance of summer camp for kids after COVID-19 62 / JOURNEYING INTO LIFE ON THE SPECTRUM: A Tampa family opens up about their journey with autism 66 / WHEN TO VISIT A PEDIATRIC EMERGENCY CENTER: The experts at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital explain how to handle and prepare for an emergency 68 / IT TAKES A VILLAGE: How YOU can help prevent child abuse and neglect in our community

EVERY ISSUE: 6/ NOTEWORTHY: April Highlights, Things We Love and More 18 / MOMS TO KNOW: Meet Schatzi Borgella of Treasure Tresses 70 / WHAT’S TRENDING ON TAMPABAYPARENTING.COM Photo by Howie Mac Photo

Tampa Bay Parenting is published twelve times per year and distributed throughout the Tampa Bay community. Tampa Bay Parenting is not responsible for any errors, inaccuracies, omissions or incorrect information (or the consequences related thereto) contained within the magazine or online; readers should not rely on any information contained in the magazine and they should always consult with an appropriate professional for guidance. Tampa Bay Parenting accepts no responsibility for the consequences of error or for any loss or damage suffered by users of any of the information or materials provided by Tampa Bay Parenting. Some content published by Tampa Bay Parenting is sponsored or paid for advertising content, and some individuals quoted or cited in articles have paid for advertising or sponsorships; this content or opinions do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Tampa Bay Parenting.


ON THE COVER: Manny T, ZooTampa's new mascot, spends a morning playing with ZooTampa visitor Rosie Kampmann, 5. You can meet Manny T in the Manatee Circle near the entrance of the zoo throughout the day. See what else in new at the zoo on page 10.

TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

YOUR GRILL. YOUR WAY. Grill with GreenWise for meats raised in the United States on a vegetarian diet, with no antibiotics or added hormones* ever—only at Publix. *Federal regulations prohibit the use of added hormones in pork or poultry.

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com



FLORIDA STATE FAIR: APRIL 22-MAY 1 Gear up for the largest ride midway in the United States and of course, the best FOOD! New this year are gelato nachos from Funky Flamingo, peanut butter and spicy jelly tater tots from Swift Concession Tots, and farm fresh blueberry and cream doughnuts from Peachey's. Entertainment: Hollywood Racing Pics, Demolition Derby and even Tiny the Tanker, who you’ll find roving the Fairgrounds to remind guests about social distancing and face masks. He’ll even have hand sanitizer on board. Popular among the little ones, the Giraffe Menagerie and Little Farm Hands exhibits will also be returning. Expect limited capacity, hand sanitizer stations and cashless payment options. Guests ages 5 and older will be required to wear a face mask and entry will be denied without one. Employees, vendors and exhibitors are also required to wear a face mask. floridastatefair.com

TAKE ME OUT TO THE BALL GAME! Tampa Bay Rays are back and ready to welcome fans into Tropicana Field with health and safety in mind. The team has worked closely with health experts—so here’s what you can expect, what you’ll see and even what you won’t see. Masks will be required at all times unless actively eating or drinking. You’ll also be reminded to frequently sanitize your hands, and seats will be socially distanced in pods of up to six seats. What you won’t see is technology hard at work. UV lights and electronic devices in the air conditioning units purify the air along with MERV air filters. If you’re interested in single-game tickets, you can purchase via the MLB Ball Park app or at raysbaseball.com. Tickets will exclusively be on the Ballpark app; no paper tickets will be available.

JOIN THE KIDS CLUB: RAYS ROOKIES The 2021 Rays Rookies Kids Club is $30 for kids ages 14 and under. All you have to do is register your child/children online. Membership includes a duffle bag, hat, 2020 American League Championship socks, and plenty of digital experiences with Rays players and staff! raysbaseball.com/raysrookies

EARTH-FRIENDLY FAVORITES: EARTH DAY IS APRIL 22! Celebrate by switching to earth-friendly products in the home like: PATCH: PATCH bandages are not only compostable, they are made from natural materials and organic bamboo, making them safe enough for the most sensitive skin. Bandage strips contain coconut oil, aloe vera and activated Charcoal. $6.99 for 25. patchstrips.com GREEN SPROUTS: Green Sprouts has a wide variety of items for babies and tots with a mission to minimize environmental impact while creating products with safer materials. Some of our recent favorite things from their product lineup: ● SNAP REUSABLE ABSORBENT SWIM DIAPER: The triple layer patented design is snug with the breathable wicking layer to help combat diaper rash. $14.99 ● SPROUT WARE SIP & STRAW CUPS: This unique sipper cup made from plants is designed to grow with baby and has an included bottle spout and straw. We also like that the cup is drip free! $14.99 greensproutsbaby.com


Turn to page 14 for a look at our new favorite local shop, LUFKA Refillables Zero Waste Store in Tampa!


Manny T is ZooTampa's new mascot, and you'll find this friendly seacow over in Manatee Circle near the entrance of the Zoo at various times throughout the day. Our cover model's story at the Zoo started as a rescued manatee who was rehabilitated at the David A. Straz, Jr. Manatee Critical Care Center. You'll notice he has a scar from a boat propeller. The scar is an important reminder to practice safe boating in Florida. See what else is new at ZooTampa on page 10.


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

Come explore Mars through the sights, sounds and discoveries of NASA’s Perseverance Rover as it searches for signs of life and prepares the way for future human missions.

Going on now at MOSI!

4 8 0 1 E A S T F O W L E R AV E • TA M P A • 8 1 3 - 9 8 7 - 6 0 0 0 • M O S I . O R G MOSI’s mission is to be the intersection of science, technology and innovation in the Tampa Bay region where conversations and learning happen, knowledge is exchanged and new ideas are celebrated.

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


Meet our Contributors

ANU VARMA PANCHAL Anu Varma Panchal has written and edited for area publications for nearly 20 years. She’s ac­t ive on her children’s PTA boards, loves theatre, concerts, the local brewery scene and travel, and spends way too much time schlepping her 12 and 16-year-olds around in her minivan. She never leaves home without her library card. You can find her at youreditingsolutions.com.


TARA PAYOR, PH.D. Tara Payor, Ph.D. has a doctorate in curriculum and instruction. She is a contributing faculty member for Walden University, where she guides doctoral students through their dissertations. She is also a language arts educator. Reach her at tpayor@ gmail.com.

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DANIELLE MERCURIO, D.O. Dr. Danielle Mercurio is a pediatric emergency physician at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital. She joined the hospital staff in May 2017. Dr. Mercurio earned her degree in osteopathic medicine at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and completed her pediatric residency at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children in Philadelphia. She completed a pediatric emergency medicine fellowship at Hospital for Children at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, and at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children. Dr. Mercurio is a member of the American Academy of Emergency Physicians, American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Osteopathic Association.

KELSEY WHITE Kelsey White is a librarian at the Town ‘N Country Regional Public Library. She received her Master of Arts in library and information science from the University of South Florida in 2019 and her bachelor’s in English from Flagler College in 2017.

JULIE TINGLEY Julie Tingley is a 10-year Tampa transplant who has found her way through numerous professional and parenting transitions by maintaining focus on her daily inspirations: Ella, 7, and Kate, 4. With a vision of a better future for her girls, she has introduced the KNOW Women, a women’s publication and community, to Tampa Bay.

MAGGIE RODRIGUEZ Maggie Rodriguez co-hosts the nationally-syndicated lifestyle show, "Daytime" on WFLA, Channel 8. She recently returned to TV after taking a 10-year break to raise her two children. During her career, Maggie reported and anchored the news in Miami, Los Angeles, and at the network level in New York as the host of "The Early Show" on CBS. She now lives in South Tampa, which she calls the perfect place to raise a family.

LAUREN GAY Lauren Gay is the creator of Misadventures of an Outdoorsy Diva Blog, host/producer of the Outdoorsy Diva Podcast, published photographer, speaker, consultant and adventure coach. She is a travel writer and social media influencer who is passionate about inspiring and empowering Black women to step out of their comfort zones for new experiences in travel and adventure and embracing nature as therapy. An empty nest mom, Gay is a dedicated advocate for racial diversity and inclusion in outdoor recreation and adventure travel. She's a founding member of the Black Travel Alliance.

Story Idea? Are you a local blogger or writer? If you have a content idea or a story to tell, tell us. editor@tbparenting.com


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

Wild Kratts® © 2021 Kratt Bros. Co. Ltd. / 9 Story Media Group Inc.

Open NOW Downtown Tampa GlazerMuseum.org/wild

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com




Check out what’s new at Tampa Bay’s favorite animal encounter hot spot by Anu Varma Panchal, photos provided by ZooTampa

For families with young children looking for a safe, entertaining and (shhhh…don’t tell the kids) educational experience that the whole family loves during the pandemic, ZooTampa at Lowry Park has been a lifeline over the past few months. Now that more of us are emerging from quarantine and heading back out to have fun and explore, ZooTampa continues to be an ideal destination. Whether you’re one of the 1 million annual visitors who have already been there a few times this year or are excited for a new experience, here are five new or revamped adventures that will make each visit feel like the first time.

GO EYE TO EYE WITH A SHOEBILL You may have seen birds before, but trust us, you’ve never seen anything like this 5-foot denizen of the African swamp, with its fearsome 7-inch bill that resembles a Dutch clog with razor-sharp edges and a hook on its end—essential when swooping down on baby crocodiles for dinner. Though they look like tough guys (see if you’re brave enough to lock gazes), shoebill storks are classified as vulnerable, with only 3,300 to 3,500 mature shoebills still living in the wild. Not only is ZooTampa home to three of only four in the United States, but in 2009, ZooTampa became the first wildlife institution in North America to hatch one of these rare birds outside of their native range. You can get a glimpse of these incredible animals in the Africa realm, but if you really want to get up close and personal, sign up for an unforgettable breakfast event on Saturday, April 17 at the shoebill stork aviary. From 8-9:30 a.m., you can enjoy breakfast overlooking the new shoebill stork habitat, participate in a talk about the birds and baobab trees, and ask all your burning shoebill questions to the team that cares for them every day.

BELOVED BINTURONGS Are they bears? Cats? Mops with tails as long as their bodies? If you’re wandering the Asian realm of the zoo and spot these unusual creatures lounging in a tree, you’ve come to the habitat of Sully, Melati and baby Kartika—ZooTampa’s adored binturong family. Also known as Asian bearcats, these animals use their padded paws and long claws to expertly grasp branches and explore treetops. They can even turn their ankles 180 degrees to help them climb down trees head first. Listed as vulnerable, binturongs are currently at risk due to habitat destruction, poaching and the fur and pet trade. Just don’t be surprised if you smell binturongs before you see them: One of their unique traits is their scent, which has been described as similar to buttered popcorn or corn chips. (Oh, and no, they’re not bears or cats. They belong to the family of mammals called viverrids.)


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

SAFARI FUN Want to scope out what might be the most fun future job ever? Bring your little ones to Expedition Wild Africa, where you will get to play the role of research interns visiting Africa’s Habari Preserve. In this newly designed safari experience, you’ll hop on board brand-new safari trucks to visit virtual base camps and research stations. Only the bravest need apply—you’ll get up close to some of the savanna’s most wild predators, spot the world’s largest land mammal and even escape a close encounter with a crash of white rhinos! (Opening late spring.)

SPEAKERS OF THE WILD Enjoy animals and want to learn more about them from experts? For $20 if you’re a member and $40 if you’re not, you’ll enjoy an animal mingle, a cocktail, appetizers, presentation by experts and a moderated Q&A session. Florida Panther Conservation Thursday, May 20, 6-7:30 p.m. Conservation photographer and National Geographic Explorer Carlton Ward Jr. and Mark Cunningham, a state wildlife veterinarian with Florida Wildlife Commission, will present an in-depth look into the global conservation of Florida's most beloved and endangered species, the Florida panther. Painted Dog & Elephant Conservation Thursday, Aug. 19, 6-7:30 p.m. Hear about the plight of two of Africa’s most beloved and endangered species, the African elephant and the African painted dog. Top experts in the field, including ZooTampa’s Chief Zoological Officer Dr. Larry Killmar and Greg Rasmussen, founder and former director of the Painted Dog Conservation (PDC) project in Zimbabwe, will talk about ongoing conservation efforts.

FITNESS IN THE WILD Mix up your workout routine with one of these awesome fitness options. Not only do you get to work up a sweat on the beautiful zoo grounds, but you’ll also get your pre-workout inspiration from an animal encounter! Though you need to be a zoo member to buy a ticket, you can purchase one for a friend. Yoga with Bella Prana: Saturday, May 22, 8:30-10 a.m., ages 18 and up. Pose like your favorite animal in a yoga class led by an instructor from Bella Prana Yoga & Meditation. Yogis of all levels can enjoy this wild event. Zumba: Saturday, July 24, 8:30-10 a.m., ages 18 and up. Enjoy a mix of low and high-intensity moves while dancing to upbeat music. This total body workout focuses on cardio, muscle conditioning, balancing and f lexibility. All fitness levels are welcome. Stroller Strides® with FIT4MOM: Saturday, Sept. 25, 8:30-10 a.m., ages 18 and up and children in strollers. This total-body condition workout is designed to meet you where you are mentally and physically. All fitness levels welcome. While this class is geared towards mothers and children in strollers, adults without children may join as well.

“We want our guests to walk away inspired and empowered by experiences that show the uniqueness of the animal world and join us on our mission to save these amazing species. We are dedicated to continuing to find ways for families to get wild safely to ensure that members of our community have a place to experience the much-needed mental health benefits and comfort that being outdoors and connecting with nature provides.” — Joe Couceiro, CEO of ZooTampa APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


Cypress Springs Water Park with one-of-a-kind slides, aquatic playgrounds, and a brand-new action river is the best way to Spring It On at Gaylord Palms! Inside, explore family-friendly programming and other premium amenities that have all been designed in accordance with our commitment to clean protocols.

Now - May 16th | GaylordPalms.com Designed with enhanced health and safety measures. Learn more at GaylordHotelsClean.com.


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

Spring Festival Must-Dos at Our Favorite Theme Parks:

TASTE OF EPCOT INTERNATIONAL FLOWER AND GARDEN FESTIVAL: Just a short drive away from Tampa Bay is one of our favorites: the Taste of EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival (runs through July 5). We always leave this festival inspired to create our own themed garden! The new Prehistoric Plants garden was a hit, with mini plastic dinosaurs hidden throughout for you to find.

SOME OF OUR TOP PICKS IF YOU GO WITH THE KIDS: Spike’s Pollen-Nation Exploration Scavenger Hunt: Pick up the card for $7.99 at the gift shops and search for Spike the Bee in the different gardens around the park! Health Full Trail presented by AdventHealth: This area is located near Imagination. Though the playgrounds are closed, kids can play in the plant maze while parents grab a chair and relax. The Goodness Garden Butterfly House presented by GoGo SqueeZ: This festival favorite is back and now located near The Land. Butterflies are everywhere. Enough said. Yummy Treats: With more than 20 outdoor kitchens, there’s a fun treat for everyone, like The Citrus Blossom kitchen’s lemon orange smoothie served in a signature Orange Bird Sipper. The Topiaries: Challenge yourself to spot as many of the 100+ topiaries scattered throughout the park that are snipped to look just like your favorite Disney characters.

photo provided by Busch Gardens

story and photos by Laura Byrne

BUSCH GARDENS FOOD AND WINE FESTIVAL: The sips, tastes and sounds are back at Busch Gardens! This year’s festival features 110 dishes and drinks, including 22 new menu items like the fivespice duck lettuce wraps with Asian pear coleslaw and plum sauce drizzle to meatless options like the Impossible® slider topped with caramelized balsamic onions and crispy jalapeños. If a cold brew is what you’re after, you can choose from a wide selection of beers, wines and cocktails—even sips from breweries from around Tampa Bay and Florida. One of the best ways to sip and taste your way through the festival is with a sampler lanyard with options of five, 10 or 12-item samplers available for purchase. Perhaps one of the most exciting parts about this festival is that it brings live, outdoor music back after the pandemic silenced many live concerts. With limited capacity, socially distant concerts will take place at 5 and 7 p.m. You can also purchase VIP seating to secure your spot. The lineup includes: ● ● ● ● ●

Friday, April 2: Sugar Ray Saturday, April 3: Sister Hazel Saturday, April 10: LOCASH Saturday, April 17: Tito Nieves Saturday, April 24: Starship featuring Mickey Thomas

Cool Gardens: There’s something inspirational about each of the 20+ gardens in the park. The Miniature Gardens near Germany feature a mini village. See if you can spot the mini Snow White! There’s plenty of activity, including live entertainment and mini character parades.

COMING SOON: BIG NEWS OUT OF EPCOT: The opening date for the new Ratatouille ride in the France pavilion is Oct. 1 to coincide with the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resorts.

NEW: The Giraffe Bar recently opened at Serengeti Outlook at Busch Gardens with indoor and outdoor seating options that offer panoramic views of the Serengeti Plain. It’s a great spot to snag some appetizers with the kids while you enjoy a cold drink and keep an eye out for giraffe, zebra or ostrich.

*Walt Disney World and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay both require guests to have a ticket or annual pass as well as a reservation for the day they want to attend. Face masks are also required for all guests ages 2 and older. APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


For the Love of Earth and Family: Meet the Tampa family who created the LUFKA Refillables Zero Waste Store story and photos by Laura Byrne

All it takes is one. By refilling or repurposing one plastic bottle, we can potentially eliminate one cubic foot of plastic waste per year. If we did this as a community, it would add up pretty quickly to a sizeable impact. This is why Kelly Hawaii and her husband Parosh launched their business, Lufka Refillables Zero Waste Store. It’s not just about selling people environmentally safe products, but also about educating the community and showing how we can make a difference by making small changes and eventually, big ones. The Hawaiis opened their Seminole Heights store in the summer of 2019 and the South Tampa store in November 2020. We met up with them at their South Tampa store to learn more about the part they play to protect our planet and all of us who call it home.


KELLY HAWAII: Our two stores are a culmination of the journey of my life, my husband’s life and our lives together. When I was in my 20s and early 30s, I lived overseas. I was a teacher. Living in Asia really inspired me because I learned about recycling and how they repurpose and reuse on a mass societal scale. In South Korea, Japan and even in a lot of parts of China, they have no what we consider garbage or trash because everything has a purpose for them, even food, so they compost all of their food. It really inspired me and got me thinking about the way we live in the United States and the way that we live this luxurious, disposable lifestyle. I wanted to do something to tie in my teaching with my environmental passion and that’s kind of how the store came to fruition. Then I lived in Europe … and visited a lot of zero waste stores with my husband. That’s how we got the inspiration to open these stores.


KH: We are unfortunately one of a handful and because of that we are a pioneer. We are making all of this up as we go which is exciting because there is no manual on how to have a zero-waste store. We get to use our creativity every day. And another great thing about our store is that all of our products are hand crafted here in Tampa. We just want to make people aware of ingredients they should avoid and ingredients they should embrace. When you come to a Lufka store, you know that every single ingredient is a good ingredient; we put all of our ingredients on the front of the label because they really matter to us.


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KH: I tell people, the first time they come in the store, just look around and see what we have. Think about the containers you have at home that you want to re-purpose and what you want to keep in your life for like a year. Because if you refill one product for one year, that’s one cubic foot of plastic waste—think about all of that plastic and trash you would be preventing from even going in your recycling bin. And then the second time people come, they start bringing their containers. We start raising your mental awareness as a customer about ‘What can be reused in my life?’ ‘What can be repurposed in my life?’ When you step inside one of our stores, even all the furniture is either made by us or we repurposed everything, so every part of the Lufka experience is about environmentalism, healthy products, solutions [and] alternatives, and we make it really easy for everyone.

Soap with local, organic ingredients has been a hot seller during the pandemic.



KH: Absolutely—I say we have everything you need for your modern existence, minus the single-use plastic, minus all those toxic ingredients.


KH: Oh my goodness, it smells so much better. Personally, I can’t even go down the aisle in a store that has all of these synthetic fragrances. We only use essential oils which come from nature, so those smells are what nature intended.


KH: If you don’t have a container, we have some grab and go products that are already packaged, already labeled and in a reusable container. Then you can bring that container back and refill it, and the next time it’s cheaper because you’re not paying for the container.

Reusable totes epitomize the Hawaiis' approach to environmentally-friendly living.

Bring a container to fill up with your favorite products.

Kelly Hawaii in her South Tampa store. Their first store is in Seminole Heights.

The Hawaiis tr y and source locally for their organic skin care products.


KH: No-if you refill all of your household cleaning products, laundry, all of those products, you would spend the exact same amount of money as you would at any normal store you would go to. Our price points are super competitive because we want it to be a no-brainer. Just come to the Lufka store [and] refill your products. You get the same products, and you get better quality products.


KH: I feel like we haven’t gotten to the point yet because we don’t really have anyone pushing us to be more environmentally friendly. A lot of communities don’t even offer recycling because it hasn’t been profitable. We have to on a societal level make it a priority, otherwise individuals aren’t going to be incentivized to do it.


KH: Absolutely! We are a kid-friendly place, and your kids can come in and actually make a product or make candles with me. I love it when I have little visitors come because I’m a mom, I love kids and I love their energy. They already know about plastic … they know a lot of things that we as parents didn’t know when we were kids. They’re the future, so instilling this in them now is a great way to ensure that beautiful future.


KH: So many people have been at home [that] it’s really raised people’s awareness. A lot of people now are into minimizing. This is totally part of a minimalistic lifestyle and it’s so aesthetically pleasing having just one beautiful aluminum container inside of your shower versus having five different plastic bottles. Also of course we have beautiful hand sanitizers, disinfectant sprays and beautiful hand soaps, so all of those products really became a big priority—especially hand sanitizer. We offer an organic hand sanitizer that has a cosmetic grade ethanol alcohol that comes from cane sugar. Your skin actually wants to absorb that alcohol versus isopropyl which comes from a synthetic source. Our hand sanitizers are really popular right now.


KH: Our Lufka washcloth—when it’s open, you can wash your back with it. It’s a total body exfoliation and they’re all handmade in the Kurdistan region of Iraq, so we have 20 women who make Lufkas for us who live there. All of the benefits and proceeds go to those ladies. [A lufka] will last you at least one year. It cannot get moldy or grow any bacteria so when you want to replace it you can just compost it. Plant it in your garden; it’ll just go right back to the earth. This Lufka embodies the values of our company: good for you, good for the planet, good for the people who make it. At our South Tampa store, we have a little garden in the back. I’m making it into an actual herb garden and we can do classes out there. We really want to make this a space for our community, for like-minded people to come together to create something and find that creative spark within them.





HERE’S WILLIAMS’ LIST OF FAVORITE SPOTS TO DINE WITH KIDS IN TAMPA BAY: EGGS UP GRILL: 3920 US-301 N., Riverview 33578 Eggs Up Grill serves breakfast and lunch food which most kids enjoy any time of the day. I love that my oldest can order a burger from their lunch menu and my two younger kids can order pancakes or waffles, and all three will be happy! BAVARO’S PIZZA NAPOLETANA & PASTARIA: 945 Central Ave., St. Pete 33705 (Additional locations: Tampa and Sarasota) Ar

This restaurant is a family favorite! The authentic Italian flavors of their sauces and cheese shine through with each bite. I love that they have a pizza that fits everyone’s taste buds, even my vegetarian husband’s.








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ARMATURE WORKS: 1910 N. Ola Ave., Tampa 33602


Dining with Kiddos in Tampa Bay by Laura Byrne, photos by Kiva Williams

One of the top trending stories on TampaBayParenting.com is about kid-friendly restaurants to try in Tampa Bay. Some of our top picks include the St. Pete Pier, Sparkman Wharf and the Columbia Cafe at the Tampa Bay History Center—all conveniently outdoors. When we wanted to grow that list with some other amazing options, we knew exactly who to turn to: foodie expert and mama of three, Kiva Williams of @thefunfoodiemama. Before we get to her top picks, let’s get to know her. TBP: Kiva, what inspired you to start @thefunfoodiemama? KW: My love for finding fun things to do and eat in Tampa Bay and wanting to share it with other moms and friends. TBP: What do you love about the food scene in Tampa Bay? KW: It’s constantly growing! I love that depending on what side of town or city you’re in, you can find authentic cuisine anywhere. Of course, it helps to have the inside scoop on the newest restaurants that are popping up. TBP: Has your passion for food rubbed off on the kids? KW: Yes! My oldest is a total foodie just like his mama. We’re basically the same person when it comes to enjoying food and being willing to try anything at least once. His favorite food to eat is sushi and his favorite fruit to eat is mangoes and pomegranate. TBP: What are some of your favorite things to do as a family in Tampa Bay? KW: We love taking a family stroll on the Tampa Riverwalk, spending the day at the St. Pete Pier and St. Pete Beach or taking a Dolphin Cruise at Clearwater Beach.

With over 10 food concepts to choose from, your kids are bound to find something they like here. The best part for our family is the outdoor seating area, a perfect location to enjoy the beautiful views of downtown Tampa while your kids run around and play. SPARKMAN WHARF: 615 Channelside Dr., Tampa 33602 Come for the food and stay for the family activities. This place has a calendar full of daily events your family would be sure to love. Whenever we come here, my kids never want to leave because they’re having too much fun playing. Be sure to check out Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream and The Corner’s pizza spot while you’re here. LITTLE MIDWAY: 1205 S. Howard Ave., Tampa 33629 I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! Need I say more? No complaints from any of my kids if I say we’re coming here. We love their ice cream, pies and shakes. FRESH HEALTHY CAFÉ WIREGRASS: 28139 Paseo Dr., Unit 170, Wesley Chapel 33543 It’s never too early to introduce your kids to the healthy side of life. Come here and check out their smoothies and fresh juices that taste great and are also great for you! NEW YORK NEW YORK PIZZA: 1512 E. Seventh Ave., Tampa 33605 (Additional locations: Temple Terrace, Riverview, Carrollwood and Wesley Chapel) Authentic New York pizza resides here! We haven’t had the chance to take our kids to New York yet so this is as close as we can get. They enjoy the pizza and wings here so much! SAMURAI BLUE YBOR: 1600 E. Eighth Ave., Unit C208, Tampa 33605 (Additional location: Carrollwood) We always come here when we want to treat our oldest for special celebrations and accomplishments! His favorite food is sushi, and this is some of the best and fresh sushi in Tampa. MAMA’S SOUTHERN SOUL FOOD RESTAURANT: 3701 E. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Tampa 33610 (Additional location: Brandon) Most kids enjoy their grandma’s cooking, so I’m sure the justlike-homemade fried chicken and macaroni and cheese will be a family favorite just like it is for my kids.

FOLLOW WILLIAMS ON HER FOODIE ADVENTURES: thefunfoodiemama.com | IG @thefunfoodiemama | FB @thefunfoodiemama


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

moms to by Julie Tingley, The KNOW Book + Tribe Director, KNOW Tampa and KNOW St. Pete | Clearwater

A study conducted by researchers at the Stanford Graduate School of Business revealed that 'a good hair day' can give women an edge and significantly impact how they feel and present themselves. It's easy to assume that when we look good, we feel good too; however, this isn’t about vanity—this includes a heightened sense of preparation, confidence and readiness for the challenges of the day. This very idea is personified in the client transformations that local hairstylist, Schatzi Borgella, shares with her Instagram audience (@schatzi.c). From wigs to microlink hair extensions, for thick curly hair to fine damaged locks—for this local beauty industry leader delivering 'a good hair day,' sending women from her salon chair feeling empowered is all in a day’s work.




SB: The beauty industry inspired me. My initial plan was to become a nurse and eventually a physician’s assistant. While in nursing school, I hit a wall that was difficult to overcome, which led to seeking my true passion. Hair styling came naturally to me. I was the family’s designated hair guru and spent many years despising the given title. But after spending years pursuing medicine to no avail, I decided to take a tour at the Aveda Institute, and in that moment, I knew that this is where I belong. The beauty industry spoke to my creativity, imagination and desire to help people feel beautiful from the inside out.



SB: Hair extensions have been a part of my life all my life. Many women in my community would use hair extensions to change their look or as a protective style to give their hair “a break” from manipulation. My style of sew-in extensions is a culmination of all the women who’ve trained me: I was able to glean a bit from all of them and add my own flair.



SB: Whew! What a loaded question. The pandemic certainly caused me to pivot and explore other talents. Unable to see my clients face-to-face, I began to think of ways to help them through this newfound normal filled with virtual meetings. Many of them still had to show up and be seen so I started making customized wigs and created a dedicated Facebook community to guide them through at-home hair care. My mindset quickly shifted from the traditional salon appointment to virtual consultations and shipping products.


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021


Photography by Christina Jones Photo


SB: To the women in the beauty industry who may be struggling, my advice to them is to keep striving. Listen to what your client base wants and pivot if necessary. At times we must be flexible in order to survive. “Business as usual” is no longer an option; life as you know it has become quite unusual, and you must adjust.



SB: Thank you! Yes, I do have clients who travel to see me: from South Florida to as far as New York. Instagram is a powerful tool that allows us to connect with people all over the world. Though it can be intimidating to compete in a saturated market (I’m sure you’ve felt this), there is a group of people who are waiting for your voice, your style and your authenticity. Be true to yourself and post! Do not concern yourself with perfectionism. Do the work, consistency is key, and post.



SB: The future of Treasure Tresses is becoming a household name. I’ve always said that I’d like to create a brand that transcends generations and will stand the test of time.



SB: Good food and nice scenery is the recipe for a fantastic time with my girls. We also enjoy exploring the city like tourists using public transportation to discover new places.

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com



TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

Celebrating Milestone Occasions with a


story and photos by Lauren Gay

Though large group gatherings and big trips are still not recommended, it is vitally important to find ways to celebrate the important moments in life, like milestone birthdays or anniversaries. Here are some creative, socially distanced ways to celebrate a major milestone event in your life safely with a Tampa staycation.

PLAN A LUXURY STAYCATION AND TREAT YOURSELF Parents have had a tough year, so what better way to reward yourself and celebrate that milestone than to book yourself an amazing room with a view in a luxury hotel, sans kids. I celebrated my 40th birthday at the JW Marriott Tampa hotel in the king corner spa guestroom with f loor-to-ceiling windows and wrap-around harbor views.

PLAN AN ADULT SLUMBER PARTY While large groups are not the safest option, one or two of your closest friends can quarantine and get tested so that you can be together to celebrate. My best friend came to stay with me, and it was a welcome break from being moms to just being BFFs. You’re never too old for junk food, girl talk, pillow fights and board games.

HO TE L SA FE TY PR EC AU TI ON S: Mas ks re qu ire

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SPEND A DAY RELAXING POOLSIDE Reserve a poolside cabana to carve out your own piece of paradise in the sunshine while keeping your distance. Order your favorite appetizers and cocktails and make a toast.



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EAT SOMETHING AMAZING A delectable meal is always in order when it’s time to celebrate. Order breakfast in bed and spoil yourself. I had a fantastic lamb shank birthday dinner at the Six rooftop restaurant and a strawberry gateau for dessert. Anchor & Brine at Tampa Marriott Waterside just across the street is another excellent choice with a large outdoor patio lounge on the Tampa Riverwalk and delicious seafood options.

SCHEDULE A BIRTHDAY PHOTOSHOOT Hire a photographer to take gorgeous, memorable outdoor portraits to commemorate your special occasion.

DECORATE THE ROOM Order balloons, a cake, charcuterie board and a custom decorative backdrop to bring some festive fun into the space and create that special celebratory ambience in your room.

THROW A VIRTUAL PARTY If you still want that sense of having a party with your family and friends, then a Zoom party is the way to go. Treat it like a real party and send out electronic invitations, hire a virtual DJ, have a signature cocktail for everyone to make and drink together and play a couple of games. My friends actually planned this as a surprise for me and it really did feel like I had a real party with 50 of my friends and family. The decision to travel right now is a personal one. Follow the hotel guidelines and take all precautions issued by local government officials and the CDC. APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com

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Celebrate by giving yourself the gift of total pampering and relaxation. A massage or body scrub is a great way to usher in a new decade of life.


WRITING A NEW CHAPTER with Maggie Rodriguez

by Laura Byrne

Maggie Rodriguez is someone you might have come to know over the years as the former co-host of CBS This Morning and other national network news programming. She has also been a monthly contributor to our magazine, sharing heartfelt local stories and family adventures in Tampa Bay. But most recently, she has forged a new, more flexible career path as the new co-host of Daytime on WFLA. We decided it was time for you to get to know Rodriguez a little more, so instead of having her write about others, we’re turning the spotlight on her to learn about this new path in her life. It’s a story many of you might relate to.

TBP: First, congratulations on the new gig. We are so excited for you! The last time we interviewed you, we talked about your decision to walk away from a high-profile career in network TV news. Here in Tampa, you've found a perfect position as the co-host of Daytime that not only allows you to spend quality time with the family, but also work in a career you have so much passion for. MR: Yes, I like to say that I went from full-time journalist to full-time mom to the “sweet spot” somewhere in the middle. I get to do what I love and still be with my kids before and after school. In my 20-year career in news, I never had a schedule as family-friendly as this one.

TBP: Many moms (and dads) have made the decision to step back from their careers to care for their young children. What advice do you have for other parents out there who, like you, are looking for the next chapter in their careers after taking some time off? MR: I would tell them to start by doing something—anything, even if it’s just dipping a toe back in—because once you put yourself out there, things start to happen. I began by writing for this magazine. The executive producer of Daytime read my articles and invited me to be a guest on the show, which later led to the hosting opportunity. Plant a seed. It will grow in due time.

TBP: You could have gone anywhere but decided to plant your roots in Tampa Bay. YAY! What do you love about living here? MR: Our family has fallen madly in love with Tampa Bay. It’s got the benefits of a big city with the charm of a small town. We live in South Tampa, and we love that everyone knows everyone, and all the places we visit regularly—the Little League field, my kids’ schools, the shops and restaurants we like—are within a 5-mile radius of each other. It’s a wholesome, wonderful life.

TBP: Let's talk about your new role as co-host of Daytime on WFLA! What do you love about this new role and your new work family? What does your family think? MR: It’s so much fun! My co-host, Danny New, is whip-smart and funny— he’s literally a comedian— so I really enjoy our interactions. The entire team is incredibly talented, which is reflected in the product, I think. I love that we cover everything from cooking to celebrity interviews to Tampa Bay events and hot spots. I’m especially proud of my new segment, “Maggie & the Moms,” where we chat about all things parenting. We tackle parenting news and trends, but also just everyday things that moms talk about when we’re hanging out together. We spin a wheel to determine the topics we discuss, including mom hacks, mom rules, mother knows best and my personal favorite, “Am I a momster?” I’ve learned a lot from my fellow moms during these chats and realized that we all share the same struggles and doubts. We’re all just doing the best we can as moms. I love having your editor, Laura Byrne, as a regular on our panel.

TBP: How has your family reacted to your new role? MR: They’re happy for me. My daughter was really little when I was last on TV and my son was a newborn, so they’re basically watching me for the first time. Honestly, they don’t seem too impressed, though! We’ll play the show for them when they get home from school, they’ll watch for a second and then say something like, “Cool! What’s for dinner?”

TBP: Have you made any new real-

ly cool discoveries with the family in Tampa Bay? Any new favorite things to do?

MR: We love taking weekend day trips to Anna Maria Island, Siesta Key and Boca Grande. When we stay in Tampa Bay, you’ll likely find us at Pass a Grille beach, biking along Bayshore Boulevard, exploring the [Tampa] Riverwalk or shopping or eating at Hyde Park Village.

TBP: Finally, since you have now been on both sides—as a working mom and stay at home mom—what have both experiences taught you about parenthood, marriage and even self-care? MR: I’ve learned that having the biggest job at the highest level is not the true definition of success, especially when it distances you from the things that bring you true happiness. For me, success is what I have now: a good home life, a healthy marriage, children who feel like they are my priority and a job that affords me the flexibility to lead this kind of life. I’ve finally found that balance that had always eluded me. I’m very lucky, and I don’t take it for granted!


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

Our annual Walkathon is going nationwide, and we’d like you to join us!




National Walkathon Day Saturday, May 1


Join the fun at GuideDogsWalkathon.org

Presented by APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com



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TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

WEDU is excited to announce a new addition to the WEDU PBS At-Home Learning program! LET’S LEARN WEDU PBS is a new television series created to provide children ages 3-8 with the knowledge and skills to learn and succeed during these challenging times.

Each one-hour episode includes a variety of fun, instructional activities in: • Literacy • Social Studies • Science • Math • The Arts Activities are presented by educators, STEM specialists, teaching artists, and others plus virtual field trips, storytimes, and much more to supplement at-home learning. A companion lesson collection aligned to Florida education standards also is available on PBS LearningMedia (florida.pbslearningmedia.org), a free digital education service from PBS. Visit florida.pbslearningmedia.org/collection/lets-learn to learn more.

Tune in to LET’S LEARN WEDU PBS weekdays at 1:30PM on WEDU! Let’s Learn is produced by WNET in partnership with the NYC Department of Education and is provided to WEDU through the National Educational Telecommunications Association (NETA).

New Series Premieres

May 3, 2021

Donkey Hodie, an imaginative new PBS KIDS® puppet series from Fred Rogers Productions and Spiffy Pictures, is inspired by the quirky, funny side of children’s TV pioneer Fred Rogers and his mission to help young viewers navigate the challenges of childhood. The series is set in the land of Someplace Else, which was created by Rogers on Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. Learn more and meet the characters by visiting pbskids.org/donkeyhodie

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


Limitless Opportunities AT ACADEMY AT THE LAKES by Mark Heller, head of school, photos provided by Academy at the Lakes

One afternoon following Academy at the Lakes’ first football state championship, a group of teachers saw a student, Alex, walking across campus after practice. Alex was still in his uniform, dirty from head to toe—but with a spring in his step. Under one arm he held a stack of books, his football helmet dangling from his fingers. In his other hand was his viola case. Turning to each other, the teachers chorused in unison: “That’s Academy!” But it was no surprise. It is simply the way things are at the small but powerful school that offers its students limitless opportunities. At Academy at the Lakes, we know that students deserve to explore multiple ways of learning through outstanding teaching in the classroom and extracurricular experiences that are available and accessible to all students. Our “You Matter Here” culture allows students to embrace the unexpected discoveries that come from exposure to new activities and experiences. This culture guides students to the realization that certain values lead to success across diverse platforms, and that openness, collaboration, communication and hard work bring accomplishment and happiness. So, what can a student accomplish when presented with limitless opportunities and the support of their school? Ask our alumni! They can be found at Yale, Brown, Duke, NYU, Vanderbilt and UF. They are Division I athletes, scientists, doctors, artists, researchers and entrepreneurs. In 2020, over 30% of graduating Academy seniors earned full four-year college scholarship offers. Over 14% of graduating Academy athletes are offered opportunities to play at the collegiate level, more than double the national average. Every graduating senior is prepared to pursue a path that they became passionate about through the limitless opportunities they had in school. Academy students are tackling today’s challenges. When the COVID-19 pandemic arrived, two Academy alumni and Duke undergrads, Anmol Warman ‘18 and Pranav Warman ’16, made a discovery. Using their passions for STEM and research developed through their experiences at Academy from preschool through graduation, the two brothers created a new way to identify the presence of COVID-19. By combining artificial intelligence with CT scans of a patient’s lung, the students’ program correctly identified the presence of COVID-19 with a 98% accuracy rate, far outpacing the rate of nasal swab tests. Academy at the Lakes’ culture and curriculum are centered around core strengths that help our students succeed in the 21st-century academic arena, workplace and global market. We offer a unique approach that places importance on balance and high standards that are nurturing, f lexible and inspiring. The school’s beautiful lakeside campus offers PreK through 12th graders abundant time outdoors and a scenic backdrop that contributes to what we call “The Joy in the Journey.” If you and your student are ready for an approach to school where opportunities today open tomorrow’s doors, you found the right school. At Academy at the Lakes, limitless opportunities lead to limitless potential.


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021




At Academy at the Lakes, we create big opportunities for your child in a small setting. Our You Matter Here philosophy creates a unique environment for students to embrace safe risks. If you and your student are ready for an approach to school where opportunities today open doors for tomorrow, you found the right school. Contact us today to experience the Academy Difference with a safe and socially distanced tour. LEARN MORE PreK3 – Grade 12

academyatthelakes.org/admission 813-909-7919

BUBBLESANDBLOWOUTS.COM | 813.871.2822 | 808 S. DALE MABRY. TAMPA APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


Career & Technical Certifications in Middle School Award-Winning Hillsborough County Public Schools

2,400+ At Hillsborough County Public Schools, more than 2,400 middle school students earned industry-recognized certifications preparing them for success with 21st century knowledge and skills. Career and Technical Education (CTE) includes middle and high school students taking courses in one of 17 career clusters. From CompTIA A+ Certification, ICT Cyber Security Essentials and Engineering Core Certification to Principles of Food Prep’s ServSafe® Certification, these courses are part of an overall program of study designed to prepare students to be successful in a rapidly changing workforce and equip them to make informed decisions about future career or college pathways. Students who complete a Program of Study are eligible for many scholarships, including the Gold Seal Bright Futures Scholarship.

Learn more about our industry certifications at http://bit.ly/CTEcareertracks 28

TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

Middle School Industry Certifications


MIDDLE SCHOOL. HIGH AMBITIONS. by Sean Phillips, Hillsborough County Public Schools

Middle school is no longer that awkward period between being a child and being almost grown-up. Middle school sets the stage for high school success. And choosing the right middle school—and the right classes in middle school—is extremely important. No pressure, right?

Did you know that more than 2,400 middle school students received an industry certification during the 2019-2020 school year? These middle school students got involved early in Career and Technical Education courses.

“Our CTE classes should be points of pride for our schools with the very best in technology toys and tools,” says Jereme Monette, HCPS supervisor of Career, Technical and Adult Education. “The fact that we continue to increase the number of schools and teachers who successfully complete industry certifications shows how incredible our middle school CTE programs and teachers are.” The most popular of these certifications, ICT Cyber Security Essentials, demonstrates student understanding of: ● network functions and internet connections ● fundamentals of effective communications in a technological society ● strategies and techniques for efficient web searching ● issues related to online safety and privacy ● strategies for creating effective website content and more

“It is imperative that our middle school students learn the dangers, opportunities and realities of living in an online world,” Monette says. “These certifications show that our students have the skills necessary to succeed in the 21st century.”

istockphoto.com/ Motortion

Students who earn these digital tool certifications receive industry-recognized credentials for 21st century knowledge and skills.

Each student who earns a digital tool certification also earns additional state funding for their classrooms. Due to this increase in certifications, these classrooms will receive additional funding for these accomplishments. “Funding from industry certifications allows classrooms to do exciting things like building out creative makerspaces for students to explore everything from 3D printers to programmable robots,” Monette explains. These industry certifications are a springboard to advanced programs and opportunities in high school. Students who earn a certification feel a sense of accomplishment, have a competitive edge upon graduation and become more marketable in their career.




of Verse

How Poetry Helps Improve Literacy and Self-Expression by Kelsey White, MLIS Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library, all photos provided by Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library

The notion that poetry is difficult or boring has a long history in our society, with many children and adults not attempting to read or write poetry. This is unfortunate because poetry helps foster the imagination of readers in a way that other literary forms cannot. Poetry gives children a unique way to express themselves while improving their reading, writing and literacy skills.



Poetry is multilayered with rich imagery and meaning. It challenges readers to engage with the text more than they are used to and forces them to use their critical thinking abilities to decode the meaning of a poem. Reading poetry in a group setting helps children become better at discussing and sharing ideas with others. Children also learn to infer what the poet is saying. If they can determine the literal meaning of the poem, they are one step closer to learning the deeper figurative meaning. Poetry presents children with new literary techniques such as rhymes, similes and metaphors, which are essential to their language arts education. Rhyming can help with pronunciation as well as the discovery of new words. The figurative language used in poetry teaches children to look beyond the literal and surface meaning of words, inviting children to use their imagination. Learning these concepts provides children a new and creative way to express themselves through words. Writing poetry invites children to create their own unique voice with which they can navigate their world. For children beginning to write their own poetry, two of the best forms are acrostic and haiku poems.


AN ACROSTIC POEM features a word running vertically down the leftside of the page; writers compose a line that starts with each letter of the word. The lines usually are about the word forming the acrostic. Acrostic poems are helpful for children learning abstract concepts and new and creative ways to describe everyday objects around them. A HAIKU is typically about nature and has three lines. The first and third lines have five syllables, and the second line has seven syllables. Haikus are a great place for children to start. The poem’s structure is simple and helps teach children about syllables as well as pronunciation. Whether they write haiku or acrostic or simply read some verse aloud, poetry gives children freedom to invent any thing they want.



TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021



If your child is celebrating 4 before Sept. 2, 2021 it’s time to start thinking about VPK!

Voluntary Prekinderg arten (VPK ) is an early learning program th at helps prepare yo ur child for kinderg arten!

Smaller class sizes Free for 4-year-olds Easy, online enrollment! Credentialled instructors Developmentallyappropriate curriculum


The Early Learning Coalition of Hillsborough County is funded in part by the Florida Office of Early Learning. APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com





Grades K-12 Little Captains Fun Weekly Themes Sports Basketball Volleyball Wrestling REGISTER NOW

Waterfront Campus St. Petersburg, Florida 727-384-4555


Dance Friends are Forever Friends!

Grades 8-12 Summer Signature Series with a new Farragut signature program featured each session STEM Leadership & Sailing Marine Science & Scuba Aviation Explore Florida

QUIT YOUR WAY Quitting tobacco isn’t easy. Finding help should be. Tobacco Free Florida offers free tools and services to help you get started.

USF Area Health Education Center presents

FREE Virtual Tools to Quit Classes Start the New Year off Tobacco Free!

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, quitting is more important than ever! Let us help you get the support you need from the comfort of your own home.

***MONTHLY SCHEDULE*** Every First Saturday of the Month 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM Every Second Sunday of the Month 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM Every Second Wednesday of the Month 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM Every Third Monday of the Month 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM Every Third Thursday of the Month 5:00 PM- 7:00 PM

BENEFITS: Nicotine replacement patches, gum or lozenges. (if medically appropriate for those 18 years of age or older)

Participant workbook and materials. More than DOUBLES your chances of success!

Pre-registration is required!





Summer Registration Going on Now at Ms. Lisa's Dance! Visit www.mslisasdancestudio.com 32

TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

JOIN: By calling 813-974-7889 to register. Pre-registration is required! You will be emailed a link to join by ZOOM conference via video or audio. ABOUT THE CLASS: Tools to Quit Class will provide you with information about the effects of tobacco use, the benefits of quitting, and will assist you with developing your OWN QUIT PLAN. Cessation groups cover all forms of tobacco.

To register, call:


For more information, visit us at: www.tobaccofreeflorida.com/quityourway Sponsored by:

USF Area Health Education Center





patelconservatory.org • 813.222.1040

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


your guide to Tampa Bay Area Featured listings

Berkeley Preparatory Summer Programs 4811 Kelly Road, Tampa 33615 813-885-1673; berkeleyprep.org/summer Berkeley has an enormous summer catalog of over 120 camps and classes on a beautiful 80-acre campus. There’s something for everyone at Berkeley Summer Programs: swim lessons, tech camps, fine arts, volleyball, baseball, football, LEGO, basketball, rock climbing, skateboard design, reading skills, lacrosse, tennis, chess, marine science, math review and so much more! *Online registration; half-day and full-day camps, early/ after care, and lunch options! Cost: prices vary per camp Dates: June 7 - July 30 Times: Times vary

Summer Camps

Camp Bayshore


3909 S. MacDill Ave., Tampa 33611 813-839-4297; bayshorechristianschool.org/ student-life/camp-bayshore.cfm

12015 Orange Grove Drive, Tampa 33618

Camp Bayshore is a fun, Christian-centered program for campers ages 3 through rising 6th grade. Children from all around the Tampa Bay area are provided an exciting and safe family atmosphere to learn, grow, play and make memories that last a lifetime.

Campers can try their hand at archery or Lego Robotics in the morning and dabble in painting or photography in the afternoon. More than 100 half- and full-day camps ensure everyone has a great time! Academic camps include math, science, reading, writing and engineering. Performing arts, music, recreation and sports camps last all summer. Chinese and Spanish language camps are also available. Sessions run weekly for six weeks from June 14-July 23. Free morning drop-off at 7:15 am. After-care (3-6 p.m.) and bus transportation are available for a fee. Open to all students entering PreK3-8. Located on Corbett Prep’s beautiful lakeside campus.

Cost: $225-$250/week plus a one-time non-refundable registration fee. Dates: June 1 - July 30, M-F *Registration opens March 1 Times: 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Ages: 3 years through rising 6th graders, Coed

Ages: 4-17, Coed and single sex camps

813-961-3087; corbettprep.com/campids

Cost: $120-$360/week Dates: 6 weeks, June 14 - July 23 Times: 8:30-11:30 a.m. and noon to 3 p.m. Ages: PreK3-grade 8, Coed

Camp Imagination at the Glazer Children's Museum 110 W. Gasparilla Place, Tampa 33602 813-443-3861; glazermuseum.org/camps At Camp Imagination, your little learner will imagine, discover and connect to the world around them. With unique weekly themes, there’s a camp for every kid: from Wild World to Time Travel, Maker Mania, Magical Tales and more. Children need play now more than ever and the Glazer Children’s Museum’s play-based approach sparks imagination and curiosity. This inclusive camp even features select autism-friendly weeks with additional specially trained staff, a quiet space for campers who need a break and orientation so they know what to expect. Register your kids to play with purpose and embrace curiosity this Summer! Cost: $240/week before May 1, $265/week after May 1 *GCM Members save 15% Dates: June 7 - July 30 Ages: 5-10, Coed


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

istockphoto.com/ Nadezda_Grapes

History Adventure Camps

The Coder School CODE CAMPS

Delphi Academy of Florida Summer Camp

Tampa Bay History Center 801 Water St., Tampa 33602 813-228-0097; tampabayhistorycenter.org

New Tampa | 8632 Hunters Village Road, Tampa 33647 813-422-5566; newtampa.thecoderschool.com

1831 Drew St., Clearwater 33765 727-447-6385; delphifl.org

Unmask the myths behind pirates, learn the ins-and-outs of archeology or journey to three different periods in history with American Girls Felicity, Kirsten and Nanea at the Tampa Bay History Center. History Adventure Camps include in-gallery activities, hand-on learning, guest speakers and outdoor activities. Camps are offered with reduced capacities and social distancing protocols in place. Cost: $230 for History Center Members Dates: beginning June 7 Times: times vary Ages 7-11, Coed

Our camps provide coding lessons for kids as well as fun offline activities. Kids code throughout the week and then demo their week's creations on the last day of camp. Register online and use the code EARLY100 (for in-person camps) and EARLY50 (for online camps) at checkout!

Summer Camp is the perfect time to give Delphi a try. Most of our regular school year curriculum is available to students, but we spend a lot of our time during the weeks just having lots of summer fun. Summer at Delphi is available for students from the age of 2 through 17. With day trips and jampacked adventures, explorations in the sciences and arts, kids are definitely happy campers! We also have a half day “Get Ahead, Stay Ahead” academic booster for your high schooler. Come tour today and sign up for the fun.

Cost: $299-$499/week

Cost: $260/week

South Tampa | 1730 S. Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa 33629 813-466-1411; southtampa.thecoderschool.com

Dates: June 1 - Aug. 2 Times: in-person 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.; online 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. *early drop off and late pick up available.

Dates: June 14 - July 23 Times: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Ages: 2 to 17, Coed

Dunedin Fine Art Center Summer ART Academy 1143 Michigan Blvd., Dunedin 34698 727-298-3322; dfac.org/kidscorner/summer-camp DFAC’s Summer Art Academy proudly offers over 30 years of summer art enrichment fun. Todd Still, director of youth education, is excited about heading up his 22nd year at one of the premier summer programs in the Tampa Bay area. Seven different art camps feature the best artists and art educators in the region, including multi-media experts with skills from painting to clay to drawing to dreamin’! Cost: $170-$215 Dates: Weekly sessions June 14 Aug. 6 Times: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. *before and aftercare available Ages: 4.5-14, Coed

Ages: 7-15, Coed

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


your guide to Tampa Bay Area Featured listings

Summer Camps

The James Museum Summer Art Camp

MOSI Summer Science Camps

150 Central Ave., St. Petersburg 33701 727-892-4200 ext. 1010; thejamesmuseum.org/ summercamp

4801 E. Fowler Ave., Tampa 34639 813-987-6000; mosi.org

Unleash your inner artist this summer at The James Museum. Our week-long summer day camps encourage children to get messy as they explore a variety of art-making processes. Inspired by our collection of paintings and sculptures, campers will bring their own ideas to life in our children’s art studio. Art camp offers opportunities for hands-on learning, creative thinking and collaboration. Cost: $95; $85 for members (per half-day session) Dates: Select weeks June 14 - July 30 Times: 8:30 a.m. to noon or 1-4:30 p.m. Ages: 6-11, Coed

MOSI’s Summer Science Camps bring science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) alive through hands-on experiments and building projects. From launching rockets, building robots and extracting DNA, we are about creating the experiences that expand interests and make dreams a reality. Doing real science with the tools and technologies used by industry professionals is just one way MOSI Summer Science Camps inspire our campers with a can-do attitude that will last a lifetime. Real science coupled with exciting experiments, simulations, explorations and inventions will help you discover the innovator within. Cost: Starting at $168/week Dates: June 1 - Aug. 6, M-F (except holiday weeks) Times: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., *extended care available: 7-9 a.m. $15 members/$20 non-members. 4-6 p.m. $15 members/$20 non-members Ages: For children who have completed K-8, Coed


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

Patel Conservatory 1010 N. W.C. MacInnes Place, Tampa 33602 813-222-1040; patelconservatory.org At the Patel Conservatory, every student deserves the opportunity to discover their creative potential. Our summer programs provide training in dance, theater and music. Camps and classes vary by length, age and skill level. Patel Conservatory summer camps require active learning participation by campers and result in a performance. Cost: Varies *scholarships available Dates: June 1 - Aug. 6 Ages: 3 through adult, Coed

Summer at Shorecrest 5101 1st St. NE, St. Petersburg 33703 727-409-1668; shorecrest.org/summer Summer at Shorecrest offers affordable, educational and FUN summer programs for students in preschool-12th grade including Drones & Robotics, STEAM options, musical theatre training, specialty sports clinics, academic enrichment/college prep and so much more. Programs run June 7-Aug. 6. View the full catalog and register at www.shorecrest. org/summer. Cost: Varies by session, $125$550/week. Prices range from $125 for a 20-hour program to $350 for a 40-hour program (contact for travel camp pricing) Dates: June 7 - Aug. 6 Times: Full day and half day camps available Ages: Preschool-grade 12, Coed

istockphoto.com/ Nadezda_Grapes

Tampa Prep Summer Programs 727 W. Cass St., Tampa 33606 813-251-8481; tampaprep.org/summer Camp Terrapin is Tampa Prep’s well-known coeducational, sports and fine arts camp for students entering grades 1-8. Structured activities and theme days provide friendship and fun in downtown Tampa. Additional summer programs include a variety of sports camps and courses in robotics, academics and enrichment. This summertime extension of our award-winning day school program offers something for everyone. Cost: $175-$280 for camps and enrichment Dates: June 1 – July 23 Times: 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. *before and after care provided weeks 6/7-7/23 Ages: Various camps, enrichment courses and or-credit courses are offered for students entering grades 1-12, Coed

Wakesurf Tampa Watersports Summer Camp 2200 East Lake Road, Palm Harbor 34685 804-300-1683; wakesurftampabay.com Welcome to Wakesurf Tampa’s kids summer camps. Our trained staff will ensure your child has a rewarding summer learning a multitude of watersports during our 4-day camps Monday through Thursday. We accommodate all levels from beginner to advanced and ages 5 to 16 years old. Each child will receive personal oneon-one training each time they ride. Staff members and captains are CPR and First Aid-certified. Aside from constructive training in the water, we also allow campers to swim and tube, making it easy for your child to make irreplaceable summer memories. Cost: $495/week

YMCA Summer Camp

ZooTampa Summer Camps

Multiple locations 813-224-9622; tampaymca.org 727-467-9622; ymcasuncoast.org

1101 W. Sligh Ave., Tampa 33604 813-935-8552; zootampa.org/summer-camps

Y Summer Camp offers children a day camp curriculum full of fun educational activities infused with the Y’s character values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility. Campers experience a variety of activities including swimming, science, high ropes, outdoor education, nature encounters, horseback riding, canoeing, visual arts and more! The fun and unique experiences give Y campers an opportunity to explore the outdoors, meet new friends, discover new interests and create memories that last a lifetime. In Y Summer Camp, kids are in a safe and welcoming environment where they can belong, build relationships, develop character and discover their potential.

Your kids can explore the Zoo like never before! Campers will get VIP behind-the-scenes access to the Zoo, get up-close to our amazing animals from across the globe and learn directly from the teams that care for these animals every day about what it takes to become a zoo veterinarian or animal care expert. Plus, they’ll get plenty of splashes on our water adventure, Roaring Springs! #GetWildSafely this summer at ZooTampa!

Dates: May 31 - Aug. 12

Cost: Starting at $129/week (Tampa Y) and $95/week (Suncoast Y)

Ages: 5-16, Coed

Dates: begins June 1

Cost: Starting at $290 Dates: June 7-Aug. 6 Times: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Ages: Rising K-8, Coed

Times: times vary by location Ages: 6-15 (Tampa Y), 3-17 (Suncoast Y), Coed


APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com



THE CASE FOR CAMP by Julie Nelson, CAMP IDS Director, photos provided by Corbett Preparatory School of IDS

After nearly a year and a half of classes on a computer screen, shaken-up in-person routines and postponed traditions, it’s clear students need to accomplish one major task this summer. Have fun. Lots of fun. As we enter our second summer of COVID-19, it may be tempting to fill your kids’ vacation time with tutoring or extra academics to make up lost ground or get ready for the coming school year. But students have worked hard this year under confusing and challenging circumstances. They deserve time to play, run, imagine, create, laugh, explore and discover. That’s where summer camp can help. The American Camp Association found that 90% of parents they surveyed planned in 2020 to send their children to summer camp but only 40% did. During that summer, parents said, their families attended fewer sporting events and in-person get-togethers, took fewer trips to museums, parks and zoos and reduced their family vacation time. What increased? Time spent in virtual hangouts, watching TV and playing video games. Summer camp offers the chance for kids to break out of COVID-19 ruts, safely try different activities, re-establish social connections and enjoy relief from the stress of the past year. Paddle around a lake, practice archery, write a song, build a sculpture, play Quidditch, train for a sport or cook a delicious meal. At CAMP IDS, parents can choose from more than 100 half- and full-day camps to customize a program that fits their needs and interests. Campers can play around with different dance styles in a morning session and conduct science experiments in an afternoon session. They can choose chess


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

for the morning and golf in the afternoon or balance a morning of 3D printing with an afternoon of tie-dying shirts, toasting marshmallows and racing in Red Rover. Full-day camps, on the other hand, make planning simple for parents. Counselors handle the scheduling, setting up a week of field trips or other activities for older kids or a day filled with crafts, gym time, water games, free play and stories for prekindergarten. Camp this summer can also allow students to resume activities their schools may have put on hold. A weeklong camp can be the perfect time to ease back into a sports or dance program or practice a musical instrument. Aspiring actors will return to the stage during two musical theatre camps at CAMP IDS. Students will spend two weeks rehearsing for “Shrek the Musical Jr.” or “Les Misérables School Edition” to perform live in front of audiences. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns that because of the challenges of the 2020-21 school year, the changes in home and school routine could affect students’ social and emotional wellbeing. But with friendly counselors, campers who share similar interests and lots of outdoor activities to counterbalance an overload of screen time, summer camp in 2021 provides ample avenues for much-needed fun. Enrolling in summer camp can give kids new experiences to look forward to and help them find their spark again.

SUMMER 2021 6 Weeks of Options June 14 - July 23

Over 100 Full & Half Day Camps PreK3 - 8th Grade Before & After Care

813.961.3087 corbettprep.com Bus Service Available

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


your guide to Tampa Bay Area

Summer Camps

ACADEMY OF THE HOLY NAMES SUMMER ON BAYSHORE 3319 Bayshore Blvd., Tampa 33629 813-839-5371; holynamestpa.org/summer

Fun-loving kids ages 3 and up may choose from themed day camps, STEM, technology, sports and enrichment camps at the Academy of the Holy Names’ ever-popular Summer on Bayshore. From LEGO to lacrosse and cooking to cartooning, Summer on Bayshore has something for everyone. Complete session information and online registration are available at holynamestpa.org/summer. Full- and half-day weekly sessions run from June 7-July 30.

Cost: $150 (half day) to $325 (full-day specialty camps) Dates: June 7-July 30, weekly Ages: PreK3-grade 8, Coed

ADMIRAL FARRAGUT ACADEMY 501 Park St. N., St. Petersburg 33710 727-384-4555; farragut.org/summer

Whether you’re looking for fun weekly-themed activities or sports camps, Farragut’s day camps will entertain and educate your rising kindergartener to 12th grader. Our boarding Summer Signature Series is available to rising 8th-12th graders. Each week offers campers the opportunity to explore one or two of our signature programs.

Cost: varies per camp Dates/Times: June 1 – Aug. 14, dates and times vary per camp Ages: grades K-12, Coed

ALLIGATOR & WILDLIFE DISCOVERY CENTER (Summer Fun Activity) 12973 Village Blvd., Madeira Beach 33708 727-329-8751; kissagator.com

Our Center provides humane, professional care for pet surrenders that cannot be returned safely to the wild. The facility is home to a little over 200 animals including alligators, lizards, mammals, marine life and more. Our animal family comes to us from places such as the SPCA, wildlife rescues or individual owners who can no longer care for their pet.

Details: Adults $12, Seniors $10, Children $8 (2 and under free). Group rate of five or more all get in for $8 per guest. Open every day, all summer long!


Admiral Farragut Academy: 501 Park St. N., St. Petersburg 33710 727-823-1600 x 212; americanstage.org/summer

Cost: $225/week *financial aid available

American Stage provides a quality performing arts education in a positive and empowering environment, giving young people the tools to be fearless, focused and flexible on stage and in life. All experience levels are welcome! We believe in fostering an accessible environment that encourages a sense of belonging, curiosity and collaboration.

Dates/Times: June 21 Aug 6., 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Ages: grades K-12, Coed


3741 Canoga Park Dr., Brandon 33511 813-651-0779; villageelc.com/programs/summer-program Arts, nature, technology and Spanish are key areas of investigation at ANTS Camp. Students in kindergarten through fifth grade are invited to this hands-on experience where they can explore STEAM/STEM topics, practice cooperation and develop friendships. A nutritious lunch and snacks are provided at no extra cost. Field trips are offered with a coach-to-student ratio of 1:10 (additional fee applies). Drop off between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. and pick up your student by 6 p.m.

Cost: $155/week Dates/Times: June 1 Aug. 5, 7-9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Ages: grades K-5, Coed


1846 1st Ave. S., St. Petersburg 33712 727-825-0515; creativeclay.org Creative Clay’s 2021 inclusive Art Around the World camp focuses on four cultures—Scotland, Zimbabwe, Laos and New Zealand--and will incorporate art history lessons into each class. The camp classroom environment has a 6:1 camper/teacher ratio and is designed to provide individually-paced learning, freedom of expression and sensitivity to learning differences. All children will have one painting per week on exhibit at the St. Petersburg Museum of History located at the St. Pete Pier.


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Cost: $200/week Dates/Times: June 21 - July 30, M-F, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Ages: 6-12, Coed *Inclusive—accepts at least two children with disabilities each week

Camp Bayshore A ministry of Bayshore Christian School

SUMMER FUN AT CAMP BAYSHORE BAYSHORECHRISTIANSCHOOL.ORG (813) 839-4297 Ext. 300 3909 South MacDill Avenue Tampa, FL 33611

Campers 3 years old to rising 6th graders Registration Opens March 1st June 1st-July 30th

“Our family loves Camp Bayshore! My son feels safe and has the best time. He always shares about his exciting days. We are beyond grateful that Camp Bayshore is our second home every summer.” -Camp Bayshore Parent

s umtome r remember


Register today by visiting: berkeleyprep.org/summer

Summer Programs 21 Print TB Parenting.indd 1

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com 3/4/21 41 2:38 PM

We can’t wait to see you again this summer! Camp Terrapin (grades 1–8) Special Interest Camps (6 years to grade 12) • • • •

Robotics LEGOs Programming Cheer

• • • •

Rowing Volleyball Arts Chess


the sky’s the limit at junior docent art camp Create | Explore | Express The Dalí Museum offers weeklong surreal summer experiences for kids 9-14 to explore art & express themselves. Sessions include instruction from awardwinning teachers & guest presenters, creative writing and art making. Online and face-to-face options are available.

Camps start at $65

Learn more at

TheDali.org/camp 42

TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

COLOR EXPLOSION June 14-18 Ages 6-8

UPCYCLED ART July 12-16 Ages 6-8

S.T.E.A.M. SPECTACULAR June 28-July 2 Ages 9-11

ART ADVENTURES July 26-30 Ages 9-11

Unleash your inner artist and make friends this summer at The James Museum! Jr. Adventure Camp 5 - 9 year olds

thejamesmuseum.org/summercamp 150 Central Ave, St. Petersburg, FL 727-892-4200 x1010


Adventure Camp 10 - 15 year olds

will never be the

SAME! “Mom, I’m bored. There’s nothing to do.” If you’ve ever heard your child say that, then we have an adventure for you! “Bored” is never heard at Soul Adventures, a summer camp for 10-15 year-olds. Imagine these experiences: • Rope courses • Kayaking • Paddle boarding • Fishing • Mountain biking • Snorkeling

Summer is coming, and Jr. Adventure Camp is the place to be. Join us for a summer of crazy games, fun field trips, awesome crafts and our annual food fight! Our weekly camps offer a fun and exciting alternative for summer. Energetic camp counselors will keep your child active during our fun-filled weeks. Campers will participate in activities such as rock climbing, bounce houses, sports, water games, crafts, and much, much more! Join us for a summer adventure! Soul Adventures is located at 129 North Belcher Rd, Clearwater.

Let the adventure begin

Combine these exploits with a powerful daily devotion time, and you have the recipe for an adventure that might just last a lifetime.

www.souladventures.us APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com



TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

SUMMER CAMP DIRECTORY | special advertising section ART CAMPS & WORKSHOPS AT THE MFA 255 Beach Drive NE, St. Petersburg 33701 727-896-2667; mfastpete.org

Unleash your inner artist at the MFA's art camps and workshops. This July, the MFA is hosting THREE summer camps: two week-long art and science camps for grades 1-5 and one week-long art and empowerment workshop for female students in grades 6-9. Join us as we explore the world through art!

*scholarships available. Cost: $190 for members; $250 for not-yet-members Dates/Times: July 12-16, July 19-23, July 26-30; 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Ages: Grades 1-5, Coed; and 6-9, Female

BARRETT SCHOOL OF MUSIC SUMMER CAMPS Various Locations 813-285-5091; musicschoolintampa.com

Cost: $110-$200

This summer, the Barrett School of Music is offering camps for anyone and everyone. Whether your child is a passionate string player, a musical theater fanatic, or a music tech enthusiast, we have the camp for them. And if they're just getting started, our Brandon Music Camp will make for the perfect start to their musical journey. No matter the age or interest, the Barrett School of Music is your one-stop for musical summer fun.

Ages: 4-17, Coed

BAYSIDE SPORTS ACADEMY LIMITLESS SUMMER CAMP 4400 34th St. N., Suite E, St. Petersburg 33714 727-258-4981; baysidesportsacademy.org/camps

At Bayside's Limitless Summer Camp, we encourage children to love being active. Let your children enjoy a variety of camps this summer and have great experiences they will never forget! Early bird discount pricing is available. Attend eight full weeks, get all post-camp days FREE! Weekly and daily rates available.

Dates/Times: July 19-30, Times vary, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

*extended care available Cost: Starting at $45/half day up to $340/week Dates/Times: June 10Aug. 10, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Ages: 5-13 on or before Sept. 1, 2021, Coed


5956 54th Ave. N., Kenneth City 33709 727-266-2852; thebeatmusicacademy.com

Cost: $99-$699

The Beat Music Academy is a unique learning experience that aims to provide students with the foundations needed to become a successful DJ. Courses are put together and taught by local professional instructors for students of all ages. Classes are offered one-on-one and in groups.

Ages: All ages welcome

Dates/Times: Enrollment by request

BEST HORSE CAMP AT WEST COAST MORGANS 17126 Boy Scout Road, Odessa 33556 813-920-9870; westcoastmorgans.com

Cost: $80-$100/day, $400-$500/week

WCM has adjusted the 2021 BEST Horse Camp to include social distancing, more riding and outside time, lots of disinfection and camper separation protocols to protect everyone as best as possible! Spaces are limited due to logistical changes but the camp experience will be amazing! Offering half and full days, single weeks and bulk weeks over summer and winter breaks, and family discounts! Riders of all levels can enjoy weekly themes, tons of hands-on horse activities, guest speakers and MORE!

Dates/Times: June 1 – Aug. 6, half and full day options, 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Ages: 6+, Coed

BRICKS 4 KIDZ LEGO® SUMMER CAMPS 3713 W. Dale Ave., Tampa 33609 813-545-4282; bricks4kidz.com/florida-tampa

Cost: $125-$285, half and full day camps

Bricks 4 Kidz is back with a whole new summer of LEGO® camps. With over 50 different camps at several locations and brand new camp themes, we are sure to have an awesome camp your child will enjoy! Sign up today!

Dates/Times: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Ages: 4.5-12, Coed


23221 101st Road, O’Brien 32071 386-209-1908 or 386-935-0863; campdovewood.org

Cost: $725-$1,225

Camp Dovewood celebrates 44 years of dynamic Christian camping for girls 7-17 in North Florida. We have an outstanding equestrian program with certified instructors: huntseat, rodeo, dressage, grooming, vet care and trail rides. We also offer swimming instruction, tennis, cheerleading, art, drama, archery, Bible, volleyball, softball, cooking, gymnastics, music and baton. ACA and CHA accredited.

Ages: 7-17, Girls Only

Dates/Times: June 6-July 17, 1-2 week sessions

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


SUMMER CAMP DIRECTORY | special advertising section CAMP FASTB BILINGUAL SUMMER CAMP & CHILDCARE The French American School of Tampa Bay 2100 62nd Ave. N., St. Petersburg 33702 727-800-2159; fastb.org/camp-fastb

If you are looking for a safe place for your kids to enjoy the summer and learn some French, please join us! Mornings will include fun French activities and afternoons will be filled with arts and crafts, games and plenty of time for free play. The co-ed camp is open to children ages 3-12, and no prior French instruction is required. Extended Care is available at $10/hour or $40/week morning and $75/week afternoons if paid in advance.

*extended care available Cost: Full Day $300$325/week; half day $200-$225/week Dates/Times: June 21 Aug. 2, weekly. 9 a.m. to noon or 3 p.m. Ages: 3-12, Coed


7602 Henry Drive, Land O' Lakes 34638 813-996-1226; campidlewildofflorida.com Camp Idlewild’s program model was developed for children ages 6-17 who have the following superpowers: autism spectrum disorders (including Asperger's Syndrome), sensory processing disorders, Down syndrome and developmental delays. We are also offering Young Adult Camp (YAC) programs for 18-30 year-olds on select dates. Check our website for more information.

Cost: Weekend camp $250/Weekend; summer camp $700/Week Dates: Weekend camp: April 9-11, 23-25; Summer camp: June 20-July 30 Ages: 6-17; young adults ages 18-30, Coed


Turner/Bartels K-8 School, 9020 Imperial Oak Blvd., Tampa 33647 800-968-4332; invent.org/camp

Cost: $235

Spark your kid’s creativity and confidence with our new Camp Invention® program! At Turner/Bartels K-8 School the week of June 7, campers in grades K-6 will collaborate in hands-on activities exploring fun STEM concepts by taking apart their own microphone, exploring solar-powered crickets and more. Visit invent.org/local to secure your spot and save.

Ages: K-grade 6, Coed

Dates: June 7-10


18050 US Highway 301 S., Wimauma 33598 941-928-6860; camposprey.com Camp Osprey Kid’s Day / Overnight Adventure Camp is located on 204 acres that meander along the Little Manatee River. Horseback riding, zipline, giant swing, paintball, BB guns, archery, kayaking, paddleboards, swimming, fishing and art and crafts are offered in a Christian-based environment of family fun. Make a lifetime of memories in just one summer.

Cost: $250-$525 Dates/Times: Day Camp M-F, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Overnight Camp Sun. 4 p.m. to Sat. 9:30 a.m. Ages: 7-15, Coed


381 Moonlight Drive, Cloudland, GA 30731 423-472-6070; campwoodmont.com

Cost: $1,025/week or $1,595/2 weeks

Imagine a home away from home where your child feels secure, welcome and reassured—that’s Camp Woodmont! Just two-and-a-half hours from Atlanta, this ACA-accredited camp boasts two generations of family management. Overnight camp for boys & girls ages 6 to 14. Activities include archery, climbing, horseback riding, crafts, games, sports and more! Oneand two-week sessions available.

Dates/Times: May 30July 30, Overnight 1- and 2-week sessions Ages: 6-14, Coed


990 62nd Ave. NE, St. Petersburg 33702 727-525-5419; canterburyflorida.org/summer Canterbury's Summer Programs will provide your camper with a variety of exciting options to promote adventure, a love of learning, and a playful spirit. Summer camp is not only a place where memories are made, but a place that will inspire your camper to grow intellectually, physically and socially.

CARROLLWOOD CULTURAL CENTER SUMMER ARTS CAMP 4537 Lowell Road, Tampa 33618 813-922-8167; carrollwoodcenter.org/camp-activities

At the Carrollwood Cultural Center, artistic expression, belting it out, busting a move and getting into character are all encouraged! Through art, music, dance and drama, campers ages 4-10 will explore a different theme each week, while campers ages 11-13 use the theme to create an original staged production. *We are offering a 15% Early Bird Discount for registrations received by April 30, 2021.


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

Costs: Half day starting at $165; full day starting at $350 Dates: June 7-July 23 Ages: PreK4-grade 12, Coed

*extended care available Cost: ages 4-10: $90$230/week, ages 11-13: $390-$500/three weeks Dates/Times: M-F, June 7-Aug. 6, 9 a.m. to 3 or 4 p.m. Ages: 4-13, Coed

text DJ to 484848

m www.thebeatmusicacademy.co

Learn Dj & Music production skills with The Beat Music Academy red By EZ Texting

Msg & Data Rates May Apply. Powe

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


June 7-August 6

Camps for students of all ages, from preschool to 12th grade.

Purposeful Preschool Play American Sign Language Drones & Robotics Fine Arts Musical Theatre Training Specialty Sports Clinics STEM & Video Game Creation Academic Enrichment/College Prep...and so much more!

5101 First Street NE St. Petersburg, FL 33703 727-522-2111

Register Now at www.shorecrest.org/summer Summer at Shorecrest offers academic enrichment camps, recreational camps, athletic camps and so much more! Affordable full and half day camp options for students in preschool through 12th grade. OPEN TO THE COMMUNITY. 48

TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

ART & ARCHAEOLOGY WILD CREATIONS ART CAMP & EMPOWERMENT Dig up some history and travel back in WORKSHOP time with the exhibition Antioch Reclaimed, and learn about the art and science of archaeology. Discover how archaeologists piece together the past from Ancient Greece, to Mesoamerica, and even right here in Tampa Bay.

JULY 12–16 (grades 1-5)


Calling all nature enthusiasts! Dive into the environmentally-focused exhibition Skyway 20/21, and meet local artists inspired by the beauty of Tampa Bay. Learn about our unique environment, create your own nature artworks and enjoy a field trip to the new St. Pete Pier.

During this week rising 6th to 9th graders who identify as female learn about historical and contemporary female artists from the women of the MFA Curatorial staff. We’ll explore different ways of selfexpression through mind, body and art.

JULY 26–30 (grades 6–9)

Price: $190 members, $250 not-yet-members Scholarships available Camp times: 9 am–4 pm Due to safety precautions, camp sizes will be limited. All guests will be required to wear a face mask, observe social distancing and adhere to the additional safety protocols of the MFA.

JULY 19–23 (grades 1–5)


June 14 through July 30 | 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. | Monday-Friday All school age children, ages 5-11 St. Raphael’s Catholic Church | 1376 Snell Isle Blvd. NE $175 per week or $45 per day, per child for part time $50 registration fee per family bhaire@st-raphaels.com | 727-823-7969 or 727-709-0060

* * * * *

Daily scheduled educational activities Low staff to child ratio; experienced staff Grassy field for sports and water play Shaded & fenced in playground Gym for group activities, classrooms, kitchen, cafeteria and restrooms * Secure waterfront campus Be a part of our summer of colors at the ‘cool’ place for the ‘hot’ summer!

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com



1515 W. Bearss Ave., Tampa 33613 and 12606 Casey Road, Tampa 33618 813-920-2288; carrollwooddayschool.org/summer-programs Carrollwood Day School is pleased to offer both our regular day and enrichment camps this summer to age 3 through grade 8, starting June 1 and running through July 23. Additionally, CDS has created a new Educational Enrichment summer program offering the opportunity to help students get a head start for fall with mastery learning in language arts and math, research methods and forensic science.

Cost: $150-$250 Dates/Times: ages 3-6: June 1-July 16 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., grades 1-8: June 1-July 23 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Ages: age 3-grade 8, Coed


6204 Interbay Blvd., Tampa 33611 813-831-8429; ccranchacademy.com

Cost: Full-time $240, half day $180

We have Summer Camp and Summer VPK available with many activities! Camp activities include horseback riding, swimming, art, sports including archery, canteen snack hut, outdoor exploration and bounce house. Come join us for all the fun outdoors!

Dates/Times: June 1 – Aug. 2, Closed July 5, full day 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., half day 8 a.m. to noon Ages: 1-12, Coed

CITY OF LARGO SUMMER CAMPS 201 Highland Ave., Largo 33770 727-587-6720; largocamps.com

Cost: $25-$450 *limited scholarships available

Join us for City of Largo Summer Camps. From full day camps, to sports and specialty camps for PreK through high school, you’ll find the best options in Largo for your child this summer! Register today, as spots are sure to fill up. Visit LargoCamps.com for more information.

Dates/Times: June 1 Aug. 10, times vary from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Ages: PreK to high school, Coed

CLEARWATER COMMUNITY SAILING CENTER 1001 Gulf Blvd., Clearwater 33767 727-517-7776; clearwatercommunitysailing.org

Cost: $178-$298

Clearwater Community Sailing Center is the place for kids to spend summer in the fresh air and on the water. We have sailing, windsurfing and paddling camps for all experience levels. Sign up and join the fun!

Ages: 5-17, Coed

Dates: June 14 – Aug. 6


180th St., Live Oak 32060 352-641-0350; earthimmersion.com/scuba-diving-summer-camp.html

Cost: $1,850-$3,250/ session

Earth Immersion is a SCUBA, adventure and outdoor education camp for teens (13-17 years old) looking for an unmatched experience exploring North Florida's crystal-clear springs. Activities include earning SCUBA certifications, snorkeling, canoeing, hiking, fishing, tubing, community service hours and learning about freshwater/marine biology. We offer 7- or 13-day overnight programs.

Dates: June 20 - July 31, 7- or 13-day sessions Ages: 13-17, Coed

ECKERD COLLEGE SUMMER WATERSPORTS CAMP 4200 54th Ave. S., St. Petersburg 33711 727-864-8288; eckerd.edu/waterfront/camp

The Eckerd College Summer Watersports Camp offers classes in Exploring Watersports, Sailing, Windsurfing, Kayaking, Saltwater Fishing, Little Mariners, Exploring Marine Life and more for students ages 5-17. This camp is taught in the perfect environment for learning watersports and gives campers exciting and unforgettable experiences.

Cost: $175-$195 Dates/Times: June 7 – July 30, weekly, 9 a.m. to noon and 1-4 p.m. Ages: 5-17, Coed

THE FLORIDA ACADEMY OF THE PERFORMING ARTS Music Showcase, 402 Oakfield Drive, Brandon 33511 813-490-ARTS; faopa.org

The Florida Academy of Performing Arts offers two types of camps. Music and More camps are weekly and let campers explore instruments, singing and art. Musical theatre camps meet for 2-3 weeks offering students an opportunity to sing, memorize lines, work on character development and perform in live shows.


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

Cost: varies Dates/Times: June – August, full and half-day options Ages: 5+, Coed

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


CREATE. LEARN. PLAY. Camps for Ages 6-17 Starting May 31

Register today! Now offering camps in your neighborhood! Learn more and register: TampaMuseum.org/SummerArtCamp Sponsored by:








TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com








Summer Summer camps camps TAM PA BAY H ISTORY CE NTE R








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Campers get Adventure hands-on with history History Camps through games, crafts, activities, are created for children ages gallery time and guest speakers. 7 to 11. Campers get hands-on

with history through games, crafts, activities, gallery time Swashbuckling Summer Juneand 7 - guest 11 orspeakers. July 5 - 9

New! Archaeology Camp Swashbuckling Summer featuring the new exhibit June 7 - 11 or July 5 - 9 Tusks to Tails: A Fossil History of Florida.

June 14 - 18 Camp New! Archaeology will focus on the new, natural history exhibit © Tusks to Tails: A Fossil History of Florida.

American Girl

June 21 June - 25 14 or July - 1819 - 23

American Girl©

History Adventure Camps June 21 - 25 or July 19 - 23 are created for children ages 7 to 11. Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Before care and after care available. Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Before care and after care available. Register online at tampabayhistorycenter.org/camps Register online at or call 813.228.0097 tampabayhistorycenter.org/camps For COVID-19 policies visit For Summer Camp COVID-19 Policies and Procedures, tampabayhistorycenter.org/camps visit tampabayhistorycenter.org/camps Scholarships granted based on need and availability. Scholarships granted based on need and availability. *Cannot be combined with other discounts. *Cannot be combined with other discounts.


Tampa Riverwalk | 801 Water Tampa, | 813.228.0097 Tampa Riverwalk | 801St., Water St.,FLTampa, FL Smithsonian Smithsonian Affiliate Affiliate


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@tampabayhistory @tampabayhistory


Various locations: Lithia-Main Center, Riverview, Apollo Beach, Brandon, Tampa, Lutz 813-571-2002; girlswithconfidence.com

Cost: Half and full day, $149-$249 for early registration through March 31

Girls With Confidence offers several unique, creative and fun camps for girls in grades K-12. Every camp day we focus on a new “confidence building” theme where we have meaningful discussions, activities and games and work on creative art projects and crafts. We are confident your girls will LOVE our camps. Come check out our new center located in Lithia. We have a little petting farm with goats and chickens.

Dates/Times: June 1 Aug. 6, times vary from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Ages: 4-14, girls only

HILLEL ACADEMY PRESCHOOL SUMMER CAMP 2020 W. Fletcher Ave., Tampa 33612 813-963-2242; hillelacademytampa.com

Cost: $225-$275/week (8 weeks available)

Hillel’s preschool camp will be held in our brand new state-of-the-art Early Learning Center building. This includes a large multi-purpose room, teaching kitchen and 5,000-square-foot outdoor playground. During themed weeks, campers have fun while working towards their social-emotional developmental milestones with centers, water play, hands-on activities, outdoor time and individualized attention.

Dates/Times: June 9 – July 30 Ages: 1-4 years, Coed

IN THE BREEZE HORSEBACK RIDING RANCH & CHILDREN’S CAMP 7539 Gardner Road, Tampa 33625 813-264-1919; inthebreezeranch.com

In The Breeze

Rated the number one horseback riding ranch and children’s camp in the southeastern United States, we rent our lovely horses to the general public daily. We offer horse camp any day there is no school. Swimming with the horses is big. We swim in our creek that stays 72 degrees all year round or out to our island in our 62-acre lake. We have custom parties, pony rides, photo shoots, lessons, boarding, hayrides/bonfires and much more. Fun for all ages!

Cost: $60/day Dates/Times: Monday Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Ages: 10 and up, Coed


One Dali Blvd., St. Petersburg 33701 727-823-3767; thedali.org

Cost: In-person $200$225; Online $65-$85

Discover new ways to interpret and create art, meet new friends and have fun. This year’s theme will focus on surreal inventions. The Museum offers week-long camps in both face-to-face and online versions.

Dates/Times: In-person June 14-18, July 12-16, 9:15 a.m. to 5:15 p.m.; Online June 28-July 2, July 2630, 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Ages: 9-14, Coed

LASER OPS EXTREME GAMING ARCADE - (Summer Fun Activity) 6283 W. Waters Ave., Tampa 33634 813-443-6509; laserops.com

Laser Ops is a 24,000-square-foot entertainment center featuring a game arcade with more than 60 games, virtual reality gaming, tactical laser tag, archery tag and Bazooka Ball. The venue also features a large sports bar and grill, including a full liquor bar. Laser Ops is great for friends and family fun.

Cost: Varies Summer-Hours: M-Th 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fri. 4-11 p.m. Sat. 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sun. 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Ages: All ages, Coed


6520 Richies Way, Apollo Beach 33572 813-641-1922; abkidscamp.com Life Academy emphasizes hands-on life skills lessons. Our programs and activities encourage critical thinking and problem solving. STEM, swimming, horse experience, canoeing, bike track, food forest, gardens, fishing, tennis, karate, sports, crafts, cooking and more. Campers utilize our 7-acre facility and go home sweaty, dirty and tired every day.

Cost: Registration $125, full-time campers $145/ week, drop in $175/week Dates/Times: May 30 Aug. 10, M-F 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Ages: 5-13, Coed

MARY JO’S PERFORMING ARTS ACADEMY SUMMER CAMP 15906 Mapledale Blvd., Tampa 33624 813-969-0240; mjpaa.com

The arts are a perfect avenue to allow your child to explore their creativity, tap into their imagination and discover their potential. Students will develop self-expression, build confidence, learn to work with peers, foster problem solving skills and stimulate curiosity. From classics to pop culture, your children will unfold the wonderful world of the performing arts.

Cost: $125-225 Dates/Times: June-Aug., M-F, 9 a.m. to noon, 3, or 4 p.m. Ages: 3+, Coed

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


SUMMER Largo Recreation, Parks & Arts








This Summer At Mary Jo's! It's So Much More Than Dance!


JUNE & JU = =




OF SUMMER FUN! www.CanterburyFlorida.org/Summer camps@canterburyflorida.org 727-521-5914 56

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APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


SUMMER CAMP DIRECTORY | special advertising section MS. LISA'S DANCE CAMP & ACROBATIC/TUMBLING WORKSHOPS Dance Camps: 3805 W. San Miguel St., Tampa 33629 Acro/Tumbling Workshops: 4535 S. Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa 33611 813-326-8466; mslisasdancestudio.com

Cost: Classes $60-$70/ month, Camps/Workshops $165-$290/week

Ms. Lisa's Dance offers camps for ages 3-6 and acrobatic/tumbling & Dance workshops for ages 6-13. Some of the dance camps are Hip Hop Minion Madness, Elsa's Frozen Adventure and Fancy Nancy. Some of the acrobatic workshops are Cartwheels and Cupcakes, Handstands and Headstands and Pom Poms and Cheer. There are also Dance Workshops such as Cinderella, High school Musical, and Jojo Jazz and Pop.

Dates: June 7 - Aug. 13, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Ages: 3-13, Coed

PRACTICALLY PIKASSO ART CAMP 1912 4th St. N., St Petersburg 33704 727-822-5204; practicallypikasso.com

Unleash your imagination, make friends and create art this summer. Fulland half-day summer camps offer a variety of fun, hands-on activities that encourage creative thinking, bold art-making and playful collaboration. Campers will enjoy art-filled experiences based on weekly themes as well as stories, songs and games. Children will explore various art mediums, such as pottery painting, watercolor, oil pastels, tempera paints, collage and clay sculpture in both guided and self-guided experiences.

Cost: Full day $275/ week, Half day $175/ week Dates/Times: M-F, June 14 – Aug. 13, Full day 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Half day 9:30 a.m. to noon Ages: 6-12, Coed


10137 E. Adamo Dr., #800b, Tampa 33619 813-833-1740; skyzone.com/tampa/programs/skycamp Sky Camp for ages 5-13 includes days of active play at Sky Zone on our Ninja Warrior Course, Free Climb, Sea of Trampolines and so much more. Accompanied by Sky Zone camp counselors, kids enjoy healthy physical fitness and fun including crafts, movies and science experiments. It’s hassle-free for parents. Drop off the kids and we’ll make sure they have the best time ever. Full-, half-day and full-week options and sibling discounts are available.

Cost: $35.99-$45.99/ day, $139.99-$179.99/ week Dates/Times: Every day school is out from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Ages: 5-13, Coed


Skycrest Christian School, 129 N. Belcher Road, Clearwater 33765 727-797-1186; souladventures.us Every day is a new adventure at Soul Adventures summer camp, which offers two exciting summer options. Adventure Camp for 10-15-year-olds includes off-campus outdoor activities such as kayaking, paddle boarding, biking and fishing. Jr. Adventure Camp for 5-9-year-olds will keep your child active during our fun-filled weeks.

Cost: Adventure Camp $285/week, Jr. Adventure Camp $168/week Date/Time: May 24-Aug. 6, 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Ages: Adventure Camp 10-15 and Jr. Adventure Camp 5-9, Coed


1376 Snell Isle Blvd. NE, St. Petersburg 33704 727-823-7969 or 727-709-0060; straphaelschool.net Structured activities throughout the day keep minds and bodies active with experienced staff at a 1:10 ratio. We have a grassy field for sports and water play, shaded and fenced playground, air conditioned gym for group activities and snacks and meals, all on a secure waterfront campus. Fulltime and part-time attendance is offered and fees are all inclusive at the ‘cool’ place to spend the ‘hot’ summer!

Cost: Full-time $175/ week, Part-time $45/day, $50 registration fee Date/Time: June 14 - July 30, 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., M-F Ages: 5-11, Coed


AR Workshop St. Petersburg, 2807 Dr. MLK Jr. St. N., St. Petersburg 33704 727-803-0189; arworkshop.com/stpetersburg This morning session camp is $195 per registrant and runs Monday-Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. each day. Our camps are designed for girls and boys ages 7-14. Kids will create 4 DIY youth projects and a DIY camp t-shirt over the course of the camp. We also offer an optional Friday halfday camp. Check our calendar to register!


6585 Simons Road, Zephyrhills 33541 813-361-6660; svbtenniscenter.com/summer-camps Regardless of your level, come and join our international team of coaches at the Sarah Vande Berg Tennis Center. From 6-year-old beginners to high performance players, we are here for your specific needs!

Cost: $195 Dates/Times: June 14 – Aug. 12, M-Th, 9:30 a.m. to noon Ages: 7-14, Coed

*Private lessons available Cost: Recreational: $400-$600/week, Competition Group: $600-$850/week Dates/Times: May 31 – Aug. 6, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., M-F, Full and Half Days Ages: 6 and older, Coed


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

Be a Happy Camper DELPHI 2021 SUMMER CAMP

6 Weeks of Incredible Fun! June 14th - July 23rd, each week filled with age appropriate activities for: Preschool - Ages 2-3 • Lower School - Ages 4-8 Elementary School - Ages 8-12 • Middle & High School - Ages 13-17

727-447-6385 www.delphifl.org APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com



TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

SUMMER CAMP DIRECTORY | special advertising section TAMPA MUSEUM OF ART – SUMMER ART CAMP Tampa Museum of Art, Cornelia Corbett Center 120 W. Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa 33602 813-421-8373; tampamuseum.org/summerartcamp

Children and teens exercise their creativity and imagination with hands-on activities themed around the Tampa Museum of Art’s permanent collection of antiquities, modern and contemporary art. With a variety of 2D and 3D mediums to choose from, campers connect with the art on view and create unique works of art.

Cost: $150-$175 Dates/Times: May 31 July 2, 9 a.m. to noon or 1-4 p.m. Ages: 6-17, Coed

TRADITIONAL TAEKWON-DO CENTER OF SOUTH TAMPA 3617 Henderson Blvd., Tampa 33609 813-350-9400; southtampataekwondo.com

Who wants to be a Ninja this summer? Kick, spin, jump and learn martial arts with our amazing black belt instructors. Other activities include fun field trips, arts and crafts, enrichment classes, Lego play, water slides, obstacle course fun and much more.

Cost: $175.00 per week, no registration and free uniform Dates/Times: May 31Aug. 6, 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Ages: 5-15, Coed


606 Valley View Ranch Road, Cloudland, GA 30731 706-862-2231; valleyviewranch.com Since 1954, this horse lovers’ paradise on top of Lookout Mountain offers 600 acres of scenic trails and panoramic views where all levels of riders will learn English and Western. Enrollment is limited to 50 girls and is open to ages 8-17. Spend up to six hours a day riding and caring for your OWN camp horse.

Cost: $2,050-$3,600 Dates/Times: Overnight, June 6 - Aug. 6 Ages: 8-17, Female

VIOLINS 4 JOY SUMMER VIOLIN CAMPS 1189 NE Cleveland St., Clearwater 33755 727-285-8535; violins4joy.com

Cost: $100-$225/week

Offered for school-aged children of all musical ability levels, the camps provide an opportunity for children to come together and grow as musicians and leaders. The programming is innovative, the repertoire is diverse and teachers are experienced educators who are experts in their musical instrument. As a bonus, the camp’s location is near one of America’s “Best Beaches.” Each camp will offer students opportunities to perform as soloists and as a group. For more details and to register, visit our website.

Ages: 5-14, Coed

Dates: June 7-11


330 Pauls Drive, Brandon 33511 813-417-5867; vosleryoungartistsstudio.com This workshop will introduce the young artist to a classical atelier program of instruction. Students will learn to draw through direct observation. Kerry Vosler, master instructor, will do frequent demonstrations and give regular instruction at the artist's easel. See website for more details about the Tampa Bay, Sarasota and McLean, Virginia workshops. Supplies included.

Cost: $320-$395/week Dates: March 15-18, June 7-11 and June 14-18 Ages: 12-18, Coed

WEB OF WISDOM SUMMER SCIENCE CAMP 5238 Mile Stretch Drive, Holiday 34690 727-389-4750; wowschools.org

At WOW science camp, children will learn about the Florida ecosystem through hands-on science labs and outdoor adventures. Students learn basic skills such as fishing, boating safety and animal identification. Field trip activities include snorkeling, fish sampling, kayaking and more.

Cost: $150/week Dates/Times: June 1 July 30, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. (camp activities 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.) Ages: K-8, Coed

YMCA OF GREATER ST. PETERSBURG SUMMER CAMP Multiple Locations 727-895-9622; stpeteymca.org/childcare/summer-camp

Summer Day Camp at the Y is an 8-week program that integrates exercise, play, STEM-based activities, field trips and more. Children can explore their favorite interests with our Specialty Camps featuring sports, outdoor adventures, cooking and more. Pair a one-week Specialty Camp with Day Camp for a full 8-week summer of fun and exploration at the Y!

Visit TampaBayParenting.com to view our full summer camp directory.

Cost/Ages: Starting at $150, ages 5-14 (Bardmoor, Jim & Heather Gills Y). Starting at $125, ages 5-12 (Childs Park Y, Lealman Exchange), Coed Dates: June 14 – Aug. 6

APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


Journeying Into a Life on the Spectrum by Tara Payor, Ph.D., photos provided by the Rahrig family

Saying no bad days is unrealistic. At times, they’re strung together. We can emerge from those valleys because we choose to focus on the light, no matter how dim. We choose to focus on the small victories, no matter how treacherous the climb. We choose to focus on love over fear because, no matter the trial, love is the most realistic, good way toward a thriving perseverance. Rachael and Andrew Rahrig’s journey with autism taught that small moments, be they tough or cheery, make up life— that unpredictable, tremendous terrain we walk each day.


Titus Rahrig is a happy, loving child with a great demeanor. Titus has autism. “He had lots of words and hit all the milestones,” recalled Andrew. By the time Titus was 18 months, the Rahrigs found themselves dancing between wonderings about autism and typical toddler behaviors. Ultimately, Titus’ regressions, loss of clarity and repetitive behaviors placed them on a two-year journey toward diagnosis. “As a dad, I was consumed with thoughts of ‘our son is diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder,’” Andrew says. Now, however, the Rahrigs approach autism with the ‘rhino concept’: “Rhinos run at 30 mph but only see 30 feet ahead,” Andrew explains. “Rhinos run without apprehension because they’re built for crashing through walls. It’s similar to parenting a child on the spectrum because we don’t know what Titus’ development will be like at 10 or at 30, but we keep running. We keep doing therapy. We keep doing what’s best for our child.” Titus, who celebrates his eighth birthday April 26, has parents who push early intervention. “We anchor ourselves in hope that his development takes leaps along the way,” says Andrew.


Titus recently earned student of the month at school. His days are full: attending an SDHC school for part of the day and then Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy for four hours. The Rahrigs believe fighting for a good team of people to support a child on the spectrum is key. Titus is limited in speech, and stimming (short for self-stimulation) is something ABA supports. “We want him to master both getting energy out through stimming and having a quiet body in public,” Andrew says. Though Titus can’t communicate he likes his programs, Andrew and Rachael can tell he works hard and continues mastering things. He’s adjusted well to his baby sister, Thea, who the family welcomed last November. Rachael shares: “A family who has a child with Down Syndrome encouraged us to try for a second child and I carry them with me as a model of what family can look like.”


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021


“Initially, I was depressed,” Andrew confesses. “I’d go to the parking lot and cry. I later realized laying down my vision of what fatherhood was supposed to look like was crucial for Titus.” Rachael, who grieved and processed differently, was Andrew’s rock, and the couple saw counselors together and individually. Professional support was a large stepping-stone toward present, brighter days. Art, prominent in Titus’ communication, also drew its way into the Rahrigs’ processing of life on the spectrum. Literature and a commissioned painting highlighted Andrew’s need for sketching a life outlined by dignity and pride. “Re-reading Hemingway’s ‘Old Man and the Sea,’ I thought about the pride I feel being Titus’ dad. Even when there are regressions, victory is in preserving our family’s dignity.” “Look Up,” a 5 -foot, 6 -inch painting by artist Paul Tepper, hangs in the Rahrig home. It’s a simultaneously private and communal way of understanding the family’s story.



The Rahrigs believe that openness about Titus having autism helps others relate to him: “We’re called to frame Titus in a way that makes our family relatable,” explains Andrew. But articulating how much time it takes operating in a world that is different can be exhausting. “Sometimes I just want to have brunch with a friend,” Rachael jokes, but insists that increasing understanding about autism is important. “We want people to know about behaviors like stimming so that they aren’t afraid to engage with us—to say things like, ‘Your son is beautiful.’”


Andrew and Rachael’s communities of care were negatively impacted by COVID-19. “Pandemic life stripped away things we relied on for stability,” Rachael says. A year later, they’ve found their cadence again—even entertaining new rhythms. Pandemic restrictions limited Andrew’s travel for a demanding corporate job and created a first-class opportunity to pursue an entrepreneurial dream. The couple started Members Only Craft Cocktails, a family project tapping into both their strengths. For extroverted Andrew, the socialization MOCC mixed up helped carry him through 2020.


Hemingway’s old man, Santiago, declared it well: “Now is the time to think of only one thing. That which I was born for.” Each Rahrig, like each of us, was born to be exactly who he/she is. We are individuals—not necessarily simple in a world favoring sameness. Some days, accepting and embracing the great parts of our unique selves is easy. Other days, it’s all shades of hard. Yet, canvased across all of our lives are daily opportunities to find ease and joy. Parents: ease into eroding bedrock expectations about what— who—any child should be. Then, both old and young can find joy in the unpredictable, tremendous terrain we pave and call a life.

SERVICES: Learn more about CARD—the Center for Autism and Related Studies at USF card-usf.fmhi.usf.edu/index.html SUPPORT: Purchases at Bowtism, started by a Tampa mom whose nonverbal, autistic daughter inspired the brand, support autism awareness bowtism.com GARNISH: Shake up joy with Members Only Craft Cocktails www.membersonlycraftcocktails.com APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


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When to Visit a Pediatric Emergency Center by Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital staff, photo provided by Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital

A child’s injury or severe illness can be scary for parents, especially if it requires a 911 call or visit to a pediatric emergency center. Danielle Mercurio, D.O., an emergency medicine physician at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital, explains how to handle and prepare for an emergency. First, plan ahead by knowing where the nearest emergency center is located. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, find out whether the emergency center combines patients of all ages or has a separate care area for children to ensure your child will be away from others who may have/or been exposed to COVID-19. Also, it’s important to consider that in some emergencies, it may be better to call 911 rather than driving, because paramedics can begin care before arriving at the hospital.

DR. MERCURIO RECOMMENDS BRINGING YOUR CHILD INTO A PEDIATRIC EMERGENCY CENTER IMMEDIATELY FOR THE FOLLOWING REASONS: ● An infant who is less than 60 days old with a rectal temperature higher than 100.4 °F ● A child who has trouble breathing, demonstrates labored or fast breathing, or if you see their ribs and neck muscles prominently between breaths ● Any child less than 5 with intractable vomiting (they cannot tolerate any f luids) for more than 4-8 hours with or without diarrhea and reduced urine output compared to the day before ● Any child with altered mental status (child is unable to respond to you) ● Any child having seizures without a history of seizure disorder ● Any child experiencing symptoms of anaphylaxis (a severe allergic reaction) such as throat swelling, coughing, wheezing, trouble breathing, rash, vomiting, diarrhea or fainting just after eating new foods or being stung by an insect ● Bleeding that won’t stop despite holding pressure for about 15 minutes ● Any injury that looks obviously deformed or swollen. Sometimes kids have broken bones but hide it well. If you notice your child is not using their hands, arms or legs, they likely need an X-ray. ● Any male child or teenager with severe pain, with or without swelling, in the testicle ● Any female child or teenager with sudden onset, severe, one-sided pelvic pain ● Any child who cannot jump up and down because of abdominal pain, especially if pain is worse on the right side and accompanied by fever, vomiting or loss of appetite


● Any child with severe headache, severe abdominal pain or one who is not engaging normally with the family and instead is sleeping excessively or refusing to drink f luids ● If a child swallows an object, especially chemicals or medication, and is having any difficulty breathing, swallowing or speaking. If a child swallowed a potentially poisonous substance but does not have symptoms, you should still immediately call the Poison Control Center at 800-222-1222. ● Any immunocompromised child with fever higher than 100.4 (patients on chemotherapy, receiving bone marrow transplantation, sickle cell anemia, neutropenia, spherocytosis, those without a spleen and those taking many immune-modulator medications)


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

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How YOU Can Help Put an End to Child Abuse and Neglect by Laura Byrne

We’ve heard it time and time again…it takes a village to raise a child. It’s true. And just like in any village, troubles can arise. That’s when we band together as a community to help lift those who need it, especially our children. Sometimes this means doing things that aren’t so comfortable, like reporting suspected abuse or neglect, even if that suspected abuse is being committed by somebody we may know or even love. In April, our nation recognizes Child Abuse Prevention Month to help raise awareness about reporting abuse and joining together to ensure we have programs and strategies in place to prevent abuse from occurring in the first place. The theme for this year’s month-long recognition is Thriving Children and Families: Prevention with Purpose.

to recognize our role. Not everyone knows this, but every community member is a mandatory reporter—which means if you suspect child abuse, you are required by law to report it. Certain people are required additionally—like teachers, physicians, social workers, daycare workers and law enforcement officers.

TBP: Do you have to know for certain something is going on?

JE: You don’t have to know for certain that something terrible has gone on. If you happen to notice the child next door or down the street all of a sudden has injuries that don’t seem to be easily explained… they’re cowering when they’re around a particular parent … we all have that gut check. If something We sat down with her for a Zoom condoesn’t seem right and you feel like that versation to learn more about how child maybe is at risk for being abused, you the community—our village—can can report it. It’s anonymous, so nobody is come together to support and going to know who reported it and second of all, protect children. you don’t have to be certain. As long as you explain, ‘well here’s what I observed’ or ‘here’s why I believe this’ or ‘here is what my daughter observed.’ They will ask you a series of questions. They have a form. The burden is not on you to make that determination. You are just the one who is passing along the information you have.

One key community player in this effort is the Honorable Katherine G. Essrig—who from her bench in the 13th Judicial Circuit’s family dependency and child welfare court and her volunteer roles in the community, is helping to advocate as a voice for the voiceless.



e E ssrig

TBP: You became aware early on that as a judge you have a platform beyond your role as a judge in the courtroom, a role when you convene different groups, particularly groups with different ideas and approaches. Judge Essrig: I became aware early on that you do have a voice and that you do need to recognize that and decide when you want to use it forcefully and when not. I learned how much I liked dealing with families and trying to help families—in particular, children—and how to have all of those things coalesce such that hopefully on some days and some ways, I’m able to make a difference and we’re able to make things better.

TBP: The blue pinwheel is a symbol of the movement that every child deserves a great childhood. Let’s talk about that. JE: The pinwheels remind us that we need to support families. We need to be aware of and do what we can to acknowledge that there is child abuse in our community and be sure


TampaBayParenting.com APRIL 2021

TBP: The Child Abuse Hotline, 1-800-96 ABUSE (22873), has not only saved the lives of children, but families too? JE: I have to tell you, after having worked in this field for a long time, I see a lot of parents, legal guardians and caregivers, whose lives have been transformed by this process too. They don’t necessarily relish the intrusion in their lives initially, but a lot of times, these are parents and caregivers who themselves often had trauma in their history. We now know so much more than we used to know about the role of trauma. We don’t just say go to some class, go get yourself a solution to the problem; we really delve into the specifics of a parent’s case plan or a parent’s issues.

TBP: This is not how it was always done when it comes to child welfare? JE: The reality is we looked upon certain parents as bad people… it’s not the way to do things and now we know that. That’s not to say everybody is treated perfectly by our system

today because they’re not, but we understand far better today than we did then. We have to look at them as people and understand that often times, they’re not bad people. They may have done something that… might have been a criminal act, might have been an abusive act… but let’s look at their history, let’s look at how they were raised as children, let’s look at the trauma they had in their lives and let’s try to provide them with some healing and some services that will guide them. It’s not just a question of whisking that child away from this abusive environment and helping the child, it’s a question of wrapping the services around the entire family to the extent we can. Don’t get me wrong, there are those horrific cases, and we can conjure up the images of that we know from the past, but for the vast majority of our parents, we recognize we need to help them as well, we need to help them be better parents, give them the skills they need to not engage in those types of behaviors.

TBP: You’ve mentioned that some of the families who come into your courtroom never experienced parental love or caring in their own lives. JE: It’s such an important part of you growing up to be a resilient and self-sufficient person and a lot of parents in our system didn’t have that. If you can give them that feeling of support and wholeness, you can really transform them and the whole trajectory of their life and their family’s lives.

TBP: Do you think there is sometimes a reluctance to report suspected abuse out of fear they’ll break up a family?

Every com" munity member is

a mandatory reporter-which means if you suspect child abuse, you are required by law to report it.

Most of what we see—and I don’t mean to minimize if a child has been harmed in any way—but a vast majority of what we see is the result of a parent or legal guardian or custodial guardian having substance abuse and/or mental health problems.

TBP: By healing the entire family unit, you are essentially working to break the cycle of abuse? JE: I can’t tell you how many parents I’ve seen that started out angry at me, angry at the system—angry and maybe feeling completely forlorn and without hope—who have persevered because one thing I’ve learned… I don’t have a magic pill to cure all of society’s ills, but I can tell you the greatest motivator I’ve ever seen is the potential loss of or the potential reunification with one’s child.


JE: Often times, people are a little reluctant to report it when it’s somebody close to them, when it’s a friend or neighbor or family member for fear of disrupting a family or have[ing] a child displaced or causing friction. You are there to heal and to help and ultimately if there is something, if there is abuse occurring, that it will ultimately end in the child’s benefit.

TBP: What else can we do as community members to help break the cycle of abuse and neglect?

JE: Part of it is just awareness. If you want to be more than aware, you can become a guardian ad litem, you can volunteer, you can be a mentor, you can be a tutor, you can volunteer at one of our neighborhood resource centers. Start with our Children’s Board. Call them and say I just really want to help. Most of our community members have no idea [about] the vast array of programs and services that exist. People in need aren’t always aware of them and people who want to volunteer to help aren’t always aware of them.

You can take away your home, you can take away your worldly possessions, you can even take away one’s spouse or significant other and all of that has a huge impact, but nothing, nothing has the same impact as removing one’s child, knowing one’s child might be removed or knowing you have a chance to get back with your child.

ChildrensBoard.org | 813-229-2884


Learn more about the services provided by the Children’s Board of Hillsborough County and find a Children's Board Family Resource Center near you:

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Children’s Board Family resourCe Centers There are seven Children’s Board Family Resource Centers that are strategically placed throughout Hillsborough County that offer universal services at no cost to families in Hillsborough County.

Centers offer the following: ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓

Developmental Playgroups Developmental Screening Tutoring Car Seat Safety Classes CPR & First Aid Certification Mobile Clinic Services including: Child Well Care, Immunizations, Vision & Hearing Screenings, Dental Family Service Coordination Ready to Learn Assistance Healthcare Enrollment Assistance Family Counseling Information & Referrals Variety of Center-Driven Activities

Please call your neighborhood Family Resource Center to sign up for supports today! Brandon | 813-740-4634 Central Tampa | 813-204-1741 Plant City | 813-752-8700 North Tampa | 813-558-1877 South County | 813-641-5600 Temple Terrace | 813-435-3032 Town ‘N Country | 813-356-1703


To adhere with CDC guidelines space is limited and services are provided on a first come first serve basis. APRIL 2021 TampaBayParenting.com


320 W. Kennedy, Ste. 220 Tampa, FL 33606


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