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Who knew learning could be so much fun?

Created date

April 27th, 2009

Your grandkids will love this summer camp

By Mark Abromaitis It s only the spring, but NorthBay, an environmental and educational camping complex located at the headwaters of the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland, is already preparing for the hundreds of summer campers that will descend upon its scenic waterfront campus. "We spend all year preparing the grounds and getting ready for these camps, so this is an especially exciting time for us," says George Comfort, NorthBay s executive director. "Each year we put a lot of work into reviewing our programs and revising our offerings so our campers can have the best experience possible with the style of camp and activities they want the most." ' Something for every kind of camper Run by the Erickson Foundation, NorthBay opened its doors in 2005 and plays host to both a traditional summer camp where children can explore a variety of indoor and outdoor interests, and more in-depth "specialty camps." "No matter your child s skill level or areas of interest, we have something for them," says Joseph Antonio, the summer camp manager. "Whether it s athletics, the outdoors, or something like science or biology, we offer it all in a safe, fun, and educational atmosphere." Campers in the traditional NorthBay summer program choose up to three activities from a lengthy list that they would like to focus on during the week. Activities include paddling, sailing, swimming, filmmaking, rock-climbing, extreme science, dance, drama, archery, mountain biking, cooking, and arts and crafts. "We offer camper-specific instruction," Antonio explains. "As the campers skills progress throughout the week, they will attend lessons being taught at their individual skill level, regardless of age." Out and about This year, NorthBay s specialty camps will offer more in-depth experiences for children who have a specific passion or interest. For adventurous kids looking for an outdoor challenge, 16 campers will head out on a Trailblazers trip. Under the supervision of an experienced education staff, the campers will hike and camp along the trails of western Maryland and West Virginia. They will also climb the peaks at Seneca Rocks and go white water rafting. For children who are interested in athletics, NorthBay will offer two sport-specific camps field hockey and lacrosse. In these camps, the sports fundamentals and even some advanced techniques will be taught by both college and professional coaches. College standouts Morgan Ragan and Julie Eller will head up the field hockey camp, and Tano Arrogancia, a coach with the Washington Bayhawks professional lacrosse team, will lead the lacrosse camp. Exercising the mind For the science and nature buff, the NorthBay education staff will host the Marine Science camp. This camp will provide youth with a hands-on experience as they study the Chesapeake Bay and its surrounding environment. Campers will hunt for turtles and catch-and-release fish, scuba dive, and take part in other aquatic adventures. Finally, in the Athletes and Authors program, campers will develop reading and writing skills centered around athletic literature. They will also learn the fundamentals of various sports while focusing on good sportsmanship, teamwork, and effective communication. Comfort says, "No matter the skill or lesson for the day, at the heart of it, NorthBay s overall mission is showing young people that their attitudes and actions have a lasting impact on their future, the environment, and the people around them." For more information about all the NorthBay camps, go to: '