Here we go, summertime is almost upon us, the kids can almost taste it. Spring sports are starting to wrap up, teachers are sending home the leftover school supplies that instantly become art supplies at my house and we’re all filling our calendars with activities to keep the kids busy these next three months.

Our oldest has gone to overnight camp the last couple of years and absolutely loves it. This year he is also going to expand his livestock judging skills with an overnight camp at Texas A&M. We set up a “Grandma Camp” with both sets of grandparents for the kids to each spend a week with. And in between all of that excitement, they are right here in Seguin every day at the Just for Kids Summer camp, which they love.

I started going to camp when I was 6 years old. I was in Girl Scouts for all of elementary school and I remember the first camp I went to was in Glen Rose. It was a Girl Scout-run camp, but it did not have the amenities that some kids are accustomed to today. We were in the woods, and our cabins consisted of a large wooden platform with a canvas tent and about a dozen cots spread throughout. There was no electricity in the cabin, and the bathhouse was just across the way.

I remember having to take my own camping gear including cooking utensils and a canteen. We would make our meals by the campfire and spent the week exploring and learning about the wilderness. I don’t remember too much more than those details, but it definitely laid a solid foundation for what I wanted to do with my summers going forward.

Next year both of our boys will be old enough to attend overnight camp, and our youngest son has been waiting for that day for more than three years now. Their days are filled with activities and bonding with other kids their age, without mom and dad watching over them, which gives them an even bigger sense of freedom.

The youth in our community have so many options when it comes to summer activities. The Irma Lewis Seguin Outdoor Learning Center also hosts a daytime summer camp with exciting activities for all ages. The Seguin Public Library has a calendar full of special events hosted in their beautiful location. Many churches host their annual vacation bible school that adults and kids look forward to all year. The list goes on and on.

One of my favorite parts about sending my son to summer camp, is that they don’t allow the kids to bring any electronics including a digital camera. Therefore, we purchase a disposable camera that we send off for a week to have printed. It’s that little detail, that has gone untouched by time, that brings a smile to our faces as we go to pick up the pictures and he gets to see how they turned out.

The one part that I do not look forward to, unpacking a weeks worth of dirty laundry.

Elizabeth Engelhardt is the publisher for the Seguin Gazette.

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